Environmental Degradation and Poverty Nexus: Evidence from Coral Reef Destruction in Indonesia

Kanetasya Sabilla
| Abstract views: 804 | views: 361


In a rural area, environmental degradation and poverty nexus focuses on the high-dependency of poor people to natural resources-based livelihood. Arguably, limited assets of poor people cause them to be unable to cope with natural resources degradation and to undertake sustainable practice in their livelihood activities. This study attempts to find the nexus between environmental degradation and poverty in the case of coral reef destruction in Indonesia by applying secondary research as a methodology. A sustainable livelihood framework is applied to analyze small-scale fisher people's vulnerability and capacity to destruct. This study finds that small-scale fisher-people have limited assets to cope with coral reef destruction; however, the same condition leads them to destruct coral reef by doing the destructive fishing practice. This condition causes them to be trapped in the downward spiral of environmental degradation and poverty. Moreover, small-scale fisher-people can overcome this problem by developing self-governance common pool resources to conserve coral reef and increase their livelihood sustainability.


environmental degradation, poverty nexus, coral reef destruction, small-scale fisher-people, Indonesia, sustainable livelihood framework

Full Text:



Allison, E. H. & Ellis, F. (2001). The livelihoods approach and management of small-scale fisheries. Marine Policy, 25, 377-388.

Angelsen, A. (1995). Introduction: The poverty of the environment and the environment of poverty. In A. Angelsen & M. Vainio (eds), Poverty and the Environment (pp. 1-18). Sabah: CROP/ADIPA/UNCTAD.

Angelsen, A. (1997). The poverty environment thesis: Was Brundtland wrong?. Forum for Development Studies, 24(1), 135-154.

Baum, G., Kusumanti, I., Breckwoldt, A., Ferse, S. C. A, Glaser, M., Dwiyitno, Adrianto, L., van der Wulp, & S., Kunzmann, A. (2016). Under Pressure: Investigating marine resource-based livelihoods in Jakarta Bay and the Thousand Islands. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 110(2), 778-789

Baumann, P. (2002). Improving access to natural resources for the rural poor: A critical analysis of central concepts and emerging trends from a sustainable livelihoods perspective. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organisation.

Bebbington, A. (1999). Capital and Capabilities: A framework for analyzing peasant viability, rural livelihoods and poverty. World Development 27(12), 2021-2044.

Bene, C. (2003). When fishery rhymes with poverty: A first step beyond the old paradigm on poverty in small-scale fisheries. World Development, 31(6), 949-975.

Boli, P., Yulianda, F., Damar, A., Soedharma, D. & Kinseng, R. (2014). Benefits of sasi for conservation of marine resources in Raja Ampat, Papua. Jurnal Manajemen Hutan Tropika (Journal of Tropical Forest Management), 20(2), 131-139.

BPS. (2015). Analysis of Fishing Household in Indonesia (Analisis Rumah Tangga Usaha Perikanan Di Indonesia). Jakarta: Statistics Indonesia.

BPS. (2016). The Overview of Poverty in Indonesia on March 2016. Jakarta: Statistics Indonesia.

Burke, L., Selig, E. & Spalding, M. (2002). Reefs at Risk in Southeast Asia. Washington: World Resource Institute

Cesar, H., Burke, L., & Pet-Soede, L. (2003). The Economics of Worldwide Coral Reef Degradation. Arnhem: Cesar Environmental Economics Consulting.

Chambers, R. (1988). Sustainable livelihoods, environment and development: Putting poor rural people first. Institute Development Studies DP 240.

Chambers, R. & Conway, G. R. (1991). Sustainable rural livelihoods: practical concepts for the 21st century. IDS Discussion Paper 296.

Cinner, J. (2014). Coral reef livelihoods. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, ,: 65-71.

DFID. (1999). Sustainable Livelihoods Guidance Sheets. London: Department for International Development

Dunning, K. H. (2015). Ecosystem services and community-based coral reef management institutions in post blast-fishing Indonesia. Ecosystem Services, 16, 319-332.

Duraiappah, A. (1998). Poverty and environmental degradation: A review and analysis of the nexus. World Development, 26(12), 2169-2179.

