Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Rent Seeking and the Smoke and Mirrors Game in the Creation of Forest Sector Carbon Credits: An Example from British Columbia

Contents:

Author Info

  • G. Cornelis van Kooten
  • Tim Bogle
  • Frans P. de Vries

Abstract

From a cost standpoint and as demonstrated in this paper, it is beneficial to permit forest-sector carbon offsets in lieu of carbon dioxide emissions reduction. Such offsets play a role in voluntary markets and Europe’s Emission Trading System. However, problems related to additionality, leakages, duration and impermanence, high transaction costs, and governance raise important questions about the validity of most carbon offset credits from forestry. Using data for a forest estate in south-eastern British Columbia owned by the Natural Conservancy of Canada (NCC), we construct a forest management model to demonstrate that the planned NCC management program yields questionable forest carbon offsets. NCC management results in slightly less annual carbon sequestration than leaving the forest as wilderness, but sustainable commercial management of the site sequesters between 8 and 270 thousand tonnes of CO2 more per year than NCC management. Because commercial exploitation was the counterfactual used to justify the NCC carbon offsets, offsets were subsequently sold to non-arms-length buyers, and numbers of carbon offsets are highly sensitive to assumptions, one can only conclude that the carbon offsets generated by this (and probably many other) forest conservation projects are simply spurious.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://web.uvic.ca/~repa/publications/REPA%20working%20papers/WorkingPaper2012-06.pdf
File Function: Final version, 2012
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Victoria, Department of Economics, Resource Economics and Policy Analysis Research Group in its series Working Papers with number 2012-06.

as in new window
Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rep:wpaper:2012-06

Contact details of provider:
Postal: P.O. Box 1700, STN CSC, Victoria, B.C., V8W 2Y2
Phone: (250) 721-8532
Fax: (250) 721-6214
Web page: http://web.uvic.ca/~repa/
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords: climate change and forestry; forest carbon offsets; forest conservation; REDD;

Find related papers by JEL classification:

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Couture, Stéphane & Reynaud, Arnaud, 2011. "Forest management under fire risk when forest carbon sequestration has value," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(11), pages 2002-2011, September.
  2. Sathaye, Jayant & Andrasko, Kenneth & Chan, Peter, 2011. "Emissions scenarios, costs, and implementation considerations of REDD-plus programs," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 16(04), pages 361-380, August.
  3. Bosetti, Valentina & Rose, Steven K., 2011. "Reducing carbon emissions from deforestation and forest degradation: issues for policy design and implementation," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 16(04), pages 357-360, August.
  4. Dieter Helm, 2003. "The Assessment: Climate-Change Policy," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(3), pages 349-361.
  5. Ann Ingerson, 2011. "Carbon storage potential of harvested wood: summary and policy implications," Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change, Springer, vol. 16(3), pages 307-323, March.
  6. Fischer, Carolyn, 2004. "The complex interactions of markets for endangered species products," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 926-953, September.
  7. Bosetti, Valentina & Lubowski, Ruben & Golub, Alexander & Markandya, Anil, 2011. "Linking reduced deforestation and a global carbon market: implications for clean energy technology and policy flexibility," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 16(04), pages 479-505, August.
  8. Henk Folmer & G. Cornelis van Kooten, 2006. "Deforestation," Working Papers 2006-06, University of Victoria, Department of Economics, Resource Economics and Policy Analysis Research Group.
  9. Carolyn Fischer, 2010. "Does Trade Help or Hinder the Conservation of Natural Resources?," Review of Environmental Economics and Policy, Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 4(1), pages 103-121, Winter.
  10. Rose, Steven K. & Sohngen, Brent, 2011. "Global forest carbon sequestration and climate policy design," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 16(04), pages 429-454, August.
  11. G. Cornelis van Kooten & Robert A. Schipper, 2002. "Forest Conservation in Costa Rica when Nonuse Benefits are Uncertain but Rising," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 84(1), pages 150-160.
  12. Kurt Niquidet & Brad Stennes & G.Cornelis van Kooten, 2008. "Bio-energy from Mountain Pine Beetle Timber and Forest Residuals: The Economics Story," Working Papers 2008-11, University of Victoria, Department of Economics, Resource Economics and Policy Analysis Research Group.
  13. Dieter Helm, 2010. "Government failure, rent-seeking, and capture: the design of climate change policy," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 26(2), pages 182-196, Summer.
  14. Brant Abbott & G. Cornelis van Kooten, 2008. "Can Domestication of Wildlife Lead to Conservation? The Economics of Tiger Farming in China," Working Papers 2009-01, University of Victoria, Department of Economics, Resource Economics and Policy Analysis Research Group.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. G. Cornelis van Kooten & Craig Johnston & Zhen Xu, 2012. "Economics of Forest Carbon Sequestration," Working Papers 2012-04, University of Victoria, Department of Economics, Resource Economics and Policy Analysis Research Group.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:rep:wpaper:2012-06. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (G.C. van Kooten).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.