The potential perils of Sal forests land grabbing in Bangladesh: an analysis of economic, social and ecological perspectives

Kazi Kamrul Islam, Kimihiko Hyakumura

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    The increased demand for foods and commercialization of the commodity markets has resulted in enormous interest in arable land resources, leading to a rapid expansion of forest land into arable land. The Sal forests of Bangladesh have been rapidly grabbed into commercial purposes, which made the forests a threatened ecosystem. Therefore, the objective of the study was to identify the economic, social and ecological impacts of land grabbing on the sustainable development of Sal forests in Bangladesh. Using different qualitative and quantitative data collection techniques from the Madhupur and Bhawal Sal forests of Bangladesh, the study clearly identified that the forestland grabbing has taken place with the assistance of state institutions. The economic outcomes of forestland grabbing were mainly seized by the state institutions and local elites, and a number of industries have been set up in and around the Sal forest areas which created huge pressure on forest biodiversity. Consequently, the ecological analysis showed that a significant number of plant species had lost and the remaining species were facing a critical situation. The study also found a violation of human rights and displacement of almost all ethnic respondents from their ancestral forestland. Therefore, the negligible economic gain of Sal forest land grabbing has not taken precedence over social and ecological consideration; a coordinated approach leading by the government level could stop land grabbing and ensure the sustainable development of Sal forests in Bangladesh.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)15368-15390
    Number of pages23
    JournalEnvironment, Development and Sustainability
    Volume23
    Issue number10
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021

    All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

    • Geography, Planning and Development
    • Economics and Econometrics
    • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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