ArticlePDF Available

Commercialization of Nature: Can Market-Based Mechanisms Deliver Positive Conservation and Development Outcomes?


Abstract and Figures

Over the past two decades, market-based approaches to natural resources conservation have become a focus in national and international arenas. They are regarded as a means to finance biodiversity conservation. The approaches have emerged, partly because of global environmental challenges as well as a response to growing criticisms levelled against the efficiency of conventional approaches to natural resources conservation. Drawing from numerous case studies, this article aims to demonstrate the extent to which these approaches have managed to deliver win-win outcomes as claimed by its proponents. It synthesizes literature from the current experiences of market-based approaches, and assesses its success with respect to economic, social and environmental impacts. The article contributes to the growing debate about the role of environmental markets for biodiversity conservation and development. The article concludes that despite some weaknesses that market-based conservation approaches exhibit, they are the vital component in efforts to combine conservation and development.
No caption available
Content may be subject to copyright.
Open Journal of Social Sciences, 2016, 4, 61-69
Published Online June 2016 in SciRes.
How to cite this paper: Mariki, S.B. (2016) Commercialization of Nature: Can Market-Based Mechanisms Deliver Positive
Conservation and Development Outcomes? Open Journal of Social Sciences, 4, 61-69.
Commercialization of Nature: Can
Market-Based Mechanisms Deliver Positive
Conservation and Development Outcomes?
Sayuni B. Mariki
Department of Wildlife Management, Sokoine University of Agriculture, Morogoro, Tanzania
Received 18 May 2016; accepted 12 June 2016; published 15 June 2016
Copyright © 2016 by author and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution International License (CC BY).
Over the past two decades, market-based approaches to natural resources conservation have be-
come a focus in national and international arenas. They are regarded as a means to finance biodi-
versity conservation. The approaches have emerged, partly because of global environmental chal-
lenges as well as a response to growing criticisms levelled against the efficiency of conventional
approaches to natural resources conservation. Drawing from numerous case studies, this article
aims to demonstrate the extent to which these approaches have managed to deliver win-win out-
comes as claimed by its proponents. It synthesizes literature from the current experiences of
market-based approaches, and assesses its success with respect to economic, social and environ-
mental impacts. The article contributes to the growing debate about the role of environmental
markets for biodiversity conservation and development. The article concludes that despite some
weaknesses that market-based conservation approaches exhibit, they are the vital component in
efforts to combine conservation and development.
Benefits, Conservation, Development, Local People, Markets
1. Introduction
Over the past two decades, conservation policy and practice have increasingly turned towards market-based in-
terventions as a means to reconcile environmental conservation and economic development [1]-[4]. The inter-
ventions have emerged in response to global environmental issues and challenges including global warming,
ozone layer depletion, and failure of environmental legislation to protect environment [5]. This situation re-
S. B. Mariki
quired new strategy of cooperation and negotiation between different actors. Since then, many governments are
striving to use market-based mechanisms to resolve environmental problems in diverse ways [5].
Market-based conservation emerged under the notion that if the economic value is apportioned to a resource
or a species, users will realise the accrued benefits and thereby use the resources sustainably; thus, it would be
the best way of saving it [6] [7]. Moreover, the direct payments received by local communities may provide
benefits adequate to compete with alternative land use activities such as agriculture [8]. These benefits accrued
will also provide livelihood opportunities for those most affected by conservation initiatives [9]. To date, there is
a range of financial mechanisms with the intention of meeting these dual objectives.
Market-based approaches have been implemented for over two decades, but they seem to yield mixed results
(e.g. [10]-[12]). This paper draws from different case studies around the world to explore the extent to which
these approaches have delivered conservation and development outcomes. The article contributes to growing
literature of market-based conservation approaches and whether they are good option for biodiversity conserva-
tion and economic development. Lessons learnt from different case studies will provide insights to various ac-
tors interested in market-based initiatives as a way of meeting conservation objectives.
This article starts by providing a brief history of conservation with a focus on commercialization. Secondly, it
reviews market-based conservation and its two persistent narrativespositive and negative impacts of commer-
cialization. Lastly, findings from various case studies of market-based conservation are analysed. A general
conclusion drawn from this review is that, market-based conservation approaches are important in complement-
ing the existing strategies and initiatives aiming at reconciling conservation and development goals.
2. A Brief History of Conservation with Focus on Commercialization
Modern conservation dates back to the late 19th Century when the Yellowstone National Park was established in
the United States of America. Conservation spread worldwide, largely through colonialism. The main concern
was that excessive local resource use was leading to the resource decline and extinction [13]. Europeans be-
lieved that Africans hunting for subsistence was barbaric and uncivilized. Sport hunting was perceived in ro-
mantic terms as a civilized sportfor privileged white settlers. Thus, white people were regarded as hunters
while black people were called poachers. For instance, Teddy Roosevelt, the 26th President of the United States,
in his voyage to East Africa in early 1900s killed over 11,000 animals. However, he was regarded asThe
Hunterand alsoConservationist President[14].
Colonial period was marked by increased exploitation of natural resources such as wildlife, forests and wood-
lands. During the First World War, there was intensive forest encroachment as indigenous forests were cleared
to establish tea, coffee, commercial crops and timber plantations [15]. Natural resource plundering, land appro-
priation from local people (colonial primitive accumulation) and unequal exchange were done mainly through
violence and force [16]. At this time, several ordinances and policies were enacted and formulated to control
natural resource use. For example in Tanzania, the Forest Ordinance of 1957 and the Wildlife Conservation Or-
dinance of 1959 were enacted in which virtually all customary rights to local communities were withdrawn.
Shortly after World War II, much of the Western world experienced economic boom. However, after the
boom, these countries experienced economic stagnation in the 1970s where there was a high unemployment co-
incided with high inflation [17]. In developing countries, there was a decline in economic growth in the 1970s
and 1980s partly as a result of a mix of state-led economy, nationalism, corruption, politics, and populism [17].
The stagflation forced many countries to look for new economic systems. The neoliberalism and other associ-
ated economically liberal doctrines emerged as a solution to the problem and swept all over the world [16].
