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III. Selected issues


Globally, forestry faces difficult challenges as we enter the next millennium. Population growth, changes in population distribution, economic pressures and efforts to alleviate poverty and ensure food security are leading to the intense scrutiny of forests’ actual and potential contribution to development and of the relative benefits of retaining land under forest as opposed to converting it to other land uses. The most obvious challenge within the sector is how to meet the growing demand for forest products while safeguarding the ability of forests to provide a range of environmental services, including the maintenance of soil and water resources, protection against desertification, the conservation of biological diversity and mitigation of global climate change. Conflicting demands and differences in opinion about the relative importance of the goods and various services provided by forests must be addressed. Easily quantified economic benefits from forests, including the production of wood and non-food forest products and the generation of employment, must be weighted against environmental and social benefits, all of which have a value but only some of which are easily expressed in monetary terms. Demands for a more equitable distribution of the benefits from forests, for safeguarding the rights of forest dwellers and indigenous peoples and for widespread participation in decision-making related to forests will add to the complexity and challenge of forest management and policy-making in the coming years.

Major current trends that are having an effect on forests include continued population growth and urbanization, higher rates of global economic growth after the sluggish first three years of this decade, the continued progress of many former centrally planned economies towards a market economy and trade liberalization. Over the past few years, the structure and functions of public institutions, including forestry and related departments, have continued to undergo significant changes. Trends in decentralization, the privatization of functions previously assigned to the public sector and a movement towards a more pluralistic, or multipartner, institutional environment have become more apparent. Budget reductions have affected forestry departments in developed and developing countries alike. Environmental concerns increasingly are influencing natural resource policies and practices and even, to some extent, international trade. Finally, the "internationalization" of issues continues; attention at the highest policy-making levels has been drawn to the interactions between development and environmental and social issues through four international summits held within the last two years: the World Summit for Social Development (Copenhagen, March 1995); the Fourth World Conference on Women (Beijing, September 1995); Habitat II – the Second United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (Istanbul, June 1996) and the World Food Summit (Rome, November 1996). The importance accorded internationally to forestry is reflected in the establishment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests in April 1995 by the UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) to encourage international consensus on key issues related to forests. Set up to monitor the implementation of the agreements made at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED – Rio de Janeiro, June 1992), the CSD reported to a special session of the UN General Assembly in June 1997 on progress made over the last five years. This meeting was attended by many heads of state and has kept the discussion of sustainable development prominent on the agenda of policy-makers.

The effect of population and economic growth on demand for food and forest products is clearly illustrated by past consumption trends. Between 1960 and 1995, world population almost doubled in size and the world economy (as measured by GDP in real terms) tripled. Over the same period, world production of grains more than doubled while that of fuelwood doubled and that of paper more than tripled. Looking ahead, today’s population of 5.7 billion is expected to grow to seven billion by the year 2010. Nearly all of this increase will occur in the developing world, where constraints to agricultural and forestry production are particularly challenging and national economic imperatives and disparities in income distribution are already putting intense pressure on natural resources. These factors will certainly affect the ability of countries to attain long-term food security and to maintain the productivity of their natural resource base, including forest resources.

New information on global forest cover was released in 1997 by FAO’s Forest Resources Assessment Programme, including: the area of forests in 1995; changes in forest area between 1990 and 1995; and revised estimates for changes in forest area between 1980 and 1990.10 Forests (natural and plantation) are estimated to have covered 3 454 million ha (26 percent of the world’s total land area) in 1995, 57 percent of which were in developing countries. The distribution of forest area by main regions is shown in Figure 4.

Worldwide, there was a net loss of 56 million ha between 1990 and 1995. This was due to a decrease of 65 million ha in developing countries and an increase of 9 million ha in developed countries over the five-year period. Considering only natural forests in developing countries, which is where most deforestation is occurring, the new estimates indicate that:

In short, although deforestation continues to be significant in developing countries, it appears that the rate of loss of natural forests may be slowing. While this is a positive sign, it will be difficult to know whether it is the beginning of a trend until more data are available from FAO’s Forest Resources Assessment 2000, now in progress.

Recently released information11 on the causes of deforestation between 1980 and 1990 shows that key factors in forest cover change are rural population growth, coupled with agricultural expansion (especially in Africa and Asia), and large economic development programmes involving the resettlement of people, agricultural expansion and infrastructure development (in Latin America and Asia). Although timber harvesting is generally not a direct cause of deforestation, it is known to be a facilitating factor in some areas, particularly through the construction of roads which make previously remote areas accessible to agricultural colonizers.

Demand for food to feed the world’s increasing population will continue to put pressure on forest lands. FAO estimates that the increase in world food production to meet rising demand, mainly in developing countries, is likely to be in the order of 1.8 percent per year from now until 2010. In some countries, supplies will be increased by importing food or by intensifying production on existing agricultural land. For countries where neither option is feasible and where opportunities for land expansion exist (mainly sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America), food supplies will also be increased by putting more land into agriculture. The need for increased production and improved access to food in developing countries is also drawing greater attention to the ways in which forests and trees can contribute to household and national food security, in particular their role in protecting the natural resource base on which agriculture depends.

On the other hand, in some developed countries the levelling off of demand for agricultural products, coupled with continued intensification of production, is resulting in the release of marginal agricultural lands from production and therefore new opportunities for afforestation.

Despite overall positive economic performances in much of the developing world in recent years (see World economic environment, p. 37), poverty, hunger and malnutrition persist in parts of the world and among various sectors of the population because of an uneven distribution of wealth and access to resources. Many of the world’s poor live near forests and are dependent on forest lands and resources for their livelihoods. Forests do and will continue to play a particularly important role in providing products and income for these people. Competing demands for forests to continue to provide for local needs while meeting increasing national demands for industrial forest products, which will be stimulated by rising overall income levels, may well intensify.

The combined impact of economic growth and increasing population size on demand for forest products is likely to be significant, particularly so since per caput consumption of industrial forest products is especially responsive to changes in low-level incomes. There was a 36 percent increase in consumption of wood products between 1970 and 1994. Slightly more than half the wood harvested each year is consumed as fuelwood, while the rest is used for industrial wood products. Today, demand for fuelwood continues to increase at a rate of about 1.2 percent per year (the average annual rate of increase for 1992-94). Demand for industrial wood products seems to be levelling off in developed countries but it continues to rise steadily in developing countries. Preliminary figures from the forthcoming issue of FAO’s Global Outlook Studies indicate that the increase in demand for wood products (fuelwood and industrial wood) between 1990 and 2010 will be in the order of 20 percent, driven primarily by expanding populations and economic growth in developing countries.