Ellis, F. (2000). Rural Livelihoods and Diversity in Developing Countries. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

FAO. (2005). Small-Scale Fisheries: Assessing Their Contribution to Rural Livelihoods in Developing Countries. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organisation.

Ferse, S. C. A., Knittweis, L., Krause, G., Maddusila, A., & Glaser, M. (2012). Livelihoods of ornamental coral fishermen in South Sulawesi/Indonesia: Implications for management. Coastal Management, 40(5), 525-555.

Freed, S. & Granek, F. (2014). Effects of human activities on the worlds most vulnerable coral reefs: Comoros case study. Coastal Management, 42(2), 280-296.

Gould, W. T. S. (2009). Population and Development. Oxon: Routledge.

Hardin, G. (1968). The tragedy of the commons. Science, 162(3859), 1243-1248.

Jehan, S. & Umana, A. (2003). The Environment-poverty Nexus. Development Policy Journal March 2003: 53-70.

Khan, S. R. & Khan, S. R. (2009). Assessing poverty-deforestation links: Evidence from Swat, Pakistan. Ecological Economics, 68(10), 2607-2618.

Khan, S. R. & Khan, S. R. (2011). Fishery degradation in Pakistan: a poverty-environment nexus?. Canadian Journal of Development Studies, 1(32), 32-47.

Lefever, S., Dal. M., & Matthiasdottir, A. (2007). Online data collection in academic research: advantages and limitations. British Journal of Educational Technology, 38(4), 574-582.

McGregor, D. F. M., Barker, D., & Evans, S. L. (1998). Resource Sustainability and Caribbean Development. Kingston: The Press University of the West Indies.

McLeod, E., Szuster, B., & Salm, R. (2009). Sasi and marine conservation in Raja Ampat, Indonesia. Coastal Management, 37, 656-676.

Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. (2005). Ecosystems and Human Well-being: Synthesis. Washington DC: Island Press.

Nadkarni, M. V. (2000). Poverty, environment, development: A many-patterned nexus. Economic and Political Weekly, 35(14), 1184-1190.

Ostrom, E. (1990). Governing the Commons. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Ostrom, E. (1999). Coping with tragedies of the commons. Annual Review Political Science, 2, 493-535.

Ostrom, E. (2010). The challenge of self-governance in complex contemporary environments. The Journal of Speculative Philosophy, 24(4), 316-332.

Parekh, G., Killoran, I., & Crawford, C. (2011). The Toronto connection: Poverty, perceived ability, and access to education equity. Canadian Journal of Education, 34(3), 249-279.

Ravnborg, H. M. (2003). Poverty and environmental degradation in the Nicaraguan hillsides. World Development, 31(11), 1933-1946.

Reardon, T. & Vosti, S. A. (1995). Links between rural poverty and the environment in developing countries: Asset categories and investment poverty, World Development, 23(9), 1495-1506.

Satria, A., Matsuda, Y., & Sano, M. (2006). Questioning Community-based Coral Reef Management Systems: Case Study of Awig-Awig in Gili Indah, Indonesia. Environment, Development and Sustainability, 8(1), 99-118.

Scoones, I. (1998). Sustainable rural livelihoods: A framework for analysis. IDS Working Paper, (72).

UNDP. (1998). Human Development Report. New York: United Nations Development Programme.

UNEP. (2000). Global Environment Outlook. Nairobi: United Nations Environment Programme.

Wanucha, G. (2014, July 1). Going Local in the Coral Triangle. Retrieved from Oceans at MIT Website: http://oceans.mit.edu/news/featured-stories/coral-triangle

World Bank. (2002). The Environment and the Millennium Development Goals. Washington: World Bank.

World Bank. (2007). Poverty and the Environment: Understanding Linkages at the Household Level. Washington: World Bank.

World Commission on Environment and Development. (1987). Our Common Future. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

WRI (2014, May 30) Atlas of Forest and Landscape Restoration Opportunities. Retrieved June 7, 2016, from World Resources Institute: http://www.wri.org/resources/maps/atlas-forest-and-landscape-restoration-opportunities

Copyright (c) 2017 Journal of Indonesian Social Sciences and Humanities
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.


  • There are currently no refbacks.