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2013-03-01 | Peer Reviewed

Governance, Location and Avoided Deforestation from Protected Areas: Greater Restrictions Can Have Lower Impact, Due to Differences in Location

Pfaff, Alexander , Juan Robalino, Eirivelthon Lima and Diego Herrera. 2014. “Governance, Location and Avoided Deforestation from Protected Areas: Greater Restrictions Can Have Lower Impact, Due to Differences in Location.” World Development 55: 7-20.
Download reference Doi:10.1016/j.worlddev.2013.01.011

For Acre, in the Brazilian Amazon, we find that protection types with differences in governance, including different constraints on local economic development, also differ in their locations. Taking this into account, we estimate the deforestation impacts of these protection types that feature different levels of restrictions. To avoid bias, we compare these protected locations with unprotected locations that are similar in their characteristics relevant for deforestation. We find that sustainable use protection, whose governance permits some local deforestation, is found on sites with high clearing threat. That allows more avoided deforestation than from integral protection, which bans clearing but seems feasible only further from deforestation threats. Based on our results, it seems that the political economy involved in siting such restrictions on production is likely to affect the ability of protected areas to reduce emissions from deforestation and degradation.