Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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A stochastic bio-economic pig farm model to assess the impact of innovations on farm performance
Ali, B.M. ; Berentsen, P.B.M. ; Bastiaansen, J.W.M. ; Oude Lansink, A. - \ 2018
Animal 12 (2018)4. - ISSN 1751-7311 - p. 819 - 830.
bio-economic model - environmental impact - pigs - profit - stochasticity

Recently developed innovations may improve the economic and environmental sustainability of pig production systems. Generic models are needed to assess the impact of innovations on farm performance. Here we developed a stochastic bio-economic farm model for a typical farrow-to-finish pig farm to assess the impact of innovations on private and social profits. The model accounts for emissions of greenhouse gases from feed production and manure by using the shadow price of CO2, and for stochasticity of economic and biological parameters. The model was applied to assess the impact of using locally produced alternative feed sources (i.e. co-products) in the diets of finishing pigs on private and social profits of a typical Brazilian farrow-to-finish pig farm. Three cases were defined: a reference case (with a standard corn–soybean meal-based finishing diet), a macaúba case (with a macaúba kernel cake-based finishing diet) and a co-products case (with a co-products-based finishing diet). Pigs were assumed to be fed to equal net energy intakes in the three cases. Social profits are 34% to 38% lower than private profits in the three cases. Private and social profits are about 11% and 14% higher for the macaúba case than the reference case, whereas they are 3% and 7% lower for the co-products case, respectively. Environmental costs are higher under the alternative cases than the reference case suggesting that other benefits (e.g. costs and land use) should be considered to utilize co-products. The CV of farm profits is between 75% and 87% in the three cases following from the volatility of prices over time and variations in biological parameters between fattening pigs.

De vleeswereld : Toenemend bewustzijn over dierenwelzijn en milieu zorgt voor lagere vleesconsumptie
Veluw, K. van - \ 2017
Ekoland (2017)10. - ISSN 0926-9142 - p. 13 - 15.
vlees - vleeswaren - dierenwelzijn - vleesproductie - biologische voedingsmiddelen - milieueffect - meat - meat products - animal welfare - meat production - organic foods - environmental impact
Vlees eten doe je niet meer zomaar. Vlees en alles daarom heen staat enorm in de schijnwerpers. Vanuit voedingsoogpunt blijft vlees zeer waardevol hoewel teveel consumptie van rood vlees de kans op darmkanker verhoogt. Vlees blijft echter ontzettend lekker maar productie en consumptie ervan is te ver doorgeslagen. Het moet anders en duurzamer. Een reis langs de vleeswereld.
Environmental impact of mineral fertilizers: possible improvements through the adoption of eco-innovations
Hasler, Kathrin - \ 2017
University. Promotor(en): Onno Omta. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463436922 - 156
environmental impact - business management - fertilizers - agricultural production - germany - milieueffect - bedrijfsmanagement - kunstmeststoffen - landbouwproductie - duitsland

Agricultural production has kept pace with the population growth (FAO, 2012). One major input for a productive agriculture are fertilizers. Despite their effect on yield and quality, they also have considerable effects on the environment leading to emission of greenhouse gases, acidification, eutrophication and use of scare resources (Ruttan, 2002; Kitzes et al., 2007). However, unlike other agricultural inputs, fertilizers cannot be substituted and a reduction in the fertilizer use can lead to major yield decreases or a production shifting to less suitable areas. By considering the above mentioned statements this thesis aims to expand the knowledge of the environmental impact of fertilizers in general and innovation supply chain thinking, knowledge exchange and innovation adoption within the fertilizer supply chain in particular with the main research question:

To what extended can the environmental impact of fertilizers be improved by accelerate the adoption and diffusion of (eco)-innovations within the fertilizer supply chain?

To answer this question, the thesis was divided into two main theoretical perspectives. The first part focuses on the environmental impact of mineral fertilizers and relevant alternatives. The second part focuses on innovation adoption and diffusion.

