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The Dynamics of Carbon Sequestration and Alternative Carbon Accounting, with an Application to the Upper Mississippi River Basin

  • Feng, Hongli

Carbon sequestration is a temporal process in which carbon is continuously being stored/released over a period of time. Di erent methods of carbon accounting can be used to account for this temporal nature including annual average carbon, annualized carbon, and ton-year carbon. In this paper, starting by exposing the underlying connections among these methods, we examine how the comparisons of sequestration projects are a ected by these methods and the major factors a ecting them. We explore the empirical implications on carbon sequestration policies by applying these accounting methods to the Upper Mississippi River Basin, a large and important agriculture area in the US. We found that the di erences are signi cant in terms of the location of land that might be chosen and the distribution of carbon sequestration over the area, although the total amount of carbon sequestered does not di er considerably across programs that use di erent accounting methods or di erent values of the major factors.

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Paper provided by Iowa State University, Department of Economics in its series Staff General Research Papers with number 12356.

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Date of creation: 01 Jul 2005
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Publication status: Published in Ecological Economics, July 2005, vol. 54 no. 1, pp. 23-35
Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:12356
Contact details of provider: Postal: Iowa State University, Dept. of Economics, 260 Heady Hall, Ames, IA 50011-1070
Phone: +1 515.294.6741
Fax: +1 515.294.0221
Web page: http://www.econ.iastate.edu
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  1. Oehmke, James F., 2000. "Anomalies in net present value calculations," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 67(3), pages 349-351, June.
  2. Douglas J. Miller, 1999. "An Econometric Analysis of the Costs of Sequestering Carbon in Forests," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 81(4), pages 812-824.
  3. Philip Fearnside & Daniel Lashof & Pedro Moura-Costa, 2000. "Accounting for time in Mitigating Global Warming through land-use change and forestry," Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change, Springer, vol. 5(3), pages 239-270, September.
  4. Saak, Alexander & Hennessy, David A., 2001. "Well-behaved cash flows," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 81-88, October.
  5. Darius M. Adams & Ralph J. Alig & DBruce A. McCarl & John M. Callaway & Steven M. Winnett, 1999. "Minimum Cost Strategies for Sequestering Carbon in Forests," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 75(3), pages 360-374.
  6. 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.
  7. Hongli Feng & Lyubov A. Kurkalova & Catherine L. Kling & Philip W. Gassman, 2004. "Environmental Conservation in Agriculture: Land Retirement versus Changing Practices on Working Land," Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications 04-wp365, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.
  8. Peter J. Parks & Ian W. Hardie, 1995. "Least-Cost Forest Carbon Reserves: Cost-Effective Subsidies to Convert Marginal Agricultural Land to Forests," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 71(1), pages 122-136.
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