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Addressing additionality in REDD contracts when formal enforcement is absent

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  • Cordero Salas, Paula
  • Roe, Brian
  • Sohngen, Brent
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    Abstract

    The success of reducing carbon emissions from deforestation and forest degradation depends on the design of an effective financial mechanism that provides landholders sufficient incentives to participate and provide additional and permanent carbon offsets. This paper proposes self-enforcing contracts as a potential solution for the constraints in formal contract enforcement derived from the stylized facts of reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation implementation in developing countries. It characterizes the optimal self-enforcing contract and provides the parameters under which private enforcement is sustainable when the seller type that is, the opportunity cost of the land, is private information. The optimal contract suggests that the seller with low opportunity cost receives a positive enforceable payment equivalent to the information rents required for self-selection, in contrast to when the buyer knows the seller type in which case all payments should be made contingent on additional forest conservation. When the buyer does not know the seller type, a first-best self-enforcing contract can be implemented if forest conservation is sufficiently productive. If the gains from forest conservation are small, self-enforcing contracts may induce some carbon sequestration by some or all seller types, depending on the value of the shared gains of the relationship.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 6502.

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    Date of creation: 01 Jun 2013
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    Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6502

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    Keywords: Climate Change Mitigation and Green House Gases; Contract Law; Debt Markets; Common Property Resource Development; Forestry;

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

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    1. JunJie Wu & Bruce A. Babcock, 1996. "Contract Design for the Purchase of Environmental Goods from Agriculture," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 78(4), pages 935-945.
    2. Paula Cordero Salas & Brian E. Roe, 2012. "The Role of Cooperation and Reciprocity in Structuring Carbon Sequestration Contracts in Developing Countries," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 94(2), pages 411-418.
    3. Claassen, Roger & Cattaneo, Andrea & Johansson, Robert, 2008. "Cost-effective design of agri-environmental payment programs: U.S. experience in theory and practice," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(4), pages 737-752, May.
    4. W. Bentley MacLeod, 2006. "Reputations, Relationships and the Enforcement of Incomplete Contracts," CESifo Working Paper Series 1730, CESifo Group Munich.
    5. Ferraro, Paul J., 2008. "Asymmetric information and contract design for payments for environmental services," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(4), pages 810-821, May.
    6. MacLeod, W Bentley & Malcomson, James M, 1989. "Implicit Contracts, Incentive Compatibility, and Involuntary Unemployment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 447-80, March.
    7. Jeffrey M. Peterson & Richard N. Boisvert, 2004. "Incentive-Compatible Pollution Control Policies under Asymmetric Information on Both Risk Preferences and Technology," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 86(2), pages 291-306.
    8. Andrew Moxey & Ben White & Adam Ozanne, 1999. "Efficient Contract Design for Agri-Environment Policy," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(2), pages 187-202.
    9. Spulber, Daniel F., 1988. "Optimal environmental regulation under asymmetric information," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 163-181, March.
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