Environmental narratives and politics in Tanzania's Rufiji Delta: A reply to Burgess et al.

Betsy A. Beymer-Farris, Thomas J Bassett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This reply is in response to Burgess et al.'s Commentary on our original article, "The REDD Menace: Resurgent protectionism in Tanzania's mangrove forests." Their commentary, we argue, shifts the focus from WWF's past conservation work and environmental narratives in the Rufiji Delta North, the subject of our article, to its current forest carbon inventory work. We do not comment on WWF's new work. Our principal concern remains on the environmental narratives crafted by WWF that were used to justify attempts to remove Warufiji small-scale rice farmers from the mangrove forests in the Rufiji Delta North. We emphasize the political implications of designating forest areas for carbon forestry and REDD projects in terms of forest dependent people's land and livelihood rights. We argue from environmental historical and social justice perspectives that the Warufiji should be counted among the winners, not the losers, in the green value chains currently under construction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1355-1358
Number of pages4
JournalGlobal Environmental Change
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1 2013


  • Carbon forestry
  • East Africa
  • Environmental Narratives and History
  • Rights and livelihoods

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Ecology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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