Since its creation more than two decades ago as a voluntary market-based approach to improving forest management, forest certification has proliferated rapidly in developing countries. Yet we know little about whether and under what conditions it affects deforestation. We use rich forest management unit-level panel data—including information on deforestation, certification, regulatory permitting, and geophysical and socioeconomic land characteristics—along with matched fixed effects models to identify the effect of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification on deforestation in Mexico, the country with the third-highest number of FSC certifications in the developing world. We test for a variety of different temporal and subgroup effects but are unable to reject the null hypothesis that certification does not affect deforestation. Although these results do not indicate that FSC certification has no effect on forest management, they do suggest that its impact on deforestation may be limited.
RFF Live — Jun 9, 2020
Managing Forests for Climate Mitigation—from Theory to Practice
An in-depth conversation on the practicalities of implementing natural climate solutions through forest management
Media Highlight — May 12, 2020
The One Trillion Trees Project and Increasing US Forest Cover
RFF Issue Brief by Dave Wear is cited extensively in BBN Times article on the One Trillion Trees Project.
Issue Brief — May 7, 2020
Tree Planting as Climate Policy?
Efforts to significantly expand the US forest carbon sink would benefit from a careful consideration of the nation’s history of tree planting and forest investment and the current structure of timber supply and demand.