Impact of Environmental Degradation on Agricultural Production and Poverty in Rural Nigeria
Chioma V. Nwokoro, Felix O. Chima

The dual problems of environmental degradation and poverty have over the years being a topic of great influence in International discussion because of the challenges they pose to sustainable development in world countries today. To combat the effects of these two problems, international community, world organizations, and scholars have tried to establish links between the two problems. One of the links between the two concepts is found to exist in rural areas where poverty due to poor access to societal resources and other forms of inequality compel rural people to over exploit immediate environmental resources which are readily available for subsistence or mini commercial agriculture. In most rural areas, agriculture is the main source of livelihood and environmental resources form the basic source. Some scholars are of the view that this dependence on the environment easily depletes resources when people are faced with poverty and high population density. When these resources become depleted the people are once again pushed into more poverty. In Nigeria, few attentions have been given to the impact of unsustainable agriculture on the environment; and many ways poverty, which is rampant in these rural areas, encourage rural agriculturalists to abandon traditional resource management methods for immediate benefits. This paper highlights the impact of unsustainable agricultural practices on the environment and emphasizes the importance of addressing the challenges of rural poverty in achieving effective sustainable development and management of environmental resources depended on for agriculture in the rural areas in Nigeria.

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