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By M. Bonell, L. A. Bruijnzeel

This accomplished assessment of the hydrological and physiological functioning of tropical rain forests covers the environmental affects in their disturbance and conversion to different land makes use of, in addition to optimal concepts for dealing with them. experts will locate authenticated element in chapters written by way of specialists on an entire variety of people-water-land use concerns.

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Additional resources for Forests, Water and People in the Humid Tropics: Past, Present and Future Hydrological Research for Integrated Land and Water Management (International Hydrology Series)

Example text

Moreover, multiple uses can overlap on the same piece of land, either at the same time, as is the case for agroforestry practices, or in different periods of the year, as in the case of seasonal rotation between agriculture and pasture. Similarly, to the human mind, land uses, and land use changes, represent a blend of physical and cultural, often political, elements. Knowledge of tropical land use changes over time would help to understand the underlying cause-effect mechanisms and formulate effective remedial policies, but land use changes are often subtle, thereby defying any attempt at objective measurement and leaving room for speculation.

Insecurity of land tenure (no clearly defined responsibility for management); desertification / climate change. Among the direct causes of deforestation the following can be identified (FAO 2001a): r r r r r poor farming practices (short fallow shifting cultivation) conversion to cash crop estates (Ivory Coast) mangroves being converted to rice fields or ponds for shrimp farming and cleared for woodfuels increased clearing and tree cutting for fuelwood and charcoal poor logging practices including over-exploitation 22 R.

A pan-tropical remote sensing survey was implemented with the aim of producing consistent, thematically and statistically sound results at the regional and pan-tropical level (FAO, 1996). The most recent FAO effort, the Forest Resources Assessment 2000 (FRA 2000), continued to collect data per country to extend and improve the time series already available but discontinued the use of mathematical modelling to fill gaps in information. These were now filled by expert opinions, consultations or indepth studies.

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