Balancing rural household livelihood and regional ecological footprint in water source areas of the South-to-North Water Diversion Project

Wang, Chen, Shi, Guoqing, Wei, Yongping, Western, Andrew William, Zheng, Hang and Zhao, Yan (2017) Balancing rural household livelihood and regional ecological footprint in water source areas of the South-to-North Water Diversion Project. Sustainability, 9 8: . doi:10.3390/su9081393


Author Wang, Chen
Shi, Guoqing
Wei, Yongping
Western, Andrew William
Zheng, Hang
Zhao, Yan
Title Balancing rural household livelihood and regional ecological footprint in water source areas of the South-to-North Water Diversion Project
Journal name Sustainability   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 2071-1050
Publication date 2017-08-07
Year available 2017
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.3390/su9081393
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 9
Issue 8
Total pages 20
Place of publication Basel, Switzerland
Publisher M D P I AG
Language eng
Subject 3305 Geography, Planning and Development
2105 Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
2308 Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
Abstract There is a knowledge gap and practical demand to understand the co-evolutionary relationship between rural household livelihood and regional ecological footprints for developing sustainable livelihoods in ecological conservation regions. This paper tracks the change trajectories of rural household livelihoods and regional ecological footprints in four water source areas of the South-to-North Water Diversion Project where various ecological and environmental protection projects and measures are being proposed to protect water quality. As a result, some concerns regarding rural livelihood have arisen. The sustainable livelihood approach developed by DFID (Department for International Development in UK) was used to measure the natural, physical, financial, human, and social capitals of rural livelihoods, while the ecological footprint accounting approach was used to calculate the amount of bio-productive spaces that produce the yearly resource flows for human consumption. The study period is 2000–2014 and data was obtained from the Statistical Yearbooks. The results show that the change trend of natural capitals of rural households, which have increased by 72.5% (SY), 98.8% (NY), 69.3% (TA), and 120.3% (JN) within 15 years, determine the overall change track of rural livelihoods and that rural household livelihood grows with the expansion of regional ecological footprints. Sensitivity of regional eco-footprints to rural livelihood varies from 5.8 to 0.5 in case areas. It is recommended that in the “post South-to-North Water Diversion era”, four policy instruments—population transfer and relocation, industrial restructuring and updating, rural infrastructure and community reconstruction, and cross-ecological compensation—should be adopted to improve sustainable livelihoods in these four water source areas.
Keyword Capitals
Ecological footprint
Livelihood
Rural household
Water source area
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Grant ID 13 ZD172
FT130100274
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
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