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Ex-post Evaluation of Forest Conservation Policies Using Remote Sensing Data: An Introduction and Practical Guide

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  • Allen Blackman

Abstract

Rigorous, objective evaluation of forest conservation policies in developing countries is needed to ensure that the limited financial, human, and political resources devoted to these policies are put to good use. Yet such evaluations remain uncommon. Recent advances in conservation best practices, the widening availability of high-resolution remotely sensed land-cover data, and the dissemination of geographic information system capacity have created significant opportunities to reverse this trend. This paper provides a nontechnical introduction and practical guide to a relatively low cost method that relies on remote sensing data to support ex-post analysis of forest conservation policies. It describes the defining features of this approach, catalogues and briefly reviews the studies that have used it, discusses the requisite data, explains the principal challenges to its use and the empirical strategies to overcome them, provides some practical guidance on modeling choices, and describes in detail two recent case studies.

Suggested Citation

  • Allen Blackman, 2012. "Ex-post Evaluation of Forest Conservation Policies Using Remote Sensing Data: An Introduction and Practical Guide," SPD Working Papers 1201, Inter-American Development Bank, Office of Strategic Planning and Development Effectiveness (SPD).
  • Handle: RePEc:idb:spdwps:1201
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    1. Daniel Müller & Darla K. Munroe, 2005. "Tradeoffs between Rural Development Policies and Forest Protection: Spatially Explicit Modeling in the Central Highlands of Vietnam," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 81(3).
    2. Marco Caliendo & Sabine Kopeinig, 2008. "Some Practical Guidance For The Implementation Of Propensity Score Matching," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(1), pages 31-72, February.
    3. Sims, Katharine R.E., 2010. "Conservation and development: Evidence from Thai protected areas," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 94-114, September.
    4. Sierra, Rodrigo & Russman, Eric, 2006. "On the efficiency of environmental service payments: A forest conservation assessment in the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 131-141, August.
    5. James J. Heckman & Hidehiko Ichimura & Petra Todd, 1998. "Matching As An Econometric Evaluation Estimator," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 65(2), pages 261-294.
    6. Ho, Daniel E. & Imai, Kosuke & King, Gary & Stuart, Elizabeth A., 2007. "Matching as Nonparametric Preprocessing for Reducing Model Dependence in Parametric Causal Inference," Political Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 15(3), pages 199-236, July.
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    8. Maureen Cropper & Jyotsna Puri & Charles Griffiths, 2001. "Predicting the Location of Deforestation: The Role of Roads and Protected Areas in North Thailand," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 77(2), pages 172-186.
    9. Paul Ferraro & Merlin Hanauer, 2011. "Protecting Ecosystems and Alleviating Poverty with Parks and Reserves: ‘Win-Win’ or Tradeoffs?," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 48(2), pages 269-286, February.
    10. Klaus Deininger & Bart Minten, 2002. "Determinants of Deforestation and the Economics of Protection: An Application to Mexico," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 84(4), pages 943-960.
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    Cited by:

    1. Gwenolé Le Velly & Céline Dutilly, 2016. "Evaluating Payments for Environmental Services: Methodological Challenges," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 11(2), pages 1-20, February.
    2. Leonardo Corral & Maja Schling & Cassandra Rogers & Janice Cumberbatch & Fabian Hinds & Naijun Zhou & Michele H. Lemay, 2016. "The Impact of Coastal Infrastructure Improvements on Economic Growth: Evidence from Barbados," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 95978, Inter-American Development Bank.
    3. Mohebalian, Phillip M. & Aguilar, Francisco X., 2016. "Additionality and design of forest conservation programs: Insights from Ecuador's Socio Bosque Program," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(C), pages 103-114.
    4. Corral, Leonardo & Schling, Maja & Rogers, Cassandra & Cumberbatch, Janice & Hinds, Fabian & Zhou, Naijun & Lemay, Michele H., 2018. "The Impact of Coastal Infrastructure Improvements on Economic Growth: Evidence from Barbados," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 7860, Inter-American Development Bank.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    forest conservation policy; evaluation; literature review; reduced emissions from deforestation and degradation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • Q23 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Forestry
    • Q28 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Government Policy
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
    • Q57 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Ecological Economics

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