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Land Management: A      21st Century priority

Land is inextricably linked to human well-being and plays a role in food security and our collective livelihoods. When land resources are over-exploited and degraded, quality of life is negatively affected and can result in food insecurity, job losses, displacement, or conflict. Improving the economic, social and cultural quality of life, therefore, requires the stewarding and preservation of land’s capacity to continue to provide ecosystem services for future generations.

What is Land Management?

Land management encompasses all activities associated with the management of land and natural resources that are required to achieve the continuation of these services.

The organisational structures for land management differ between countries throughout the world, and reflect local cultural and judicial settings.

Within a country-specific context, the land management activities may be described by three components: Land Policies, Land Information Infrastructures, and Land Administration Infrastructures in support of Sustainable Development.

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How Land Use is Determined?

The total population and density, technology, economic activities and capital available for development play a role.  Factors such as availability of water, air quality, geographical layout, minerals, soil type, topography and environment are also considered.

Why Land (Use Management) stewardship is Important?

Effective stewardship helps control the allocation of land for specific uses. This ensures resources and services can be used by future generations. It minimises the negative effect of economic activities and development on the environment. The best use of available resources is achievable through judicious usage.

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How improved land management helps sustainability?

Successful land management helps preserve ecosystem services (i.e., soil carbon, air, and water quality), allows more open spaces in the urban environment, and reduces the land taken up by uncontrolled urbanisation.

Without management policies and zoning regulations, uncontrolled land utilisation would affect the social, health and economic well-being of the community.

This will have a negative effect on air and noise pollution, traffic flow caused by congestion, and a reduction in the value of the residential property.

Effective land management helps maintain optimal natural resources, reduced soil erosion, ongoing wetlands and habitats functioning and maintained recreational spaces. unmanaged development would have the opposite effect and would thereby degrade the habitats and environment. In turn, this would affect the functioning potential of an area.

Why Land Usage and Planning is Important?

Usage planning and land management reduce the negative impact of utilisation and improve the optimal functioning of services. Planning enables the allocation of areas for activities and applications to meet the needs of the persons using it while protecting the resources against over-exploitation

What Is a Land Use Management System?

It entails policies, procedures and tools to ensure the land can be utilised in the best possible way. The usage plan and map are used for indicating the various areas and their designated zones for development within an area. This promotes public social and economic well-being while minimising the effect on the available resources.

The Role of Planning in Development

Planning plays an integral role in the social, environmental and economic development of a particular community. Therefore, consideration goes into the allocation of land for particular uses to meet these goals.

The advantages of Land Management:

  • Protects the ecosystem services that we already utilise.
  • Reduces / limits urban sprawl.
  • Facilitates a structure and development area that supports public health & safety.
  • Enables compatible usage of a particular area (residential area close to a commercial area).
  • Reduces and prevents land-use conflict.
  • Reduces and controls transportation costs
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Hylton Allison

Author Hylton Allison

Hylton Allison, Founder Of Bahori Consulting, An Environmental Consulting Business Established In 2014, Prides Himself On Serving And Impacting His Client’s Business With Commercial Consciousness. Hylton Has 20+ Years’ Experience In South Africa/ Africa And 14 Years In The DRC , 5 Of Which Have Been In The DRC Rainforest.

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