With Reference to Case Studies, Critically Evaluate the Success of Management Schemes in Fragile Environments Essay

Words: 1465
Pages: 6

With reference to case studies, critically evaluate the success of management schemes in fragile environments (40 marks)

A fragile environment is one which is easy to disrupt, and once disrupted, difficult to restore. An example of this kind of environment is the Sundarbans; the largest single block of mangrove swamp in the world, covering 10,000 km² from the coasts of West Bengal to Bangladesh. The mangrove swamps are sensitive to a number of factors, including temperature, salinity and sea level, where small changes may be able to cause huge impacts on the overall health and effectiveness of the swamps to protect the coastline and the 300,000 livelihoods that depend on it.

The mangrove swamps can act as shock absorbers, protecting
…show more content…
Forest staff needed to be bribed again to provide them with armed protection from bandits when travelling by boat, as without the forest staff, they could lose their valuable honey and wax harvests to bandit ambushes.
Part of the plan was also to create a Stakeholder Advisory Council, where representatives of user groups, such as woodcutters, fisher folk, shrimp fry, tour operators were nominated by NGO’s in order to effectively create plans that satisfied all user groups, or at least reached an acceptable compromise. However, due to a delay in mobilizing the NGO’s, the Ministry of the Environment and Forests handpicked nominees to represent user groups instead, completely undermining the entire purpose of the SAC in the first place, as the chosen members were not considered to be true representatives of the user groups.
The project also failed to take into account the real forces causing damage to the ecosystem of the Sundarbans, such as human interference in the form of poachers and industrial shrimp farmers, who have turned thousands of hectares of agricultural village land to commercially-controlled ponds, displacing communities from their lands and removing vast areas of what they see as useless and unprofitable mangrove