'Keep it local' approach more effective than government schemes at protecting rainforestSeptember 12, 2017
Conservation initiatives led by local and indigenous groups can be just as effective as schemes led by government, according to new research. In some cases in the Amazon rainforest, grassroots initiatives can be even more effective at protecting this vital ecosystem. This is particularly important due to widespread political resistance to hand over control over forests and other natural resources to local communities.
Researchers from the University of Cambridge, the University of East Anglia (UEA) and the Peruvian Ministry of Environment assessed the effectiveness of different approaches to conservation in the Peruvian Amazon between 2006 and 2011. They found that while all were effective at protecting the rainforest compared with non-protected areas of land, the areas protected by local and indigenous communities were on average more effective than those protected by the government.
However, the effectiveness of the conservation strategies also depended on what non-protected areas they were compared to, and the land use restrictions in place in the non-protected land. Future assessments of the impacts of different conservation strategies should therefore pay closer attention to land use restrictions in place in non-protected lands. The results are reported in the journal Scientific Reports.
Although the Amazon rainforest and its unique biodiversity are rapidly disappearing, little is still known about which protection mechanisms make a difference and how different conservation strategies compare.
The study looked at areas protected by the national government, indigenous communities or civil society and the private sector are, compared to non-protected areas and land destined for timber and mineral extraction. The researchers assessed each approach for how well it was able to curtail deforestation, defined as total forest cover loss, and forest degradation, defined as other human-induced disturbances, such as selective logging, logging tracks and fire.
The researchers combined remote sensing data with environmental and socio-economic datasets to assess each approach, and controlled for other factors that are expected to affect deforestation and forest degradation.
"Our results that these diverse types of protected areas were effective at reducing deforestation and forest degradation compared to non-protected areas are very encouraging," said lead author Dr Judith Schleicher, from Cambridge's Department of Geography. The larger reduction in deforestation and forest degradation in areas led by indigenous communities and grassroots groups suggests that local ownership and support for protecting the Peruvian Amazon can be a particularly effective approach.
"Policy makers must focus on a more diverse set of mechanisms for protecting the rapidly disappearing tropical forests," said Schleicher. "Our analysis shows that local stewardship of the forest can be very effective at curtailing forest degradation and conversion in the Peruvian Amazon. Local conservation initiatives deserve more political, financial and legal support than they currently receive."
"Our analysis shows that there is no single way of protecting tropical forests, and multiple approaches are required to stem the relentless tide of forest conversion and degradation," said co-author Professor Carlos Peres from UEA's School of Environmental Sciences.
University of Cambridge
Related Deforestation Articles:
The ongoing deforestation around the fringes of the Amazon may have serious consequences for the untouched deeper parts of the rainforest.
Taking a fresh look at evidence from satellite data, and using the latest theories from complexity science, researchers at the University of Bristol have provided new evidence to show that the Amazon rainforest is not as fragile as previously thought.
A new study of 67 less-developed, malaria-endemic nations led by Lehigh University sociologist Dr.
Central American tropical forests are beginning to disappear at an alarming rate, threatening the livelihood of indigenous peoples there and endangering some of the most biologically diverse ecosystems in North America.
Multinational companies are increasingly looking to Africa to expand production of in-demand commodity crops such as soy and oil palm.
In many developing countries, economic growth and deforestation seem to go hand in hand -- but the links are not well understood.
Empowering local governments with forestry decisions can help combat deforestation, but is most effective when local users are actively engaging with their representatives, according to a new University of Colorado Boulder-led study.
Only a small share of Congolese villagers is the driving force behind most of the deforestation.
A new study finds that close to 9,000 square kilometers of Amazon forest was cleared from 2008 to 2012 without detection by the official government monitoring system.
Even if people completely stopped converting tropical forests into farmland, the impacts of tropical deforestation would continue to be felt for many years to come.
Related Deforestation Reading:
Deforestation (Development or Destruction?)
by Richard Spilsbury (Author)
Looks at the impact of deforestation around the globe and in such specific places as Finland, Nepal, and Brazil. View Details
Deforestation For Dummies: An In-Depth Look at the Causes
by Jackson Young (Author)
This is Jackson's School Project View Details
Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed: Revised Edition
by Jared Diamond (Author)
In Jared Diamond’s follow-up to the Pulitzer-Prize winning Guns, Germs and Steel, the author explores how climate change, the population explosion and political discord create the conditions for the collapse of civilization
Environmental damage, climate change, globalization, rapid population growth, and unwise political choices were all factors in the demise of societies around the world, but some found solutions and persisted. As in Guns, Germs, and Steel, Diamond traces the fundamental pattern of catastrophe, and weaves an all-encompassing global thesis through a... View Details
Deforestation: The Ultimate Guide Deforestation Causes, Solutions To Deforestation, Deforestation Facts and More
Tһе gо-tо-gυіԁе fог ԁеfогеѕtаtіоn, еffесtѕ оf ԁеfогеѕtаtіоn, ѕоӏυtіоnѕ tо ԁеfогеѕtаtіоn аnԁ mυсһ mоге. View Details
Deforestation (Compact Research Series)
by Lydia Bjornlund (Author)
Describes how the world's forests are being destroyed, some of the causes and consequences of this destruction, and sustainable solutions for the future. View Details
What Can We Do About Deforestation? (Protecting Our Planet)
by David J. Jakubiak (Author)
Looks at the problem of deforestation, examining what forests are, why they are important to people, the reasons why people cut or burn them down, the negative effects of deforestation, and steps that can be taken to save them. View Details
Deforestation in the Teknaf Peninsula of Bangladesh: A Study of Political Ecology
by Masakazu Tani (Editor), Md Abiar Rahman (Editor)
This book presents a political ecology study on deforestation in the Teknaf Peninsula of Bangladesh. The study’s aim was to elucidate social factors contributing to processes of deforestation, including poverty, migration of refugees, forest encroachment, and power relations entailed in forest management. The individual analyses presented in the book are entirely based on primary information obtained through original field work conducted over a period of 7 years, and on remote sensing using satellite imagery and GIS techniques. The second half of the book considers reforestation... View Details
Deforestation: Deforestation causes, impacts and restoration strategies
Restoration forestry or eco-forestry or sustainable forestry is basically not aimed to produce forest trees for logging or any sort of human consumption instead it mainly aiming the environmental protection in order to maintain Carbon dioxide and Oxygen levels as well as pacifying weather changes and the effects to the natural habitats. This book attempts to justify the reasons of deforestation, afforestation and reforestation with available examples and current techniques as per discussions of Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and Land use, land use, change and forestry (LULUCF) of Kyoto... View Details
Deforestation (Earths Conditions)
by Caleb Owens (Author)
Briefly describes how the world's forests are being destroyed, some of the causes and consequences of this destruction and some ways of preventing it View Details
Second Growth: The Promise of Tropical Forest Regeneration in an Age of Deforestation
by Robin L. Chazdon (Author)
For decades, conservation and research initiatives in tropical forests have focused almost exclusively on old-growth forests because scientists believed that these pristine” ecosystems housed superior levels of biodiversity. With Second Growth, Robin L. Chazdon reveals those assumptions to be largely false, bringing to the fore the previously overlooked counterpart to old-growth forest: second growth.
Even as human activities result in extensive fragmentation and deforestation, tropical forests demonstrate a great capacity for natural and human-aided regeneration.... View Details