Quantifying the potential of restored natural capital to alleviate poverty and help conserve nature : A case study from South Africa

Blignaut, James
Moolman, Christina
Journal for Nature Conservation
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Summary Poverty and environmental degradation seem to be endemic in many of the former homeland territories of South Africa. The political legacy of Apartheid might have ceased, but the economic and environmental consequences thereof still have to be dealt with. In one interesting case such a poverty-stricken and environmentally degraded area (Bushbuckridge) lies adjacent to a world conservation icon, the Kruger National Park. Currently, however, the community of Bushbuckridge does not enjoy much benefit from this unique geographic location. On the contrary there seems to be increasing tension between the community in their quest for survival and the national park as a conservation enclave. This tension will not disappear automatically. The situation needs to be managed. It is proposed here that by broadening the conservation corridor through land restoration and by incorporating the Bushbuckridge communal land as an IUCN Category VI protected area (a protected area within which sustainable resource harvesting by communities is permitted) into the Kruger National Park and under the provision that the community remains the land owner, the conservation initiative could benefit the community as much as by a factor of four. For this to be successful a proper managerial and institutional system will have to be in place, including a system that will allow the trade in ecosystem goods and services.
Name of Journal: 
Journal for Nature Conservation
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Journal Issue/Article
Grassland Society of Southern Africa

The Grassland Society of Southern Africa (GSSA) is involved and concerned with the science and practice of range and pasture management. This broad field involves primarily the use and conservation of natural resources. It encompasses applied fields such as livestock production, wildlife management, nature conservation, water catchment management and range and mine-dump rehabilitation. The disciplines include, amongst others, ecology, botany zoology, range and pasture science, animal science, soil science and genetics. This collection includes journal articles from the African Journal of Range and Forage Science as well as related articles and reports from throughout the Southern African region.