Patterns and implications of land use/cover change: A case study in Pranmati watershed (Garhwal Himalaya, India) (2002)

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Land use/cover changes during the period 1963–1993 and their ecological and socioeconomic implications in Pranmati Watershed in the Indian Himalaya were analysed on the basis of information extracted from archival records, satellite data, participatory discussions, and field measurement. Agricultural land use was practiced on 14.2% of the watershed area in 1963 compared with 18.5% in 1993. More than 50% of the agricultural expansion occurred in community forests between 1850 and 2400 m and on 20–30° slopes. The increase in area under cash crops, potato, and amaranth accompanied an 86% increase in the mean monetary value of crop produce but at the cost of abandoning the traditional crops Fagopyrum esculentum, F. tataricum, Panicum miliaceum, and Setaria italica. Agricultural land use changes were such that mean manure input at the watershed scale increased by 50%, and fodder output from crops decreased by 40%, implying the increasing pressure on forests. Local forest management institutions have not been adequately empowered to respond to the growing economic aspirations of people and the increasing population pressure. Research and policy support for improvement in traditional soil fertility management practices and forest resource-based economic development opportunities for local people is needed to reduce the threat from agriculture to forest ecosystems.
Year: 2002
Language: English
In: Mountain Research and Development 22(1):56-62.http://www.bioone.org/doi/pdf/10.1659/0276-4741%282002%29022%5B0056%3APAIOLU%5D2.0.CO%3B2,

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 Record created 2011-12-21, last modified 2013-01-17