Maron Greenleaf

Grant Type

Hunt Postdoctoral Fellowship

Institutional Affiliation

Dartmouth College

Grant number

Gr. 10048

Approve Date

October 2, 2020

Project Title

Greenleaf, Maron (Dartmouth College) "Forest Lost: Carbon and Inclusion in the Brazilian Amazon"

“Forest Lost: Carbon and Inclusion in the Brazilian Amazon” examines efforts to use capitalism to combat climate change. Since the 2000s, hundreds of forest carbon programs have sought to monetarily value the living forest through carbon credits. “Forest Lost” is an ethnography of one of the most lauded of these programs, located in the Amazonian state of Acre, Brazil. It examines how the Acreano state sought to make the forest valuable not through privatizing land or carbon—as anticipated by both carbon credit critics and supporters—but rather through inclusive politics aimed at mixed-heritage smallholders and the forested landscapes in which they live. In particular, it analyzes benefits meant to get smallholders to farm and use the forest without destroying it. Through this analysis, “Forest Lost” traces how the forest’s new value enabled environmentally-premised redistribution and citizenship, as well as how such inclusive politics made the standing forest monetarily valuable. The book also reveals the limits of this environmental inclusion—how it could paradoxically reinforce the marginalization of people and landscapes it sought to support and the deforestation it tried to combat, ultimately giving rise to support for pro-deforestation candidates, like Jair Bolsonaro. Through this analysis, “Forest Lost” reveals how environmental capitalism can both support and constrain inclusion, citizenship, and the potential for more just futures in a changing climate.