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Understanding Drivers of Unsustainable Natural Resource Use in the Comoro Islands

Abstract : The Comoros archipelago is a biodiversity hotspot by virtue of its high level of endemism. However, it suffers one of the highest rates of forest loss worldwide, mainly due to strong anthropogenic pressures. As Comorian populations depend on forest resources for subsistence, establishing relevant conservation strategies for their sustainable management requires the consideration of multiple stakeholders’ perspectives toward biodiversity and habitat conservation. To better understand the relationships between humans and nature; how comorian people use natural resource and the relevance of a protected area for long-term biodiversity conservation, we used Q-methodology to assess local people’s perceptions regarding biodiversity and conservation actions. Three discourses are identified during analysis: “Pro-environment discourse”, “Keeping things as usual” and “Social and environmental concerns”. According to the results, employed respondents, were favorable to long-term forest and biodiversity conservation. In contrast, unemployed respondents were in favor of more immediate benefits while unemployed but educated respondents were in favor to both long-term forest conservation and immediate benefits from forests. This suggests that poverty and a lack of access to basic services is associated with overharvesting of natural resources by rural people. These results suggest that biodiversity conservation of the Comoros archipelagos may benefit for plan aiming at (1) developing tourism and maintaining sustainable production of crops and livestock that could allow enhancing livelihoods and well-being of all social groups, (2) developing projects such as local markets that could allow villagers to sell agricultural productions, (3) setting up awareness campaign for tree-planting and reforestation. Reforestation could allow re-establishing natural plants and make large trees available for long-term purposes.
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Submitted on : Monday, January 3, 2022 - 11:57:03 AM
Last modification on : Friday, May 20, 2022 - 9:04:16 AM
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Mohamed Thani Ibouroi, Said Ali Ousseni Dhurham, Aurélien Besnard, Nicolas Lescureux. Understanding Drivers of Unsustainable Natural Resource Use in the Comoro Islands. Tropical Conservation Science, SAGE Publications, 2021, 14, pp.194008292110325. ⟨10.1177/19400829211032585⟩. ⟨hal-03507500⟩



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