One of the most pressing questions regarding the future outlook for the forest sector is whether there will be sufficient wood to meet expanded demand in the future and whether it can be supplied without unacceptable social and environmental costs. Various factors are having an impact on forest product supply, including increased plantation establishment and improvements in processing (both of which help ease the situation), and an apparent, sharp decrease in timber removals in the Russian Federation this decade (which has had a significant impact on world wood production). In addition, restrictions placed on timber harvesting in natural forests in response to environmental concerns are reducing industrial roundwood supplies in some countries.

The area under plantations in developing regions has doubled between 1980 and 1995 (from 40 million ha to 81 million ha), and industrial wood production from farm forestry and agroforestry systems is becoming increasingly important in several countries. Increased demand for forest products is likely to reinforce these trends.

Improvements in forest industries have resulted in significant increases in output of finished products per unit of raw material. These improvements include the diversification of raw materials (e.g. an increasing use of coconut wood and rubber wood in forest industries), greater use of wood residues, the increased recycling of paper and paperboard and the development of more efficient processing technologies. International trade, which has increased steadily in volume (see Figure 6) and value over the past few decades, is expected to become even more important as a way to compensate for shortages in many countries’ wood supply. Although developed countries still dominate world trade in forest products on both the export and import sides, developing countries, particularly in Asia and Latin America, are becoming increasingly important. Asian countries are expected to become even more important importers of wood products to offset predicted major wood deficits.

The dissolution of the USSR and subsequent efforts by newly independent countries to move from a centrally planned to a market economy are having major impacts on forestry. First, there have been serious disruptions in forest management and production systems as well as forest product processing and trade in some of these countries. Particularly significant are the changes in the Russian Federation, which accounts for more than one-fifth of the world’s forests and is a major producer of industrial roundwood. The sharp decrease (recorded removals in 1994 were only about half of those in 1990) in industrial roundwood removals in the CIS and the Baltic states contributed to the decline of about 15 percent in world industrial roundwood production over the same period. Second, major reorganizations are taking place in the forestry sectors of the countries in transition in Central and Eastern Europe and the CIS, including the reorientation of forestry policies and institutions, the privatization of forest operations and state-owned forest enterprises and the restitution of nationalized forest land to former owners or to their heirs.

The impact of rapid infrastructure development and of urbanization on land use, land cover and environmental conditions in urban and peri-urban areas is evident in many areas of the world, but especially in Africa and Asia where the rates of urbanization are highest. The effect of urbanization on overall demand for forest products and on rural land use, however, has been studied less and is less well understood than the relationships between forest resources and population or economic growth; it is unclear whether the patterns evident in developed countries as they became urbanized will hold true for developing countries, which are urbanizing at a much faster rate and have populations at much lower income levels. What is apparent, however, is that there is considerable scope for forestry to improve the environmental conditions and livelihoods of urban dwellers and, in some places, there is a potential productive role that peri-urban plantations can play in providing urban populations with wood products. While rapid urbanization is no longer an issue in most developed countries, in recent years an increased awareness of the potential environmental and social benefits of forests and trees in urban areas has led to the development of strong urban forestry programmes in many countries such as the United States and in Europe.

Environmental awareness and public pressure have continued to have an impact on all aspects of the forestry sector: on forest management, harvesting and post-harvest activities, markets and trade in forest products. Concern that forests should be managed in such a way as to ensure that their productive functions, environmental services and social benefits are sustained over the long term has led to efforts to develop criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management.12

There is a trend towards the management of forests as ecological systems that have multiple economic benefits and environmental values, and management objectives put more weight on environmental protection and the conservation of biological diversity. More attention has been drawn to the potential environmental and social benefits which might result from the development of non-wood forest products. Restrictions have been placed on harvesting in national forests in North America and some tropical Asian and South Pacific countries. Reduced-impact logging systems are being advocated to minimize harmful effects of timber harvesting. Some initiatives, such as certification schemes and the listing of timber species in appendixes of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, are being implemented in an attempt to link trade to forestry-related environmental concerns.

The increased importance ascribed to the environmental functions of forests and their integral role in sustainable forest management was highlighted by Chapter 11 of Agenda 21 (Combating deforestation) and the "Forest Principles" adopted at UNCED. It is also reflected in recently enacted international conventions, including: the International Convention to Combat Desertification; the Convention on Biological Diversity; and the UN Framework Convention on Global Climate Change. These conventions are expected to reinforce ongoing national, regional and international activities related to forests.

Both the socio-cultural benefits of forests and the social implications of the distribution of forest benefits continue to be issues of international attention and national action. The questions range from how to meet the needs and respect the rights of indigenous groups, forest-dwelling and forest-dependent people to the more universal question of how to take into consideration the range of demands for forest goods and services by a variety of interest groups. These concerns have resulted in the further development and institutionalization of various participatory forest management systems, in the devolution of ownership of forest resources and in the recognition of access rights of local communities and user groups. In many developing countries in particular, local communities are playing an increasingly important role in the day-to-day management and protection of forest resources and, in the case of indigenous peoples, efforts are being made to minimize outside interference with traditional resource management practices. Increasingly, in developed and developing countries alike, action is being taken to develop means by which the opinions of a wide range of interest groups can be considered in forestry policy and management decision-making.

The forestry sector is undergoing a dynamic evolution in a rapidly changing world. The world’s forests and forestry sector are shaped as much by external economic, political, demographic and social trends as by forces working within the sector itself. Both the present and the future of forests must be considered within the wider context of development, which has as its ultimate goal the improved well-being of present and future generations of human beings.



Women play an extremely important role in agricultural development, accounting for an estimated 40 percent of the agricultural labour force in Latin America and the Caribbean and between 60 and 80 percent in both Asia and the Pacific and Africa.13 A lack of adequate research casts serious doubts on estimates of women’s full contributions to farm activities. Additionally, women’s low participation in national and regional policy-making, their invisibility in national statistics and their lack of participation in extension services (with the exception of home economics programmes) has meant that issues of most concern to women are often neglected in the planning, appraisal, implementation, management and evaluation of many rural development policies and programmes. Other reasons why agricultural development efforts have failed to be reoriented towards women include limited female leadership and resources in recipient governments as well as gender biases within donor agencies.14 This neglect of women results in losses in potential productivity gains and economic growth.

The challenge to include women in development efforts was first taken up at the 1975 World Conference on Women in Mexico and again in Copenhagen in 1980. In the wake of the UN Decade for Women (1975-1985), many international initiatives have since contributed to a greater recognition of women’s key participation in rural and other domains of development. The Fourth World Conference on Women, held in Beijing in 1995, reconfirmed a global commitment towards the advancement of women.

