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