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Can REDD+ still become a market? Ruptured dependencies and market logics for emission reductions in Brazil

Richard van der Hoff, Raoni Rajão and Pieter Leroy

Ecological Economics, 2019, vol. 161, issue C, 121-129

Abstract: During almost 20 years of political debate on the nature of Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES), these schemes have been characterized mostly as a non-market approach, even though attempts to transform them into market instruments has persistently recurred in these debates. One notable example is the materialization of Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) in Brazil, where a sustainable development discourse dominates national forest governance at the expense of a carbon commodification discourse. This research paper adopts a Foucauldian approach to plot the epistemological foundations of the market logics that still influence REDD+ institutionalization in Brazil to a large extent and thereby reproduce what we define as a ruptured dependence on nature. More specifically, we recognize ruptured dependence in the three building blocks of market instruments, namely singularization, monetary valuation and appropriation. Our analysis shows that REDD+ institutions have retained the singularization and monetary valuation of emission reductions, even though the appropriation processes have rejected the possibility of exchange and instead emphasized the national ownership of emission reductions. However, appropriation remains a highly politicized process that is sensitive to criticism and open to calls for alternative approaches that are closer to ruptured dependence.

Keywords: PES; REDD+; Ruptured dependence; Market instruments; Building blocks (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:161:y:2019:i:c:p:121-129