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The impact of small-scale wood harvesting on neem Azadirachta indica A. Juss stands in the coastal savanna of Ghana

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Abstract:

Although the introduced neem tree Azadirachta indica A. Juss is a very important energy source in the coastal savanna of Ghana, the sustainability of small-scale wood harvesting (SSWH) has not been investigated with regard to this species. This paper assesses the sustainability of SSWH on neem stands in the coastal savanna, using a socio-economic and ecological survey. The results show that SSWH, incorporating coppicing, stand tolerance, balanced with total bole cutting and root removal, and based on socio-cultural supports, has created a modified yet sustainable system of SSWH. It is concluded that these systems may contribute to tree stand conservation.

Keywords: Ghana; coastal savanna; coppicing; neem; small-scale wood harvesting; socio-ecological

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-4762.2005.00611.x

Affiliations: Department of Geography, University of Sussex, Falmer, Brighton BN1 9SJ, Email: ecol55@hotmail.com

Publication date: March 1, 2005

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