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1 Problems of implementing soil conservation practices and policies.

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1 1 Problems of implementing soil conservation practices and policies

2 2 The concept that soil conservation is such a good thing that it is only necessary to show the people what to do and they will start to do it The concept that soil conservation is such a good thing that it is only necessary to show the people what to do and they will start to do it Another approach is to use financial incentives to encourage the implementation of conservation works by the government paying a substantial part of the cost of the works and the rest being a charge to the landowner Another approach is to use financial incentives to encourage the implementation of conservation works by the government paying a substantial part of the cost of the works and the rest being a charge to the landowner The third possibility is to use coercion The third possibility is to use coercion Soil conservation in theory and in practice

3 3 1.Political aspects (a) Political policy (a) Political policy Most politicians and most political parties pay lip service to the ideal of good husbandry and the conservation of natural resources but in practice soil conservation does not win votes Most politicians and most political parties pay lip service to the ideal of good husbandry and the conservation of natural resources but in practice soil conservation does not win votes

4 4 (b) State land and state forest Many developing countries have a historical legacy of land reserved for the use of some agency of power Many developing countries have a historical legacy of land reserved for the use of some agency of power In territories previously under British colonial rule all the land not otherwise allocated was crown land In territories previously under British colonial rule all the land not otherwise allocated was crown land Other colonial regimes had similar systems Other colonial regimes had similar systems

5 5 (c) Land Allocation A corollary to tolerating in encroachment is the deliberate allocation of land to non land owner A corollary to tolerating in encroachment is the deliberate allocation of land to non land owner In India the declared policy is land for land less and by government legislation 50% of all state In India the declared policy is land for land less and by government legislation 50% of all state This policy is neither realistic nor practical in a country like India which has been intensively formed and densely settled for centuries and has no reserves of spare land suitable for cultivation This policy is neither realistic nor practical in a country like India which has been intensively formed and densely settled for centuries and has no reserves of spare land suitable for cultivation

6 6 (d) Legislation The question is - should government try to enforce its polices for land use by legislation. It is tempting thought The question is - should government try to enforce its polices for land use by legislation. It is tempting thought After all surly the expert the management must know best what is best for the country After all surly the expert the management must know best what is best for the country The record of legislation was reviewed some years ago by FAO The record of legislation was reviewed some years ago by FAO

7 7 2. Social features (a) Land ownership and land tenure Among the factors which lead to an over stressing of land resources we must put high on the list the cultural ethic that every one has automatic right to own land Among the factors which lead to an over stressing of land resources we must put high on the list the cultural ethic that every one has automatic right to own land The aspect of land tenures which can lead to soil depletion are short term cultivation right, share cropping, tenancies, and absentee land lord The aspect of land tenures which can lead to soil depletion are short term cultivation right, share cropping, tenancies, and absentee land lord

8 8 (b) Fragmentation The concept of universal right to own land is that it leads to the progressive subdivision of land holding The concept of universal right to own land is that it leads to the progressive subdivision of land holding In some states this lead to the consolidation program which in effect puts all the land into a common pool In some states this lead to the consolidation program which in effect puts all the land into a common pool A similar consolidation program was applied in some years ago in Malawi A similar consolidation program was applied in some years ago in Malawi

9 9 (c) The social significance of cattle The part played by livestock in adding to pressure on the land resources base varies a great deal from one country to another The part played by livestock in adding to pressure on the land resources base varies a great deal from one country to another In Africa cattle are symbol of status and evidence of wealth In Africa cattle are symbol of status and evidence of wealth

10 10 (d) Reluctance to move It is fact of life that humans are gregarious and do not like to move from there accustomed environment It is fact of life that humans are gregarious and do not like to move from there accustomed environment However it does not appear to be a solution to the problem of over development of mountainous region of the humid tropic However it does not appear to be a solution to the problem of over development of mountainous region of the humid tropic

11 11 (e) Reluctance to change It is common place to refer to the conservatism of the peasant former or to his inertia and the difficulty of changing existing pattern It is common place to refer to the conservatism of the peasant former or to his inertia and the difficulty of changing existing pattern There is no doubt that change occur in frequently and slowly, but the reason for this are sometimes misunderstood There is no doubt that change occur in frequently and slowly, but the reason for this are sometimes misunderstood

12 12 3. Economic constraints (a) The element of risk (a) The element of risk The economic prison holding the subsistence former is his inability to take risks The economic prison holding the subsistence former is his inability to take risks The essence of forming is trying to improve the odds in the gamble against weather, pest, and disease The essence of forming is trying to improve the odds in the gamble against weather, pest, and disease The peasant has no risk capital to gamble with, so his whole strategy is geared to safety The peasant has no risk capital to gamble with, so his whole strategy is geared to safety

13 13 (b) The time scale of soil conservation In order to measure the benefit of conserving the soil one has to use a long time scale In order to measure the benefit of conserving the soil one has to use a long time scale However the managers of our national land resources are also our political leaders and their time scale seldom extends beyond the date of next election so on the whole they are not interested in long term conservation However the managers of our national land resources are also our political leaders and their time scale seldom extends beyond the date of next election so on the whole they are not interested in long term conservation

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