In response, most governments have signed various international agreements, treaties and conventions, pledging to pay greater attention to the needs of women, particularly rural women, and to focus more efforts and resources on raising their productivity. A wider understanding of gender issues, and of the role of women in agriculture and food security, has become part of mainstream development thinking. For example, many governments and agencies now have women-in-development units and gender policies and specialists. There have also been improvements in the collection of gender-disaggregated data, research on female-headed households and the role of women in agriculture, and methods for including the activities of women in national accounts. Additionally, effective women’s organizations are helping female farmers gain better access to credit and resources.

Despite these public displays of commitment, change has been slow and many development efforts are still not reaching a significant number of women. When women have been targeted as beneficiaries, it has generally been in their reproductive capacity or as targets of welfare interventions. Until recently, small, dispersed "women-specific" projects, or project components, focusing on their productive role in agriculture have remained isolated from national agricultural planning and policies. Given the crucial role they play in food production and provisioning, efforts to increase women’s productivity are vital to global food security. Key among these efforts is increasing women’s access to agricultural education, extension and training, as human capital development has been shown to be a prerequisite for increasing agricultural productivity. Ensuring full participation of women in the Special Programme for Food Security pilot demonstration projects and in constraints analyses is essential for short-term benefits.

The role of women in agricultural development

Although there is diversity in household production patterns, women in all regions of the world play a predominant role in household food security through agricultural and food production. It is estimated that women in developing countries spend up to two-thirds of their time in traditional agriculture and marketing, with their work hours tending to exceed those of men. In these countries, women in rural areas grow at least 50 percent of the world’s food. They work in all aspects of cultivation, including planting, thinning, weeding, applying fertilizer and harvesting as well as post-harvest activities such as storage, handling, stocking, marketing and processing. They are also involved in poultry and livestock production. In Southeast Asia and the Pacific, as well as in Latin America, women’s home gardens represent some of the most complex agricultural systems known. While nearly all tasks associated with subsistence food production are performed by women, their share in cash crop farming is also significant.

The findings of a UNDP/World Bank project in Burkina Faso, Kenya, Nigeria and Zambia on raising productivity of women farmers in sub-Saharan Africa concluded that women are so important to African agriculture that initiatives to raise the sector’s productivity cannot afford to ignore them. Women farmers in this region produce more than three-quarters of its basic food supply. In addition, they are now cultivating crops (e.g. coffee and other cash crops), taking on tasks (such as land clearing) traditionally undertaken by men and, increasingly, making decisions on the daily management of farms and households.15 This is partly due to males migrating away from farms in search of more remunerative activities. While women produce much of the developing world’s food supply and are the backbone of food production and provisioning for family consumption, their productivity is generally low and based on long work hours on small landholdings. They also have restricted access to training, technology, credit and inputs and, for the most part, use traditional and unimproved agricultural methods. Closing the gap between current and potential productivity levels may be the most effective means of promoting agricultural development. The opportunity to do so in the low-income food-deficit countries is presented by the Special Programme for Food Security pilot phase.

Investing in education: effects on productivity

Investing in human capital is one of the most effective means to reduce poverty and bring about sustainable economic growth. Research suggests that increasing the average amount of education of the labour force by one year raises GDP by 9 percent. This is true for the first three additional years of education, in which case a 27 percent increase in GDP can be expected.16

Virtually all studies on agricultural productivity show that more educated farmers earn a higher return on their land. According to one study,17 four years of primary education increased the productivity of farmers by 8.7 percent overall, and by 10 percent in cases where a modernizing environment was prevalent, largely in Asia. (A modern environment was characterized by the availability of new crop varieties, innovative planting methods, erosion control and the availability of capital inputs such as insecticide, fertilizer and tractors or machines. Market-oriented production and exposure to extension services were also indicators.) In analysing Malaysia, Thailand and the Republic of Korea, Jamison and Lau18 estimated that one year of schooling is on average associated with a net increment to farm product of 5.1, 2.8 and 2.3 percent, respectively.

A World Bank study estimates that the rate of return on investments in women’s education is in the order of 12 percent in terms of increased productivity, the highest rate of return of possible investments in developing nations. The researchers estimated that if women and men received the same education, farm-specific yields would increase from 7 to 22 percent. Increasing women’s primary schooling alone would increase agricultural output by 24 percent.19

Education also plays a major role in improving the status of women, the nutrition of their families and national food production. Female education brings significant social returns, with associated improvements to household health and nutrition, lower infant and child morbidity and mortality and slower population growth.20 Women’s education also typically pays off in wage increases, with a consequential rise in household incomes. A recent ILO report indicates that each additional year of schooling raises a woman’s earnings by about 15 percent compared with 11 percent for a man.21

For agriculture, female education is crucial to higher productivity and increased implementation of environmental protection measures. Education is most effective in increasing productivity and aggregate output when technological inputs, training and access to information are readily available. Increasing agricultural production is therefore contingent not only on education but also on ensuring women equal access to extension, agricultural credit and other inputs and support services.

Agricultural extension: the current situation

Agricultural extension programmes bridge the gap between technical knowledge and farmers’ practices. Generally, they are free public services, but user fees and private extension services do exist. Numerous studies show that extension is generally cost effective and has significant and positive impacts on farmers’ knowledge and adoption of new technology, and hence on farm productivity and rural incomes. Without technical assistance, information and training, farmers are limited in their ability to adopt new technologies and plant varieties. They may be forced to use low-input/low-output cultivation techniques, thereby reducing the intensity of cultivation. This results in lower crop yields and may be linked to environmental degradation.

Given women’s role in agriculture, including female farmers in extension makes sense for a variety of reasons. First, agricultural extension programmes that ignore women’s farming roles risk low returns, inefficiency and, in the long term, failure to achieve development objectives. Second, extension activities that are carried out without the participation of female farmers risk having negative impacts on women and their families. Accordingly, the productivity and welfare of rural households can be maximized when both female and male farmers participate in extension activities that are relevant to their roles as agricultural producers.

The present situation, however, is that agricultural information is not reaching or benefiting women effectively. FAO estimates that rural women’s access to agricultural extension worldwide is currently only about one-twentieth of that of men.22 The belief that information will trickle down to them through households and communities is still widely held. Studies in Asia and the Pacific, Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean, however, show that such transmission is often poor.23 FAO survey data (1989) show that about 5 percent of all agricultural extension resources worldwide are directed to female farmers and 15 percent of the world’s extension agents are women, which is a sharp contrast with the proportion of agricultural work carried out by women (Table 2). Whether by design or default, the result is a male-to-male system for transferring agricultural training, technologies and information.

