Assessing the Mitigation Potential of Forestry Activities in a Changing Climate: A Case Study for Karnataka

Assessing the Mitigation Potential of Forestry Activities in a Changing Climate: A Case Study for Karnataka


The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) of the Kyoto Protocol has two goals: promote climate mitigation activities that offset carbon dioxide entering the atmosphere, and promote sustainable economic development. Afforestation and reforestation (A/R) projects can often meet these two goals simultaneously. India, which ratified the Kyoto Protocol in 2002, has sought to implement A/R projects as part of the CDM.

Research Goals & Methods

This study, which took place in India’s Karnataka State, assessed the effectiveness of large-scale A/R projects in achieving the two goals of the CDM, as well as the impact of carbon pricing on land availability for these projects. The study used the Generalized Comprehensive Mitigation Assessment Process (GCOMAP) Model for this economic analysis, using two different carbon price points and assessing both short-rotation and long-rotation tree plantation species. GCOMAP simulates the response of forestry land users to changes in land, carbon, and product prices.

Conclusions & Takeaways

The study concluded that A/R projects can be sources of sustainable development through the CDM. Through the GCOMAP analysis, the study found that although significantly more land was purchased for forestry under the higher price point, lower price points also showed increases in forestry land. This study is a useful tool for policymakers to understand the possible economic implications and land-use changes that could occur under different carbon price points.


Khatun K, Valdes PJ, Knorr W, Chaturvedi RKumar. Assessing the mitigation potential of forestry activities in a changing climate: A case study for Karnataka. Forest Policy and Economics. 2010;12:277–286. doi:10.1016/j.forpol.2009.12.001.


  • School of Geographical Sciences, Bristol University, Bristol, UK
  • Earth Sciences, Bristol University, Bristol, UK
  • Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India