Tropical countries may be willing to pay more to protect their forests.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Inadequate funding from developed countries has hampered international efforts to conserve biodiversity in tropical forests. We present two complementary research approaches that reveal a significant increase in public demand for conservation within tropical developing countries as those countries reach upper-middle-income (UMI) status. We highlight UMI tropical countries because they contain nearly four-fifths of tropical primary forests, which are rich in biodiversity and stored carbon. The first approach is a set of statistical analyses of various cross-country conservation indicators, which suggests that protective government policies have lagged behind the increase in public demand in these countries. The second approach is a case study from Malaysia, which reveals in a more integrated fashion the linkages from rising household income to increased household willingness to pay for conservation, nongovernmental organization activity, and delayed government action. Our findings suggest that domestic funding in UMI tropical countries can play a larger role in (i) closing the funding gap for tropical forest conservation, and (ii) paying for supplementary conservation actions linked to international payments for reduced greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in tropical countries.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Vincent, JR; Carson, RT; DeShazo, JR; Schwabe, KA; Ahmad, I; Chong, SK; Chang, YT; Potts, MD

Published Date

  • July 2014

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 111 / 28

Start / End Page

  • 10113 - 10118

PubMed ID

  • 24982171

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC4104906

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1091-6490

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0027-8424

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1073/pnas.1312246111


  • eng