The lack of female extension agents is one of the biggest constraints to African women in gaining information and training. FAO found that women accounted for less than 11 percent of extension staff in Africa. Very few of the female agents surveyed had agricultural training; most specialized in home economics. Only 7 percent of all agricultural extension services were allocated to women farmers, and extension services traditionally available to women – home economics – received only 1 percent of total extension resources.24


Percentage of agricultural work carried out by women versus percentage of women extension staff


Female agricultural work

Female extension staff




















Tanzania, United Rep.









Source: FAO. Women, agriculture and rural development fact sheets (for the respective countries).

According to a recent FAO report on the Near East region, where women represent an important source of agricultural labour, the majority of extension officers in the region are male and most of their target farmers are males.25 In Egypt, women perform 53 percent of the agricultural labour, but women extension officers constitute less than 1 percent of the total. Extension to female farmers is often limited to traditional home-based activities, such as health, hygiene and home management. In India, agricultural extension services largely bypass the 40 percent of the country’s farm workers who are female. Studies of extension services in Latin America and the Caribbean find similar biases.

Gender barriers in extension and training

Extension messages that ignore the unique role, responsibilities and workloads of women farmers are inappropriate for them. According to an FAO report on women, agriculture and development in Africa, the primary focus of extension is oriented towards commercial crops, which are traditionally grown by men, rather than on food and subsistence crops, which are the primary concern of women farmers and the key to food security. Women working in agriculture generally undertake extremely diverse activities and so require a wider range of information and training than men. Most extension programmes lack the breadth of content needed to interest or benefit large numbers of women.

Another result of male-dominated extension services is the oversight of the practical constraints facing women. Male extension agents in many countries do not consider the dual roles of women in farming and the family, and they consequently schedule meetings and demonstrations at times and places that are inconvenient for women farmers. A lack of child care services and the need to perform household chores mean women often cannot attend. Extension meetings may also interfere with income-generating activities. In eastern Nigeria, for example, local markets operate on a five-day cycle, and few women can afford to forgo the income of a market day in order to meet an extension agent.

Distance from extension sites can pose a serious problem for women because of transportation costs and cultural restrictions on their mobility. For instance, in eastern Nepal, few females attended training courses because they lacked experience in social interaction; in their communities, it is the men who primarily deal with the outside world.26 In other cases, women may not be able to change their work schedules without permission from village elders.

Underlying these problems is a lack of recognition that men and women are often responsible for different crops, livestock, tasks and income-generating activities, and therefore have different extension needs. As an example of flawed assumptions about gender roles, in Zambia, extension agents provided special beakers for measuring fertilizer to male farmers, although it was the women who actually applied the fertilizer. Consequently, the women continued to apply the fertilizer without the beakers and the problem of inaccurate measurements persisted.27

The lack of women extension agents severely curtails the spreading of vital information to women farmers since, in many societies, they are discouraged from speaking individually with male extension agents. Even where extension contact between the sexes is relatively unrestricted, male agents may encounter difficulties in dealing with women, resulting in services being skewed away from female clients, as occurred in a forestry project in Honduras.28 Where women are hired, however, they often face lower pay and other inequities. Socio-cultural restrictions may also pose difficulties for women agents by, for example, preventing them from travelling by motorbike or applying for posts away from families and communities.

The lack of female staff can be attributed in part to male-dominated extension and research organizations that fail to understand the need to target services directly to women farmers. The "glass ceiling" limiting promotions for women in these agencies may exacerbate the situation. One study points to examples in the Department of Agricultural Extension in Bangladesh, where women made up only 5 percent of staff with college degrees, and in the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute, where 22 percent of the staff were women. Furthermore, opportunities to hire women are declining as these agencies face reduced budgets and staff cutbacks.29

Perhaps the greatest problem is in recruiting qualified women from agricultural educational institutions to fill positions in extension services. Although the enrolment of women in agricultural programmes is generally lower than that of men, their proportions are substantially higher than the proportions employed in extension would indicate. For example, in Lebanon 47 percent of bachelor’s degree recipients in agriculture and veterinary science and 59 percent of master’s degree graduates in these fields are women. In Peru nearly 30 percent of the university-level agriculture graduates are female. In Zimbabwe, 22 percent of those enrolled in agriculture and 18 percent of those in veterinary science at the college or university level are women. In Tunisia 12 percent of those receiving agricultural training are women. In Honduras, at the university level women make up 12 to 42 percent of students in various agricultural majors. In the Sudan, while few students are enrolled in graduate-level agricultural or veterinary studies, one-third are women.

Existing women-oriented extension services tend to concentrate almost exclusively on women’s reproductive role. As such, they provide women with training in traditional home-based activities such as child care and home management, but little or no training in income-generating activities, such as crop and livestock production, agro-industries or sustainable agriculture. In settlement schemes in Sri Lanka and Malaysia, for example, rural women were trained in cake-making and embroidery, despite their high degree of participation in agricultural activities.

However, the need for agricultural extension services directed at women is only increasing. A World Bank study of Burkina Faso, the Gambia, Mali, Mauritania and Senegal reveals that women in the Sahel are increasing their labour input in agricultural production as a result of male migration, changes in gender responsibilities, intensification of farming and environmental degradation. Despite this increase in responsibility, these women have not received a commensurate increase in access to resources and services.30 One of the major reasons for this is that rural surveys are designed or administered to identify men as heads of households. Thus, female-headed households are ignored and excluded from projects and funds. This is particularly striking given that, in some regions of Africa, 60 percent of households are headed by women.

In Asia and the Pacific, while many extension efforts have successfully reached women over the past 20 years, serious constraints still limit women’s access to information and technical assistance. For example, women involved in small-scale livestock rearing – a major activity in almost all Asian countries – cite a lack of both livestock-related extension services and access to veterinarians.31

Even when contacted, many women are unable to utilize extension recommendations fully because of limited access to land, credit, inputs, technologies and markets. Very few credit-lending arrangements in the Near East, for example, have been set up especially for women farmers, and only a small number apply for credit. This is mainly attributable to weak institutional structures, traditional beliefs and cultural practices, a high degree of illiteracy and poor education as well as women’s lack of collateral. In many developing countries, rural women often do not have the necessary education or skills, such as functional literacy and management experience, to understand extension literature or to participate fully in activities.

The failure of governments and donors to provide these women with agricultural inputs and support services results in considerable in agricultural productivity and output losses. Although some changes have been made over the past few years in terms of women’s access to extension services, women’s contact with extension has not had as positive an impact on output as has that of men. These disappointing results point to the need for strategies to improve not only the quantity but also the quality of extension packages for female farmers.

