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Carbon Offsets for Forestry and Bioenergy: Researching Opportunities for Poor Rural Communities

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Leo Peskett, Jessica Brown, Kate Schreckenberg
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This report presents findings from a research study looking at the opportunities that carbon offset projects offer for poor rural communities. The report first gives an overview of the carbon offset markets and considers opportunities at the global level in terms of the types of projects that are attracting investment in rural areas in developing countries and the size of the market. The findings are clear: whilst the overall scale of markets has been increasing rapidly (though with recent slowing related to the global financial crisis), investment in projects in low-income countries is still only at a small scale, with only 3.2% and 1.2% of projects in Africa and in the mandatory and voluntary carbon markets, respectively. The remainder of the report looks at three forestry and three bioenergy offset projects in more detail, in Uganda and India, respectively.