In these thesis LCA calculations of different fertilizer types (e.g. urea, ammonium nitrate) and production types (single nutrient fertilizers, bulk blends or complex fertilizers) try to examine the amount of emissions during fertilizer production, transportation and application. With literature data of emissions during the fertilizer production, completed with data from expert interviews along the fertilizer supply chain a holistic LCA calculation was conducted. The results showed that especially urea should be used with special care in temperate climate zone and produced with best production technologies. Additionally, the production and application of phosphorus should always be part of agricultural LCA studies, because this plant nutrient also can have effects on the results in the impact categories use of scare resources and salt water eutrophication. With an optimized fertilization strategy, the environmental burden can be reduced by up to 15%.

Chapter 3 focuses on greenhouse gas emissions. The carbon footprint, used with special care and an accurate developed framework, can be a good tool to estimate these greenhouse gas emissions (Finkbeiner, 2009; Hillier et al., 2009; Pandey et al., 2011). By calculating the carbon footprint with a basic LCA approach a scientific accepted method was used. The carbon footprint of different mineral fertilizers (urea, ammonium nitrate, calcium ammonium nitrate and urea ammonium nitrate), stabilized nitrogen fertilizers (using different inhibitors), secondary raw materials (feather meals, blood-and-bone-meals and leguminous crops meals) and a combined irrigation and fertilization were compared in order to find a more sustainable solution. Here especially the uses of a double inhibitor to delay the nitrogen transformation in the soils can have an effect on the carbon footprint results.

The second part of this thesis concentrates on the fertilizer supply chain and the adoption of eco-innovations. Eco-innovations are one option to reduce the environmental impact of fertilizers without compromising on fertilizer productivity. Although numerous eco-innovations in the domain of fertilizers are available, they have no sufficient adoption rate. Here a systematic literature review combined with the types of eco-innovations within an expanded technology acceptance model (TAM) was used to estimate the main drivers. The study distinguishes between disruptive and continuous as well as process, product and other types of innovations to get a better understanding for specific situations. The distinction between the types of innovations was made, because it was assumed that the nature of the specific innovation influences the adoption. The results lead to the assumption that disruptive innovations are mostly pushed by a high quality support and a well-functioning information flow; continuous innovations are more pushed by a good access to credits and an informative environment.

Chapter 5 tries to explaining the low adoption of eco-innovation in the German fertilizer supply chain in particular. Expert interviews along the fertilizer supply chain (researcher, producer, traders) and a detailed questionnaire with closed and open questions were used to estimate the necessity to change. Furthermore, the knowledge of different eco-innovations was used to evaluate the knowledge sharing of the fertilizer supply chain. Findings suggest that drivers for eco-innovations are perceived differently by the various actors in the fertilizer supply chain. The overall knowledge on eco-innovations decreases downstream the chain.

Ploeg- en omzetverbod van blijvend grasland in Natura 2000-gebieden : beoordeling ecologische en milieu- effecten van eventuele opheffing in de Wieden Weerribben
Doorn, Anne ; Broekmeijer, Mirjam ; Schotman, Alex ; Lesschen, Jan Peter ; Geertsema, Willemien ; Korevaar, Hein ; Melman, Dick ; Schuiling, Rini - \ 2017
Wageningen : Wageningen Environmental Research (Wageningen Environmental Research rapport 2832) - 59
natura 2000 - bodembeheer - permanente graslanden - milieueffect - ecologische beoordeling - nederland - soil management - permanent grasslands - environmental impact - ecological assessment - netherlands
Arable weeds and non-target plants in prospective risk assessment for plant protection products : Specific protection goal and exposure assessment goal options
Arts, Gertie ; Boesten, Jos ; Brock, Theo ; Roessink, Ivo - \ 2017
Wageningen : Wageningen Environmental Research (Wageningen Environmental Research report 2836) - 31
plant protection - herbicides - weed control - weeds - nontarget organisms - wild flowers - environmental impact - ecotoxicology - ecological risk assessment - gewasbescherming - herbiciden - onkruidbestrijding - onkruiden - niet-doelorganismen - wilde bloemen - milieueffect - ecotoxicologie - ecologische risicoschatting
Marine snow formation during oil spills: additional ecotoxicological consequences for the benthic ecosystem
Eenennaam, Justine S. van - \ 2017
University. Promotor(en): Tinka Murk, co-promotor(en): Edwin Foekema. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463436274 - 160
oil spills - snow - biodegradation - ecotoxicology - benthos - phytoplankton - marine invertebrates - environmental impact - olieverontreinigingen - sneeuw - biodegradatie - ecotoxicologie - fytoplankton - zee-invertebraten - milieueffect

The Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010 was one of the largest oil spills in history. For three months, oil leaked from the Macondo well at 1,500 m depth into the Gulf. As one of the spill responses, an unprecedented amount of dispersants were applied, both at the sea surface and, for the first time ever, directly injected into the wellhead. During the spill, unusually large amounts of marine snow, including Extracellular Polymeric Substances (EPS), were formed. Oil-contaminated marine snow aggregates were formed by aggregation of EPS with suspended solids, phytoplankton cells due to the spring bloom, and the dispersed oil droplets. The marine snow sank through the water column and settled on the ocean floor. This process was named MOSSFA: Marine Oil Snow Sedimentation and Flocculent Accumulation. MOSSFA was an important pathway of transferring oil to the deep-sea, and 14-21% of the total discharged oil is estimated to have settled on the sediment, where it impacted the benthic ecosystem. This thesis focused first on the mechanism of EPS snow formation, and then more in depth on the additional ecotoxicological consequences of marine snow formation during oil spills for the benthic ecosystem.

Chapter 2 describes the role of chemical dispersants in the presence of phytoplankton in the formation of EPS, one of the main ingredients of marine snow. Results show that phytoplankton-associated bacteria were responsible for the EPS formation, and the symbiosis between the phytoplankton and its associated bacterial community provided the bacteria with energy to produce the EPS.

The microcosm experiment in Chapter 3 investigated the effect of marine snow on oil biodegradation in microcosms without benthic macroinvertebrates. Results showed that marine snow hampers oil biodegradation: the presence of marine snow reduced the depletion of oil alkanes by 40%, most likely due to the high biodegradability of marine snow organics compared to the oil. Biodegradation of marine snow resulted in anaerobic conditions in the top of the sediment layer. This reduced the oil biodegradation. Marine snow thus prolongs the residence time of oil in the benthic ecosystem.

The next microcosm experiment, described in Chapter 4, investigated the effects of oil-contaminated marine snow on benthic macroinvertebrates, and the effect of macroinvertebrates on oil biodegradation. Bioturbation by the invertebrates increased the oxygenated top layer of the sediment and partly counterbalanced the inhibition of oil biodegradation due to oxygen consumption by marine snow. Survival of three benthic invertebrate species was reduced by (oil-contaminated) marine snow. Oxygen depletion near the sediment surface seemed to be the main reason for the observed adverse effects of the marine snow. In addition, indications were found that some species used the marine snow as food source, even when it was oil-contaminated.

In the last microcosm experiment, described in Chapter 5, two benthic invertebrate species were monitored over a period of 42 days after which new animals were introduced and observed for an additional period of 22 days. Marine snow degradation again resulted in lower dissolved oxygen concentrations in the water column, which inhibited oil biodegradation on the sediment compared to oil in combination with clay. The oxygenated top layer of the sediment disappeared, and recovered after ~20 days. At the end of the experiment, mudsnails from the treatments with oiled marine snow had higher PAH concentrations in their tissues than the animals from the treatments with the same amount of oil in clay only, confirming the use of marine snow as food source.

Overall, oil-contaminated marine snow on the ocean sediment can negatively affect benthic ecosystems, and can hamper oil biodegradation and ecosystem recovery. The additional consequences of MOSSFA during oil spills and spill responses should be taken into account in oil spill response planning.