Improving extension services for women

Several strategies or combinations of strategies can dramatically improve the quality of extension services for women and increase the number of female participants. In many cases, relatively simple and cost-effective adjustments to extension services and delivery mechanisms can yield enormous improvements. Some of these are outlined in Box 3.



Increase the number of female agents by recruiting more and providing them with access to training, resources and logistical support equal to that of male agents.

Increase the pool of women qualified to provide extension by promoting the teaching of science and technical subjects to females, targeting females for intakes to agricultural colleges and providing more facilities for them at such colleges.

Retrain and redeploy female agents, for example home economists or rural development staff, to provide agricultural extension. In Nigeria, home economists (who had detailed knowledge of rural women and were farmers in their spare time) were successfully transferred to an extension service. This involved little additional cost, since they were already on the government payroll.

Increase the number of women contacted by specifying targets. In Burkina Faso, measures to target women farmers resulted in an increase in the number of women directly contacted by extension agents from 15 000 to 299 000.

Adjust the selection procedures or criteria for "contact farmers" so more women qualify for extension services. In Kenya, for example, agents were encouraged to accept contacts with the wives of men who were identified as contacts but worked off the farm or farmed only part-time.

Provide extension services to women’s groups where it is more efficient than individual contact or where women indicate a preference for group extension. In Kenya, studies estimate that group extension can reach twice as many as farmers at the same cost as individual extension.

Make more efficient use of scarce female agents by having them introduce womens’ groups to the extension system and services as well as the male extension agent assigned to the area.

Improve the content of extension services to women farmers by ensuring that they receive agricultural information and that messages and recommendations are relevant to women’s production activities. Improve farm technology to make it more appropriate for women.

Adjust the timing and location of extension meetings and training sessions so that they are convenient and accessible for women (e.g. held in the evenings and sited at markets or grain mills). Shorter modules and mobile training units brought to the villages can also help.

Train and sensitize male extension agents to work with women farmers. Male agents should have technical training in women’s activities and crops and training to help them work with women. As an example, male agents in Nigeria met regularly with female Subject Matter Specialists to discuss extension messages from the perspective of women farmers.

Offer incentives to encourage extension agents to meet with female farmers. In Nigeria, donor support for women and positive feedback made extension agents feel that, by extending their services to female farmers, they were part of an effective, ground-breaking strategy.

Diagnose and identify women’s extension needs by collecting and analysing gender-disaggregated data and use this information to plan and implement policies and interventions.

Monitor and evaluate extension programmes with feedback from the participants and gender-sensitive extension agents to ensure that the programmes are helping women farmers as intended.

Source: K. Saito, op. cit., footnote 15, p. 60.

A number of encouraging initiatives have been taken by some countries. In Egypt, for example, the recent establishment of a strong Policy and Coordination Unit for Women in Agriculture in the Ministry of Agriculture has begun to address some of the above-mentioned constraints. Efforts to increase the number and technical competence of women extension agents have achieved some success in Burkina Faso, Kenya and Morocco. In the Gambia, after concerted efforts to target women, the proportion of female extension participants rose from 5 percent in 1989 to 60 to 70 percent by 1994. In Zimbabwe, the development of a more appropriate extension package for female farmers and the inclusion of women as candidates for master farmer certificates boosted their participation from 44 percent in 1990 to more than 60 percent in 1993.

In Asia and the Pacific, the explicit targeting of women for agricultural extension services has coincided with a growing number of female farmers. During the late 1980s, almost all Asian and Pacific countries produced extension publications directed at women; of note was an extensive series for women produced by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) in the Philippines.


Women farmers are by no means a homogeneous group. They represent different socio-economic situations with different extension needs. The nature and extent of their involvement in agriculture certainly varies greatly from region to region. However, regardless of these variations, there is hardly an activity in agricultural production in which women are not actively involved.

Within the agriculture sector, there is no doubt that the returns from investing in women are very high. Since education, extension and training are all mutually supportive and reinforcing contributing factors to agricultural productivity, efforts to assist rural women and improve their opportunities should concurrently focus on all of these areas. Educated women have a foundation for further technical training and are better equipped to seek out and obtain credit and other resources. Women who have access to extension services are more receptive to new technologies and are more likely to adopt environmentally sustainable farming techniques. Trained women are in a better position to pass on useful information to other women, thereby diffusing relevant technical information. The link between education and training and extension for female farmers and higher economic productivity and output underscores the value of investing in women. During the past decade, structural reform programmes have justifiably called for the elimination of government subsidies, taxes, regulations and inefficient state enterprises that distort the functioning of markets. However, intervention is called for to improve market performance and social welfare where underinvestment occurs owing to market failures or distortions.

If subsidized extension services are to continue, these services must be directed at the farmers who have the greatest impact on global and household food security, i.e. women farmers. To do this, more contact is needed with women farmers and the quality of this contact must be improved. Both of these can be accomplished by increasing the proportion of women agents, sensitizing and training male agents and having both male and female agents provide information relevant to women farmers. In addition, access to complementary inputs, credit and technology is vital for realizing production gains.



In recent years a consensus has developed that the increasing accumulation of greenhouse gases in the environment is likely to lead to undesirable changes in the global climate. Signatories to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change32 recognize the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and have agreed that developed countries, in the first instance, should aim at reducing emissions to 1990 levels by 2000 and beyond, although caveats provide exemptions to this for some countries. It is becoming clear that the developing countries will need, at some point, to take an active role in abating global greenhouse gas emissions. Because of the prominence of agriculture in these countries, its dependence on climate and its role as an emitter of greenhouse gases, the sector deserves special attention.

The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change distinguishes between developed and developing countries. It commits members of the Annex 1 group (comprising 37 developed countries and European economies in transition) to develop policies "with the aim of returning individually or jointly to the 1990 levels of ... anthropogenic [human-induced] emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases ...". Furthermore, developed country parties are obliged to "... provide new and additional financial resources to meet the agreed full costs incurred by developing country Parties in complying with their obligations ...". In addition, recognition is given to the priorities of "economic and social development and poverty eradication" in developing countries.

The role of the agricultural sector is given particular attention in the framework convention, which states in its preamble that "arid and semi-arid areas or areas liable to floods, drought and desertification ... [are] ... particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change" and requires that developed countries assist in the "protection and rehabilitation" (Article 4) of such areas, many of which are in developing countries, particularly in Africa.33

Nonetheless, in spite of the emphasis on developed countries reducing their emissions and assisting developing countries, the latter group will have to address the problem within the next few years. Most of the growth in carbon emissions will come from developing countries.34 Indeed, if OECD countries were to reduce their emissions to zero, in the absence of any policy changes global carbon dioxide emissions would still be above 1990 levels (22 billion tonnes) by 2010 because of the rapid growth in emissions from some developing countries. Thus, developing countries must certainly have a role in emission abatement if global warming is to be adequately addressed. Because of the pervasiveness of energy use, all sectors of an economy will be affected, positively or negatively. As an emitter of carbon, methane and nitrous oxide and provider of carbon sinks that absorb or sequester carbon, but also as a beneficiary of an additional CO2 fertilization effect, the agricultural and forestry sectors will be affected in complex ways.

