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Meeting the Global Sustainable Development Goals on a Changing Planet with Limited Land and Water Resources

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Land Use in the 21st Century: Contributing to the Global Public Good

By Tom Hertel

Purdue University

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Abstract

This paper focuses on the evolution of global public goods related to the world’s land resources over the course of the 21st century, their potential impacts on the world’s poorest households, as well as prospects for policy interventions aimed at enhancing these outcomes. It begins with global scale projections to 2100 of land use and associated goods and services, including food, fuel, timber, greenhouse gas emissions, carbon sequestration and biodiversity. This is followed by in-depth discussion of each of these services and the challenges of providing these public goods in sufficient quantities to advance societal welfareespecially that of the world’s poorest households. The paper concludes with a discussion of policies aimed at promoting the provision of land-based public goods and how they could be altered to be more pro-poor. Within this context, the paper argues that access to geospatial analysis tools and information on climate, land use and tenure, poverty and environmental indicators will become increasingly valuable to both public and private decision makers.

Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  • Hertel, Thomas W. 2016. "Land Use in the 21st Century: Contributing to the Global Public Good." Review of Development Economics, December. doi:10.1111/rode.12295.
  • Tom Hertel (2017), "Land Use in the 21st Century: Contributing to the Global Public Good," https://mygeohub.org/resources/1339.

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