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Population Pressure, Deforestation, and Land Degradation: A Case Study from the Dominican Republic

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Abstract:

Population pressure, deforestation, and land degradation are major ecological concerns in developing countries. This research investigates causal linkages among interrelated physical and social processes in a case study conducted within the Plan Sierra resource management region of the Cordillera Central, Dominican Republic. Results of bivariate regression analysis, based on a sample of 450 traditional hillslope farms, support a linear relationship between population pressure and deforestation at two spatial scales. However, the strength of the relationship between population pressure and forest cover change decreases over a twenty-year time frame. Results also confirm a positive relationship between deforestation and land degradation. This case study contributes to an understanding of the precise nature of these relationships at sub-national scales of analysis.

Keywords: Dominican Republic; deforestation; land cover/land use change; land degradation; population pressure

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/0033-0124.00142

Affiliations: 1: Eastern Kentucky University, 2: Michigan State University

Publication date: February 1, 1999

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