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Rural Livelihoods and Carbon Management

Whilst it is acknowledged that emissions control is the major task, successful strategies to mitigate climate change will often include improved management of the land-based components of the carbon cycle. In recent years, 'carbon offset' initiatives have deliberately secured carbon in land management, to offset emissions elsewhere, and sometimes for a payment from the emitter. What is the added value of land-based carbon offsets? What might their impacts be on rural livelihoods? Are rural people and their farming and forestry systems well-suited to the provision of carbon offsets? How can rural people benefit? This document reviews the arguments. It concludes that sustainable carbon offsets will integrate global needs for carbon management with local livelihood requirements from the land.

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