Fostering resilient silvo-pastoral practices in Senegal: The promotion of enriched closed forest areas in the groundnut basin
The implementation of silvo-pastoral inter-village spaces
(see Figure 1) is an endogenous initiative developed by local communities in
the groundnut basin of Senegal. Its aim is to address the combined effects of
climate change and resource degradation (Sanogo et al., 2014). According to
Touré and Kremer (2002), the concept of ‘closed area’ corresponds to all
consensual measures taken by local populations to rehabilitate and maintain the
silvo-pastoral resources of a given area of their land in order to produce
ecological, socio-economic and cultural benefits in a sustainable manner. This
results in restricted access to and use of resources within the area for a
certain period of time to allow for the regeneration of the vegetation and
rehabilitation of ecosystem services.
The main objective of the initiative is to improve the
livelihoods of vulnerable rural populations living in ecologically fragile
areas of Senegal through the sustainable management of community inter-village
silvo-pastoral reserves. This practice has also shown to improve soil carbon
sequestration and the resilience of local species (Diouf et al., 2014). Forest
products (wood and non-wood products) from these areas increasingly provide
sustainable sources of incomes for rural populations. In the groundnut basin,
there exist a number of species and products with high socio-economic potential.
In addition, these areas provide environmental services, for example through
reducing erosion and improving soil fertility (Sanogo, 2011).
The initiative constitutes a good practice due to the strong
involvement of the local population, the enablement of the participation of
women in all activities, the effectiveness of the measures taken as well as the
potential for replicability of the latter.