Linking Plant-Based Enterprises and Local Communities to Biodiversity Conservation in Nepal Himalaya

 

Author: Bhishma Prasad Subedi
Publisher: Department of Forestry, Kumaun University, Naini Tal-263002, Uttaranchal, INDIA
Language: English
Date of Publication: December 2004
ISBN: N/A
Number of Pages: 193
Price: Free

This study on community based NTFP enterprises and conservation provides an analysis at two levels. The first deals with the potential of NTFP enterprises and community forestry in Nepal. In the second, an in-depth analysis of enterprise-oriented community forest management was made by sampling 37 CFUGs of high mountain areas where other economic options were negligible. The country-level analysis shows that Nepal has extraordinarily wide range of NTFPs uses and the dependence of local communities on them would continue for long time. The in-depth analysis of 37 CFUGs indicated that through enterprise oriented community forest management, it is possible to develop synergy between improvement of livelihood and conservation. EOCF gave economic power to local people to choose an action that they think will be more rewarding in the long-run. People conserve more the species from which they generate cash income than the species which they use for their subsistence. The hope of earning cash is the major driving force in a society suffering from lack of it. Though this kind of behavior of community is encouraging from enterprise point of view, it may lead to reduction in biodiversity pool. It is situations like these where better understanding and education may help in addressing the problem. For example, communities need to be educated about the linkages between the species and ecosystem conservation. Though the limitations of this study are many, the fact that it was carried out in collaboration with 37 communities involving more than 5,000 households give convincing evidence in support of the above conclusion.

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