Contradictory distributive principles and land tenure govern benefit-sharing of Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) in Chiapas, Mexico

Izquierdo-Tort, Santiago, Corbera, Esteve, Martin, Adrian ORCID:, Carabias Lillo, Julia and Dupras, Jérôme (2022) Contradictory distributive principles and land tenure govern benefit-sharing of Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) in Chiapas, Mexico. Environmental Research Letters, 17 (5). ISSN 1748-9326

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Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) are incentive-based instruments that provide conditional economic incentives for natural resources management. Research has shown that when economic incentives are parachuted into rural communities, participation and benefits are collectively negotiated and shared. However, we know little about how benefit-sharing evolves over time in community-based PES. To address this gap, we examine distributional justice in four communities of the state of Chiapas, Mexico, which participate in a PES programme, and we assess how local justice principles compare with the programme's goals. Our analysis reveals patterns of both continuity and change in how communities share PES benefits, which reflect a suite of contradictory justice principles, including entitlement, merit, need, and equality. The studied communities distribute PES benefits by providing differentiated compensation to diverse groups of landholders via private cash payments, whilst also attending non-landed community members through public infrastructure investments. We show that benefit-sharing is strongly influenced by pre-existing land tenure features and associated norms, which in the study area include three different types of individual and common-property. Yet, we also show that communities continuously adjust benefit-sharing arrangements to navigate distributional challenges emerging from programme engagement. Overall, we provide novel insights on the evolution, diversity, and complexity of distributive justice in community-based PES and we advocate for a context-sensitive, nuanced, and dynamic account of justice in incentive-based conservation.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Data availability statement: The data generated and/or analysed during the current study are not publicly available for legal/ethical reasons but are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request. Funding: S I T and J D acknowledge the financial support of Ouranos (RF580003), Mitacs (IT10488), and the Canada Research Chair in Ecological Economics. S I T and E C acknowledge the funding of the 'Payment for Ecosystem Services: long-term effectiveness and motivations for the conservation of forest ecosystems' project (PID2019-109758GB-I00), Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation. S I T and J C L acknowledge the financial support of Alianza WWF-Fundación Carlos Slim. S I T acknowledges the financial support of Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACyT). E C acknowledges that this work contributes to the 'María de Maeztu' Programme for Units of Excellence Innovation of the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation (CEX2019-000940-M).
Uncontrolled Keywords: sdg 9 - industry, innovation, and infrastructure,sdg 10 - reduced inequalities,sdg 15 - life on land ,/dk/atira/pure/sustainabledevelopmentgoals/industry_innovation_and_infrastructure
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Global Development (formerly School of International Development)
University of East Anglia Research Groups/Centres > Theme - ClimateUEA
UEA Research Groups: University of East Anglia Schools > Faculty of Science > Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research
Faculty of Science > Research Centres > Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research
Faculty of Social Sciences > Research Groups > Global Environmental Justice
Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 13 Apr 2022 11:30
Last Modified: 15 May 2023 00:49
DOI: 10.1088/1748-9326/ac6686


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