Sustaining Jamaica's forests: The protected areas resource conservation project

  • Philip R. Berke
  • Timothy Beatley


This study examines Jamaica's attempt to protect a tropical forest reserve. The biophysical setting, and the types and magnitude of forest development pressures are reviewed. Next, Jamaica's approach to developing new land-use strategies and compatible environmental protection and economic development programs are examined. Finally, the practical and theoretical implications by which institutions can be designed to encourage planning for sustainable development are reviewed. The implications suggest how to provide an appropriate mix of cooperation and market competition, by which people acting in their own interests accomplish socially equitable economic development, while protecting the environment for the benefit of future generations. The experience illustrates that effective long-term protection of natural areas requires the building of local relationships and support, the development of local economic activities supportive of conservation, the defining of clear boundaries, and significant monitoring and enforcement. Long-term protection of the Blue and John Crow mountains, and other important natural areas of Jamaica, will also require the development of a workable and enforceable system of land-use planning for the island, and adjustments to the economic incentive structure so that sustainable, nonextractive uses of natural capital are placed on equal footing with other economic uses (e.g., coffee production).

Key Words

Jamaica Parks and protected areas Forest preserves Biodiversity conservation 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Philip R. Berke
    • 1
  • Timothy Beatley
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of City and Regional PlanningUniversity of North CarolinaNorth CarolinaChapel HillUSA
  2. 2.Department of Urban and Environmental PlanningUniversity of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA

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