Determining an Optimal Afforestation Policy: A Cost-Benefit Analysis
Afforestation, tree planting on land that otherwise would be fallow, is being discussed as a method for reducing net carbon emissions. This article summarizes Swinehart (1996), which presents a tool for determining the optimal level of domestic afforestation. The tool is TREES, a model that evaluates possible afforestation projects in the U.S. We present an overview of the model structure and data. One of the crucial data parameters is the valuation of carbon. The international price of carbon, as computed by MERGE, provides TREES with a one-way linkage with a global integrated assessment (GIA) model. Sequestration results for scenarios utilizing different carbon valuations are presented and are compared with results from traditional abatement measures. The policy implications from these results are discussed.
KeywordsCarbon Sequestration Baseline Scenario Sequestration Rate Afforestation Program Timber Market
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