Journal article

Deforestation rate and causes in Upper Manyame Sub-Catchment, Zimbabwe: Implications on achieving national climate change mitigation targets

Publication Details

Author list: Zvobgo L, Tsoka J

Publisher: Elsevier

Publication year: 2021

Journal: Trees, Forests and People

Volume number: 5

Start page: 100090

Total number of pages: 13

ISSN: 2666-7193



The signing of the Paris Agreement at the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP) 21 repositioned the global agenda toward sustainable forest management to address the threats of global warming. However, deforestation rates in many parts of the world continue to accelerate. The study evaluates the rate and causes of deforestation in Upper Manyame Sub-Catchment (UMSC) due to land use land cover (LULC) changes between 1990 and 2020. Landsat imagery analysis augmented by household questionnaire survey and key stakeholder interviews were used to assess the rate and cause of deforestation in UMSC. Over the 30 years, the sub-catchment lost 9.4% of its vegetation area due to land use changes. Vegetation loss was mainly due to urban expansion of Harare and its dormitory towns and the extensive peri‑urban agriculture mainly tobacco harvesting. Using the Markov Chain Cellular Automata model, the study estimated that in 2030 the catchment will lose approximately 3.3% of the current vegetation land cover area. This means a further reduction of the vegetation area from 20.1% to 16.8% in 2030. There is need for harmonisation of infrastructure development in Harare and the peri‑urban farming activities with policies that conserve forests such as the use of charcoal and eucalyptus plantations for curing tobacco instead of indigenous trees. This is critical if Zimbabwe is to meet its climate change mitigation targets in the Nationally Determined Contribution that promotes the implementation of Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+)


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    Carbon, Climate change mitigation, Climate mitigation, Deforestation, Global warming, Greenhouse gas emissions

    Last updated on 2021-11-06 at 11:17