Martin Persson has a background in environmental science and is currently Associate Professor at Physical Resource Theory, Chalmers University of Technology. His research interests include the economics of climate change and climate policy, with a special focus on non-CO2 greenhouse gases, tropical deforestation, bioenergy and trade. Recently, his research has focused on the distant driver of tropical deforestation, where he has developed methods for estimating deforestation footprints for land-based products and for analyzing how trade links consumers across the world to forest destruction in the tropics. Martin assisted the Swedish EPA in the translation of the Stern Review into Swedish and was in 2008 awarded the Myrdal Prize for the best article in the Swedish Economic Society’s journal Ekonomisk Debatt for a paper on the economics of climate change in the wake of the Stern Review. He has been a visiting scholar at the Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center (CATIE), Costa Rica and Stanford University, USA, and is an appreciated lecturer at both undergraduate and graduate level in the topics of land use, climate change and climate policy. Martin also regularly holds lectures to policy makers, business leaders, environmental organizations and the general public on land use, sustainability and climate change.
Telecoupling of land use systems, Land governance, Land change trade-offs for ecosystem services and biodiversity
A new paper in Current Research in Environmental Sustainability looks at the destruction of the Amazon through a large-scale collective action lens and identifies six variables that show lack of accountability, distrust among actors, and little sense of responsibility for halting deforestation remain key stressors.
A new paper in One Earth identifies 86 policies the EU could implement to address tropical deforestation, and shows that policy options that are politically feasible policies tend to have a weaker theory of change—the causal chain through which the policies address deforestation—setting up a trade-off between feasibility and impact (though there are exceptions, such as mandatory due diligence).
GLP Members Mairon Bastos Lima and Martin Persson published an in-depth case study in Frontiers in Forests and Global Change of the Cerrado Working Group, a multi-stakeholder initiative led by civil society and the soy agribusiness to address land use change in that savanna landscape in Brazil. The findings suggest that a sustainable development agenda for the Cerrado has been substantially narrowed to become mostly one of conversion-free soy supply, serving more the interests of that agroindustry and its consumers than those of the landscape's most vulnerable stakeholders, such as local communities.