A further role for developing countries relates to so-called joint implementation. The framework convention allows countries to fulfil their obligations jointly. Thus, two or more countries may cooperate to reduce their aggregate emissions or enhance sinks, through afforestation for example, to absorb greenhouse gases by the required amount. Empirical estimates suggest that the costs of abatement tend to be lowest in developing countries, for example China and India. Such countries could therefore be potential partners in jointly implemented emission abatement projects.

In addition to undertaking emission abatement and joint implementation, a third issue for developing countries concerns the impact that policy changes in other countries have on them. Opinions vary as to the costs of reducing emissions to 1990 levels by 2000 and beyond in Annex 1 countries (the so-called stabilization approach and a common interpretation of the framework convention’s requirements), but some observers suggest that reductions in growth and in demand for developing country exports may make developing countries worse off. This is in spite of the absence of abatement policies in developing countries and the relocation of industries that may occur as a result of changes in international competitiveness. For these various reasons, policies to abate global climate change are an important issue for developed and developing countries alike.

Climate change and agriculture

Various degrees of uncertainty exist about several technical aspects of climate change (see Box 4). While most agree that anthropogenic emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (NH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), chlorofluorocarbons and other substances are warming the globe, there is still much uncertainty about the likely magnitude or impact of the global warming on climate. Changes in precipitation and sea level are uncertain, as are the regional and temporal distribution of changes and their impacts. Some regions of the world may benefit from a warmer climate and the beneficial fertilization effect of higher carbon dioxide levels on plant growth and yields. Some regions may also suffer damages from inundation as a result of rising sea levels; an increased frequency and magnitude of natural hazards such as storms, floods and droughts; an increase in human and animal diseases such as malaria; and decreases in biodiversity. As a result of these uncertainties, the magnitude and distribution of the benefits of abating emissions are unclear. Despite the uncertainties, policy-makers have been sufficiently convinced of the consequences to agree to make considerable efforts to reduce the growth of emissions.

The potential impact of climate change on agriculture and forestry is noteworthy because changes in climate affect production directly. Furthermore, the production phase of crops and forests acts as a carbon sink, taking up carbon that would otherwise contribute to increased atmospheric CO2 concentrations and an enhanced greenhouse effect.35




Fossil fuel use

Production of CFCs

Changes in land use

Population growth


Concentration and persistence of gases

Role of clouds

Role of oceans

Role of ice

Role of land cover


Changes in temperature

Changes in precipitation

Changes in sea level

Regional and temporal distribution of vegetation changes

General circulation models (GCMs) of global climate suggest that projected increases in global average surface temperatures of 1° to 3.5°C are likely to occur over the next 100 years, shifting the climate zones away from the equator, raising sea levels (probably less than 1 m by 2100) and increasing the likelihood of storms, floods and droughts.

While changes in temperature and precipitation are important from an agricultural perspective, other factors influencing yields include a reduction in soil moisture and increases in plant transpiration. In addition, higher levels of atmospheric CO2 should increase photosynthesis rates, thereby increasing yields in favourable conditions.

Average temperatures are expected to increase by a greater amount nearer the poles than the equator. In the temperate zones, each degree of warming is expected to shift the climatic zone by 200 to 300 km. Regional climatic changes imply that the production of crops for which temperature is a limiting factor could increase in the higher latitudes. Wheat production could therefore possibly extend into Canada, Scandinavia, the Russian Federation and Argentina, reflecting the longer growing season.

For many crops, particularly in tropical agriculture, the limiting factor is precipitation. While the area affected by monsoonal rains is likely to extend, climate models are unable to predict with any certainty the regional distribution of rainfall. If rainfall increases in marginal areas that have fragile soils or mountains or over the sea, increases in production may not offset decreases resulting elsewhere from reduced rainfall or soil moisture.

A warmer climate might reduce soil moisture. Evaporation rates in mid-latitudes increase about 5 percent for each 1°C increase in temperature. Crops in arid zones are likely to be sensitive to this factor. Some estimates indicate that yields may fall considerably in some instances. However, these often neglect adaptation towards more suitable varieties or crops as well as the fact that the per unit productivity of water of C4-type crops such as maize or sugar cane, especially, increases with increased CO2 through reduced evapotranspiration.

Increased concentrations of CO2 also have a fertilization effect on productivity. A doubling of CO2 may increase photosynthesis by 100 percent in some instances, allowing plants to grow faster and to a greater size.36 This applies particularly to wheat, rice and soybeans and, to a lesser extent, to low-latitude crops such as maize, sorghum, millet, sugar cane and pasture grasses.

A further issue relating specifically to agriculture concerns methane. Little attention has been given to this issue to date because of data limitations, the overriding importance of carbon for (energy-dependent) economic growth and the relatively slow growth in methane emissions. However, the framework convention specifies that there should be reductions in methane emissions. Policies relating to methane emissions may be particularly important for many developing countries that are dependent on rice and livestock production.

Methane is the second most important greenhouse gas, accounting for more than 15 percent of the enhanced greenhouse effect. Recent estimates suggest that annual emissions are around 380 million tonnes per year, compared with 80 million tonnes in pre-industrial times.37 However, methane remains in the atmosphere for a considerably shorter time than carbon. The major anthropogenic sources of methane emissions are livestock farming, natural gas and oil production, coal mining, rice cultivation, the burning of biomass, landfills and sewage. Hoofed animals, mainly cows, contribute perhaps 100 million tonnes or 25 percent of human-induced emissions.38 Per animal emissions vary tremendously depending on diet, species, age, weight and health. Typically, cows in developing countries that are fed on a sparse diet produce perhaps more methane and nitrous oxide per unit of meat or milk than animals in intensive production.

Wetland rice production accounts for an estimated 60 million tonnes of methane per year, although estimates are regarded with considerable uncertainty. Most rice is produced in developing countries, with China and India making a substantial contribution.

Policies to reduce methane emissions are likely to impact more significantly on developing countries, which tend to have large agricultural sectors, often with substantial amounts of rice and livestock production. Increasing meat consumption in developing countries may lead to increased livestock production and hence increased methane emissions in these economies, unless the additional consumption is partly based on increased imports from developed countries.

