Money Growing on Trees

Payments for ecosystem service programs use a market-based approach to pursue environmental goals. While they are common policy tools, key concepts that can determine their efficacy are nuanced and hard to grasp. We present a new interactive game that explores the functioning and implications of payments for ecosystem service programs. Participants play the role of rural households in a developing country. They decide individually or as groups whether to enter into contracts to receive payment from the United Nations REDD+ program to refrain from harvesting from a local forest. The game explores topics including: payments for ecosystem services programs; climate change; tropical deforestation; cost-effectiveness; additionality; contract fraud and enforcement; and community resource management. We provide customizable materials, a detailed reading list, and prompts for discussion.

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OBJ OBJ datastream 653.26 KiB application/pdf 2020-02-26
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