Assessment of trade-offs between timber and carbon values of Pterocarpus angolensis (Kiaat) in the Kavango Region of Namibia : a comparison of current and potential values

Moses, Moses (2013-03)

Thesis (MScFor)--Stellenbosch University, 2013.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Kiaat trees in Namibia are threatened by unsustainable harvesting practice. This study’s aim was to estimate the total value of an average Kiaat tree selected for harvesting with a focus on current timber use value, value of an optimally utilised tree, carbon value, and alternative uses of Kiaat trees. To accomplish this aim, the following specific objectives were set: (1) to estimate the total tree volume and optimum utilisable timber volume of an average Kiaat tree; (2) to estimate the amount and value of carbon stored in the above-ground parts of an average Kiaat tree; (3) to determine timber utilisation levels; and (4) to identify alternative use options to reduce timber losses of Kiaat trees. Previous studies on Kiaat in Namibia and elsewhere focused on growth, development and socio-economical aspects of Kiaat trees. A combination of a socio-economic survey and tree volumes and biomass determination was used to collect data. The survey entailed Kiaat products assessment and face-to-face personal interviews with known key-informants in and around Rundu. Loggers with permits to harvest Kiaat trees were asked to harvest 40 Kiaat trees and data collected from each tree before and after felling included: lower-stem diameter, diameter at breast height (DBH), upper-stem diameter, stem length, stump height, recovered merchantable logs lengths and lower-and-upper diameters and lengths of branches greater than 10 cm in diameter. All canopy parts smaller than 10 cm in diameter were directly weighed, sampled and oven-dried at 105°C until constant weight. Volume of different tree parts was calculated and in combination with basic wood density used to calculate the biomass. It was established that a typically harvested Kiaat tree had an above-ground dry volume of 1.63 m3, of which 1.34 m3 (82%) was utilisable timber volume but that only 0.37 m3 (23%) was used and 0.97 m3 (59%) was left behind in the field. Merchantable logs were mainly cut into planks from which finished products - beds, chairs, doors and tables - were made. An average of 10.7 planks were cut per trunk and the local price of planks was N$45.26 at the time of the study. More income is generated from finished products compared to selling loose planks. Canopy parts were mainly cut into woodcrafts – bowls, music drums, and walking sticks. Current timber use value (N$484.73) surpasses carbon value (N$123.74). A further result of the study was that a significantly higher income could be earned for local livelihoods from Kiaat trees in the Kavango Region if trees were optimally used. Carbon trading is a noble conservation initiative, particularly when trees unsuitable for timber are considered. Use of timber trees exclusively for carbon trading is, however, not a viable option in respect of supporting local people’s livelihoods.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Kiaatbome in Namibië word bedreig deur onvolhoubare ontginningspraktyke. Die doelwit van die studie was om die totale waarde van ‘n gemiddelde Kiaatboom, wat gekies is vir ontginning, te bepaal met die fokus op huidige houtwaarde, waarde van ‘n optimaal gebruikte boom, koolstofwaarde en alternatiewe gebruike vir Kiaatbome. Om hierdie doelwit te bereik is die volgende spesifieke sub-doelwitte gestel: (1) bepaal die totale boomvolume en optimale bruikbare houtvolume van ‘n gemiddelde Kiaatboom; (2) bepaal die hoeveelheid koolstof wat in die bogrondse dele van ‘n gemiddelde Kiaatboom gestoor word en bereken die monitêrewaarde daarvan; (3) bepaal die houtgebruiksvlakke en houtvermorsing van Kiaatbome; en (4) identifiseer alternatiewe gebruike om die vermorsing van Kiaatbome te verminder. Vorige studies oor Kiaat in Namibië en elders het gefokus op groei, ontwikkeling en sosio-ekonomiese aspekte van Kiaatbome. ‘n Kombinasie van ‘n sosio-ekonomiese opname en boomvolume en biomassa bepalings is gebruik vir die insameling van data. Die opname het ‘n Kiaat produkbepaling en gesig-tot-gesig persoonlike onderhoude met sleutel informante in en om Rundu behels. Boomkappers met permitte om kiaatbome te ontgin is gevra om 40 Kiaatbome te ontgin en data is versamel van elke boom voor en na ontginning. Die data het ingesluit: lae-stam deursnee, deursnee op borshoogte (DBH), bo-stam deursnee, stamlengte, stomphoogte, herwinde bruikbare stomplengte, bo- en onder- deursnee en lengtes van takke wat 10 cm of groter deursnee het. All kroondele 10 cm en kleiner in deursnee is geweeg en ‘n steekproef versamel wat oondroog gemaak is by 105ºC totdat konstante gewig bereik is. Die volume van verskillende boomdele is bereken en in kombinasie met houtdigtheid gebruik om biomassa te bereken. Dit is bereken dat ‘n tipiese geoeste Kiaatboom ‘n bogrondse droë volume van 1.63 m³ het, waarvan 1.34 m³ (82%) bruikbare houtvolume is. Net 0.37 m³ (23%) van die bruikbare houtvolume is egter gebruik en 0.97 m³ (59%) is agtergelaat in die veld. Bruikbare stompe is meestal opgesaag in planke waarvan finale produkte soos beddens, stoele, deure en tafels gemaak is. ‘n Gemiddeld van 10.7 planke is verkry per stomp en die plaaslike prys van planke was N$45.26 gedurende die studie tydperk. Meer inkomste is verkry van finale produkte as van die verkoop van los planke. Kroondele is meestal opgesaag in houtkunswerke soos bakke, musiekdromme en kieries. Die huidige houtwaarde van N$484.73 is meer as die koolstof waarde (N$123.74) van die bome. ‘n Belangrike resultaat van die studie is dat ‘n beduidende groter inkomste gegenereer kan word vir plaaslike lewensbestaan van Kiaatbome in die Kavangostreek as bome optimaal benut word. Koolstofhandel is ‘n edele bewaringskonsep, veral as bome ongeskik vir houtgebruik is soos in die geval van krom bome en jonger bome. Die eksklusiewe gebruik van houtbome vir koolstofhandel is nie ‘n lewensvatbare opsie om plaaslike mense se lewensbestaan te ondersteun nie.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/79908
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