The Environmental Crunch in Africa

Growth Narratives vs. Local Realities

  • Jon Abbink

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xviii
  2. Margaret L. Buckner
    Pages 29-50
  3. Back Matter
    Pages 319-324

About this book


This book discusses the problems and challenges of environmental–ecological conditions in Africa, amidst the current craze of economic growth and ‘development’. Africa’s significant economic dynamics and growth trajectories are marked by neglect of the environment, reinforcing ecological crises. Unless environmental–ecological and population growth problems are addressed as an integral part of developmental strategies and growth models, the crises will accelerate and lead to huge costs in later years. 

Chapters examine multiple emerging tension points all across the continent, including the potential benefits and harm of growing urban-based ecotourism, the trajectory of labour-saving technologies and the problems facing agro-pastoralism. Although environmental management and sustainability features of African rural societies should not be idealized, functional 'traditional' economies, interests and management practices are often bypassed, seen by state elites as inefficient and inhibiting 'growth'. In many regions the seeds are now sown for lasting environmental crises that will affect local societies that have rarely been given opportunity to claim accountability from the state regimes and donors driving these changes. 


Environmental management ecology environmental policy ecological crisis development studies environmental policy in Africa sustainable management ecological crises population growth problems in Africa African Studies developmentalism in Africa agro-pastoralism ecotourism in Africa land appropriation in Africa sustainability in Africa Wake up everyone (play)

Editors and affiliations

  • Jon Abbink
    • 1
  1. 1.African Studies CentreLeiden UniversityLeidenThe Netherlands

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2018
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
  • eBook Packages Social Sciences
  • Print ISBN 978-3-319-77130-4
  • Online ISBN 978-3-319-77131-1
  • Buy this book on publisher's site