The impact of equitable payment for watershed services scheme on livelihoods in Tanzania: the case of Uluguru Mountains

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University of Dar es Salaam
Care International and World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) initiated a payment for ecosystem services (PES) project namely Equitable Payments for Watershed Services (EPWS). The scheme aimed at modifying unsustainable land use practices to conserve and improve watershed areas around Kibungo Juu sub-catchment, in the Uluguru Mountains. It also aimed at improving the quality of life of the communities involved through substantial benefits. The EPWS tried to demonstrate how PES can reverse environmental degradation by addressing the core drivers of land-use changes through market incentives. There has been a growing interest by researchers and conservationists in finding out whether the participation in PES schemes improves conservation and increases the stock of livelihood capital. This study was an attempt to provide answers to some of these predicaments. The main objective of the study was to find out the impact of EPWS on the communities in the Kibungo juu sub-catchment in the Uluguru Mountains. A total of 120 households were selected from 3 out of the 5 participating villages, divided into 60 participating and 60 non-participating households. There was also a consultation with focus groups, key informants as well as the researcher’s physical observation. Structured and semi-structured questionnaires were used to collect information. The livelihood impact of the EPWS scheme was measured using a few selected livelihoods items from the five broad categories. The trend of responses and internal consistence were computed using Mean Likert Scale and the Cronbach Alpha coefficients while the Conjoint Model was used to determine the preferences of ecosystem service providers. The findings showed that the EPWS scheme had the potential to improve livelihood capital for the environmental service providers. Nevertheless, for the EPWS scheme to be successful the observed challenges must be addressed. First and foremost, the respondents felt that the reward for adopting the conservation practices did not reflect the opportunity cost. This could be explained by the considerable number of EPWS participants who had quit the project. The respondents also preferred payment to be in form of agricultural input voucher rather than direct cash and that it should be channelled through local governments and not project implementers.
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Watershed management, Ecosytem services, Environmental protection, Watershed ecology, Human services, Economic aspects, Uluguru mountains(Tanzania), Tanzania
Mussa, K.R (2012) The impact of equitable payment for watershed services scheme on livelihoods in Tanzania: the case of Uluguru Mountains, Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. (Available at