The economic reforms signified a move from a state-led economy and administrative control towards eco-
nomic liberalizationand encouragement ofprivate sector development[18]. The economic liberalization was
a part of the general move intended to give markets a greater role in development. It was also a response to nu-
merous factors specific to finance [17]. Three broad factors that pushed a move towards financial liberalization
in the 1980s and 1990s were poor results, high costs, and pressures from globalization” ([17], p. 208). The neo-
liberalism agenda according to [16] was an attempt to set back the clock to an earlier time of imperialist plun-
dering of the planet, its peoples and its resources. Development partners were an important and integral part of
the process of economic reforms. Their main contribution was provision of substantial financial and technical
assistance and monitoring governments on implementation of economic reforms [18].
Most of the reforms in the natural resources sector in many countries in the south occurred in the 1990s.
S. B. Mariki
These reforms were supported by conservation multinationals, development multinationals, as well as many na-
tional departments for international cooperation [19]. The international policy instruments such as Convention
on Biological Diversity and the Millennium Development Goals also supported these reforms. For instance, the
Fifth IUCN World Parks Congress recommended that: “…protected area establishment and management should
contribute to poverty reduction at the local level, and at the very minimum must not contribute to or exacerbate
poverty” ([20], p. 210). The international agreementspushed local conservation authorities to take the liveli-
hood concerns of people residing in conservation landscapes seriously, leading to the continued search for
on-the-ground mechanisms that can facilitate reconciliation between conservation and livelihood” ([9], p. 363).
3. Market-Based Approaches to Biodiversity Conservation
Since 1990s, market-based approaches to biodiversity conservation gained popularity in many countries [6]. The
market-based conservation is fitted in neoliberalism that aims to reregulate nature through forms of commodifi-
cation [21]. Neoliberalism proposes that human well-being can best be advanced by liberating individual en-
trepreneurial freedoms and skills within an institutional framework characterized by strong private property
rights, free markets and free trade ([22], p. 2). The neoliberalisation priorities include deregulation, decentrali-
sation, increased private sector involvement and withdrawal of the state in markets [23]. The state’s role in the
neoliberal context is tocreate and preserve an institutional framework appropriate to such practices” ([22], p.
Neoliberal conservation may take many forms, but it reframes conservation in terms of market mechanisms
[21]. Neoliberal conservation can be defined as the decentralisation of environmental governance, or a shift in
responsibility for formal resource management from state to local institutions and new forms of commodifica-
tion and commercialisation of nature that emerge in these contexts in order to fund conservation efforts” ([24], p.
10). Advocates of market-based conservation argue that such market will increase conservation fund, increase
environment-friendly business practices, promote participatory conservation, protect native property rights, and
promote environmental consciousness, thus enhancing more effective and efficient conservation [21]. Market-
based conservation has been linked with efforts to empower and economically improve the condition of most
disadvantaged people, for example poor farmers, the landless, women and indigenous peoples [25]. Thus, the
approach differ from traditional command and control approach to natural resources conservation as it allows
actors to undertake actions that have the lowest cost but lead to more cost-effective results.
The main commodities for production and exchange in the market are mainly carbon, wildlife, landscape aes-
thetics, genetic resources and related knowledge, and ecosystem services. There have been major policy docu-
ments supporting this approach. These documents, among others, include: The economics of ecosystems and
biodiversity[26] andTowards a green economy[27].
The economic rationale of market-based approaches is premised on the assumption thatif biodiversity and
other environmental services are assigned market prices, market forces will drive biodiversity conservation ([28],
p. 2). The requirements in these markets are mainly commodification, privatization, free trade locally, nationally
and internationally. The approach is construed as a means to achieve development and environmental conserva-
tion in an environmentally sound way [9].
The main markets include payment for ecosystem services (PES) (also known as payment of environmental
services)focus on maintaining a flow of a specified ecosystem service in exchange for something of economic
value. Examples under PES scheme include: carbon trade (Kyoto Protocol)The Protocol, adopted in Japan in
1997 and entered into force in 2005, is an international treaty that bindsState Parties to reduce greenhouse
gases emissions[29]. This Protocol was the first international attempt to fight climate change through the re-
duction of greenhouse gases emissions. The carbon trade emerged as an exchange of credits between nations.
The trade was designed to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide. The trade allows countries that have higher car-
bon emissions to purchase the right to release more CO2 into the atmosphere from countries that have lower
carbon emissions [30]. Natural forests and plantation are regarded as an important carbon sinks. Therefore, by
allowing landowners to sell the carbon stored in these forests as emission reduction credits, will act as an incen-
tive for forest conservation [6]. This argument has been embraced by the forestry sector in many countries as
well as forest plantation companies, and has promoted the afforestation and reforestation projects [28]. Another
form of PES is payments for watershed servicespayments or direct compensations by the beneficiaries of a
watershed service for the maintenance or provision of the service to its providers.
S. B. Mariki
Biodiversity offsets is another form of market where the conservation actions are intended to compensate for
the residual, unavoidable harm to biodiversity caused by development projects, so as to ensureno net lossof
biodiversity. However, before developers contemplate offsets, they should have first sought to avoid and mini-
mise harm to biodiversity [31].
Forest Certification is another form of market that intends to ensure sustainable forest management based on
environmentally, socially beneficial and economically viable management of forests for present and future gen-
erations([32], p. 5). The certification concept emerged in the 1990s after many campaigns by environmental
groups on the impact of timber logging on the environment. Examples of these campaigns include the Boycott
Tropical Timberand Save the Rainforestof the 1970s and 1980s. The campaigns managed to raise awareness
amongst consumers as well as putting pressure on the industry to use their purchasing power to influence prac-
tices in the trade. Based on this, timber producers, traders and environmentalists consent to establish the Forest
Stewardship Council (FSC) in the early 1990s. Since then, a mechanism has been put in place to identify timber
from genuine sources [33].
Trade in genetic resources and related knowledge is also considered as one of the markets. It is believed that
if well managed, the market can be advantageous, since it can generate income for people, and at the same time
provide incentives for the conservation of biodiversity. Another market is ecotourism. Ecotourism is defined as a
responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the wellbeing of local people
[34]. Tourism markets are believed to bring about win-win outcomes by adding value to protected areas through
ecotourism activities and ecosystem services. This added value can pay for conservation activities and generate
benefits for local communities, encouraging them to support conservation [6] [21].
Commercialisation of park management is another market where firms buy up public parks and reconstitute
them on business principles. The typical example is the African Parks Organisation”. The Organization man-
ages ten parks in seven African countriesCentral Africa Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ma-
lawi, Congo, Rwanda and Zambia. The total area under management covers six million hectares [35].
