In Madagascar, the booming charcoal business is contributing to deforestation and may exacerbate the effects of global warming.
Deforestation does not happen in a vacuum–it occurs in an economic, political, and historical context. Rural Africans have less access to high value commodities and converting forests into charcoal is one of the few options (similar to the issue in Haiti). The short-term economic gain for a few individuals leads to long-term environmental problems such as soil erosion, flooding, and habitat destruction for many species.
Tags: biogeography, environment, ecology, poverty, development, economic, labor, Madagascar, erosion, Africa, resources, political ecology.