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Assessment of Charcoal Production and Impact of Environmental Policies in Limited Forest Resources Countries: The case of Togo, West Africa

K Kokou
Y Nuto


In this study, plant species currently used for charcoal production were identified in major charcoal production
centres or supply basins (SBs) in Togo. Impact of environmental policies on this activity were also assessed. Therefore,
a sample of 310 charcoal producers in four SBs in different ecological areas throughout Togo, were selected. Law
regulating charcoal production, currently appointed to protect the environment were also analysed. Results reveal
that the average quantity of charcoal produced is 323,353 tons per year. Producers are women (52%) averaging 39
years of age. A category of seasonal producers are pupils who practice this activity during the holidays. Charcoal is
made in temporary kilns at the soil surface. In each SB an average of 15 native plant species are used. Transporters
influence traders and traders influence producers with regard to charcoal quality. However, demand comes from
final consumer who prefers heavy charcoal. This study shows that environmental policies do not influence charcoal
production in Togo due to the weakness of existing laws, no coordination between the institutions in charge of the
environment and the overall failure of the energy policy.