Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Handing resource management back to local councillors in Senegal

06.10.2006
Forest resource management in Senegal is highly dysfunctional. This was revealed by the results of a two-year study of decentralized management and the economics of the charcoal supply chain.

With 80 000 ha of forest cover cleared each year, including 30 000 ha to produce charcoal, Senegal has lost half of its forest in 20 years. Nowadays, its forest resource, which covers just 25% of the country, is continuing to shrink as a result of numerous factors, including a severe drought, which lasted for three decades up to the late 1990s. Is this catastrophic vision a consequence of climatic factors alone, of an uncontrollable increase in demand from urban areas, or of bad management at national level?

An analysis of the situation in the field tipped the balance in favour of the latter two options. This was shown by the results of a two-year research programme conducted by CIRAD, in partnership with the World Resource Institute (WRI) and the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA). In effect, the economic and political issues surrounding charcoal production often run counter to sustainable management measures.

The decentralization laws drawn up are generally sufficient to give local councils real decision-making and operating powers. However, it is clear that those powers are often still held higher up, giving central government and public services arbitrary responsibility for executing those laws. As a result, players outside local communities often have completely free access to and use of the available resources. They set up new authorities, often at village level, which tend to compete with rural councils, promoting confustion as to the distribution of responsibility. The context favours various forms of private management and the reaffirmation by State representatives of their role as guarantors of natural resources, while local people, who make a living from natural resources, are invited to participate in maintaining those resources to ensure sustainable management.

What can be done to ensure that power is really transferred to local communities? The programme recommended making changes along three lines: taxes, timber licences and management schemes. The recommendations question the legitimate authority of the State and the local councils' room for manoeuvre. Taxes need to be harmonized, established and monitored at both local and national level, so as not to favour one region over another and to prevent exhaustion of the resource. The situation concerning the laws governing timber cutting is confused to say the least: local councillors can sign felling authorizations, but it is actually forest service staff members who issue licences. Lastly, the forestry code imposes complex forest management systems, notably for charcoal production, while the decentralization code allows for simplified management schemes.

Helen Burford | alfa
Further information:
http://www.cirad.fr/en/actualite/communique.php?id=525

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Ammonium nitrogen input increases the synthesis of anticarcinogenic compounds in broccoli
26.04.2017 | University of the Basque Country

nachricht New data unearths pesticide peril in beehives
21.04.2017 | Cornell University

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Fighting drug resistant tuberculosis – InfectoGnostics meets MYCO-NET² partners in Peru

28.04.2017 | Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Wireless power can drive tiny electronic devices in the GI tract

28.04.2017 | Medical Engineering

Ice cave in Transylvania yields window into region's past

28.04.2017 | Earth Sciences

Nose2Brain – Better Therapy for Multiple Sclerosis

28.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>