Assessing the impact of socio-economic development and climate change on faecal indicator bacteria in the Betna River, Bangladesh
Islam, Majedul - \ 2017
University. Promotor(en): Rik Leemans, co-promotor(en): Nynke Hofstra. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463436304 - 137
climatic change - environmental impact - water quality - rivers - contamination - bacteria - coliform bacteria - faecal coliforms - bangladesh - south asia - klimaatverandering - milieueffect - waterkwaliteit - rivieren - besmetting - bacteriën - coliformbacteriën - fecale coliformen - zuid-azië

Consumption of water that is contaminated with pathogens still causes high numbers of death and disease. Understanding the factors that influence the dynamic distribution of waterborne pathogens is important, as this will help understanding improvements and possible solutions. Such understanding is particularly important in a developing country like Bangladesh, where large proportions of the population often have little or no access to clean water. Despite the high relevance for public health, few studies currently exists on the fate and transport of pathogens and the so-called Faecal Indicator Bacteria (FIB, e.g. E. coli, enterococci) in (sub)tropical systems. FIB are susceptible to shifts in water flow and quality. The predicted increases in rainfall and floods due to climate change will exacerbate the faecal contamination scenarios. This could be further compounded by the rapid change in socio-economic conditions (population growth, urbanization, sanitation and agricultural management) in the developing countries. Therefore, to reduce future health risks, understanding the influence of changes in socio-economic conditions and climate on microbial dynamics is important.

Very few studies have quantified the relationship between the waterborne pathogens/FIB concentrations and climate and socio-economic changes. In this study a process-based model was developed and a scenario analysis was performed based on the new combined climate and socio-economic changes scenarios, to assess the present and future river hydrodynamics, FIB sources, die-off processes and concentrations. We used FIB, because measuring FIB are cheaper than pathogens. FIB are usually not pathogenic but their presence indicates the likely presence of waterborne pathogens. These pathogens are expected to respond to climate change in a comparable way to FIB. The present study is based on the Betna River basin in southwestern Bangladesh, where faecal contamination is not monitored and very little knowledge exists on the distribution of contaminants.

First of all, FIB concentrations of the river water were measured to identify the river’s faecal contamination levels that can be used to validate the water-quality model. In the study area, wastewater is not treated and this untreated wastewater is discharged directly into the river. This is evident from the measured FIB data. In 88% of the E. coli and all enterococci samples, the USEPA bathing water quality standards were violated (Chapter 2). Such violation indicates potential health risks associated with the use of the river water for domestic, bathing and irrigation purposes. The correlation between environmental variables (water temperature, precipitation and salinity) and FIB concentrations was also determined. A positive correlation was found with water temperature and precipitation, and a negative correlation with salinity. The positive correlation with temperature is due to the co-occurrence of high summer temperature with abundant monsoon rainfall. The positive correlation with precipitation can be explained by the increased runoff from agricultural lands and urban areas. This runoff contains many bacteria. In the study area, during the rainy season (July to September) precipitation increases and as a result water salinity decreases. The observed negative correlation with salinity is more likely due to the typical weather patterns during the rainy season when low salinity coincides with increased precipitation and high temperature, than to salinity dependent die-off of bacteria. A regression model was applied that explained almost half of E. coli and enterococci variability in river water. This, however, only considers water temperature and precipitation (Chapter 2).

Then, the present and future hydrodynamics of the river were simulated using a two dimensional hydrodynamic model (MIKE 21 FM). Although the main goal of this thesis is to assess the river’s present and future FIB concentrations, the reasons for this hydrodynamic modelling are twofold. Firstly, outputs of the hydrodynamic model are used as input into the water-quality model (Chapter 4). Secondly, hydrodynamics (i.e. water level and discharge) are simulated because increased water level and discharge together with sea level rise stimulate floods in the river basin. These floods are related to outbreaks of waterborne diseases. The modelled results corresponded very well with the measured water levels and discharges. The model was applied to simulate baseline and future water levels and discharge for Representative Concentration Pathway RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios using bias-corrected downscaled data from two climate models (IPSL-CM5A and MPI-ESM). The model results showed an expected increase in water level up to 16% by the 2040s and 23% by the 2090s (Chapter 3). The monsoon daily maximum discharge was expected to increase up to 13% by the 2040s and 21% by the 2090s. These model results also showed that the duration of the water level above the danger level and extreme discharge periods can increase by half a month by the 2040s and over a month by the 2090s. The coincidence of the water danger level with extreme discharge may cause disastrous floods in the study area.

