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Research to manage the Environment for Development

Recent publications


Water and Sanitation Service Delivery, Pricing, and the Poor: An Empirical Estimate of Subsidy Incidence in Nairobi, Kenya

The increasing block tariff (IBT) is among the most widely used tariffs by water utilities, particularly in developing countries. This is in part due to the perception that the IBT can effectively target subsidies to low-income households. Combining data on households’ socioeconomic status and metered water use, this paper examines the distributional incidence of subsidies delivered through the water tariff in Nairobi, Kenya.


Marine Protected Areas in Artisanal Fisheries: A Spatial Bio-economic Model Based on Observations in Costa Rica and Tanzania

In many lower-income countries, the establishment of marine protected areas (MPAs) involves significant opportunity costs for artisanal fishers, reflected in changes in how they allocate their labor in response to the MPA. The resource economics literature rarely addresses such labor allocation decisions of artisanal fishers and how, in turn, these contribute to the impact of MPAs on fish stocks, yield, and income.


Marine Protected Areas: Lessons from Costa Rica and Tanzania

Both Tanzania’s and Costa Rica’s beaches provide important nesting sites for endangered sea turtles. Poaching of eggs by local people for food or for sale presents a major threat to these species, as do other predators. This harvesting of eggs in MPAs, and throughout Costa Rica, remains illegal, but enforcement on long beaches proves difficult. Both countries have active organizations that attempt to reduce this poaching, sometimes involving moving nests.


Will a Driving Restriction Policy Reduce Car Trips? A Case Study of Beijing, China Suggests That Driving Restrictions Are Not Too Effective

A driving restriction policy is a politically acceptable policy tool to address traffic congestion and air pollution in some countries and cities, but evidence from Beijing suggests that it is not as effective as hoped. This type of policy, called a command-and-control measure, is more acceptable than a market-based pricing instrument, because it states a rule that applies to everyone, rather than imposing a tax or fee that might be felt more heavily by poorer people. 


Opening the Black Box of Carbon Finance “Additionality”: The Political Economy of Carbon Finance Effectiveness across Tanzania, Uganda, and Moldova

This paper identifies conditions under which the Clean Development Mechanism and other carbon finance projects effectively generate genuine, “additional” carbon credits—relying on a systematic empirical investigation of afforestation/reforestation and bioenergy carbon finance projects across Tanzania, Uganda, and Moldova. At low global carbon prices, additionality was related to the interests of project developers and their resulting capacities and motivations for project implementation.


The Effect of Land Restitution on Poverty Reduction among the Khomani San “Bushmen” in South Africa

This paper looks at the impact of land restitution involving the Khomani San “bushmen” in the Kgalagadi area of South Africa. It seeks to investigate the effect of land restitution on poverty reduction among the beneficiaries. We run two-stage least squares models of access to nature, per capita income and poverty status on the use of restituted land, among other variables. Our results suggest that the Khomani San beneficiaries have gotten more access to natural resources but that


Climate change and the Ethiopian economy: a CGE analysis

The paper analyzes the economic impacts of climate change-induced fluctuations on the performance of Ethiopia's agriculture, using a countrywide computable general equilibrium (CGE) model. We model the impacts on agriculture using a Ricardian model, where current agricultural production is modelled as a function of temperature and precipitation, among other things, and where future agriculture is assumed to follow the same climate function. The effect of overall climate change is projected to be relatively benign until approximately 2030, but will become considerably worse thereafter.


The Impact of Natural Resource Scarcity on Agriculture in Ethiopia

In developing countries such as Ethiopia, rural households spend a considerable part of their time in agriculture as well as resource collection.  However, rigorous empirical studies on the impacts of scarcity of environmental resources on productive activities such as agriculture are very limited—in developing countries in general and Africa in particular. Using a panel data set collected from Ethiopia, this paper examines the effect of scarcity of fuelwood and water on time spent in agriculture.