Constraining forest certificate's market to improve cost-effectiveness of biodiversity conservation in São Paulo state, Brazil
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionPLoS ONE 2016, 11(10) e0164850
The recently launched Brazilian ªforest certificatesº market is expected to reduce environmental compliance costs for landowners through an offset mechanism, after a long history of conservation laws based in command-and-control and strict rules. In this paper we assessed potential costs and evaluated the cost-effectiveness of the instrument when introducing to this market constraints that aim to address conservation objectives more specifically. Using the conservation planning software Marxan with Zones we simulated different scopes for the ªforest certificatesº market, and compared their costeffectiveness with that of existing command-and-control (C&C), i.e. compliance to the Legal Reserve on own property, in the state of São Paulo. The simulations showed a clear potential of the constrained ªforest certificatesº market to improve conservation effectiveness and increase cost-effectiveness on allocation of Legal Reserves. Although the inclusion of an additional constraint of targeting the BIOTA Conservation Priority Areas doubled the cost (+95%) compared with a ªfree tradeº scenario constrained only by biome, this option was still 50% less costly than the baseline scenario of compliance with Legal Reserve at the property.