The market-based conservation is supported by international treaties and conventions (e.g. Convention of
Biological Diversity, International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture), development
partners (e.g. USAID), corporations, financial institutions (e.g. World Bank), organizations (e.g. World Intel-
lectual Property Organization, the World Trade Organization), investors, governments, among many others [19]
[20] [28].
4. Persistent Narratives of Market-Based Conservation
4.1. Positive Impacts of Market-Based Conservation
Market-based approaches are promoted as an opportunity for sustainable livelihoods. It enhances poverty reduc-
tion by providing livelihood opportunities, generating benefits for local communities and rational economic ac-
tors, and increasing democratization [6]. Furthermore, it enhances ecological sustainability, thus it is the most
efficient and effective way of saving biodiversity [6]. Apart from that it relieves the states of the burden of con-
servation [6] [21]. Some literature supporting this claim includes [27] and [36].
Ecotourism in Africa is claimed to be environmentally sustainable form of development([37], p. 131). For
instance, in Tanzania there are ecotourism activities in different categories of protected areas such as in national
parks and Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs). The WMAs are portions of village land set aside for wildlife
conservation. Safari and hunting tourism are considered as the main source of income in these areas. Local peo-
ple receive a share from tourism revenues and through this are motivated to support and participate in conserva-
tion. Thus, ecotourism is considered as a means to reconcile wildlife conservation and economic development.
One of the WMAs practising ecotourism is the Enduimet WMA. This WMA has great commercial potential for
tourismhas three tourists tented camps, and two hunting companies, several less frequent photographic tour
companies. In 2010, members of Enduimet WMA received 45,941 USD [38]. Several studies have indicated
ability of protected areas to reduce poverty (e.g. [11] [39]).
Positive impacts of carbon projects have been demonstrated through agricultural production, land tenure,
conservation and livelihoods (e.g. [10] [40]). For example, findings from smallholder carbon projects in Africa
where six projects managed by local and/or international NGOs were involved show that the projects enhanced
crop yields and soil healthwater holding capacity and making soils more resistant to drought, increased fodder
and fuel wood [10]. In some cases, the development of the carbon projects led directly to solidification of tenure
S. B. Mariki
rights of communities. For instance in Humbo, Ethiopia, the carbon project development process, enabled peo-
ple to get user certificates which granted them control of the resources in the project area [10]. Another example
is the Makira REDD + Project in Madagascar where about 710,588 carbon credits were sold to Microsoft in
2014. Wildlife Conservation Society estimated that it could prevent the release of more than 32 million tonnes
of CO2 over the next 30 years. The use of carbon credits was claimed to mitigate the impacts of climate change
while protecting biodiversity and enhancing human livelihoods [40].
[41] reviewed eight case studies of payment for ecosystem services (PES). The findings show that the
schemes provided small income to participating households also supported community services and infrastruc-
ture, particularly where revenues were made directly to community bodies. Likewise, [42] reviewed 44 case
studies on PES. The studies show that the schemes can provide positive conservation and development out-
comes with respect to livelihoods, household and community incomes, governance and land-use change. Also,
[43] study in Cambodia on PES show that the programs had significant positive impacts on livelihoods for those
that could afford to participate. In addition, the study by [39] indicates that PES can help to reduce poverty.
4.2. Negative Impacts of Commercialization of Natural Resources
It is argued that market-based conservation leads to primitive accumulation [44]/accumulation by dispossession
[16] and green grabbing [45]. These terms have some similarities because all of them refer to appropriation of
large tracts of land for economic ends. However, green grabbing refers to appropriation of land and resources in
the name of green biofuels, carbon offsetting schemes, conservation activities and ecotourism initiatives [46].
Accumulation by dispossession is centralization of wealth and power in the hands of few by dispossessing the
public their wealth or land [16], while primitive accumulation refers to taking land, enclosing it, and expelling a
resident population to create landless proletariat and then leasing the land into the privatized mainstream of cap-
ital accumulation [45] [47]. Most of the land accumulated is last remnants of natural areas and local peoples
land. This process has negative impact on local people access to natural resources, food security, human rights,
and the environment [48].
Market-based approaches alienate local people from their resources with hollow promises to involve them as
significant partners and beneficiaries [38]. A study by [12] on carbon sink plantation in Uganda shows that local
people were evicted from their ancestral land to make a space for plantations. Similarly, some WMAs in Tanza-
nia have led to disappointments to local people as people were persuaded to demarcate their land for conserva-
tion, take management responsibility and benefit from the resources through tourism. However, this is not the
case for instance in Enduimet WMA, as the central government retained the power of making strategic decisions
over the WMA and only minimal benefits are realized. The revenue stream is centralised, there is lack of trans-
parency of revenue flow and local communities are deprived control over revenue collection and distribution
Besides, market-based mechanisms require clear ownership of land and resources so as to know who has the
right to trade. Thus, it favours people with clear land title deed, and those with the investment capital, required
expertise, social capital, and education [32]. The policies that support market-based approaches mainly attract
and benefit large-scale landowners, who contribute towards market-based conservation [32]. Thus, marginal
groups such as poor, forest-dependent people, indigenous peoples, and women are victims and disadvantaged in
markets, as most of them do not have title deeds of land [50]-[52]. Women in particular, often own less (not own)
properties, have less time to engage in development activities due to household chores, also lack information [38]
[53]. In addition, the trade agreements do not support social safeguards in the biodiversity markets. For example,
the liberalization of trade in ecosystem services under the General Agreement on Trade in Services and similar
clauses in bilateral trade agreements indicate that giving priority and rights to local community discriminates
against large companies [28].
Moreover, the schemes benefit outsiders than the affected community [50]. Also, the mechanisms aggravate
already existing inequalities in the community due to its tendency toredistribute upward rather than downward
[54] [55]. A study by [2] on who benefits from bio prospecting-driven commercialization of argan oil in Mo-
rocco show that the benefits that trickled down to local households were regressively distributed both regionally
and between households. The bulk of gains accrued to non-locals and the process of commercialization induced
changes in production, processing and distribution that excluded the poor. Another study conducted in Costa
Rica on bio-prospecting shows that the scheme led to illegal appropriation of resources and limited economic
S. B. Mariki
benefits [32].
Studies show that the monetary powerful actors dominate the market and are able to negotiate and influence
the rules of market (e.g. [32]). Thus, large and influential private companies, stand the better chance in the nego-
tiation process from onset [56]. In addition, the significant financial returns accrued from the market, enhances
dishonest companies to buy their way out of violations of environmental conservation laws. Besides, the criteria
set by organizations such as the FSC for forests certification are often insufficient to meet the intended aims; and
can sometimes be easily neglected or manipulated (e.g. [32] [33]).