There are also limited means with which to reduce methane emissions. There is some scope for dietary supplements for livestock, and in time this may be significant, particularly for intensive producers. There seems to be less scope in rice cultivation, although the development of cultivars that require less time under water, or a switch in favour of wheat consumption, may have some impact.

Nitrous oxide is another greenhouse gas emitted mainly from agriculture. It is released naturally from forests, wetlands and termite mounds as well as from human sources such as biomass burning, land clearing, nitrogen-fertilized pasture and crops, leguminous crops, cattle in intensive production systems, animal waste and fossil fuels. Although nitrous oxides have a long atmospheric lifetime, similar to carbon and in contrast to methane, present-day levels are little higher than pre-industrial levels and annual growth is relatively low. About 90 percent of global emissions are attributable to agriculture.

Emission abatement polices: carbon leakage, terms of trade and welfare effects

Current efforts towards abating emissions are primarily concentrated in the developed countries. This reflects the historical contribution of these countries to the stock of atmospheric greenhouse gases. Of interest are the likely effects that such policies may have on developing countries and their agricultural sectors. For developing countries not implementing abatement measures, two effects of developed country abatement policies are noteworthy: carbon leakage and changes in terms of trade.

First, "carbon leakage" refers to the fact that emission reductions in one country may be partially or completely offset by an increase in emissions from another non-abating country, whose continuous recourse to fossil fuel-intensive techniques would enhance its relative competitiveness. Clearly, a high rate of carbon leakage undermines the effectiveness of an emission abatement policy overall, but non-abating developing countries may benefit from this effect. Empirical estimates of the magnitude of carbon leakage if emission abatement policies were widely implemented in developed countries range from next to nothing to 100 percent or more, although estimates at the lower end of this range, from about 10 percent to 35 percent, seem more plausible.39

A second effect of abatement policies concerns changes in terms of trade, the ratio of export to import prices. A deterioration in terms of trade implies that a greater quantity of exports are needed to purchase a given quantity of imports. Abatement policies can be expected to affect import and export prices in all countries, even in those not implementing abatement policies. Prices of fossil fuel-intensive products (such as chemicals, rubber and plastics, iron and steel, non-ferrous metals and manufactured goods) could be expected to rise as the implicit or explicit tax on fuel combustion is passed on. However, the tax-induced fall in demand for fossil fuels would lower their prices. Finally, lower economic growth in emission-abating countries would lower their import demand, negatively affecting exports from all countries, including agricultural exports from developing countries. The overall impact depends on the composition of imports and exports. Countries that export large quantities of fossil fuel (such as OPEC members), or products requiring intensive use of fossil fuel, are likely to experience worsening terms of trade, while countries that import these products (e.g. Japan) are likely to gain.

Changes in terms of trade can offset changes in output induced by carbon leakage. In other words, the decline in developed countries’ demand for developing country exports may more than offset gains to developing countries that are attributable to carbon leakage.

The substitutability of agricultural inputs versus use of these inputs in other industries, both domestically and in other countries, is another important factor. In developing countries, capital and labour resources may be drawn away from the agricultural sector towards the more internationally competitive and profitable fossil fuel-intensive industries, such as iron and steel. The composition of industry across the economy will determine the extent to which the agricultural sector is affected.

Efficient outcomes reduce welfare losses to abaters and non-abaters alike

Whether developing countries gain or lose from climate change abatement policies, a more relevant question is whether there are alternative policies that could benefit all countries. Recent international negotiations between parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change have focused on countries making cuts in their greenhouse gas emissions in proportion to their emission growth since the base year 1990. Addressing the enhanced greenhouse effect through the so-called stabilization of emissions to 1990 levels by 2000 ignores a fundamental feature of the problem, namely that climate change is truly global in scope. Analysts are largely in agreement that the enhanced greenhouse effect is a global problem in the sense that the environmental impact of greenhouse gas emissions is independent of location. Greenhouse gases are a stock pollutant – it is the atmospheric concentration of gases that determines the enhanced greenhouse effect, not the flow of emissions. Therefore emissions released in the tropics are assumed to have the same impact as those released in temperate climates.

The location of the reductions in emissions does not influence their environmental impact. However, the cost of abating greenhouse gas emissions does vary considerably from country to country owing to differences in technologies in use, the availability of alternative methods of energy generation, the composition of industry, the distribution of energy resources and markets, dependence on exports and other factors. Even at the margin, costs may differ significantly.

Perhaps of greater importance from a global perspective is the fact that the costs of abatement tend to be lower in developing than in developed countries, reflecting the considerable scope for improvements in energy efficiency through the application of more modern technologies.40 For example, China has many small-scale coal-burning power plants, and its iron and steel sector is relatively inefficient and out of date. Some empirical estimates suggest that marginal costs of abatement in China could be less than 20 percent of total OECD marginal costs.41

A similar argument applies to sinks. The costs of providing sinks, such as forests, will vary with the availability and potential alternative uses of land. Land values and the costs of establishing sinks vary tremendously, but are likely to be greatest where the land is used most intensively. Countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Brazil and Argentina would appear to provide the greatest scope for sink enhancement.

Given the global nature of the enhanced greenhouse effect, the substantial differences in costs in different countries and the different rates of economic and emissions growth in different countries, it makes economic sense for countries with the largest potential contribution to the global problem to attempt to reduce or contain emissions. From a global perspective, any given target can be achieved at minimum cost only if the least-cost opportunities for reducing emissions are utilized first. An efficient outcome would require much of the abatement in emissions to be located in developing countries.

According to some estimates, welfare losses under an efficient outcome in 2020 are $47 billion (constant 1988 United States dollars), just 40 percent of the losses that would be sustained if developed countries were required to locate their emission-reduction activities within their own country.42 An earlier OECD study puts this figure at 20 percent.43

This does not imply, however, that the costs of emission abatement should necessarily accrue wholly or mainly to developing countries. That costs of abatement are relatively lower in the developing countries does not detract from the fact that these countries also have relatively less margin for bearing abatement costs in terms of competitiveness and income losses. It remains true, however, that the problem is global in scope, and all countries have their share of responsibility in controlling it.

Implications and conclusions

The enhanced greenhouse effect is an environmental challenge that is perhaps unique in scale. It features global causes and effects and will require widespread cooperation if atmospheric concentrations are to be reduced. However, the problem of abating global greenhouse gas emissions seems intractable. Most developed countries see the need to reduce global emissions, and political and economic realities dictate that these countries set an example in the abatement effort. However, many have yet to demonstrate the political will to accomplish reductions. Many developing countries see the problem as a legacy of industrial development, whereby developed countries took the opportunity to develop in a period when greenhouse gas emissions were not seen as a constraint, and they regard other priorities as more pressing. This is in spite of the observation that most of the increase in emissions in future will come from countries currently regarded as developing countries. Nonetheless, to increase the international abatement effort, it will be necessary at some stage to broaden participation to include countries not currently committed to emission abatement.

