An area of interest is defined by stakeholders who wish to jointly manage their lands and require a Management Unit Control Plan (MUCP) to estimate the costs of clearing and controlling invasive alien plants- A.
In addition to clearing and control, stakeholders may wish to explore the opportunities for cost-recovery by utilising the invasive alien plants an develop a Management Unit Control and Utilisation Plan (MUCUP)- B.
The area of interest should be spatially divided the finest scale lmanagement unit required, and these are termed compartments. The mangement unit control and utilisation plan (MUCUP) for the area of interest will define costs for treating and controlloing invasive alien plants and the cost-recovery from biomass utilisation.
Spatial data can provide a map of above ground biomass, but this needs to be combined with identification of invasive alien plant species distribution in order to identify the invasive plant biomass requiring clearing and control, while being able to distinguish indigenous plants that should be preserved and/or protected.
Value added industries can utilise the invasive alien biomass and provide valuable wood-based products to society (ie timber, poles, mulch, firewood, wood pellets, electricity, biochar). Feasibility of value added industries is strongly influenced by the cost of biomass supply. Therefore the harvesting, transport and logistics needs careful consideration. The proximity of roads determines the accessible biomass of alien plants invasions, and the topography limits the amount that can be harvested without undue cost and environmental damage.Slopes of <200 limit machinery (tractor, chipper) and therefore harvestability.
Viable value added industries are those that break-even or generate financial profit. EBIT measures the profit a company generates from its operations, making it synonymous with “operating profit.” By ignoring tax and interest expenses, it focuses solely on a company’s ability to generate earnings from operations, ignoring variables such as the tax burden and capital structure. The feasibility of individual business ventures will have to be determined, but the EBIT margin should be positive. In this example, an EBIT that is 20% of the revenue from product sales is used as the benchmark for profitability of value added industries. Returning these profits to reduce the costs of clearing and control can reduce the overall costs of land restoration. In addition, these value added industries provide jobs and skills in the environmental goods and services sector and contribute to the growing bio-economy.
Several decision support tools have been developed to enable a MUCUP to be develop for any area of interest in South Africa. Access these tools here…