Moreover, in these markets, there is no level playing field for producers and consumers. Thus, only economi-
cally powerful consumers are free to choose and only economically powerful producers are able to compete in
the market [28]. This approach often is disadvantageous to marginal groups in the society, who lack economic
power to enter the biodiversity market. Also, they are denied access to resources when land is privatized [50]
[51] [57].
There are cases where these markets can lead to environmental destruction instead of environmental conser-
vation, especially when economic incentives are meagre or unevenly distributed, and/or when the market based
approach fail to deliver net lossin biodiversity offsetting. [58] conclude that many of the expectations
set by current offset policy for ecological restoration remain unsupported by evidence. Likewise, [59] examined
natural forest management for high value timber, sale of non-timber forest products, and biodiversity prospect-
ing. The findings show that all three schemes were generally unsuccessful in facilitating the conservation of the
biological resources upon which the markets were based, except for a few cases operating under specific condi-
Moreover, most schemes are unsustainable because most of them are external dependent mechanisms. For in-
stance, almost all patrol activities in the Enduimet WMA are externally funded; the scheme will become unsus-
tainable when external support ends unless the government intervenes by funding the activities after donor
pull-out. However, experience from previous schemes such as Serengeti Regional Conservation Project [60] and
Selous Conservation Programme [61] has indicated that there was minimal support from the Government when
the donors ended their support. [62] also indicated that the market-based conservation projects in the Amazon
did not meet development expectations partly because of the high costs borne by sponsoring organizations.
Furthermore, the benefit sharing mechanism incurs high transaction costs [49] [61] [63]. For instance studies
from Costa Rica, Cambodia, Mexico, Tanzania, Mozambique and Ecuador on PES found that transaction costs
can total up to 66% of the income generated through the schemes [63].
Furthermore, in most cases there are more costs than benefits to local populations [49]. For example in En-
duimet WMA there are low revenue generation that does not come close to matching the opportunity costs borne
by the communities. Wildlife damage to local people is too high and there is not compensation in most cases [38]
[49]. Another study by [10] on six carbon projects in Africa show that for tree planting projects farmers were
responsible for buying their own tree seedlings thus they incurred implementation costs. Carbon returns to
farmers, in all six cases, were very low compared to the total costs of implementation. Other negative outcomes
in the six carbon projects were conflicts among households or within them over land and carbon rights, trade-
offs between agricultural yield and carbon credit production, and conflicts within communities over the distribu-
tion of carbon payments, vague or weak land rights. Although, market-based mechanisms provide number of
jobs to local people, the labour conditions are not favourable and many jobs are seasonal, with low wages [32].
Another shortcoming is rent seeking by different actors at different levels (see e.g. [64]). The corrupt gov-
ernments through its corrupt officials and their allies can easily divert finances derived from market mechanisms
[64]. Moreover, in countries where corruption is rampant, people with more power and influence are the ones
securing the benefits from the markets.
Some studies show that not all values of biodiversity are included in the markets (e.g. [28]). It is difficult to
quantify the cycles of nature (i.e. biodiversity balance, generation of water springs, pollination of insects, among
many others). These values are mostlyinvisible”, and are not included in the markets [28].
5. Conclusions
The findings from various case studies demonstrate the strength and weaknesses of market-based approaches on
conservation and development. On the one side, case studies have demonstrated that market based conservation
can enhance biodiversity conservation, improve livelihoods, social services, and infrastructure, enhance good
S. B. Mariki
governance, enhance agricultural production and land tenure. On the other side, the case studies have shown that
the schemes can favour owners of large tracts of land and powerful actors. Besides, the schemes benefit outsid-
ers in most cases, can also lead to green grabbing and alienate people from their resources. Moreover, the
schemes are affected by corruption; they lack transparency in revenue flow, and can lead to environmental de-
struction. Furthermore, flow of revenue incurs high transaction costs and the schemes are unsustainable because
most of them are external dependent. In most cases, the victims are local communities particularly the poor,
women, and indigenous people. Although, these schemes promise many powerful benefits for community, they
remain unfulfilled. The benefits received in these schemes seldom outweigh associated costs.
As we have seen, the market-based approaches have much weakness but it is a vital component of efforts to
combine conservation and development. The market-based conservation can be more effective and equitable if
all biodiversity values are considered and equitably distributed to the proper owners. Also, if the market is prop-
erly regulated and there is an equitable participation of all biodiversity producers and consumers. All of these
criteria have gender dimensions that should be emphasized and considered in the markets.
[1] Lybbert, T.J., Barrett, C.B. and Narjisse, H. (2004) Does Resource Commercialization Induce Local Conservation? A
Cautionary Tale from Southwestern Morocco. Society and Natural Resources, 17, 413-430.
[2] Lybbert, T.J., Barrett, C.B. and Narjisse, H. (2002) Market-Based Conservation and Local Benefits: The Case of Argan
Oil in Morocco. Ecological Economics, 41, 125-144.
[3] Blackman, A. and Woodward, R.T. (2010) User Financing in a National Payments for Environmental Services Pro-
gram: Costa Rican Hydropower. Ecological Economics, 69, 1626-1638.
[4] Farley, J. and Costanza, R. (2010) Payments for Ecosystem Services: From Local to Global. Ecological Economics, 69,
[5] Beder, S. (2006) The Changing Face of Conservation: Commodification, Privatisation and the Free Market in Gaining
Ground: In Pursuit of Ecological Sustainability. In: Lavigne, D.M., Ed., International Fund for Animal Welfare, Guelph,
[6] Büscher, B.E. (2008) Conservation, Neoliberalism, and Social Science: A Critical Reflection on the SCB 2007. Annual
Meeting in South Africa. Conservation Biology, 22, 229-231.
[7] McAfee, K. (1999) Selling Nature to Saveit? Biodiversity and the Rise of Green Developmentalism. Environment and
Planning D: Society and Space, 17, 133-154.
[8] Pereira, S.N. (2010) Payment for Environmental Services in the Amazon Forest: How Can Conservation and Devel-
opment be Reconciled? The Journal of Environment & Development, 19, 171-190.
[9] Roth, R. and Dressler, W. (2012) Market-Oriented Conservation Governance: The Particularities of Place. Intro to
Special Issue. Geoforum, 43, 363-366.
