Central Data Catalog

Citation Information

Type Thesis or Dissertation - Masters of Science in Conservation Biology
Title Using tropical forests to combat global climate change without compromising local livelihoods
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2010
URL http://zoology.uct.ac.za/pdf/Kissoon_Ian_2010_MSc_CB_thesis.pdf
Tropical forests provide benefits to local and national economies through the provision of
environmental goods and services. In the fight against climate change, the Guyanese President
has proposed placing almost the entire state-owned forest under an avoided deforestation
programme if the right economic incentives are created to compensate for the economic benefits
that the country would have to forego. The opportunity cost which includes standing timber
value, post-harvest land use value, avoided protection cost, and loss of local ecosystem services
was estimated at US$580M annually. With avoided emissions estimated at 343 tons of carbon
per hectare and the abatement cost of carbon at US$2-11 per ton, this proposal seems financially
viable and important for this developing nation. However, such a programme would affect the
local communities that depend on the use and conversion of forest resources for their livelihoods.
This study showed that a third of the state forest can be allocated to meet the needs of local
communities without compromising the potential income from the avoided deforestation
programme. The continued use of a third of the state forest would not only benefit the local
communities and maintain their traditional way of life but would also benefit the government
who would otherwise have to spend at least US$396M annually to supplement those resources
that the forests provide free of cost.

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