How much does prior experience of climate change impacts influence perception of risk? The case of forest landowners in the Northwoods, USA

Authors: Alexandra Paige Fischer*, University of Michigan, Riva Denny, University of Michigan
Topics: Human-Environment Geography, Sustainability Science, Global Change
Keywords: Climate change, adaptation, forests, individuals and households, quantitative methods
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Day: 4/7/2021
Start / End Time: 3:05 PM / 4:20 PM
Room: Virtual 44
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Adaptation to climate change at the individual level, requires observing the effects of climate change, but how well do people actually see those effects, let alone recognize them for what they are? In this analysis we compare private forest landowners’ perceptions of four climate change related forest impacts, as measured by a mail survey, with measures of those forest impacts from aerial forest surveys. We consider the accuracy of forest owners’ observations across the four impacts, in conjunction with impact characteristics and landowner demographics, and investigate the ways that the accuracy of landowners’ observations influence their forest management practices. We are particularly interested in how the impacts’ characteristics might influence the likelihood that landowners have noticed them.

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