[10] Shames, S., Wollenberg, E., Buck, L.E., Kristjanson, P., Masiga, M. and Biryahaho, B. (2012) Institutional Innovations
in African Smallholder Carbon Projects. CCAFS Report No. 8. Copenhagen, Denmark: CGIAR Research Program on
Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS).
[11] Andam, K.S., Ferraro, P.J., Sims, K., Healy, A. and Holland, M. (2010) Protected Areas Reduced Poverty in Costa
Rica and Thailand. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107, 9996-10001.
[12] Carrere, R. (2009) Carbon Sink Plantation in Uganda: Evicting People for Making Space for Trees. In: Böhm, S. and
Dahbi, S., Eds., Upsetting the Offset: The Political Economy of Carbon Markets, Mayfly Books, London, 98-101.
[13] Adams, W.M. (2004) Against Extinction: The Story of Conservation. Earthscan, London, 16, 311.
[14] TRA (Theodore Roosevelt Association) The Hunter, n.d. Hunter.htm
[15] Bluffstone, R. and Robinson, E.J.Z. (2014) Forest Tenure Reform in Asia and Africa: Local Control for Improved
Livelihoods, Forest Management, and Carbon Sequestration. Environment for Development, RFF Press, London, 284.
[16] Harvey, D. (2003) The New Imperialism. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
[17] WB (World Bank) (2005) Financial Liberalization: What Went Right, What Went Wrong? Economic Growth in the
1990s: Learning from a Decade of Reform, World Bank, Washington DC.
S. B. Mariki
[18] Muganda, A. (2004) Tanzania’s Economic ReformsAnd Lessons Learned. Scaling Up Poverty Reduction: A Global
Learning Process Conference, Shanghai, 25-27 May 2004.
[19] Inamdar, A., de Jode, H., Lindsay, K. and Cobb, S. (1996) Capitalizing on Nature: Protected Area Management.
Science, 283, 1856-1857.
[20] IUCN (2003) Recommendations. The 5th World Parks Congress, Durban, 8-17 September 2003.
[21] Igoe, J. and Brockington, D. (2007) Neoliberal Conservation: A Brief Introduction. Conservation and Society, 5, 432-
[22] Harvey, D. (2005) A Brief History of Neoliberalism. Oxford University Press, New York.
[23] Levine, A. (2007) Staying Afloat: State Agencies, Local Communities, and International Involvement in Marine Pro-
tected Area Management in Zanzibar, Tanzania. Conservation and Society, 5, 562-585.
[24] Brondo, K.V. (2013) Land Grab: Green Neoliberalism, Gender, and Garifuna Resistance in Honduras. University of
Arizona Press, Tucson, 240 p.
[25] Neumann, R.P. (2000) Primitive Ideas: Protected Area Buffer Zones and the Politics of Land in Africa? Nordiska
Afrikainstitutet, Uppsala, 220-242.
[26] TEEB (2010) The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity: Mainstreaming the Economics of Nature. A Synthesis
of the Approach, Conclusions and Recommendations of TEEB.
[27] UNEP (2011) Towards a Green Economy: Pathways to Sustainable Development and Poverty Eradication—A Synthe-
sis for Policy Makers.
[28] GFC (Global Forest Coalition) (2008) Life as Commerce: The Impact of Market-Based Conservation Mechanisms on
Women. The Global Forest Coalition.
[29] IPCC (2015) Climate Change 2014: Synthesis Report. Summary for Policy Makers.
[30] UNFCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) (2014) International Emissions Trading: Green-
house Gas Emissions—A New Commodity.
[31] Kate, K., Bishop, J. and Bayon, R. (2004) Biodiversity Offsets: Views, Experience, and the Business Case. IUCN,
Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK and Insight Investment, London, UK.
[32] GFC (Global Forest Coalition) (2008) Life as Commerce: The Impact of Market-Based Conservation on Indigenous
Peoples, Local Communities and Women. GFC, Asunción.
[33] Magin, G. (2008) Forest CertificationWhat Does It Mean for the World’s Forests? Botanic Gardens Conservation
[34] TIES (The International Ecotourism Society) (2011) What Is Ecotourism?
[35] APO (African Parks Organization) (n.d.) Our Story.
[36] Simpson, R.D. (2004) Conserving Biodiversity through Markets: A Better Approach. PERC (Property and Environ-
ment Research Centre) Policy Series PS-32, USA.
[37] Duffy, R. (2006) Global Environmental Governance and the Politics of Ecotourism in Madagascar. Journal of Ecot-
ourism, 5, 128-144.
[38] Mariki, S.B. (2016) Social Impacts of Conservation on Gender in West Kilimanjaro Tanzania. Open Journal of Social
Sciences, 4, 220-235.
[39] Pagiola, S., Arcenas, A. and Platais, G. (2005) Can Payments for Environmental Services Help Reduce Poverty? An
Exploration of the Issues and the Evidence to Date from Latin America. World Development, 33, 237-253.
[40] Butler, R. (2014) Microsoft Buys Madagascar Carbon Credits.
[41] Mahanty, S., Suich, H. and Tacconi, L. (2013) Access and Benefits in Payments for Environmental Services and Im-
plications for REDD+: Lessons from Seven PES Schemes. Land Use Policy, 31, 38-47.
[42] Hejnowicz, A.P., Raffaelli, D.G., Rudd, M.A. and White, P.C.L. (2014) Evaluating the Outcomes of Payments for
Ecosystem Service Programmes Using a Capital Asset Framework. Ecosystem Services, 9, 83-97.
S. B. Mariki
[43] Clements, T. and Milner-Gulland, E.J. (2014) Impact of Payments for Environmental Services and Protected Areas on
Local Livelihoods and Forest Conservation in Northern Cambodia. Conservation Biology, 29, 78-87.
[44] Marx, K. (1976) Capital: A Critique of Political Economy. Vol. 1, Penguin, London.
[45] Kelly, A. (2011) Conservation Practice as Primitive Accumulation. Journal of Peasant Studies, 38, 638-701.
[46] Fairhead, J., Leach, M. and Scoones, I. (2012) Green Grabbing: A New Appropriation of Nature? Journal of Peasant
Studies, 39, 237-261.
[47] Büscher, B. (2009) Letters of Gold: Enabling Primitive Accumulation through Neoliberal Conservation. Human Geo-
graphy, 2, 91-94.
