COVID-19 lockdown and the forestry sector: insight from Gandaki province of Nepal

Laudari, Hari Krishna and Pariyar, Shiva and Maraseni, Tek (2021) COVID-19 lockdown and the forestry sector: insight from Gandaki province of Nepal. Forest Policy and Economics, 131:102556. pp. 1-12. ISSN 1389-9341


Abstract

Almost all countries have imposed large-scale mobility restrictions (or lockdown) to stop the spreading of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The mobility restriction has disrupted all types of business; causing a devastating impact on countries' economies; and pushing millions of people into extreme poverty. Scientists have been assessing the impact of COVID-19 lockdown on various fronts but there is limited scholarship in the forestry sector. We navigated the impact of COVID-19 lockdown on the forestry sector by taking Gandaki Province (21,974 km2) of Nepal as a case. Employing semi-structured interviews (n = 62) with all ten stakeholder groups, literature review and media analysis, our study revealed that the COVID-19 lockdown suspended all types of forestry and ecotourism businesses; obstructed research and monitoring activities; halted capacity development and extension services; impacted forest development work; and increased incidences of illegal logging and poaching and trafficking of wildlife. Because of the complete shutdown of businesses, the forestry sector of Gandaki province lost 9.6 million USD and 3.2 million man-days of employment during the lockdown period. The economic cost of the lockdown was 1.73 million USD for NTFPs traders, 1.26 million USD for ecotourism entrepreneurs, 0.55 million USD for the community forest user groups and 0.24 million USD for the smallholder or private forest owner. We suggested four post-COVID recovery pathways, including sustainable forest management, nature-based tourism, improvement of forest products value chain and community-based natural resource management to bounce back from the loss. As the current pandemic is most likely to derail the Sustainable Development Pathways of several countries, including Nepal and necessitates the need for an immediate response, the finding and recommendation of our study may inform decision-makers to reimage post-pandemic recovery and leverage sustainable development.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to Published version in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Life Sciences and the Environment - Centre for Sustainable Agricultural Systems (1 Aug 2018 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Life Sciences and the Environment - Centre for Sustainable Agricultural Systems (1 Aug 2018 -)
Date Deposited: 15 Jul 2021 03:56
Last Modified: 15 Jul 2021 03:56
Uncontrolled Keywords: post-pandemic recovery; nature-based solution; sustainable forest management; sustainable development goals; community-based natural resource management; eco-tourism
Fields of Research (2008): 07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0705 Forestry Sciences > 070599 Forestry Sciences not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410402 Environmental assessment and monitoring
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): D Environment > 96 Environment > 9604 Control of Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species > 960499 Control of Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1806 Terrestrial systems and management > 180699 Terrestrial systems and management not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.forpol.2021.102556
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/42756

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