Designing REDD+ Schemes to Address Permanence Concerns: Empirical Evidence from Kenya
Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) is an important topic in the debate on policies to mitigate climate change. This is the first study to test and compare the environmental impact of different REDD+ payment schemes in the field, and provide some insights on the effectiveness of different policies with respect to the permanence of forest-based emission reductions. This study implements a stated preference experiment of time allocation in the unique setting of the Kasigau Corridor REDD+ Project in Kenya, where charcoaling is a major source of forest degradation. The impact on time allocation is analyzed under the presumption that a hypothetical agricultural policy or an ecocharcoaling policy was introduced. We find that a policy that indexes eco-charcoal payments to charcoalers’ opportunity costs is the most effective policy in providing permanence in REDD+: it lowers the amount of labor allocated to charcoaling even at high charcoal prices.