Making global initiatives local realities: Carbon mitigation projects in Chiapas, Mexico

Kristen C. Nelson, Ben H.J. De Jong

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations


Global, environmental initiatives create macro-level agreements, but the true test is how local communities respond. From 1995 to 2001, we investigated the evolution of Fondo Bioclimatico, a carbon mitigation project, using interviews and document review. Even under tremendous uncertainty the project grew seven-fold. Its social structure shifted from a development emphasis to a brokering relationship, from shared to concentrated power, from social fund to carbon bank. Social selection of systems with fewer tree species and single ecosystems is a concern for biodiversity. The challenge is to remain critical, monitor, and support indigenous communities in their endeavor to implement clean development mechanism projects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)19-30
Number of pages12
JournalGlobal Environmental Change
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 2003

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Kristen Nelson thanks the Rockefeller Foundation for supporting fieldwork in 1996–1997 and the Grant-in-Aid Program at the University of Minnesota for fieldwork support in 2001.


  • Carbon markets
  • Carbon mitigation
  • Carbon sequestration
  • Clean development mechanisms
  • Community agroforestry
  • Mexico


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