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Female farmers might increase greenhouse gases

Decisions by women can lead to more changes in land use because of their willingness to accept offers from outsiders. To avoid deforestation, the value of natural ecosystems needs to be instilled

 

By Tess Beyer

 

Indonesia is the world’s third largest producer of greenhouse gas, with 85% of its emissions coming from the destruction of natural forests, the main driver of which in the 21st century is industrial-scale, export-oriented agriculture, such as palm-oil producing monocultures.

Female farmer in cocoa garden

Female farmers might find it economically more attractive to convert their high-carbon agroforests to low-carbon oil palm. Photo: World Agroforestry Centre

The conversion of forests to other land uses typically has dramatic effects not only on the landscape but on the lives of humans who interacted with the forest. Those effects can be different for men and women and could lead to more greenhouse-gas emissions if women make the decisions, according to a study by Grace Villamor and colleagues in the forest margins of the province of Jambi on the island of Sumatra in Indonesia.

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This work is linked to the CGIAR Research Program on Forests, Trees and Agroforestry

t.beyer@cgiar.org'

Tess Beyer

Tess Beyer is an Australian Volunteer for International Development, funded by the Australian Government, working as a communications officer with the World Agroforestry Centre Philippines. As well as developing a variety of communications materials for the Philippine program, she supports regional projects through writing, video editing and design. Tess holds a Bachelor of Development Studies from the University of Newcastle, Australia.

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