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Nepal’s Ecosystems: Aiming for New Heights

June 22, 2017 |

This article was originally published on Center for International Forestry Research.

“Nepal is a country of vast extremes, from lowlands and forested plains to mountain ranges, and, of course, the iconic Mount Everest. With land altitude varying from as low as 70 meters to more than 8,800 meters above sea level, this small landlocked nation has the most dramatic elevation extremes in the world. Within these vastly differing landscapes lie unique ecosystems.

For the past four decades, Nepal has been on the leading edge of Community-Based Forestry (CBF), with 40 percent of the country’s 28 million people working to manage and help restore nearly a third of the country’s forested land.

These forests provide a wide range of ecosystem goods and services to local communities including clean water, timber and firewood; as well as services like water purification and regulation; air regulation; biodiversity maintenance; seed dispersal; and greenhouse gas mitigation and flood control.

In the past, most of the research around CBF has been focused on how reforested areas can provide goods to help local communities. Yet little research has been done on the effects and benefits of ecosystem services (ES). ES covers four basic services: 1) Photosynthesis support 2) Provisioning (i.e. wood, food and water) 3) Regulation (i.e. climate change and water quality); and 4) Cultural services (i.e. ecotourism)…”

Read on at: Center for International Forestry Research.

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