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Beyond Environmental Policy Impacts: Joint-Efforts on Improving the Effectiveness of Pasture Management in Northwest China

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Type: Conference Paper
Author: Gubo, Qi; Fengyang, Li; Zhipu, Long; Lixia, Tang; Xiuli, Xu
Conference: Sustaining Commons: Sustaining Our Future, the Thirteenth Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of the Commons
Location: Hyderabad, India
Conf. Date: January 10-14
Date: 2011
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/7187
Sector: Grazing
Region: East Asia
Subject(s): pastoralism
resource management
Abstract: "Environmental degradation showed its most serious situation in the ecotones of farming and grazing in Northwest China, which had both significant negative impacts on local people’s livelihood and inevitable damage on living conditions of habitants in other areas. Corresponding to the environmental problems, the government implemented several environmental protection policies, including the extreme policy of grazing ban. At the same time, farmers living in this area coped with the hash environment and the enforced policies simultaneously. What are mutual interests between macro environmental policy makers and local people? What are the impacts of those policies on the pasture management effectiveness? How did policy maker, the farmer, other policy implementer, and other stakeholders develop an adaptive mechanism of pasture management during their interaction on Grazing Ban policy implementation? This article explored to answer those questions through a tracing study among 2001-2009, when grazing ban policy and relevant policies were implemented in Yanchi County, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region in China, which is located in the middle part of the ecotone of cropping and grazing in Southwest China. This article found that the interaction among stakeholders in policy implementation and the farmers’ coping strategy on external institutions formatted the art of pasture management, which could not be discussed only through policy impacts assessment. With the analysis of farmers’ correspondences and adjustment of their livelihood strategy while implementing policies, it was found that furtive grazing was used effectively by the farmers and their community in balancing environmental protection and livelihood development, when the policy makers tried to internalize the external costs and benefits of using grassland through policy of grazing ban. Furthermore, for a more sustained application of pastureland, the facilitated interactions and induced joint-efforts of the government departments, relevant NGOs and community people could make more effective pasture management."

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