Reducing carbon transaction costs in community based forest management

Margaret Skutsch

Research output: Working paper

225 Downloads (Pure)


The paper considers the potential for community based forest management (of existing forests) in developing countries, as a future CDM strategy, to sequester carbon and claim credits in future commitment periods. This kind of forestry is cost effective, and should bring many more benefits to local populations than do afforestation and reforestation, contributing more strongly to sustainable development. However community forest management projects are small scale, and the transaction costs associated with justifying them as climate projects are likely to be high. A research project being carried out in six developing countries is testing carbon measurement and monitoring methods which can be carried out by community members with very little formal education, which should greatly reduce these transaction costs. Using hand-held computers with GIS capability and attached GPS, villagers with four years of primary education are able to accurately map their forest resource and input data from sample plots into a programme which calculates carbon values.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages31
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2004


  • IR-60534
  • Participatory carbon measuring and monitoring
  • carbon entitlements
  • Avoided deforestation
  • community based forest management
  • Transaction costs


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