Land-Use Change, Carbon Sequestration and Poverty Alleviation

Lipper, L. and Cavatassi, R. (2004) Land-Use Change, Carbon Sequestration and Poverty Alleviation. Environmental Management, 33 (1). S374-S387.

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In this article, we seek to identify where the greatest potential for synergies between carbon sequestration and poverty alleviation lie and ways they can be enhanced. We assess the amount and eligibility criteria of sequestration payment sources to developing countries. Many land-use changes accessible to low-income land users are potentially competitive in a market where payments are likely to range between between $11 to $15 per carbon ton sequestered. We present a conceptual framework of land-use decision-making to assess the potential for sequestration adoption among the poor. The determinants of adoption vary according to the impact of adoption on the returns to productive factors in the absence of any payment for sequestration. Where sequestration leads to a decrease in returns, the key determinant is the return to sequestration and labor, which are driven by the potential sequestration supply per unit land area and labor-use requirements. When sequestration adoption leads to an increase in returns, barriers to land-use change are present, which is frequently the case for the poor. Adoption is determined by the capacity of sequestration payments to overcome constraints. Barrier removal may involve designing payments to overcome risk or investment constraints, or wider institutional reform. Sequestration values may be insufficient to cover costs of institutional reform, requiring incorporation into wider development programs. A survey of results from empirical studies lend support to the analysis. We conclude with an assessment of transaction cost impacts on sequestration adoption among the poor, and how these can be addressed.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: The authors are deeply grateful to David Cooper for insightful comments and Irini Maltsoglou for research assistance. The usual disclaimers apply
Uncontrolled Keywords: Carbon sequestration - Land use - Land-use change - Poverty alleviation - Technology adoption
Author Affiliation: Economic and Social Department Agriculture and, Economic Development Analysis Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome, Italy
Subjects: Atmosperic Science > Climatology
Soil Science and Microbiology > Soil Sciences
Crop Improvement
Divisions: General
Depositing User: Mr. SanatKumar Behera
Date Deposited: 25 Feb 2012 05:56
Last Modified: 25 Feb 2012 05:56
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