Next, the hydrodynamic model was coupled with a water-quality module (ECOLab). The fate and transport of FIB was simulated, the influence of different processes tested and the contribution from different sources to the total contamination quantified (Chapter 4). The model outputs corresponded very well with the measured FIB data. The present river microbial water quality based on measured and simulated results indicated, once again, noncompliance with bathing water standards. Primary and secondary levels of wastewater treatment were not sufficient to reach the standards most of the time, and discharges from sewer drains and incoming concentrations from the upstream boundary were found to be a major cause of water contamination. Tide, wind and diffuse sources (urban and agricultural runoff) contributed little. The high FIB inputs from the upstream open boundary come from untreated point source discharges from upstream urban areas and accumulation of diffuse contaminants from the large upstream areas. Therefore, this study underlines the need for establishment of wastewater treatment plants both in the studied basin and upstream urban areas. This study provides insight into bacterial fate and transport mechanisms, contribution of different sources to the faecal contamination and applicability of wastewater treatment in a river of a subtropical developing country where this type of study is lacking. Uncertainties are related to the lack of high temporal resolution measured FIB data and the lack of available data for contaminant loads from septic tank leakages, open defecation and sediment resuspension. However, the model well captured the measured FIB variability, suggesting that it can be applied for microbial water quality assessments in other watersheds of the world with similar characteristics.

The developed model could be an ideal tool to forecast future impacts of climate and socioeconomic changes on FIB fate, transport and dynamics. Finally, future FIB concentrations were simulated using the coupled hydrodynamic and microbial model (MIKE 21 FM-ECOLab) and scenario analysis (Chapter 5). Scenarios have been developed building on the most recent Shared Socio-economic Pathways (SSPs) and Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) scenarios from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). We developed a baseline scenario (October 2014–September 2015) reflecting the current conditions and two future scenarios, S1 (sustainability scenario) and S2 (uncontrolled scenario) mimicking different future developments of socio-economic (population, urbanization, sanitation, wastewater treatment development, land use) and climate-change factors (temperature, precipitation and sea-level rise). In S1 RCP4.5 was combined with socio-economic scenarios SSP1, and for S2 RCP8.5 was combined with SSP3 (S2). Assumptions on sanitation, waste water treatment and agricultural management in line with the storylines were made to quantify future changes in FIB concentrations and consequent health risk. Different future scenarios were found to have substantial impact on FIB concentrations in the river. By the 2090s, FIB concentrations are expected to decrease by 98% or increase by 75% for the sustainability scenario and uncontrolled scenario respectively. An uncontrolled future resulted in a deterioration of microbial water quality due to socio-economic developments, such as higher population growth, land-use change and increased sewage discharges and changes in rainfall patterns. Microbial water quality strongly improved under a sustainable climate and improved sewage treatment. FIB concentrations were much more sensitive to changes in socio-economic factors than to changes in climatic factors. This underlines the importance of socio-economic factors in assessing and improving microbial water quality.

The results show the importance of improvements in sanitation and wastewater treatment in the Bangladeshi Betna River basin to ensure that future FIB concentrations in the river comply with the US-EPA bathing water quality standards. Major investments to construct wastewater treatment plants are necessary to compensate for the population growth and increased the volume of wastewater treatment. Although the current level of contamination is already too high, without wastewater treatment the water quality will further deteriorate.

The thesis assesses the present and future FIB dynamics in the Betna River through sampling, statistical and process-based modelling, and scenario analysis. The results contribute to increase the knowledge base on the dynamic distributions of the FIB in surface water in a developing country and in a subtropical system, where this type of study is lacking. It also reduces the knowledge gaps regarding future flooding scenarios at the local scale. While some earlier studies focused on only assessing climate-change impacts on microbial water quality, this study for the first time assessed the influence of combined climate and socio-economic scenarios (using scenarios based on the new SSP-RCP scenario matrix) on river FIB concentrations. This combined modelling and scenario approach enables the assessment of faecal contamination sources and dynamics at present and in the future. The developed model and scenario analysis approach provides a basis for the water managers to reduce the widespread faecal contamination and the risks of waterborne disease outbreaks, which are still a leading cause of deaths in developing countries.

