The cost of carbon retention by reduced impact logging

Tay, John and Healey, John R. and Price, Colin (2000) The cost of carbon retention by reduced impact logging. Forest Ecology and Management, 139 (1-3). pp. 237-255. ISSN 0378-1127


Download (128kB) | Preview


Reduced impact logging (RIL) is one means of reducing the carbon emissions held responsible for global warming. It may also reduce other adverse logging effects. A study of RIL’s effects in Sabah, Malaysia, found 44% reduction of area logged within a tract, 22% reduction in timber yield per logged hectare, and 18% increase in cost per m3 logged compared with conventional logging (CL). Estimated timber yield at the next harvest was 31% higher following RIL. Compared with unlogged forest, RIL damaged rattan, wildlife, soil and water quality values less than did CL. However, RIL’s environmental benefits per area of forest logged are considerably compromised by the greater logging area required for a given timber yield. Doing RIL in place of CL had a net cost per unit area at all rates of discount. Per m3 of timber logged, RIL was beneficial without discounting, but had a net cost at a 2% discount rate and higher. The overall cost of RIL’s superior carbon retention varied with both discount rate and level of analysis, from negative price to more than US$ 50 per megagram at a 10% discount rate. RIL appears most cost-effective on a per m3 logged basis at low discount rates. However, at commonly applied discount rates (4% and above) RIL’s carbon price exceeds most published estimates for carbon prices.

Item Type: Article
Keyword: Global climate change, Carbon economics, Malaysia, Tropical rain forest, Forest management
Subjects: S Agriculture > SD Forestry
Department: SCHOOL > School of International Tropical Forestry
Date Deposited: 23 Sep 2013 15:03
Last Modified: 11 Oct 2017 14:24

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item