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Forest Degradation in the Himalayas: Determinants and Policy Options

  • Jean-Marie Baland


    (Center for Research in the Economics of Development, University of Namur)

  • Sanghamitra Das

    (Indian Statistical Institute)

  • Dilip Mookherjee

    (Boston University)

This paper summarizes findings from a decade-long project on forest degradation in the mid-Himalayan region of India and Nepal. The analysis is based on LSMS data for Nepal and field work in Indian states of Uttaranchal and Himachal Pradesh comprising sample surveys of forests, households and village communities, besides commissioned anthropological studies for select villages. The purpose was to ascertain the nature and magnitude of deforestation and degradation from ground-level forest measurements, its implications for living standards of local communities, the contribution of different factors commonly alleged such as local poverty, inequality, economic growth, demographic changes, property rights and lack of collective action by local communities. Principal findings, policy implications and questions for future research are discussed.

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Paper provided by University of Namur, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1116.

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Length: 54 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nam:wpaper:1116
Contact details of provider: Postal: Rempart de la Vierge 8, B-5000 Namur
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  1. Gene M. Grossman & Alan B. Krueger, 1994. "Economic Growth and the Environment," NBER Working Papers 4634, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Jean-Marie Baland & Pranab Bardhan & Sangmitra Das & Dilip Mookherjee & Rinki Sarkar, 2006. "Managing the Environmental Consequences of Growth: Forest Degradation in the Indian mid-Himalayas," India Policy Forum, Global Economy and Development Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 3(1), pages 125-277.
  3. Baland, Jean-Marie & Bardhan, Pranab & Das, Sanghamitra & Mookherjee, Dilip, 2010. "Forests to the People: Decentralization and Forest Degradation in the Indian Himalayas," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(11), pages 1642-1656, November.
  4. Gani Aldashev & Catherine Guirkinger, 2011. "Deadly Anchor: Gender Bias under Russian Colonization of Kazakhstan, 1898-1908," Working Papers 1111, University of Namur, Department of Economics.
  5. Andrew D. Foster & Mark R. Rosenzweig, 2003. "Economic Growth And The Rise Of Forests," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(2), pages 601-637, May.
  6. Lele, Sharachchandra M., 1991. "Sustainable development: A critical review," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 607-621, June.
  7. repec:cdl:ciders:2407 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Jean-Marie Baland & Pranab Bardhan & Sanghamitra Das & Dilip Mookherjee & Rinki Sarkar, 2010. "The Environmental Impact of Poverty: Evidence from Firewood Collection in Rural Nepal," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(1), pages 23-61, October.
  9. Jeff Dayton-Johnson and Pranab Bardhan., 1996. "Inequality and Conservation on the Local Commons: A Theoretical Exercise," Center for International and Development Economics Research (CIDER) Working Papers C96-071, University of California at Berkeley.
  10. Mansuri, Ghazala & Rao, Vijayendra, 2004. "Community-based (and driven) development : A critical review," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3209, The World Bank.
  11. Cooke, Priscilla A., 1998. "The effect of environmental good scarcity on own-farm labor allocation: the case of agricultural households in rural Nepal," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 3(04), pages 443-469, October.
  12. Edmonds, Eric V., 2002. "Government-initiated community resource management and local resource extraction from Nepal's forests," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 89-115, June.
  13. Duraiappah, Anantha K., 1998. "Poverty and environmental degradation: A review and analysis of the nexus," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 26(12), pages 2169-2179, December.
  14. Jacoby, H.G., 1990. "Shadow Wages And Peasant Family Labor Supply; An Econometric Application To The Peruvian Sierra," Papers 73, World Bank - Living Standards Measurement.
  15. J-P. Platteau & A. Abraham, 2002. "Participatory Development in the Presence of Endogenous Community Imperfections," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(2), pages 104-136.
  16. Barbier, Edward B., 1997. "Introduction to the environmental Kuznets curve special issue," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(04), pages 357-367, November.
  17. Baland, Jean-Marie & Platteau, Jean-Philippe, 2000. "Halting Degradation of Natural Resources: Is There a Role for Rural Communities?," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198290612.
  18. Pitt, Mark M., 1985. "Equity, externalities and energy subsidies The case of kerosine in Indonesia," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 201-217, April.
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