Causes and effects of deforestation in Uganda: a case study of Buwalasi, Buteza and Buyobo Sub-Counties
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The study was designed to examine the causes and effects of deforestation. The capacity resource base of forests cannot be under estimated in the economy of Uganda. The study was conducted in three sub-counties of Sironko district that exhibit high incidences of deforestation. The study was guided by two hypotheses: That the demand for forest products, agricultural land and construction materials have no major influence on forests and that there are no important effects of deforestation in Buwalasi, Buteza and Buyobo sub-counties. The study used a descriptive research design with both qualitative and quantitative methods. The samples used in the study consisted of household heads, forest product traders, and district and sub-county key informants. The data was collected using questionnaires, oral interviews, records and observation. The quantitative data was analyzed using Chi square (x2) to test the hypotheses while the qualitative data was analyzed on the basis of content analysis where emerging themes were identified. The empirical data from the secondary sources was analyzed using linear regression. They study inter-alia established that human activities were the most threat to forests. Forests are a national resource base but because they have been depleted have affected the employment and incomes of people at different levels. The following recommendations among others are suggested; Preventive measures guarding against over exploitation and creation of mass awareness on sustainable forest harvesting. Further research on the impact of agro-forestry on sustainable forests’ development is also recommended.