Population and Energy: A Systems Analysis of Resource Utilization in the Dominican Republic

Population and Energy: A Systems Analysis of Resource Utilization in the Dominican Republic

Population and Energy: A Systems Analysis of Resource Utilization in the Dominican Republic

Population and Energy: A Systems Analysis of Resource Utilization in the Dominican Republic

Excerpt

This monograph stems from a series of field-based studies undertaken by the senior author in the Dominican Republic, all of which dealt with processes of landscape change and the cultural features produced by change. The first of the studies were analytical but nonquantitative, and employed both diachronic and spatial techniques. From the results, it became evident that, for a full understanding of landscape evolution, the cumulative effects of land-use change would have to be evaluated quantitatively. Only in this manner could the impact of carryover trends on the availability of physical resources be acctirately measured over both the short and the long run.

Evaluation of landscape evolution is of practical, as well as academic, importance. Planners recognize the critical need for an evaluative and predictive method for understanding the wide-ranging ecological impact of human activities on the physical resource base. There is a particular need to gauge people's probable impact through changing land use on the life expectancy of dams and reservoirs within watershed areas. Prompted by a personal request from the president of the Dominican Republic, Joaquín Balaguer, to undertake the study of such impact, and taking into account the broad implications of the research problem, an interdiscipli-

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