Environmental and Resource Economics

, Volume 50, Issue 3, pp 405–445 | Cite as

Economic Assessment of Forest Ecosystem Services Losses: Cost of Policy Inaction

  • Aline Chiabai
  • Chiara M. Travisi
  • Anil Markandya
  • Helen Ding
  • Paulo A. L. D. Nunes
Article

Abstract

This paper presents a bottom-up methodological framework for estimating some of the key ecosystem services provided by forests biomes worldwide. We consider the provision of wood and non-wood forest products, recreation and passive use services, and carbon sequestration. The valuation framework derives per hectare estimates by applying meta-analysis, value-transfer and scaling-up procedures in order to control for the existing heterogeneities across world regions and forest biomes. The first part of the study estimates stock values per hectare for each forest ecosystem service in the baseline year 2000 and in the year 2050. Results differ per geographical region and biome. Carbon stocks represent, on average, the highest value per hectare, followed by provisioning services, passive use and recreational values respectively. The second part provides an estimation of the welfare loss (or gain) associated with policy inaction in the period 2000–2050 leading to a change in the forest area. Welfare results are mixed and require a careful interpretation, ranging from a worldwide annual benefit of + 0.03% of 2050 GDP to an annual loss of −0.13%. The highest damage is expected in Brazil due to the increasing deforestation taking place in tropical natural forests, which is causing a considerable loss of carbon stocks.

Keywords

Carbon Cultural services Forest ecosystem services Market values Meta-analysis Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Non-market values Non-wood forest products Value-transfer Wood forest products 

Abbreviations

CBD

Convention on Biological Diversity

COPI

Cost of policy inaction

ESs

Ecosystem services

EVRI

Environmental valuation reference inventory

FAO

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

GDP

Gross domestic product

IMAGE

Integrated Model to Assess the Global Environment

MEA

Millennium Ecosystem Assessment

NWFPs

Non-wood forests products

PPPGDP

Purchasing power parity GDP

TEV

Total economic value

IUCN

International union for conservation of nature

TEEB

The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity

WFPs

Wood forests products

WITCH

World Induced Technical Change Hybrid model

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Aline Chiabai
    • 1
  • Chiara M. Travisi
    • 2
  • Anil Markandya
    • 1
    • 3
  • Helen Ding
    • 4
  • Paulo A. L. D. Nunes
    • 5
  1. 1.Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3)BilbaoSpain
  2. 2.Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei FEEMMilanoItaly
  3. 3.University of BathBathUK
  4. 4.Department of Agriculture and Natural ResourcesUniversity of PaduaPadovaItaly
  5. 5.The Mediterranean Science Commission, Principauté de Monaco; Department of Agriculture and Natural ResourcesUniversity of PaduaPadovaItaly

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