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  • Does Selective PA Size Reduction Unleash Additional Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon?
EE Seminar

Environmental Economics Seminar

Does Selective PA Size Reduction Unleash Additional Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon?


Derya Keles
PhD candidate - Bureau for Economic Theory and Applications (BETA) - AgroParisTech



Since the 1980s, Protected Areas (PAs) have been key conservation tools to deter deforestation. However, their implementation may involve conflicts over land use, leading them to be located in remote places and reducing their contribution in the reduction of deforestation. When they do conflict with economic activities, actors with development interests may then push for PA Degazettement, Downsizing and Downgrading (PADDD) – i.e., legal changes in PA size or status, which may increase deforestation. This article is the first to examine the impact of actual PA size reduction from 2009 to 2012 – i.e., downsizings (partial erasures) and degazettements (complete erasures), over the entire Brazilian Amazon, on forest cover losses until 2015. We use a propensity score matching the fact that PAs are more likely to be reduced near economic activities, where deforestation is also more likely (Tesfaw et al., 2018; Keles et al., 2019). Starting with a simple framework, we suggest that PA size reductions may increase forest cover losses if they were already containing land-clearing activities when they were still protected. Empirically, we confirm that, on average, PA size reductions accelerated forest cover losses until 2015 especially near economic activities. We are also able to confirm they were contributing to additional deforestation reductions when they were still protected.

Co-authors : Alexander Pfaff

Practical information


Montpellier SupAgro / INRA - Bat. 26 - Centre de documentation Pierre Bartoli
2 Place Viala 34000 Montpellier

Dates & time

Jan 09, 2020


Alexandre Sauquet
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Gwenolé Le Velly
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