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Estimated supply of RED credits 2011-2035

November, 2011. Coren, Michael J.; Streck, Charlotte; Madeira, Erin Myers. Climate Policy, Volume 11, Number 6, 2011 , pp. 1272-1288(17). DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14693062.2011.579318



Previous attempts to estimate the supply of greenhouse gas emission reductions from reduced emissions from deforestation (RED) have generally failed to incorporate policy developments, country-specific abilities and political willingness to supply offsets for developed countries’ emissions. To address this, we estimate policy-appropriate projections of creditable emission reductions from RED. Two global forest carbon models are used to examine major assumptions affecting the generation of credits. The results show that the estimated feasible supply of RED credits is significantly below the biophysical mitigation potential from deforestation.


A literature review identified an annual RED emission reduction potential between 1.6 and 4.3 Gt CO2e. Feasible RED supply estimates applying the OSIRIS model were 1.74 Gt CO2e annually between 2011 and 2020, with a cumulative supply of 17.4 Gt CO2e under an `own-efforts’ scenario. Estimates from the Forest Carbon Index were very low at $5/t CO2e with 8 million tonne CO2e annually, rising to 1.8 Gt CO2e at $20/t CO2e. Cumulative abatement between 2011 and 2020 was 9 billion Gt CO2e ($20/t CO2e). These volumes were lower, sometimes dramatically, at prices of $5/t CO2e suggesting a non-linear supply of credits in relation to price at a low payment level. For policy makers, the results suggest that inclusion of RED in a climate framework increases abatement potential, although significant constraints are imposed by political and technical issues.


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Keywords: Other Publications, r. Financing & Distribution/ Markets, carbon credits, Carbon market, CLIMATE CHANGE MITIGATION, financing, Forestry, REDD, REDD credit

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