Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Population Pressures and Land Use Changes in Southeast Asian Countries: Recent Evidences

Dhas, Albert Christopher (2008): Population Pressures and Land Use Changes in Southeast Asian Countries: Recent Evidences.

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Abstract

This paper is concerned with the consequences of population growth and its increasing density on land use pattern and its changes. For this purpose, the empirical evidences are drawn from FAO statistics with reference to Southeast Asian Countries. The paper attempted to provide both a regional and comparative perspective in understanding the relationship between population growth and land use changes.

The study observed a steady growth in the human population during the last three decades, though the growth rate has declined during the nineties. The unequal distribution of population in terms of its size and growth was observed among the Southeast Asian Countries. The analysis indicated changes in land use pattern towards ‘arable and permanent cropland’ and ‘land not available for cultivation’. However, such a trend varied across Southeast Asian Countries significantly.

The effect of population pressure on land use changes are examined both in a broad and narrow sense, which indicated growing population pressure on land, particularly on agricultural land resulting extensification. It is observed that extensification is made possible by shifting land from forest and pastureland, and also by shifting from ‘land not available for cultivation. The variations in the effect of population pressure on land use changes are observed across Southeast Asian countries.

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