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Potential to Sequester Carbon in Canadian Forests: Some Economic Considerations


  • G. Cornelis van Kooten
  • Louise M. Arthur
  • W. R. Wilson


This paper examines the potential role of reforestation policies in reducing Canada's contribution to atmospheric carbon dioxide. The results indicate sequestering carbon by reforestation of forestlands may be a cost-effective means for Canada to offset domestic emissions of carbon dioxide from other sources, and that planting forests on marginal agricultural lands also warrants consideration. But these policies need to be compared with alternatives for reducing carbon dioxide emissions to determine their relative cost effectiveness. The authors find that reforestation is more costly than policies to increase the fuel efficiency of automobiles, but economically more efficient than converting vehicles to natural gas. Finally, they demonstrate that, because of its vast forests, Canada is a net carbon sink.

Suggested Citation

  • G. Cornelis van Kooten & Louise M. Arthur & W. R. Wilson, 1992. "Potential to Sequester Carbon in Canadian Forests: Some Economic Considerations," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 18(2), pages 127-138, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpp:issued:v:18:y:1992:i:2:p:127-138

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. John Whalley & Randall Wigle, 1991. "Cutting CO2 Emissions: The Effects of Alternative Policy Approaches," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1), pages 109-124.
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    Cited by:

    1. G. Cornelis van Kooten & Susanna Laaksonen-Craig & Yichuan Wang, 2007. "Costs of Creating Carbon Offset Credits via Forestry Activities: A Meta-Regression Analysis," Working Papers 2007-03, University of Victoria, Department of Economics, Resource Economics and Policy Analysis Research Group.
    2. Robert N. Stavins, 1998. "A Methodological Investigation of Cost of Carbon Sequestration," Journal of Applied Economics, Universidad del CEMA, vol. 1, pages 231-277, November.
    3. Ariste, Ruolz & Lasserre, Pierre, 2001. "La gestion optimale d’une forêt exploitée pour son potentiel de diminution des gaz à effet de serre et son bois," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 77(1), pages 27-51, mars.
    4. Ken Stollery, 2001. "Climate Change and Optimal Rotation in a Flammable Forest," Working Papers 01001, University of Waterloo, Department of Economics, revised Jan 2001.
    5. Gunter, W. D. & Wong, S. & Cheel, D. B. & Sjostrom, G., 1998. "Large CO2 Sinks: Their role in the mitigation of greenhouse gases from an international, national (Canadian) and provincial (Alberta) perspective," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 61(4), pages 209-227, December.
    6. repec:spr:masfgc:v:23:y:2018:i:2:d:10.1007_s11027-016-9735-7 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Jung, Martina, 2003. "The Role of Forestry Sinks in the CDM - Analysing the Effects of Policy Decisions on the Carbon Market," HWWA Discussion Papers 241, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWA).
    8. Newell, Richard G. & Stavins, Robert N., 2000. "Climate Change and Forest Sinks: Factors Affecting the Costs of Carbon Sequestration," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 40(3), pages 211-235, November.
    9. McKenney, Daniel W. & Yemshanov, Denys & Fox, Glenn & Ramlal, Elizabeth, 2004. "Cost estimates for carbon sequestration from fast growing poplar plantations in Canada," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(3-4), pages 345-358, June.
    10. Dissanayake,Sahan T. M. & Jha,Prakash & Adhikari,Bhim & Bista,Rajesh & Bluffstone,Randall & uintel,Harisharan & Martinsson,Peter & Paudel,Naya Sharma & Somanathan,E. & Toman,Michael A., 2015. "Community managed forest groups and preferences for REDD contract attributes: a choice experiment survey of communities in Nepal," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7326, The World Bank.
    11. Robert N. Stavins, 1999. "The Costs of Carbon Sequestration: A Revealed-Preference Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(4), pages 994-1009, September.

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