Impacts of payments for environmental services on local development in northern Costa Rica: A fuzzy multi-criteria analysis
This paper reports on an assessment of how Costa Rica's national payments for environmental services (PES/PSA) scheme affects local development in northern Costa Rica. The authors use a "fuzzy" multi-criteria analysis to evaluate the impacts of reforestation that occurs under the PSA scheme. The net impact is positive, with institutional and cultural gains offsetting economic losses. Although poor landowners generally experience greater positive impacts than wealthier landowners, they suffered a decrease in short-term income with reforestation, which could decrease participation of poor landowners or contribute to other negative outcomes. Participation in the PSA through a local non-governmental organization increased the positive impacts for landowners.