socio_economic factors contributing to the adoption of pelis by farmers in degraded forest areas of Marania in Mout- Kenya forest, Meru county, Kenya
Muthamia, Jackson Munoru
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A high growing population has put a lot of pressure on the areas around Mount Kenya forests, where the area has been encroached for agricultural use and timber resources. This has caused deforestation and degradation of soil and water resources. Kibirichia location is one of those areas that have suffered from different forms of land degradation and deforestation. The purpose of this study was to investigate the factors contributing to the adoption of PELIS by farmers in degraded forest areas of Marania in Kibirichia location around Mount-Kenya forest in Meru County, Kenya. PELIS System in Kenya was adopted in 1910, and was referred to as Shamba system. It was introduced as a modified form of the Taungya system used in south East Asia. The shamba system of forest plantation allowed farmers to tend tree saplings on state owned forest land and in return they were permitted to intercrop food crops until canopy closure. The objectives of the study was to investigate on land size, Social demographic factors, payment of forest charges, capacity-building, stakeholder engagement and proximity to the forest on adoption of PELIS by farmers in degraded forest areas. The study was done on shamba systems in Kibirichia County assembly ward. County with a population of 24,850 and 2,400 households in Buuri Sub-county. Kibirichia county assembly ward is an electoral ward in Kenya. It is one of the wards in Buuri constituency in Meru County. The target population of interest in this study consists of 420 households in Kibirichia county assembly ward in Buuri Sub-county participating in the shamba system. This study adopted a descriptive survey design. Stratified random sampling was used to select a sample of 127 households, while purposive sampling was used to select Key Informants for interview. A structured questionnaire was used to collect data from 127 households participating in the Shamba systems in Kibirichia county assembly ward. The study used both descriptive and inferential statistics to analyze the data. A multiple linear regression model was used to assess the factors contributing to the adoption of PELIS by farmers in degraded forest areas of Marania (Kibirichia) in Mount-Kenya forest, Meru County, Kenya. The results show significant relationships between land size (β=0.890, t=23.39, p< 0.001), payment of fees (β=0.118, t=2.019, p=0.046), capacity building (β=0.089, p=0.012), and stakeholder engagement (β=0.134, t=3.202, p=0.002) and the adoption of PELIS by farmers. Non-significant relationships were found between socio-economic factors (β=0.099, t=1.7005, p>0.05), and distance from the forest plots (β=0.048, t=1.363, p>0.05) and the adoption of PELIS by farmers. The study recommended the implementation of an elaborate Participatory Land Use Planning (PLUP) process be undertaken by all the stakeholders in order to enhance the sustainability of the PELIS system as it was found to be beneficial to the farmers and the forest conservation initiatives in the area. The following activities and considerations should be taken into account during the planning process: payment of forest plot charges, capacity building, and stakeholder engagement to enhance the adoption of the PELIS in the study area.
Africa Nazarene University