Uglis, J*., Jęczmyk, A., Sikora, J. and Wartecka-Ważyńska, A. 2019. Economic Aspects of Forest Education for General Public in Poland. A Case Study of Promotional Forest Complexes. Baltic Forestry 25(1): 152-160.

   Forest plays an important role in human life. Nowadays, a significant development of tourism and education can be observed in forests. For many visitors, forests are the destination of tourist trips. However, in order to develop tourism successfully there, the forest areas have to be properly developed. Recreation and relax in forest can become an additional source of income for forest districts and their administrative entities. This activity constitutes an important source of income for the local economy through the costs incurred by visitors for the journey to the forest for educational and recreational purposes. Within the framework of this institution there are Promotional Forest Complexes (PFCs), which task is to realize the social functions of forests. In Poland, in 2016, there were 25 Promotional Forest Complexes (PFCs). PFCs are an original Polish idea for promoting ecological forestry. Foresters within PFCs conduct various activities, including promoting sustainable forest economy, supporting scientific research and providing forest education for general public. The educational activity of PFCs is financed by two sources of funding: internal (own) financing and external financing. The main source of financing education in PFCs is the own resources of the forest districts. It should be noted that the use of forest education for the general public conducted by PFCs is free of charge for the general public. The aim of this paper is to show the forms of forest education in Poland, as well as its economic aspects. It also presents the expenditures and benefits drawn from the development of the educational function of forests. The authors attempt to evaluate the prospective cost of visitors’ attendance in these areas.

Keywords: forest education, forest function, Promotional Forest Complexes, tourist and recreational forest functions, economic aspects, Poland