Non-timber forest products and climate change adaptation among forest dependent communities in Bamboko forest reserve, southwest region of Cameroon
Year of Publication: 2021
Authors: R. N. Tieminie, Chia E. L., J. C. Tieguhong, M. F. Nghobuoche, P. S. Mandiefe, M. R. Tieguhong
Forests are naturally endowed to combat climate change by protecting people and livelihoods as well as creating a base for sustainable economic and social development. But this natural mechanism is often hampered by anthropogenic activities. It is therefore imperative to take measures that are environmentally sustainable not only for mitigation but also for its adaptation. This study was carried out to assess the role of Non-timber forest products (NTFPs) as an adaptation strategy based on local perception to cope with the impacts of climate change among forest-dependent communities around the Bamkoko Forest Reserve in the South West Region of Cameroon.
Datasets were collected through household questionnaires (20% of the population in each village that constitute the study site was sample), participatory rural appraisal techniques, transect walks in the 4 corners of the Bamboko Forest Reserve with a square sample of 25 m2 × 25 m2 to identified and record NTFPs in the reserve,and direct field observations.). Both qualitative and quantitative (statistics) methods were used to analyze the collected data.
A total of 18 plant species were identified as being harvested as Non Timber Forest Products by the residents around Bamkoko Forest Reserve. The majority of the respondents (88%) perceived that there has been a change in climate patterns due to increased temperatures and unpredictable rainfalls. Eru was the most affected NTFPs with a standard deviation of 1.66799 and agricultural crops was the most affected livelihood activity by climate change around Bamboko Forest Reserve with a standard deviation of 1.20459 and local population used more than one strategy to cope with these adverse effects
The study concluded that with the increasing climate change effects on crop production and other livelihoods, non-timber forest products still play a safety net role to assist communities. The need to ensure sustainable harvesting, improved processing, and access to non-timber forest products markets cannot be over-emphasized.