[48] Global Witness, Oakland Institute, International Land Coalition (2012) Dealing with Disclosure: Improving Transpa-
rency in Decision-Making over Large-Scale Land Acquisitions and Investments.
[49] Mariki, S.B., Svarstad, H. and Benjaminsen, T.A. (In Press) Ecotourism in Enduimet: An Examination of Local Bene-
fits and Transparency in a Wildlife Management Area in Tanzania. In: Rutten, M. and Wijngaarden, V., Eds., Ecotour-
ism in Africa: Experiences from Kenyan and Tanzanian Maasailand, African Dynamic Series, Brill, Leiden.
[50] Brockington, D., Duffy, R. and Igoe, J. (2008) Nature Unbound: Conservation, Capitalism, and the Future of Protected
Areas. Earthscan, London.
[51] Adams, W. and Hutton, J. (2007) People, Parks and Poverty: Political Ecology and Biodiversity Conservation. Con-
servation and Society, 5, 147-183.
[52] Balmford, A. and Whitten, T. (2003) Who Should Pay for Tropical Conservation, and How Could the Costs Be Met?
Oryx, 37, 238-250.
[53] Ogra, M. (2008) Human-Wildlife Conflict and Gender in Protected Area Borderlands: A Case Study of Costs, Percep-
tions, and Vulnerabilities from Uttarakhand (Uttaranchal), India. Geoforum, 39, 1408-1422.
[54] Dressler, W. (2009) Reinforcing Local Inequity and Resistance through Community-Based Conservation on Palawan
Island, the Philippines. In: Turner, S. and Caouette, D., Eds., Agrarian Angst and Rural Resistance in Contemporary
Southeast Asia, Routledge Press, Abingdon.
[55] McAfee, K. (2012) Nature in the Market-World: Ecosystem Services and Inequality. Development, 55, 25-33.
[56] Nelson, F. (2012) Blessing or Curse? The Political Economy of Tourism Development in Tanzania. Journal of Sus-
tainable Tourism, 20, 359-375.
[57] Colchester, M. (2002) Wilderness Parks or Community Conservation? World Rainforest Movements Bulletin, No. 62,
[58] Maron, M., Hobbs, R.J., Moilanen, A., Matthews, J.W., Christie, K., Gardner, T.A., Keith, D.A., Lindenmayer, D.B.
and McAlpine, C.A. (2012) Faustian Bargains? Restoration Realities in the Context of Biodiversity Offset Policies.
Biological Conservation, 155, 141-148.
[59] Crook, C. and Clapp, R. (1998) Is Market-Oriented Forest Conservation a Contradiction in Terms? Environmental
Conservation, 25, 131-145.
[60] Kideghesho, J.R., Nyahongo, J.W., Hassan, S.N., Tarimo, T.C. and Mbije, N.E. (2006) Factors and Ecological Impacts
of Wildlife Habitat Destruction in the Serengeti Ecosystem in Northern Tanzania. AJEAM-RAGEE, 11, 917-932.
[61] Songorwa, A. (1999) Community Based Wildlife Management in Tanzania: Are Communities Interested? World De-
velopment, 27, 2061-2079.
[62] Pokorny, B., Johnson. J., Medina, G. and Hoch, L. (2012) Market-Based Conservation of the Amazonian Forests: Re-
visiting Win-Win Expectations. Geoforum, 43, 387-401.
[63] Alston, L.J., Andersson, K. and Smith, S.M. (2013) Payment for Environmental Services: Hypotheses and Evidence.
Annual Review of Resource Economics, 5, 139-159.
[64] Benjaminsen, T.A., Goldman, M., Minwary, M. and Maganga, F. (2013) Wildlife Management in Tanzania: State
Control, Rent Seeking and Community Resistance. Development and Change, 44, 1087-1109.
Submit your manuscript at:
... Tsunami is rather a rare disaster in the Indian Ocean [63]. A mega-earthquake of magnitude 9.3 on the Richter scale struck near Indonesia On December 26th, 2004 at 07:58:53 local time [64,65]. The epicenter was located 80km west of the coast of Northern Sumatra (at approximately 95°51' W and 3°25'N). ...
... In fact, the heavy metal concentration was lower at Fangchenggang in Guangxi province where sand is dominant, while it was higher at Dong fang, Yunxiao and Futian district of Shenzhen where silt (between sand and clay) is dominant [62,63]. We regarded mangrove stands, coral-reef and seaweed fauna as three major inshore marine ecosystems [1,64,65]. Furthermore, we explored the heavy metal pollution in Futian mangroves of Shenzhen, China. Futian mangrove is a mangrove forest area of 304 ha located in the Guangdong Province, and is the only mangrove forests located in the middle of Shenzhen, China. ...
... People say it will promote participatory conservation and protect native property rights. Others say it promotes environmental consciousness, thus enhancing more effective and efficient conservation [64,65]. ...
Full-text available
Mangrove, or bakau as it is known in Indonesia, is one of the vegetations commonly found along the shallow coasts, estuaries, deltas and protected coastal areas and are still influenced by rising tides. After the Aceh tsunami disaster, mangrove restoration was intensively conducted in coastal areas all over Indonesia and was made into a special conservation program by the government. Mangrove is distinguishable by its big, wooden stilt roots, sharpening tip in the form of supporting leaves. The roots of the mangrove tree are morphologically distinguishable into heart root which grows into the ground and the stilt root which appear to grabs onto the surface of the ground. Mangrove forests serve several important ecological roles: they act as filters which turns saline water into fresh water, buffer from seawater intrusion, prevent erosion and abrasion, hold sediments to form new habitats, feeding ground, nursery ground, and spawning ground for a number of aquatic wildlife. Mangrove forest also possess economical functions such as as source of income, industrial ingredients for the locals and as source of new mangrove seedlings. Mangunhardjo Village, Urban Community of Mangunhardjo, Mangkang Area, Kecamatan of Tugu, Semarang City, Indonesia was an area dotted with brackish water pond. However, the area had been suffering from the effects of climate change, being inundated by overflow of river and seawater intrusion (rob). These disasters caused decline in the productivity of the ponds in the area. In an effort to combat the adverse effect of environmental change in the area, the locals of Mangunhardjo village decided to shift their livelihood by restoring the surrounding mangrove forest. Mangrove conservation at Mangunhardjo Village was conducted through activities of the program such as mangrove planting, mangrove-based food production, and mangrove waste management by applications of bioactivator bacteria for mangrove composting and production of mangrove-based natural dye for batik fabric. Mangrove-based natural dye for batik fabric from Rhizopora mucronata mangrove waste is a quite promising product and increases people’s income.
