Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Will aid to poor put wildlife at risk?

18.03.2005


Poverty alleviation and conservation must go hand-in-hand, survey finds



Even a small increase in the wealth of poor, rural families in Gabon may cause a substantial increase in the consumption of bushmeat, according to a study by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) in a recent issue of Conservation Biology. The results of the study, the authors said, underline the importance of coordinating poverty alleviation efforts with conservation to avoid depleting natural resources in Central Africa, while still benefiting the rural poor.

"Raising poor families out of poverty is a moral imperative," said Dr. David Wilkie of the Wildlife Conservation Society, the lead author of the study. "However, if doing so results in the depletion of the wildlife that these families rely upon to meet their daily protein needs, then development assistance may not only result in a loss of biodiversity. It also may put at risk the long-term security of these clients of aid--the rural poor.


The study--which was the first to explore the bushmeat issue across the entire country--was based on surveys conducted in some 1208 households in six locations across Gabon, collecting information on meat consumption, socioeconomic status, and demographic factors. In all instances, the consumption of meat, including wildlife, fish, chicken and livestock, increased with wealth, while rising prices resulted in a decrease in consumption. Growth in the income of poor families resulted in the largest jumps in bushmeat consumption. The rural poor are only 16 percent of the Gabonese population, but as they rely on wildlife for food, they eat 51 percent of all bushmeat consumed. Given this, even a small step out of poverty for the rural poor might have a huge unexpected impact on wildlife conservation and the long-term food security of poor families.

Contrary to what was expected, the price of poultry and livestock appeared to have little statistical effect on the amount of bushmeat consumed. But, increases in the price of bushmeat resulted in both a decrease in bushmeat consumed and an increase in fish consumption. The authors caution that attempts to reduce the amounts of bushmeat purchased by consumers may produce higher demand for fish. This finding indicates that management of wildlife and fisheries must go hand-in-hand, so that conserving one does not result in overexploitation and loss of the other.

A truly effective method of protecting wildlife populations and the welfare of the rural poor, Wilkie said, would be to use law enforcement to stop non-local hunters from stripping the forest of its wildlife to supply urban dwellers with a luxury item eaten on special occasions.

"In countries such as Gabon, where the poor and wildlife live together, conservation organizations need to work closely with development organizations," added Wilkie. "By understanding how client families use natural resources, we can formulate holistic strategies to protect wildlife and natural resources and promote the welfare security of local people."

WCS President and CEO Steven E. Sanderson said: "To say poverty alleviation and conservation must go together is the easy part. To solve the problems of poor people and wildlife where they actually live their lives is more complicated. It is what we try to do, and it will make the difference between a slogan and a good action agenda."

The Gabonese government has invested significantly in the conservation of wildlife within its borders. In 2002, Gabon created 13 national parks across the country, protecting over 10 percent of its land cover in the process.

John Delaney | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.wcs.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung

nachricht Scientists reveal source of human heartbeat in 3-D
07.08.2017 | University of Manchester

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A Map of the Cell’s Power Station

18.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form

18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet

18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>