Cumulative effects assessment: proof of concept marine mammals
Piet, Gerjan ; Boon, Arjen ; Jongbloed, Ruud ; Meulen, Myra van der; Tamis, Jacqueline ; Teal, Lorna ; Wal, Jan Tjalling van der - \ 2017
Den Helder : Wageningen Marine Research (Wageningen Marine Research report C002/17) - 107
marine mammals - marine ecology - environmental impact - environmental assessment - ecological risk assessment - zeezoogdieren - mariene ecologie - milieueffect - milieutoets - ecologische risicoschatting
This development of the framework and approach for a Cumulative Effects Assessment (CEA) is based on a literature review. The literature identified some key challenges that need to be addressed for CEA to evolve into a consistent, appropriate tool to assist decision-making. These challenges included • A clear distinction of the receptor-led CEA from the dominating stressor-led Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) approaches and • Enabling CEA to provide ecosystem-relevant information at an appropriate regional scale. Therefore this CEA is explicitly developed to be a receptor-led and fully integrated framework, i.e. involving multiple occurrences of multiple pressures (from single and/or different sources) on multiple receptors, as opposed to other existing approaches dealing with only a subset of those pressures or receptors, hence our use of the phrase iCEA for integrated CEA. As a proof of concept for this iCEA we selected one receptor, the ecosystem component marine mammals. The main conclusions of this exercise (see Chapter 6) are that the iCEA framework and approach presented in this study appear suitable to fulfil its main purpose and ultimately inform the policy process as described in the conception phase. However it should be acknowledged this is only the very first step in a process where through many iterations new information can be introduced and assessed (relative to existing information) based on the criteria provided resulting in an improved iCEA with increasing confidence levels. As more information becomes available the relative importance of impact chains and its corresponding information modules may change giving direction to new areas for research. For further development of this iCEA towards its intended applications we can distinguish between the first purpose, i.e. identification of the main impact chains contributing to the risk that a specific ecosystem component is impacted, which can be achieved with the approach presented here focussing on one specific ecosystem component and the second purpose, i.e. an evaluation of the performance of possible management strategies, which would require all ecosystem components to be included as would be required for ecosystem-based management. Thus to further the development and application of this iCEA towards its (two) purpose(s) the recommendation is to: • Include the available information presented in this report into the iCEA and develop the Bayesian Belief Network such that it can process this information and its associated confidence into an assessment that identifies the main impact chains for the marine mammals. • Extend the framework and approach to (all) the other ecosystem components so that a truly integrated CEA is possible. Note that this is likely to affect the identification of what should be considered the main pressures to guide management. • Improve the information modules that emerged from the evaluation as the most promising to increase the confidence in the outcome of the iCEA. Note that the previous two steps may result in a different prioritisation of the information modules as the importance of pressures and hence impact chains changes.
Including multistress in the risk assessment of plant protection products : current state of knowledge, based on a literature review and an evaluation of tank mixture applications in a spraying schedule for strawberries
Arts, G.H.P. ; Beltman, W.H.J. ; Holterman, H.J. ; Vliet, P.J.M. van; Wipfler, E.L. ; Zande, J.C. van de - \ 2017
Wageningen : Wageningen Environmental Research (Wageningen Environmental Research rapport 2793) - 51
pesticides - environmental impact - risk - exposure - drift - pesticiden - milieueffect - risico - blootstelling
Fluctuations of input and output prices are major reasons causing volatile gross margins in livestock production. There are large historic differences in the period 2001-2015 between the dairy sector and fattening pig sector in volatility. Relatively large fluctuations in gross margins were observed in the fattening pig sector (median coefficient of variation (CV) value of 32%). In the dairy sector gross margin between years was more smooth (median CV values of 12%), but projections are that after the gradual reduction of EU milk price support and following the abolishment of the EU milk quota system dairy farmers will become more exposed to the world market for dairy products and are becoming more vulnerable to (supply and demand) shocks affecting world dairy markets and prices.
Bioplastic : feiten en fictie
Bolck, Christiaan - \ 2017
bioplastics - biodegradation - pollution - wastes - environmental impact - biobased materials - biobased economy

