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Deforestation, distribution and development

Department of Economics, Adam Smith Building, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
Global Environmental Change (Impact Factor: 6). 10/2001; 11(3):193-202. DOI: 10.1016/S0959-3780(00)00057-1
Source: OAI

ABSTRACT This paper investigates the role played by distributional factors in mediating the effects of growth and development on forest depletion in tropical developing countries. A key finding of the paper is that the distributional profile of a country significantly determines whether economic development will have either a positive or a negative effect on the rate of forest loss. In countries where levels of inequality are high, development will tend to exacerbate deforestation rates while in countries where distributional profiles are more egalitarian, the negative effects of growth and development on forest cover will be ameliorated.

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    • "Population growth is often perceived as a main driver of these phenomena. Studies on a global scale find a correlation between population growth and deforestation rates (Koop and Tole 2001; Uusivuori et al. 2002) while an increasing GDP may be correlated to reduced deforestation rates (Koop and Tole 2001). Even though this trend is verified by some studies on local scale (e.g. "
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    ABSTRACT: We re-assessed the number of people and their purpose for entering a degraded dry forest in the plains of Tamil Nadu (South India) after 21 years. We found a drastic reduction in the number of people visiting the forest for the utilisation of forest products. These changes seem to be driven by the unavailability of local markets, agricultural programmes of local NGOs and better employment options than 21 years ago. The increasing human pressure on tropical forest is of worldwide concern but data on local level that support this trend are hardly available resulting in a lack of information for appropriate management strategies. The Palni Hills Conservation Council conducted a foot-path survey around the Kadavakurchi Reserved Forest (KRF), a degraded dry forest on a 10 km2 hillock at the foot of the Western Ghats in 1990/91. Interviews at 19 interview points were done simultaneously on one day a week over seven weeks, covering all seven week days. Numbers of people entering the forest were assessed, and they were asked about the importance of forest products for their livelihoods, as well as about forest-product collection patterns and marketing strategies. The survey was redone in 2012 during the same season as in 1991. We found an almost 40% decrease in the number of people entering the forest between 1991 and 2012, while amongst the different forest uses the number of people collecting fuel wood in the forest showed the strongest reduction of 90%. Heads of livestock entering the forest for grazing have increased by 25% mainly due to a rise in the number of goats. In interviews with local development institutions in the area, both government agencies and NGOs, as well as in 75 households we found that several employment generation and watershed development programs have been conducted over the last 21 years. Household respondents stated that alternative incomes triggered by agricultural and small-scale employment programmes underlay their reduced or abandoned utilisation of forest products. The main reason for the reduction in fuel wood collection, on the other hand, was stated by households as reduced availability of local markets.
    Tropentag 2012, Göttingen; 09/2012
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    • "A diversity of social, economical, and geographical conditions may influence the intensity of deforestation (Silvio et al., 2009; Daniel et al., 2011). Several studies at the global level concluded that a complex set of underlying social economic processes lead to the proximate causes of deforestation, implying that multiple rather than single factors are critical (Koop and Tole, 2001; Ehrhardt-Martinez et al., 2002; Rudel, 2002; Meyer et al., 2003; Barbier, 2004; Rudel et al., 2005; Robert, 2006). China has a long history of large-scale deforestation that has contributed to serious consequences such as frequent geological disaster, flood and soil erosion (Wang et al., 1999; Zhang et al., 2007; Liu and Min, 2010; Yan et al., 2010). "
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    ABSTRACT: China has a long history of large-scale deforestation that has contributed to serious consequences such as frequent geological disaster, flood and soil erosion. It was only recently that forest management strategy shifted from the traditional harvesting orientation to a more balanced forest ecosystem management approach with a focus on conservation. To understand the effects of such a shift, on the forest dynamics especially since the implementation of Natural Forest protection Project (NFPP), this paper examined the case of Lushuihe region, a typical region of the northeast China forest zone. Land use and landscape pattern for the period of 1975–2007 were analyzed based on Landsat MSS and TM images. Net primary, productivity (NPP), estimated with the CASA productivity model, was used to assess the human impacts on the forest ecosystem function. The results showed a reversing trend of forest cover since 1988, from continuous decrease to rather rapid increase. From 1975 to 1988, due to reckless deforestation, the forest cover in the case region decreased about 10439.39 ha (8.54% of the study area). Forest cover of the region recovered from 77.68% in 1988 to 89.56% in 1999 and 92.33% in 2007. While the forest cover increased, landscape metrics indicate that human disturbance significantly altered the composition and structure of the forest landscape. NPP change indicated a continued decreasing trend until 2007, albeit at a slower pace since 1988. In 2007, while the decreasing trend of NPP was reversed, the forest structure was still inferior to that of 1975. Looking forward, diversifying and securing the livelihoods of the still growing local population that have been heavily dependent on the traditional forestry industry remain one of the key challenges as well as solutions for enhancing and managing the regional forest ecosystem structure and function in the region.
    Ecological Engineering 09/2011; 37(9):1387-1397. DOI:10.1016/j.ecoleng.2011.03.011 · 3.04 Impact Factor
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    • "There is a range of studies confirming the negative impact of income inequality on environmental policies and outcomes (see, for example, Torras and Boyce 1998; Boyce et al. 1999; Magnani 2000; Koop and Tole 2001; Holland, Peterson and Gonzalez 2008; Vornovytskyy and Boyce 2010). These studies have to be treated with some caution. "
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    ABSTRACT: This paper analyzes the theoretical and empirical links between inequality in human development on the one hand and sustainability on the other. It specifically looks at causality in both directions. Inequality in various dimensions of human development is analyzed with respect to both weak and strong sustainability, where weak sustainability presumes substitutability among different forms of capital, while strong sustainability reject substitutability and calls for preservation of so-called critical forms of natural capital independent of the amount of investment into other forms of capital.
    SSRN Electronic Journal 08/2011; DOI:10.2139/ssrn.1905536
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