Although uncertainties remain as to the nature and importance of the problem, there is no doubt that abatement policies will have an impact on developing countries. While in some cases such an impact will be positive, resulting from the relocation of carbon- and methane-intensive industries, in others it may be negative if the demand for developing country exports falls. Negative impacts are most likely to be minimized by encouraging efficient and equitable outcomes. A willingness to participate actively in the negotiation process and in jointly implemented projects is likely to be in the best interests of developing countries individually and collectively. Throughout the prolonged negotiation process, improvements in energy efficiency and better use of energy-saving technologies would appear prudent. The removal of subsidies on energy consumption would also be desirable.

Agriculture and forestry will remain an important area in the climate change debate because the physical effects are most apparent in these sectors. Evidence to date suggests that the impact of climate change on net global agricultural productivity is difficult to assess, with higher yields owing to adaptation and the CO2 fertilization effect, in some cases, and lower yields attributable to lower rainfall and soil moisture in other cases. The impacts of global abatement policies on the agricultural sector are also likely to vary between regions and countries, although constraints on methane and nitrous oxide emissions could impact negatively on agricultural growth.

Meanwhile, in the agricultural sector consideration should be given to the impact on carbon, methane and nitrous oxide emissions when assessing prospects for forestry, livestock and crop development. In addition to their effect on emissions, improved land management practices through better use of water, fertilizer and fuel and through the conservation of organic matter are likely to prove beneficial to developing countries.

9 The material in this section is taken from FAO. 1997. State of the World’s Forests 1997. Rome. This biennial report provides a comprehensive view of global forestry, with policy-relevant information on the state of the world’s forests today and on recent developments in the sector.

10 These data are published in FAO, op. cit., footnote 9, p. 50. This work also analyses of these figures and provides data on forest cover by country.

11 FAO. 1996. Forest resources assessment 1990: Survey of tropical forest cover and study of change processes. FAO Forestry Paper No. 130. Rome.

12 A special section in State of the World’s Forests 1997 provides a comprehensive discussion of recent global, regional and national efforts to develop criteria and indicators of sustainable forest management.

13 Based on estimates from the UN regional economic commissions: the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA); the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP); and the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC). The estimates are aggregates from micro level studies that examined the full farming system, not just the measured agricultural labour force. Cited in R.L. Blumberg. 1989. Making the case for the gender variable: women and the wealth and well-being of nations. Washington, DC, USAID.

14 M. Snyder, F. Berry and P. Mavima. 1996. Gender policy in development assistance: improving implementation results. World Development, 24(9).

15 K. Saito. 1994. Raising the productivity of women farmers in sub-Saharan Africa. World Bank Discussion Paper No. 230, Africa Technical Department Series. Washington, DC, World Bank.

16 The return thereafter of an additional year of education diminishes to a GDP increase of approximately 4 percent, or a total of 12 percent for three years (World Bank. 1991. World Development Report 1991. New York, Oxford University Press).

17 Lockheed, D. Jamison and L. Lau. 1980. Farmer education and farm efficiency: a survey. Economic Development and Cultural Change, 29(1): 37-76.

18 D. Jamison and L. Lau. 1982. Farmer education and farm efficiency. Baltimore, USA, The Johns Hopkins University Press for the World Bank.

19 K. Saito, op. cit., footnote 15, p. 60.

20 K. Subbarao and L. Raney. 1995. Social gains from female education: a cross-national study. Economic Development and Cultural Change, 44(1).

21 L. Lim. 1996. Women swell ranks of working poor. World of Work, Vol. 17. Geneva, ILO.

22 FAO. 1996. Farmers’ rights in the conservation and use of plant genetic resources: who are the farmers? By S. Bunning and C. Hill. Rome.

23 B. Hertz. 1989. Bringing women into the mainstream. Finance and Development, (December): 22-25.

24 FAO. 1995. Women, agriculture and rural development – a synthesis report of the Africa region. Rome.

25 FAO. 1995. Women, agriculture and rural development – a synthesis report of the Near East region. Rome.

26 P.P. Bhattarai. 1989. Women’s roles – a case study of Tankhuwa Panchayat. PAC Occasional Paper No. 1. Kathmandu, Pakhnibas Agricultural Centre.

27 V. Nayak-Mukeherjee. 1991. Women in the economy – a select annotated bibliography of Asia and the Pacific. Kuala Lumpur, Asian and Pacific Development Centre.

28 Ibid.

29 V. Nayak-Mukeherjee, op. cit., footnote 27, p. 65.

30 World Bank. 1995. Rural women in the Sahel and their access to agricultural extension – sector study. Report No. 13532. Washington, DC.

31 V. Nayak-Mukeherjee, op. cit., footnote 27, p. 65.

32 UN. 1992. United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. New York.

33 UN, op. cit., footnote 32, p. 71.

34 World Bank. 1995. World Development Report 1995. New York, Oxford University Press; AsDB. 1993. Electricity Utilities Databook. Manila.

35 An earlier perspective on the possible effects of climate change on agriculture, forestry and fisheries is provided in FAO. 1994. The State of Food and Agriculture 1994, p. 55-62. Rome.

36 UNEP. 1996. http:/

37 D. Stern and R. Kaufman. 1995. Estimates of global anthropogenic methane emissions, 1860-1993. Working Paper No. 4. Boston, USA, Center for Energy and Environmental Studies.

38 UNEP. 1996. http:/

39 ABARE/Government of Australia. 1995. Global climate change: economic dimensions of a cooperative international policy response beyond 2000. Canberra; A. Manne and J. Oliveira-Martins. OECD Model Comparison Project (II) on the Costs of Cutting Carbon Emissions. Economics Department Working Paper No. 146. Paris, OECD.

40 IEA. 1994. World Energy Outlook. Paris, OECD.

41 Z.X. Zhang. 1996. Macroeconomic effects of CO2 emissions limits: a computable general equilibrium analysis for China. Wageningen Economic Papers 1996-1. The Netherlands, Wageningen Agricultural University.

42 ABARE/Government of Australia, p. 112 in op. cit., footnote 39, p. 77.

43 J.-M. Berniaux, J. Martin, G. Nicoletti and J. Martins. 1991. The cost of policies to reduce CO2 emissions: initial simulation results with GREEN. Working Paper No. 103. Paris, OECD.

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