Chapter 7 - The Sociology of Sustainable Development

Debt affects sd in two ways first countries often

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Unformatted text preview: ntal and social effects of many World Bank projects.93 For example, in Brazil and Indonesia, World Bank loans encourage clear-cutting tropical forests to create new cropland—a short-term view resulting in unarable land in only a few seasons.94 The World Bank is aware of these problems and is trying to make adjustments. For example, in fiscal year 1991, the Bank approved ninety-four projects with environmental components. Of these, thirteen of the programs had over 50 percent of the total costs or benefits of the project related to environmental protection benefits. The objective of a forest development project in Kenya is to “Conserve and protect indigenous forest resources, soil, and water on the forest, farm, and range land; provide technical assistance in forestry extension and agroforestry; prepare a forestry development master plan; strengthen planning and implementation capacities of forest agencies.”95 Another significant problem with development agents’ strategies for SD is the indirect relationship between debt and social/environmental degradation. The debt load carried by the LDCs is a significant factor for explaining the decline in environmental quality. Debt affects SD in two ways. First, countries often attempt to meet debt repayments by intensifying economic practices, turning to new investments, and increasing exports. These actions can result in environmentally risky development since they include resource-exploiting activities—mining, use of dangerous agricultural chemicals, and increased planting of cash crops often on deforested land.96 The increased need for export earning to pay off the debt can excelerate natural resource extractions. Buttel and Taylor point out that Third World countries that are most “debt-stressed,” and thus that are most in need of hard-currency export revenues, are most likely to see little alternative but to aggressively “develop” their tropical rainforests and other sensitive habitats in order to maintain their balance of payments and service their debts.97 National debt als...
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This note was uploaded on 10/25/2010 for the course SOSCI INBA6610 taught by Professor Prescott during the Fall '08 term at University of the West Indies at St. Augustine.

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