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Trading Forests: Quantifying the Contribution of Global Commodity Markets to Emissions from Tropical Deforestation
Department of Energy and Environment, Chalmers Technical University, Stockholm, Sweden.
Linköping University, The Tema Institute, Centre for Climate Science and Policy Research . Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. (CSPR)
Institute of Social Ecology, Alpen-Adria Universität Klagenfurt, Vienna, Austria.
2014 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This paper aims to improve our understanding of how and where global supply-chains linkconsumers of agricultural and forest commodities across the world to forest destruction in tropicalcountries. A better understanding of these linkages can help inform and support the design ofdemand-side interventions to reduce tropical deforestation. To that end, we map the link betweendeforestation for four commodities (beef, soybeans, palm oil, and wood products) in eight casecountries (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Indonesia,Malaysia, and Papua New Guinea) to consumption, through international trade. Although few,the studied countries comprise a large share of the internationally traded volumes of the analyzedcommodities: 83% of beef and 99% of soybean exports from Latin America, 97% of global palmoil exports, and roughly half of (official) tropical wood products trade. The analysis covers theperiod 2000-2009. We find that roughly a third of tropical deforestation and associated carbonemissions (3.9 Mha and 1.7 GtCO2) in 2009 can be attributed to our four case commodities in oureight case countries. On average a third of analyzed deforestation was embodied in agriculturalexports, mainly to the EU and China. However, in all countries but Bolivia and Brazil, exportmarkets are dominant drivers of forest clearing for our case commodities. If one excludes Brazilianbeef on average 57% of deforestation attributed to our case commodities was embodied in exports.The share of emissions that was embodied in exported commodities increased between 2000 and2009 for every country in our study except Bolivia and Malaysia.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Washington DC: Center for Global Development , 2014. , 52 p.
, CGD Climate and Forest Paper Series, 8
Keyword [en]
Climate change, Forests, REDD+, Commodities, Commodity supply chains, Energy, Food, Agriculture
National Category
Other Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-126345OAI: diva2:913719

Working Paper 384

Available from: 2016-03-22 Created: 2016-03-22 Last updated: 2016-04-11Bibliographically approved

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