Does Collective Action Sequester Carbon? The Case of the Nepal Community Forestry Program

50 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Randall A. Bluffstone

Randall A. Bluffstone

Portland State University - Department of Economics

Eswaran Somanathan

Indian Statistical Institute

Prakash Jha

ForestAction Nepal

Harisharan Luintel

ForestAction; Portland State University

Rajesh Bista

ForestAction Nepal

Naya S. Paudel

ForestAction

Bhim Adhikari

International Development Research Centre (IDRC)

Date Written: June 22, 2015

Abstract

This paper estimate the effects of collective action in Nepal?s community forests on four ecological measures of forest quality. Forest user group collective action is identified through membership in the Nepal Community Forestry Programme, pending membership in the program, and existence of a forest user group whose leaders can identify the year the group was formed. This last, broad category is important, because many community forest user groups outside the program show significant evidence of important collective action. The study finds that presumed open access forests have only 21 to 57 percent of the carbon of forests governed under collective action. In several models, program forests sequester more carbon than communities outside the program. This implies that paying new program groups for carbon sequestration credits under the United Nations Collaborative Programme on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation in Developing may be especially appropriate. However, marginal carbon sequestration effects of program participation are smaller and less consistent than those from two broader measures of collective action. The main finding is that within the existing institutional environment, collective action broadly defined has very important, positive, and large effects on carbon stocks and, in some models, on other aspects of forest quality.

Keywords: Science of Climate Change, Climate Change and Health, Inequality, Climate Change and Environment, Global Environment

Suggested Citation

Bluffstone, Randall Ames and Somanathan, E. and Jha, Prakash and Luintel, Harisharan and Bista, Rajesh and Paudel, Naya S. and Adhikari, Bhim, Does Collective Action Sequester Carbon? The Case of the Nepal Community Forestry Program (June 22, 2015). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 7327. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2621881

Randall Ames Bluffstone (Contact Author)

Portland State University - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 751
Portland, OR 97207-0751
United States
503-725-3938 (Phone)
503-725-3945 (Fax)

E. Somanathan

Indian Statistical Institute ( email )

7 S. J. S. Sansanwal Marg
New Delhi, 110016
India

Prakash Jha

ForestAction Nepal ( email )

Satdobato
Kathmandu
Nepal

Harisharan Luintel

ForestAction

PO Box: 12207
Lalitpur
Nepal

Portland State University

PO Box 751
Portland, OR 97207
United States

Rajesh Bista

ForestAction Nepal ( email )

Satdobato
Kathmandu
Nepal

Naya S. Paudel

ForestAction ( email )

PO Box: 12207
Lalitpur
Nepal

Bhim Adhikari

International Development Research Centre (IDRC)

Canada

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