Effects of Deforestation on Human Health in Yelwa Forest of Doma Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, Nigeria

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International Journal of Research and Innovation in Social Science (IJRISS) | Volume II, Issue VII, July 2018 | ISSN 2454-6186

Effects of Deforestation on Human Health in Yelwa Forest of Doma Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, Nigeria

Mu’azu Audu Zanuwa1, Muhammad Kamaludeen Adamu2, Ibrahim Faruq Gaya3

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1,2,3 Department of Geography, Federal University of Kashere, Gombe State, Nigeria

Abstracts: – The increase in demand for timber, fuel wood, charcoal, agricultural land and urbanization has placed pressure on forest resources in Nasarawa State. The study examined effects of deforestation on human health in Nasarawa State of Nigeria. The study adopted purposive sampling technique to choose the study area (Yalwa forest) in Doma LGA of Nasarawa state, and systematic sample was used to administer the questionnaires.The study revealed that majority (46.5%) of the respondents point out that logging activity is the main factor responsible for deforestation in the study area. More so, 69% of the respondents reported that malaria is the frequent disease in the study area.Also 59.6% of the respondents asserted that malaria is the most common disease their family members have been experiencing. In line with the findings the study recommends that there should be proper management and intensification of existing agriculture rather than expanding it on virgin lands.

Key Words: Deforestation, Health, Effects and Forest

I. INTRODUCTION

The world’s most challenging environmental problem currently is the destruction of its forest cover. The world forests are under tremendous pressure and many concern people are of the belief that something needs to be done if the forests need protection. The importance of the natural resources to humanity cannot be over emphasised. The livelihood of mankind is dependent on these resources with no exception of the forest cover. Human beings have always used the forests for habitation, protection against enemies, food security, source of medication and above all as their environment (Asare, 2005).
Many forests around the world, especially the rainforest contain medicinal plants that provides important component of health care delivery across the world (FAO, 2010). Accordingto Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO, 2010) more than two-thirds of all medicines found to have cancer fighting properties have their sources from rainforest plants,the rapid destruction of the forests subjects the formal and informal pharmaceutical industries to lack of potential new drugs due to loss of forest resource.