How do CDM projects contribute to sustainable development?

This research paper aims to provide information that will help to ensure that the benefits of carbon forestry investments in the Kyoto Protocol's CDM and similar projects are more equitably shared between stakeholders at local, national, regional and international levels, and that the trade-offs between social, economic and environmental criteria can be rigorously assessed. The authors adopt a case study approach and utilize a multi-disciplinary, primarily qualitative methodology to evaluate these issues. Preliminary research in Bolivia and Brazil was used to identify a set of key questions and criteria which were then applied to projects in Mexico and Belize. The paper sets out to develop a framework for evaluating CDM forestry options, with special reference to local development perspectives and North-South issues.