Reducing forest emissions in the Amazon Basin: A review of drivers of land-use change and how payments for environmental services (PES) schemes can affect them
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Land-use change and deforestation in Latin America generally, and in the Amazon Basin specifically, are driven primarily by economic profitability (agricultural expansion and logging) and governance weaknesses (notably, lenient law enforcement), and only to a much lesser extent by deterministic poverty cycles. Nevertheless, poor forest dwellers (indigenous communities, smallholders, rubber tappers) have the potential to be important stakeholders in stabilising Amazonian land use. Changing incentives for big deforestation actors will likely have indirect effects also on these poor people, to the extent that they might gain or lose from deforesting and degrading activities. Large-scale strategies to reduce emissions from deforestation and degradation will thus require social impact assessments that account for leakage and perverse incentive scenarios.
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