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Journal Articles Agroforestry Systems Year : 2009

Complementary labour opportunities in Indonesian pulpwood plantations with implications for land use

Abstract

This analysis suggests important considerations for assessing social impacts of large-scale pulpwood production in Indonesia, emphasizing the limited conditions under which pulp plantations could complement, rather than threaten, livelihoods of existing communities in their vicinity. Pulpwood plantations are expanding rapidly in Indonesia to feed major new pulp mills. Though officially developed on “unproductive forest lands”, pulpwood monocultures are commonly established at the expense of natural forests in Sumatra and Kalimantan. Based on a South Sumatra case study, this article analyzes how pulpwood plantations may be combined with more traditional land uses for improving livelihoods for local populations, considering the potential for “complementary” labor opportunities. This analysis is built on two assumptions: village smallholder activities represent a first choice for village-based workers, with relatively high financial returns per hectare; and requirements for village-based livelihoods are highly seasonal, which saves opportunities for complementary land uses such as industrial plantations. Application of our model to a Sumatra case study shows an upper limit in a ratio of 5:1 for pulpwood plantation development does not compromise resilient, diversified local livelihoods (no more than 5 hectares of pulpwood to each 1 hectare remaining in intensified local agriculture and agroforestry). Even at such a ratio, the study emphasizes the extremely limited conditions under which extensive timber plantation development might not threaten diversified, resilient local livelihoods: flexible timing of company operations; priority to local employment; cautious localization of plantation sites; more transparent government licensing of plantation concessions and pulpmills.
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Dates and versions

hal-00394073 , version 1 (10-06-2009)

Identifiers

  • HAL Id : hal-00394073 , version 1

Cite

Romain Pirard, Judith Mayer. Complementary labour opportunities in Indonesian pulpwood plantations with implications for land use. Agroforestry Systems, 2009, 76 (2), pp.499-511. ⟨hal-00394073⟩
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