The forests of SE Cameroon lie within the Sangha tri-national landscape (TNS), a priority area for biodiversity conservation under the Congo Basin Forest Partnership. A monitoring program showed minimal changes in conservation and local livelihoods indicators from 2006 to 2008. Following the global financial crisis in late 2008 global demand for timber decreased and this led to suspension of logging activities and lay-offs of staff by logging companies; both biodiversity and livelihood indicators deteriorated. The unemployed workers lost their incomes, experienced declining living standards and reverted to poaching and slash and burn agriculture. Pygmies were no longer able to obtain employment in Bantu agricultural plots, sell forest products to logging company employees or sell bushmeat to passing logging trucks. These global economic forces had greater impact on livelihoods and the environment than local interventions by conservation organizations. Livelihood indicators improved in 2010 and 2011 when the economy picked-up but those for environmental values did not recover as rapidly.
Publication Year: 2012
Source: International Forestry Review 14(1): 90-98