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Rural Women and Urban Men: Fuelwood Conflict and Sustainability in Sussex Village, Sierra Leone

Research reports

A PLAN International community forestry project initially assumed that residents of Sussex village, Sierra Leone, were responsible for local deforestation. This paper demonstrated that outsiders collecting wood to fulfill urban fuel demands were in fact to blame. Evaluating the possible solutions to the expected future fuel crisis in the village, the author recommended promotion of improved stoves, in both rural and urban areas, and tree planting, which was presently gaining popularity. Ultimately, however, the main obstacle to sustainable resource management was the power imbalance between the predominantly female local woodcutters and the wealthy, male, urban traders.

Andy Inglis