... This would be a model that will not disrupt the locals people's way of life but will enhance their lifestyles. Commercialisation that evicts the local people from their ancestral land and alienates them from accessing their heritage resources with hollow promises to involve them as partners and beneficiaries is not sustainable (Mariki, 2016). ...
Full-text available
Zambia is rich in natural, environmental, cultural and heritage resources. However, full optimisation of these resources to the benefit of the local communities that host them remains a challenge. A case in point is the thermal springs that are dotted around the country, mostly in rural areas, that have not been fully and sustainably utilised to the benefit of the local communities. Of particular interest is the Chinyunyu thermal springs, a critical resource, but under-utilised. As a result, the locals in Chinyunyu Village have remained unfairly “trapped” in a vicious cycle of high poverty. The main aim of this study was to explore the use of Chinyunyu thermal springs as an economic input to assist the cause of local economic development. Resting on the pragmatic, interpretivist, and constructivist research paradigms, this study employed a mixed methods convergent research design triangulated with multiple data sources. A sample size of 139 (n=139) individuals was purposively selected from the local authorities and community actors. A survey, key informant interviews, and two focus group discussions were conducted to collect data. Data collected was statistically and thematically analysed. The study concluded that the local authority in Chinyunyu Village has failed to sustainably exploit the exciting heritage and natural resources within its locality, the Chinyunyu thermal springs. Results from the study revealed that the Chinyunyu thermal springs have remained underdeveloped and underutilised as such, failed to significantly contribute to the well-being of the community members in Chinyunyu Village. Evidence from this study revealed a positive and significant association of local community participation in decision making, decentralisation of power and authority, infrastructure, and exploitation of local natural resources to local economic development of the Chinyunyu Village. The study proposes to commercialise and develop the Chinyunyu thermal springs into a community-based tourism resort as an ideal local economic development strategy. A sustainable commercial model that could be adopted by the thermal springs was therefore developed. Furthermore, the study proposes to decentralise the management of the Chinyunyu thermal springs, enhance local participation in decision making, provide basic infrastructure and formulate a local economic development policy framework for the municipal council.
... In the larger scale, the governance system likely needs to shift its environmental conservation from the centralist state to a decentralized manner, delegating the power to the civil society at the local level. Some scholars have commented on how DRR, conservation, and development are likely to be coupled, as the three activities have a common aim and all focus on attaining goals through market mechanisms [79][80][81][82]. Market mechanism has a unique approach to addressing socio-economic and environmental issues at the same time [83]. ...
Full-text available
The notion of ecosystem-based disaster risk reduction (DRR) has only recently emerged in Indonesia. The Indonesian central government now adopts some policies related to ecosystem-based DRR with formal commitments from local administrations. At the implementation level, various activities have taken place, such as mangrove planting and restoration along the coastline to address the rising sea level and the “one billion trees” program to address the urgent issue of deforestation. These governmental activities have involved local communities that reside in the high-risk area, while nonlocal actors, particularly from the private and the nongovernmental sectors, have contributed as a third element to development. This paper examines space management in the context of Eco-DRR, paying special attention to uncertainty and anxiety in the local communities as the government and private sectors engage in development activities that have significant impacts on their present and future lives. The present study pursues this purpose by means of in-depth interview and focus group discussions (FGD) with local leaders in mangrove planting and restoration programs. The study took place in a small island community in a part of the Jakarta Megapolitan Region, Indonesia. The results point out that the community feels left behind due to lack of trust in managing the conservation space. Another issue to be addressed is how to improve the democratization of environment management and livelihood base of the local community. Therefore, building confidence and ameliorating relationships between actors within/without the local community should lead to a better Eco-DRR initiative.
Full-text available
In most cases, the establishment of protected areas (PAs) goes hand-in-hand with an increase in conservation costs to communities living adjacent to these PAs. This paper draws insights from gender theories in particular feminist political ecology approach to unravel the impact of PAs on men and women around the Kilimanjaro National Park (NP) and the Enduimet Wildlife Management Area (WMA) in Tanzania. Specifically, it investigates how the creation and expansion of two PAs in Tanzania have impacted men and women in different ways. A combination of in-depth interviews , focus-group discussions, and key informant interviews was used to collect data from local people who live adjacent to these PAs. The findings reveal that the PAs impact both men and women, but the most significant impact is felt by women due to inequality in the gendered division of labour and resources at the household level. Poor men and women together with most women in female-headed households, suffer more from strong restrictions on access to PA-based resources than other people as they have limited alternatives. The benefits of PAs in compensating for resource restrictions were found to be modest and do not meet the needs of predominantly poor men and women. The majority of local people collect resources from PAs illegally to meet their livelihood needs, despite restrictions on resource access. This study concludes that, instead of PAs paying attention to people's relevant livelihood needs and improving their wellbeing, they have unfortunately worsened their situation.
Full-text available
The growing body of work on the 'neoliberalisation of nature' does not as yet pay adequate attention to conservation policy and its impacts. Similarly, studies of conservation have much to learn by placing conservation policies in the context of broader social and economic changes that define neoliberalism. In this introduction, we outline and analyse the ways in which viewing conservation through a neoliberal lens adds value (if you will excuse the metaphor) to the collection of critiques we offer, placing quite different geographical areas and case studies in a comparative context. We argue that neoliberalisation involves the reregulation of nature through forms of commodification. This, in turn, entails new types of territorialisation: the partitioning of resources and landscapes in ways that control, and often exclude, local people. Territorialisation is a starkly visible form of reregulation, which frequently creates new types of values and makes those values available to national and transnational elites. Finally, neoliberalisation has also coincided with the emergence of new networks that cut across traditional divides of state, non-governmental organisation (NGO), and for-profit enterprise. These networks are rhetorically united by neoliberal ideologies and are combining in ways that profoundly alter the lives of rural people in areas targeted for biodiversity conservation. The studies this collection brings together, which are all rooted in place-based detailed research, are united by their experience of these processes. We argue that the disparate collection of critiques on the neoliberalisation of nature needs more grounded studies like these. We conclude this introduction with some tentative recommendations for future research and policy on neoliberal conservation.
