Finding a balance among charcoal, timber and livelihoods in Zambia

Scientists set up to find the drivers of charcoal production in Zambia and the socio-economic implications.
70 percent of households in Zambia use charcoal for cooking or heating

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Demand for charcoal is all but ubiquitous in Zambia – 70 percent of households in the country use the inexpensive fuel for cooking or heating.

“Wherever there are trees, people are producing charcoal,” says Davison Gumbo, a scientist with the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) based in Zambia.

But what effect is charcoal production having on the country’s forests? Where is the charcoal coming from, and who’s producing it?

In this video, Gumbo discusses these and other forestry issues in Zambia — and how CIFOR is helping to put forest management data in the hands of local people in the southern African country.


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