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Ecology and Natural Resource Development in the Western Highlands of Cameroon. Issues in Natural Resource Management

Issues in Natural Resource Management

Cornelius Mbifung Lambi, Emmanuel Ndenecho Neba

Publication Year: 2009

The densely populated Bamenda Highlands of Cameroon remains one of the regions with the greatest land degradation problems in the country. Factors responsible for this include climate change, the hilly nature or topographic layout of the land, and human interference through overgrazing, destructive agricultural practices and the impact of deforestation. This detailed study of resource management and its ecological challenges in the Bamenda Highlands, stresses an important link between falling food output and soil deterioration. While most areas in this predominantly agricultural region enjoy food abundance, the inhabitants of high-density infertile, rugged mountainous areas are forced to resort to double cropping and intensified land exploitation that leave little room for soil regeneration. The population problem in relation to land degradation is infinitely more complicated than the region's sheer ability to produce enough food supply. The authors make a strong case for a delicate balance between human agency and environmental protection in this highly populated and physically challenging region where land is a precious resource and land conflicts are common.

Published by: African Books Collective

Title Page

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pp. iii

Copyright Page

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pp. iv


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pp. v-vi

The Editors

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pp. vii-viii

List of Acronyms and Abbreviations

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pp. ix

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Chapter One. A Window into the Land Degradation Problem in the North West Province of Cameroon: A Revisit

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pp. 1-15

Land degradation is an encroaching threat in many parts of the Bamenda mountainous terrain. In an attempt to understand the nature of this phenomenon, this paper examines the different processes and factors which provoke the degradation. These factors relate to the physical, geomorphological and anthropic activities of...

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Chapter Two. Environmental Degradation and Problems of Land Resource Management in the Bamenda Highlands, Cameroon

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pp. 17-42

Mountain environments attract high concentrations of human populations. People also live downstream from mountains and depend on their water, hydropower, grassland, timber and other resources. After several millennia of intensive human transformation of the surrounding lowlands, mountains are one of the last...

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Chapter Three. Implications of Rapid Urbanisation for Floods, Sediment and Debris Flow Hazards in Bamenda, Cameroon

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pp. 43-59

In developing countries, rapid urbanization induced by rural poverty forces recent migrants from the countryside frequently to settle in slums that carpet steep hillsides and flood plain zones. These spreading slums are prone to catastrophic flood, landslide, sediment and woody debris hazards. Understanding the characteristics of these...

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Chapter Four. Threats to the Ecological Stability of the Compound Farms in The Bamileke Plateau, Cameroon

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pp. 61-84

In its agrarian civilization, humankind developed site-specific farming systems that were at equilibrium with local culture, socioeconomic circumstances, and ecology. Production was oriented mainly to farm family subsistence. Due to rapid demographic growth, access to markets and the influence of foreign values these once...

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Chapter Five. Threats to Biological Diversity Management in the Mount Cameroon Region

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pp. 85-104

The problems facing the sustainable conservation and management of biodiversity in Sub-Saharan Africa have tended to be defined in ways that do not lead to acceptable solutions. The paper uses a combination of primary and secondary data sources to identify the problems mitigating against a sustainable biodiversity management...

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Chapter Six. Climographic Analysis and Mapping of the Mount Cameroon Region

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pp. 105-123

Mountain environments possess fragile ecosystems which are particularly very sensitive to climate change. Mount Cameroon is the highest mountain peak (4095m) in West Africa and the foot slopes are a microcosm of tropical plantation agriculture. It also possesses a diverse and rich biodiversity of scientific and...

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Chapter Seven. Ecological Planning and the Potential for the Development of Ecotourism in Kimbi Game Reserve, Cameroon

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pp. 126-141

Game reserves and other protected areas are potential areas for the development of ecotourism because of their biodiversity, landscapes and cultural heritage of local or indigenous people. This study investigates the environmental sustainability of game reserves using a sample of the Kimbi Game Reserve. It assesses the potentials of...

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Chapter Eight. Superficial Deposits and Ground Water Resource Development in the Upper Nun River Valley, Cameroon

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pp. 125-140

Access to regular, sufficient, clean drinking water and adequate sanitation is one of humanity’s basic requirements. In developing countries a significant proportion of diseases and deaths can be attributed to water-related causes. Rural people have little access to this basic resource. The paper uses a combination of field...

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Chapter Nine. The Babungo Pipe-borne Water Project: A Community Self-reliant Development Scheme in the North West Province of Cameroon

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pp. 141-160

In 1980, the inauguration of the Babungo water project showed the impact of the distribution of drinking water in a rural area. The combined efforts of the government and the village community and its association of external elites ensured the success of this water project; this example of self-help development has...

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Chapter Ten. The Dilemma of Rice Stockpiles: The Case of the Upper Nun Valley Development Authority of the North West Province of Cameroon

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pp. 161-174

The production of rice in the Upper Nun Valley Development Authority which was undertaken to meet part of the domestic demand growth rate of 3.5% and also to ameliorate the standard of living of the rural cultivators, was faced with the problems of stockpiles resulting from unmarketed quantities of rice. ...

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Chapter Eleven. Cropping Intensity and Post-cultivation Vegetation Successions: Developing Sustainable Agro-ecosystems in Ndop Plain, Cameroon

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pp. 175-190

The sustainability of traditional farming systems in many parts of Africa is threatened by losses in the variety of species, reduction in land, forest, soil and water resources under demographic pressure. Together with foreign influences these farming system are no longer in equilibrium with local culture and ecology and are therefore...

Back cover

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E-ISBN-13: 9789956715763
Print-ISBN-13: 9789956615483

Page Count: 220
Publication Year: 2009