SEI Contact:

Javier Godar

Mobile: +46 73 707 8546

Time-frame: 2015–2017

Greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity loss from land use change embodied in international trade of agricultural commodities -A pan-tropical assessment-

Land-use change (LUC), a key contributor to global greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity loss, is increasingly being driven by international trade in agricultural commodities.

A deeper understanding of how international markets and supply chains link demand for agricultural commodities to tropical forest loss across spatial scales can help inform demand-side policies for reduced deforestation, such as legislation, public procurement policies and certification schemes that leverage the market power of environmentally concerned consumers.

This project aims to advance this knowledge by quantifying greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity loss from LUC embodied in international trade in agricultural commodities. This topic has received increasing attention recently, but a paucity of data and methodological challenges have so far precluded comprehensive analysis.

This project will contribute to overcoming these barriers by:

(1) Developing a comprehensive database that quantifies the contribution of different proximate drivers to clearing of natural vegetation across the tropics at a level of individual agricultural commodities; the SEI-PCS tool  will be used to reveal fine-scale links between production regions and global consumers;

(2) Developing novel indicators (carbon and biodiversity footprints) for the climate and biodiversity impacts of agricultural products linked to LUC; and

(3) Analysing and visualizing how these environmental pressures are linked to consumption across spatial scales through international trade of agricultural commodities.