سرمایه گذاری در سرمایه های انسانی و طبیعی: پارادایم جایگزین برای توسعه پایدار در آواسا، اتیوپی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|29367||2010||11 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||10450 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Ecological Economics, Volume 69, Issue 11, 15 September 2010, Pages 2140–2150
Ethiopia remains underdeveloped due to limitations in natural, human, social and built capital. A 2006 scientific atelier conducted in the city of Awassa, Ethiopia investigated investments in human and natural capital as a sustainable development strategy. Local stakeholders identified firewood shortages, degradation of croplands, rising lake levels encroaching on croplands and poor water quality as major impediments to development. They further identified ecological degradation as a key component of these problems, and they acknowledged multiple vicious cycles compounding the environmental and economic threats to the Awassa community. Proposed solutions included investment in natural capital in the form of reforestation activities, investment in human capital in the form of promoting more efficient wood stoves along with increasing public awareness of environmental threats, and investments in social capital in the form of inter-institutional coordination to address environmental problems. All recommended investments rely primarily on national resources, in distinct contrast to the extensive imports required for most built capital investments. Unfortunately, Awassa lacks the surplus necessary for major capital investments of any kind. The atelier therefore helped local participants identify potential funders and write grant proposals for various projects, though none have been funded so far. Reversing the ecological degradation on the scale necessary for sustained economic development in Ethiopia however will require a steady flow of substantial investments, and cannot rely solely on the short term generosity of funders. International payments for carbon sequestration and other ecosystem services could help provide the necessary resources.
With a per capita Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of under $100 per year and ranking 170 out of 177 ranked countries on the United Nations Human Development Index (UNDP, 2004), Ethiopia is one of the least developed countries on the planet. Human life is impossible without adequate food, water and energy, yet Ethiopia consistently lacks secure supplies of these essential resources. Frequent drought and famine contribute to food insecurity, and almost 60% of the population—including 89% of the rural population—lacks access to potable drinking water (Hilton Foundation, 2006). Meanwhile the dominant source of energy is biomass, largely obtained from wood. However, forest resources in Ethiopia are dwindling so rapidly that charcoal, the favored cooking fuel, has recently been made illegal. A key component of food, water, and energy shortages is the massive ecological degradation the country has suffered over many centuries—in particular the loss of forest cover. Population pressures, land-intensive agricultural practices, and economic distress—especially among poor farmers and pastoralists—have interacted to generate vicious cycles of land exploitation, ecological degradation, and poverty. In addition to these rapidly compounding disinvestments in natural capital, low human and social capital—as evidenced by high illiteracy (especially among women), high unemployment, and an unstable political situation—have further exacerbated negative feedback cycles. Lack of capital is the central limiting factor in the development of the country. However, the current development paradigm focuses almost exclusively on investments in built capital, funded by overseas investors, and largely ignores the importance of natural, human, and social capital in development efforts. And yet it may be the case that the latter forms of capital offer far more promise for policymakers and development practitioners seeking to break vicious cycles and promote virtuous ones in developing countries. This paper uses the results of a 2006 atelier to investigate the potential for investments in human and natural capital, as a supplement to built capital investments, to promote sustainable development in the city of Awassa, Ethiopia.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The current development paradigm emphasizes investments in built capital, including infrastructure and industry, as the key to economic development. However, recent developments including the award to Wangari Maathai of the Nobel Peace Prize suggest that a new development paradigm—one centered on investments in human and natural capital—may constitute a viable alternative to this conventional approach. This paper used the results of a 2006 atelier in Awassa, Ethiopia to further investigate the potential for investments in human and natural capital to promote sustainable development. The “Green Awassa” Atelier served to bring together key stakeholders to design, establish and implement locally-based development projects. By engaging participants to develop and articulate a shared vision, and helping to create an action plan for the implementation of the “Green Awassa” projects, the atelier set the stage for participants to translate their shared vision into funding proposals for the resources needed to undertake projects and make them self-sustaining. The projects themselves will invest in human and natural capital by training farmers, women and youth in forestry techniques and the construction of fuel-efficient stoves, and by using the existing One Love Circus and the newly formed Green Awassa Collaborative Alliance to communicate results and disseminate skills to other communities. Most importantly all of the projects look beyond individual “problems,” and instead focus on the vicious cycles that generate them. The “solutions” themselves may also be represented as cyclical, for example: Reforestation → Improved soil quality → Improvements in agricultural productivity → Increased food security and Reduced cultivation of marginal lands → Reforestation (through natural regeneration and perhaps expanded planting). In this context reforestation is not done for ecological restoration's sake, but for the sake of economic development, and to introduce a positive and constructive feedback loop by breaking a destructive one. 4 Although it is clear that the community's vision of a “Green Awassa” characterized by fuel security, food security, water quality, sustained economic activity, and awareness of environmental issues will not be easy to achieve, the grant-writing atelier was a step in the right direction. The use of international PES schemes, particularly payments for carbon sequestration, may provide the long-term funding needed to sustain the proposed projects, while simultaneously strengthening institutional supports in the form of local NGOs, civil society members and government offices working together to implement, manage, and evaluate project activities. There is of course no guarantee that the “Green Awassa” atelier process will work, but current progress in grant requests (two grant proposals have been submitted) and in inter-sectoral collaboration on the ground in Awassa (the GACA has already met on several occasions) suggest that the chances of success may be greater than through other approaches. Ultimately there remains much to learn about natural capital investments and institution building, and as this learning process takes time, it must begin as soon as possible. The appropriate approach is to learn by doing. The loss of natural capital and the essential ecosystem services it provides in Ethiopia threatens food, water and energy security, with the threats most pronounced for farmers and pastoralists, generally the poorest of the poor. Targeted investments in human and natural capital together might allow rural Ethiopians to replace cycles of poverty, sickness, and environmental degradation with cycles of knowledge, health, and life.