Recent revolutionary changes in European agricultural policies imply dramatic shifts in future land use needs. Even a superficial examination of recent trends would suggest that large parts of current agricultural land will not be needed in the future, and the idea of a land surplus in the European Union has been repeated more insistently in recent literature (Edwards, 1986; Lee, 1987; North, 1988; inter alia). However, some authors argue that, with declining profitability, the removal of inputs and resources will result in a less intensive production process and significant areas of land are unlikely to leave agricultural production (Bowers, 1988; Harvey and Whitby, 1988; Harvey, 1991; Swinbank, 1992). The importance of assessing the degree of pressure placed on agricultural land in the medium term must not be underestimated. Land is a non-renewable resource and, as a result, land use planning is long-term in nature. In addition, land use demand changes incrementally because of rigidities and inertia. There is consequently a lag between the setting and implementation of a policy and its effect. As a result, accurate predictions of land use trends have an immediate and immense value to setting good policy. This paper presents the results of forecasts for land use change in the EU-91 to the year 2020. The study addresses the need of policy makers to acquire information about the future implications of current land use trends, by developing an econometric model to forecast future land use. Because of the more appropriate methodology adopted, the forecasts of land use change estimated in this study


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