External Interventions and Community Innovativeness to Cope with Changes in Ecosystem Services of the Okpara Dam in Northen Benin

Asian Journal of Education and Social Studies

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Title External Interventions and Community Innovativeness to Cope with Changes in Ecosystem Services of the Okpara Dam in Northen Benin
Creator Balogoun, Salomon
Drissou, LatifouI
Description The Okpara dam in Northern Benin offers multiple ecosystem services (ESS) to the riparian communities living around. It is an important drinking water source for the populations of the largest nearby metropolis Parakou. Many development activities have been undertaken to increase its capacity to supply drinking water by the Benin national water Company (SONEB: Société National des Eaux du Bénin). These activities combined with climate change are drastically affecting the sustainability of ESS supply. This paper aims to analyse the determinants of changes in the provision of ESS and to assess the local innovations developed by local communities to adapt to these changes. Data collection consisted in interviewing 111 individuals in the nearby villages of the Okpara dam. It included farmers, fishermen, religious dignitaries, SONEB officials, and traditional leaders. The results show that the modernization work undertaken by SONEB has increased the capacity of the dam to supply drinking water to the Parakou’s population. On the other hand, they have deprived the local communities of many ESS such as cultural and religious spaces, entertainment and agricultural production areas. In addition to these development works, climate change and other anthropic actions are also cited as factors explaining the depletion of certain ESS around the dam. To limit the damage and safeguard agricultural production, local population have developed agricultural areas downstream of the dam with the creation of autonomous water points for market gardening. Fish farming areas have also been created for small-scale fishing. These innovations have helped not only to improve the availability of drinking water but also increase the income of farmers and fishermen and improve the social cohesion among the communities.
Publisher SCIENCEDOMAIN international
Date 2021-11-26
Type info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Format application/pdf
Identifier http://journalajess.com/index.php/AJESS/article/view/30566
Source Asian Journal of Education and Social Studies; 2021 - Volume 24 [Issue 1]; 1-12
Language eng
Relation http://journalajess.com/index.php/AJESS/article/view/30566/57318
Rights Copyright (c) 2021 Balogoun and Drissou; This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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