Making the links between woodlands and wellbeing: a multi-stakeholder approach
The loss of woodland in Mozambique is more than an environmental issue. Choices about land use — whether made locally, provincially or nationally — affect the availability of water, firewood, fertile land and other ‘ecosystem services’ delivered by woodlands. When these services underpin food security and routes out of poverty, what happens to woodlands becomes as much about people. But if the links between land use and the wellbeing of rural communities aren’t recognised and agreed, how can policymakers balance the dual needs of human development and environmental stewardship?
The ACES project brought local, provincial and national stakeholders together to identify how woodlands contribute to wellbeing, discuss why ecosystem services are changing, and look forward to future land use. We discuss the areas of agreement and difference that point to some necessary next steps.