The relationship between agroforestry and ecosystem services: role of agroforestry in rural communities

Tahulela, Takalani (2016-03)

Thesis (MscFor)--Stellenbosch University, 2016.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Rural livelihoods are affected by numerous factors (poverty, unemployment, lack of adequate education, basic infrastructure, and food security), but poverty is the most critical. As poverty in South African is rooted in unemployment, communities adjacent to forest plantations and natural resources, are highly depended on these natural resources to sustain their livelihoods. Agroforestry systems have addressed the problem of poverty worldwide and have been designed specifically for rural development. These systems are efficient in terms of resource use, but are also economically and environmentally friendly. Therefore, this study identified agroforestry systems that might improve sustainable rural development in communities adjacent to the plantations of Komatiland Forests. The study was conducted in Limpopo, KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga provinces of South Africa where the plantations of Komatiland Forests are located. Data for the study was collected between June and July 2015 through questionnaire surveys of 30 randomly selected households in two communities per province to determine and evaluate ecosystem services utilised in the six communities. Results indicated high levels of unemployment, large family sizes, income levels not adequate to sustain household sizes, water scarcity and silvopasture as the main agroforestry system practiced in the plantations of Komatiland Forests. Although agroforestry has been practiced by a limited number of households, communities are interested in it as an alternative way to increase food security. Future agroforestry interventions by Komatiland Forests should thus rather focus on agrosilvicutural systems than silvopastural systems.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Landelike gemeenskappe word deur verskeie faktore beïnvloed (armoede, werkloosheid, gebrek aan voldoende opleiding, basiese infrastruktuur en kos sekuriteit) met armoede as die mees kritiese faktor. Aangesien armoede in Suid Afrika verband hou met werkloosheid, is gemeenskappe langs bosbouplantasies en natuurlike hulpbronne meer afhanklik daarvan vir daaglikste oorlewing. Agrobosbou sisteme kan verskeie probleme ten opsigte van armoede wêreldwyd aangespreek en is dit ook spesiaal ontwerp vir landelike ontwikkeling. Hierdie sisteme is effektief deurdat dit volhoubare natuurlike hulpbron gebruik aanmoedig, asook ekonomies en hulpbron vriendelik is. Daarom het hierdie studie ‘n paar agrobosbou sisteme geïndetifiseer wat kan help met die volhoubare bestuur van landelike onwikkeling langs bosbouplantasies van Komatiland Forests. Hierdie studie is uitgevoer in die Limpopo, KwaZulu-Natal en Mpumalanga provinsies van Suid Afrika, waar Komatiland Forests plantasies geleë is. Data was ingevorder gedurende Junie en Julie 2015 deur middel van vraelyste in 30 ewekansig geselekteerde huishoudings. Twee gemeenskappe per provinsie was ingesluit in die studie om ekosisteem produkte en dienste wat gebruik word te identifiseer en te evalueer. Resultate dui op hoë vlakke van werksloosheid, groot families, inkomste nie voldoende vir die grootte huishoudings, water skaarste asook silvopasture as die hoof agrobosbou sisteem wat beoefen word in die plantasies van Komatiland Forests. Alhoewel agrobosbou slegs deur ‘n beperkte aantal huishoudings beoefen word, is gemeenskappe daarin geïnteresseerd as alternatiewe manier om voedsel te bekom. Toekomstige agrobosbou projekte van Komatiland Forests sal dus eerder moet fokus op agrosilvicultural as silvopastural sisteme.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/98302
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