‘Traditional authority’ linked to rates of deforestation in Africa

New analysis reveals a strong correlation between precolonial institutions in Africa and current levels of deforestation. phys.org

GR:  It’s certainly true in the U. S. that century-old institutions are still the leading cause of deforestation.

4 thoughts on “‘Traditional authority’ linked to rates of deforestation in Africa

  1. Europeans are hungry for timber and Forest Councils get 55% or more of the timber harvest. Traditional Authority roles play a part in deforesting land for agricultural demands of rapid population growth and equally rapid desertification rates. It would be better for you to link it with insufficient nutrient cycling and waste usage. You really do not have a firm understanding of the African system of land tenure and forest markets.

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    • Epiphany, I’m sure I do not have a firm understanding. Nutrient loss following timber harvest and other forms of land clearing must extend the time needed for the original forests to return. Can you generalize about the current African system of land tenure? Are small land holders increasing, or are large land holders increasing?

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      • Nutrient loss following timber harvest results from agriculture. After the land is salinized and no longer supports life, or a real estate developer offers the land owner more money, the land is transferred to the developer. The land is never sold permanently. The chief gives lease on the land for the land registry for 50 to 100 years, after that time it must be renewed. Both small holders and large land holders are increasing as forest is claimed for logging, and then agriculture. The forests don’t return. There are millions of acres sitting idle, usually purchased by people out of Africa. But smallholders are increasing at the rate equal to the deforestation as large developers purchase nutrient bare soil.

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