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  FORESTRY SYMPOSIUM 1999

ANALYSIS OF SOCIAL ACCEPTANCES AND DEVIATIONS OF FARMERS FOR CONSERVATION INTERVENTIONS OF SHARED CONTROL OF NATURAL RESOURCES (SCOR) PROJECT IN HURULUWEWA WATERSHED

H.M.V. Herath
Central Environmental Authority.

Shared Control of Natural Resources (SCOR) project of International Irrigation Management Institute (IIMI) made interdisciplinary watershed management interventions to achieve rural development (production and profit) and conservation goals. Huruluwewa watershed was selected for implementing these interventions. Huruluwewa watershed belongs to the Anuradhapura district. The environmental conservation goals are significant in social acceptance as it offers long term benefits to farmers.

This paper discusses the interventions recommended by SCOR in each field for soil conservation, conservation farming, agro-forestry, chena cultivation, illicit felling of trees for timber, encroachment of public lands (reservations) etc.,. It analyses the results and findings extracted from data collected from January 1997 to August 1997 through participatory observations and direct observations, individual and group discussions.
Huruluwewa colony consists of farmer families who came from different parts of the country under colonisation project in the decade of 1950. Their different cultural backgrounds are significant in intervention processes such as minimisation of pollution and conservation of environment.

Instead of contour bunds, majority of farmers practice bund systems in paddy fields. However, they tend to burn litter instead of mulching in small scale. Ancestral hill country farmers from Nuwara-eliya district accept that special type of trenches referred to as Bakkikanu are effective in minimising soil erosion in homegardens rather than contour bunds. Cultural links with conservation interventions were also found. It was found that the generally accepted assumption that the poor practice more environmentally degradable farming practices is not correct in all instances.


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