University of Oulu

Lyche Solheim, A., Tolvanen, A., Skarbøvik, E., Kløve, B., Collentine, D., Kronvang, B., Blicher-Mathiesen, G., Hashemi, F., Juutinen, A., Hellsten, S., Pouta, E., & Vermaat, J. E. (2023). Land-use change in a Nordic future towards bioeconomy: A methodological framework to compare and merge stakeholder and expert opinions on qualitative scenarios. In CATENA (Vol. 228, p. 107100).

Land-use change in a Nordic future towards bioeconomy : a methodological framework to compare and merge stakeholder and expert opinions on qualitative scenarios

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Author: Lyche Solheim, Anne1; Tolvanen, Anne2; Skarbøvik, Eva3;
Organizations: 1Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA), Økernveien 94, 0579 Oslo, Norway
2Natural Resources Institute (LUKE), Latokartanonkaari 9, FI-00790 Helsinki, Finland
3Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research (NIBIO), Division of Environment and Natural Resources, P.O. Box 115, 1431 Ås, Norway
4University of Oulu, P.O. Box 8000, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland
5Swedish Agricultural University, Box 707, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sverige
6Aarhus University, Department of Ecoscience, C.F. Møllers Allé 3, 8000 Aarhus C, Denmark
7Aarhus University, Department of agroecology, Blichers Allé 20, 8830 Tjele, Denmark
8Aarhus University Interdisciplinary Centre for climate change (iCLIMATE), Department of Agroecology, Blichers Alle 20, 8830 Tjele, Denmark
9Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), P.O.Box 413, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland
10Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Faculty of Environmental Sciences and Natural Resource Management, (MINA-NMBU), P.O. Box 5003, 1432 Ås, Norway
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 2.7 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2023
Publish Date: 2023-10-30


Future development of bioeconomy is expected to change land use in the Nordic countries in agriculture and forestry. The changes are likely to affect water quality due to changes in nutrient run-off. To explore possible future land-use changes and their environmental impact, stakeholders and experts from four Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden) were consulted. The methodological framework for the consultation was to identify a set of relevant land-use attributes for agriculture and forestry, e.g. tillage conservation effort, fertiliser use, animal husbandry, biogas production from manure, forestry management options, and implementation of mitigation measures, including protection of sensitive areas. The stakeholders and experts provided their opinions on how these attributes might change in terms of their environmental impacts on water quality given five Nordic bioeconomic scenarios (sustainability, business as usual, self-sufficiency, cities first and maximizing economic growth). A compilation methodology was developed to allow comparing and merging the stakeholder and expert opinions for each attribute and scenario. The compiled opinions for agriculture and forestry suggest that the business-as-usual scenario may slightly decrease the current environmental impact for most attributes due to new technologies, but that the sustainability scenario would be the only option to achieve a clear environmental improvement. In contrast, for the self-sufficiency scenario, as well as the maximum growth scenario, a deterioration of the environment and water quality was expected for most of the attributes. The results from the stakeholder consultations are used as inputs to models for estimating the impact of the land-use attributes and scenarios on nutrient run-off from catchments in the Nordic countries (as reported in other papers in this special issue). Furthermore, these results will facilitate policy level discussions concerning how to facilitate the shift to bioeconomy with increasing biomass exploitation without deteriorating water quality and ecological status in Nordic rivers and lakes.

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Series: Catena
ISSN: 0341-8162
ISSN-E: 1872-6887
ISSN-L: 0341-8162
Volume: 228
Article number: 107100
DOI: 10.1016/j.catena.2023.107100
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1172 Environmental sciences
Funding: This paper was supported by the Nordic Centre of Excellence ‘BIOWATER’, funded by NordForsk under Project No. 82263.
Dataset Reference: Data will be made available on request.
Copyright information: © 2023 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (