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Socioeconomic Impacts of the Community-based Management of the Mangrove Reserve in Kerala, India

Authors:

M Hema ,

Dept. of Agricultural Economics, College of Horticulture, Kerala Agricultural University, Thrissur, Kerala, LK
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P Indira Devi

Dept. of Agricultural Economics, College of Horticulture, Kerala Agricultural University, Thrissur, Kerala, LK
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Abstract

Kerala, once very rich in mangrove formations, perhaps next only to Sunder bans in the eastern part of the country, used to have a mangrove area extending to more than 700 km2 in 1987. The mangrove ecosystems are highly productive as agricultural land. Nevertheless the ecological significance of these was not appropriately accommodated amidst the development and demographic pressures and the decline in mangrove distribution and quality is reported to be disturbing. In this background the management options for mangrove conservation through societal participation was institutionalized though the policy decisions. The policy decision was taken to declare 150 hectares of ecologically sensitive mangrove system as community reserve through the notification in 2007. The programme aims to conserve the ecosystem through community participation while protecting their property and livelihood rights. This paper is drawn from an explorative look into the present dependence on the system, societal conflicts and responses to the proposed management plan. Based on the responses the study tries to suggest socially acceptable and ecologically just management option, for the ecosystem.

The direct stakeholders of mangrove system in the study area include both the residents as well as the non- residents in the locality. The direct benefits include the wood and non wood products as well as mussel farming, coir retting, fisheries and allied products. The life of these stakeholders depends heavily on various direct or indirect uses associated with the mangrove system. The study makes estimates of the value of these direct benefits through market based methods of valuation. The result of the study throws light on the existing status of mangroves in the area, reflect the social attitudes and responses to the policy, values the direct and indirect benefits of the system and suggest management options which are ecologically desirable and socially acceptable.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4038/jepsl.v1i2.5146

Journal of Environmental Professionals Sri Lanka Vol.1(2) 2012 30-45

How to Cite: Hema, M. & Devi, P.I., (2013). Socioeconomic Impacts of the Community-based Management of the Mangrove Reserve in Kerala, India. Journal of Environmental Professionals Sri Lanka. 1(2), pp.30–45. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/jepsl.v1i2.5146
Published on 16 Jan 2013.
Peer Reviewed

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