Edited by Edward B. Barbier and Suthawan Sathirathai
Chapter 12: Conclusions of the Study and Policy Recommendations
12. Conclusion of the study and policy recommendations Edward B. Barbier and Suthawan Sathirathai SUMMARY OF FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS Mangrove forests are a crucial component of coastal resources that are valuable and important in terms of forestry, fisheries and the protection of the quality of the coastal environment. Nowhere is this more evident than in Thailand. Thus studying the impacts of shrimp farm conversion of mangroves in Thailand provides important insights into the ways in which the loss of a valuable and ecologically critical coastal resource can affect the livelihoods of local communities as well as national economic welfare. Against the latter losses must be weighed the considerable commercial and foreign exchange benefits of shrimp aquaculture and production, which is a major industry in Thailand. Such an analysis of both the economic causes and the consequences of mangrove deforestation due to shrimp farm expansion was the main purpose of this study. Chapter 1 highlighted the fact that mangrove deforestation, particularly as the result of shrimp farming, is a worldwide problem. Employing an empirical analysis of a cross-section of 89 countries containing mangroves, the chapter was able to provide evidence that mangrove loss globally is associated with expansion of aquaculture production and primary-sector (that is, agricultural) activities more generally. In particular, low and middle-income economies, such as Thailand and other rapidly developing tropical countries, that are expanding aquaculture production and are dependent on resource-based economic development generally for current growth, tend to have high rates of coastal mangrove conversion. Part I...
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