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EESS Spring Seminar Series - Andrew Millington, Professor and Foundation Dean, School of the Environment, Flinders University

Date and Time: 
Wednesday, April 17, 2013 - 12:15
Location: 
Y2E2 111 -- Light Refreshments at 12:00
Event Sponsor: 
Department of Environmental Earth System Science

EESS Spring Seminar Series - Andrew Millington, Professor and Foundation Dean, School of the Environment, Flinders University, "Commodity chains and tropical forest dynamics: coca-cocaine and land change science in South America", Abstract: The analysis of commodity (value) chains is a key research theme in land change science arising from the drivers-responses framework. However, with the exception of illegal timber extraction, illegal commodities have not been tackled as drivers of land change. This talk reports on research based onon the coca-cocaine chain in South America where the areas of cultivation (changing the loci and spatial distribution of land changes) and the rates of cultivation (changing the rates of land change, particularly forest conversion) have changed significantly over the last century. Most of the research I will report on will be from Bolivia, where a long-term analysis back to the 1960s based on land cover analysis from remotely sensed data, field surveys, and documentary analysis reveals spatial and temporal trends in coca growing and related rates of humid tropical forest loss (and reforestation) can be related more to the effectiveness of anti-narcotics policies, rather than the global price of cocaine: with the perverse outcome that strongly enforced anti-coca policies often to encourage deforestation.