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Knock on wood: managing forests for carbon in the presence of natural disturbance risk

Alexandra Siebel-McKenna, Craig Johnston and Gerrit van Kooten

Spatial Economic Analysis, 2020, vol. 15, issue 3, 299-310

Abstract: Carbon prices are used to induce forest managers to adopt longer rotation periods, leading to higher carbon sequestration in the ecosystem and storage in harvested wood products. However, national governments can choose whether or not to include emissions from natural disturbances in carbon accounting schemes. Using a stochastic dynamic programming model, we study optimal forest manager behaviour in the presence of natural disturbance risk and under a range of carbon prices, which we then use to calculate the carbon offsets so generated. Excluding such risk results in a reduced ability to use carbon prices to influence forest manager behaviour.

Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1080/17421772.2019.1701700

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