Estimating Global ‘‘Blue Carbon’’ Emissions from Conversion and Degradation of Vegetated Coastal Ecosystems

Estimating Global ‘‘Blue Carbon’’ Emissions from Conversion and Degradation of Vegetated Coastal Ecosystems

Primary Country: global
Ecosystem: coast
Sample Value Estimates: Global emissions estimates for each type are multiplied by a recent estimate of the global economic cost of new atmospheric carbon of $41 per ton of CO2 in 2007 U.S. dollars. This cost is a central estimate of the ‘‘social cost of carbon’’ (SCC), which is defined as the marginal value of economic damages of the climate change attributable to an additional ton of CO2 in the atmosphere in 2020 - in 2007 dollars. The SCC estimate is an estimate of the environmental damages that can be avoided by reducing emissions, but does not necessarily equal the price that the market will pay for reducing emissions, since that market price is determined by the avoided cost of regulatory controls on carbon and not avoided damages per se. Combining the uncertainty range in emissions with a central estimate for the social cost of carbon, or "SCC," gas emissions of $41 per Mg of CO2, the study estimates the current global cost of coastal ecosystem conversion to be between $6.1 and $42 billion incurred annually. According to study, the range would be even wider if the full range of SCC values from $7–81 was considered.
Methodology: To gauge potential carbon emissions from the conversion of coastal ecosystems, study combined estimates of global area, current conversion rate, and near-surface carbon stocks susceptible to loss in each of the three habitat types
Region: global

Publication information

Pendleton L. D.C. DonatoB.C. MurrayS. CrooksW.A. JenkinsS. SifleetC. CraftJ.W. FourqureanJ. Boone KauffmanN. Marba`P. Megonigal “Estimating Global ‘‘Blue Carbon’’ Emissions from Conversion and Degradation of Vegetated Coastal Ecosystems” PLoS ONE 7(9): e43542. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0043542, 2012

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