Full-text available
The potential impacts of payments for environmental services (PES) and protected areas (PAs) on environmental outcomes and local livelihoods in developing countries are contentious and have been widely debated. The available evidence is sparse, with few rigorous evaluations of the environmental and social impacts of PAs and particularly of PES. We measured the impacts on forests and human well-being of three different PES programs instituted within two PAs in northern Cambodia, using a panel of intervention villages and matched controls. Both PES and PAs delivered additional environmental outcomes relative to the counterfactual: reducing deforestation rates significantly relative to controls. PAs increased security of access to land and forest resources for local households, benefiting forest resource users but restricting households' ability to expand and diversify their agriculture. The impacts of PES on household well-being were related to the magnitude of the payments provided. The two higher paying market-linked PES programs had significant positive impacts, whereas a lower paying program that targeted biodiversity protection had no detectable effect on livelihoods, despite its positive environmental outcomes. Households that signed up for the higher paying PES programs, however, typically needed more capital assets; hence, they were less poor and more food secure than other villagers. Therefore, whereas the impacts of PAs on household well-being were limited overall and varied between livelihood strategies, the PES programs had significant positive impacts on livelihoods for those that could afford to participate. Our results are consistent with theories that PES, when designed appropriately, can be a powerful new tool for delivering conservation goals whilst benefiting local people. © 2014 The Authors. Conservation Biology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of Society for Conservation Biology.
Ecotourism, bioprospecting, and nontimber product marketing have been promoted recently as market-based instruments for environmental protection, but without sound understanding of the resulting net conservation effects. We present evidence on the local effects of recent argan oil commercialization in Morocco, a seemingly promising case of conservation through resource commercialization. We find that resource commercialization creates mixed net conservation incentives because assumptions implicit in the prevailing logic prove incorrect. The experience of southwestern Morocco provides a cautionary tale about conservation strategies founded on resource commercialization, emphasizing that local institutions and the biology of a resource can exert greater influence on conservation outcomes than do market forces. his staff provided key administrative and logistical support. The households participating in the survey and key informants, including Zoubida Charrouf and Bahanan Saı¨dSaı¨d, deserve acknowledgment for their cooperation and hospitality. The survey enumerators, Bahija Habib and Youssef Laaraj, did excellent work, for which we are grateful. We thank anonymous referees for helpful comments and suggestions.
Land Grab is a rich ethnographic account of the relationship between identity politics, neoliberal development policy, and rights to resource management in Garifuna communities on the north coast of Honduras, before and after the 2009 coup d'état. The Garifuna are a people of African and Amerindian descent who were exiled to Honduras from the British colony of St. Vincent in 1797 and have long suffered from racial and cultural marginalization. Employing approaches from feminist political ecology, critical race studies, and ethnic studies,Keri Vacanti Brondo illuminates three contemporary development paradoxes in Honduras: the recognition of the rights of indigenous people at the same time as Garifuna are being displaced in the name of development; the privileging of foreign research tourists in projects that promote ecotourism but result in restricting Garifuna from traditional livelihoods; and the contradictions in Garifuna land-rights claims based on native status when mestizos are reserving rights to resources as natives themselves. Brondo's book asks a larger question: can "freedom," understood as well-being, be achieved under the structures of neoliberalism? Grounding this question in the context of Garifuna relationships to territorial control and self-determination, the author explores the "reregulation" of Garifuna land; "neoliberal conservation" strategies like ecotourism, research tourism, and"voluntourism;" the significant issue of who controls access to property and natural resources; and the rights of women, who have been harshly impacted by "development." In her conclusion, Brondo points to hopeful signs in the emergence of transnational indigenous, environmental, and feminist organizations.
While conservation activities are underfunded almost everywhere, the gap between current expenditure and what is needed is particularly extreme in the tropics where threatened species and habitats are most concentrated. We examine how to bridge this funding gap. Firstly, we try to identify who in principle should pay, by comparing the spatial distribution of the costs and the benefits of tropical conservation. The immediate opportunity costs of conservation often exceed its more obvious, management-related costs, and are borne largely by local communities. Conversely, we argue that the greatest benefits of conservation derive from ecological services, and from option, existence, and bequest values; these are often widely dispersed and enjoyed in large part by wealthier national and global beneficiaries. We conclude that the gap in funding tropical conservation should be borne largely by national and especially global communities, who receive most benefit but currently pay least cost. In the second part of the paper we review recent developments in order to examine how in practice increased funding may be raised. There are many growing and novel sources of support: private philanthropy, premium pricing for biodiversity-related goods via certification schemes, and the development of entirely new markets for environmental services. Despite their potential, we conclude that the principal route for meeting the unmet costs of tropical conservation will have to be via governments, and will inevitably require the transfer of substantial resources from north to south. This will be enormously difficult, both politically and logistically, but without it we believe that much of what remains of tropical nature will be lost.
‘Conservation in the 21st century needs to be different and this book is a good indicator of why.’ Bulletin of British Ecological Society Against Extinction tells the history of wildlife conservation from its roots in the 19th century, through the foundation of the Society for the Preservation of the Wild Fauna of the Empire in London in 1903 to the huge and diverse international movement of the present day. It vividly portrays conservation's legacy of big game hunting, the battles for the establishment of national parks, the global importance of species conservation and debates over the sustainable use of and trade in wildlife. Bill Adams addresses the big questions and ideas that have driven conservation for the last 100 years: How can the diversity of life be maintained as human demands on the Earth expand seemingly without limit? How can preservation be reconciled with human rights and the development needs of the poor? Is conservation something that can be imposed by a knowledgeable elite, or is it something that should emerge naturally from people's free choices? These have never been easy questions, and they are as important in the 21st century as at any time in the past. The author takes us on a lively historical journey in search of the answers.
Forest tenure reforms are occurring in many developing countries around the world. These reforms typically include devolution of forest lands to local people and communities, which has attracted a great deal of attention and interest. While the nature and level of devolution vary by country, all have potentially important implications for resource allocation, local ecosystem services, livelihoods and climate change. This book helps students, researchers and professionals to understand the importance and implications of these reforms for local environmental quality, climate change, and the livelihoods of villagers, who are often poor. It is shown that local forest management can often be more successful than top-down management of common pool forest resources. The relationship of local forest tenure reform to the important climate change initiative REDD+ is also considered. The work includes a number of generic chapters and also detailed case studies from China, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nepal, Tanzania and Uganda. Using specific examples and a wide variety of disciplinary perspectives, including quantitative and qualitative analytical methods, the book provides an authoritative and critical picture of local forest reforms in light of the key challenges humanity faces today.