Community Rights and Livelihoods in the Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve, India (2006)

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This Talking Points document revisits the communities surrounding Nanda Devi, where the Chipko movement in which tree-hugging village women successfully prevented state-organised timber concessionaires from felling forest trees began in the 1970s. These communities where conservation activism traces its roots lost much of their access rights to their traditional commons a decade later in the name of conservation. The book documents in concrete terms some of the realities and impact of conservation on their lives and livelihoods. The picture presented echoes what is happening in many conservation areas around the world: well-meaning conservation measures have failed the very communities that have preserved the landscape through centuries. In Nanda Devi, signs are that the plight of the local communities are gradually being recognised to redress the balance. Much remains to be done, however, and the book hopes to contribute to discussions on the special needs and moral rights of communities in conservation areas, to help governments and policymakers realise the need to integrate communities and local needs into conservation plans.


 Record created 2011-02-16, last modified 2018-11-20