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Deforestation, forest fallowing, and soil conservation in shifting cultivation

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  • Yoshito Takasaki

Abstract

To design effective policies for rainforest conservation in shifting cultivation systems, it is crucial to have a better understanding of shifting cultivators f decision making. This paper develops a unified dynamic farm model of shifting cultivation, addressing two lacunae in extant theoretical works: taking into account differences between primary and secondary forests and potential roles of on-farm soil conservation. The model unifies shifting cultivator fs decisions about primary-forest clearing, forest fallowing, and onfarm soil conservation by incorporating new soils acquired from cleared primary/secondary forest land into on-farm soil dynamics. I examine how three distinct policies ? forest protection (e.g., protected areas), fallow management (e.g., improved fallow), and on-farm soil management (e.g., biochar in Amazonia) ? alter primary-forest clearing (deforestation) and fallow length. The analysis reveals that although all three policies reduce deforestation, only on-farm soil management leads to longer fallow, i.e., sustainable secondary fallow forest.

Suggested Citation

  • Yoshito Takasaki, 2013. "Deforestation, forest fallowing, and soil conservation in shifting cultivation," Tsukuba Economics Working Papers 2013-003, Economics, Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Tsukuba.
  • Handle: RePEc:tsu:tewpjp:2013-003
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