Aan bioplastics kleeft een ‘groen’ imago. In werkelijkheid zijn ze echter geen wondermiddel tegen zwerfafval en milieuproblematiek. De waarheid ligt – als altijd – genuanceerder, blijkt uit een feitenoverzicht dat Wageningse onderzoekers maakten.

Verkenning naar een grondgebonden melkveehouderij : minder koeien om binnen milieugrenzen te komen
Wit, Jan de; Veluw, Kees van - \ 2017
Driebergen : Louis Bolk Instituut (Publicatie / Louis Bolk Instituut nummer: 2017-015 VG) - 26
melkveehouderij - milieueffect - agrarische bedrijfsvoering - melkveestapel - duurzame veehouderij - melkproductie - emissiereductie - biologische landbouw - dairy farming - environmental impact - farm management - dairy herds - sustainable animal husbandry - milk production - emission reduction - organic farming
De Nederlandse melkveehouderij staat voor een enorme transitie. Met het beëindigen van de melkquotering is een grote dynamiek ontstaan die de intensivering, specialisatie en groei van de sector verder heeft versterkt. In voorliggende studie wordt duidelijk dat niet alleen vanwege waterkwaliteitsdoelstellingen maar ook voor ammoniak- en klimaat-doelstellingen een ombuiging van deze dynamiek noodzakelijk is. In deze studie is berekend hoe groot de melkveestapel moet zijn om aan deze doelen te voldoen en wat dit voor gevolgen heeft voor economie en externe maatschappelijke kosten. Rekening houdend met redelijke efficiëntieverbeteringen wordt ingeschat dat de Nederlandse melkveestapel van 1,6 miljoen melkkoeien in 2015 terug zal moeten gaan naar ongeveer 1,4 miljoen (vanwege de ammoniak-doelstelling voor 2030). Vanwege klimaat-doelstellingen zou de melkveestapel verder terug moeten (naar ongeveer 1,1 miljoen) maar de onzekerheden, over zowel de verwachte emissie per kg melk als de doelstelling, zijn te groot om hierover stellige uitspraken te doen. Met het dalend aantal dieren zullen de externe maatschappelijke kosten dalen, met circa €300-800 miljoen per jaar. Tegelijkertijd zal het een forse verlaging geven van de Netto Toegevoegde Waarde (jaarlijkse beloning voor arbeid en kapitaal), en daarmee de inkomens op de melkveebedrijven en zuivelverwerking, van €250 miljoen. Naar grove schatting kan de reductie van het aantal dieren middels opkoop tot 2030 jaarlijks maximaal €65 miljoen kosten. Aantrekkelijker lijkt het, indien mogelijk, om een harde sanering te voorkomen en tegelijkertijd het produceren binnen strenge milieugrenzen (via het verkleinen van de veestapel of anderszins) te waarderen door: Het stimuleren van brede duurzame zuivel-concepten, zoals biologische zuivel. Het stimuleren en faciliteren van alternatieve inkomstenbronnen (verbrede landbouw). Directe ondersteuning van bedrijven die binnen de milieugrenzen produceren, gefinancierd. Door bijvoorbeeld een CO2-equivalenten-belasting op (rund-)vlees en melk (waardoor tegelijkertijd het gebruik/consumptie wordt verminderd) en/of via het toestaan van ‘offsets’ in de agrarische sector bij verwerving van broeikasgasemissie-rechten binnen het ETS.
‘Force of Nature’ : climate shocks, food crises and conflict in Colonial Africa and Asia, 1880-1960
Papaioannou, Kostadis J. - \ 2017
University. Promotor(en): Ewout Frankema; Erwin Bulte. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463431668 - 238
climatic change - environmental degradation - environmental impact - agricultural development - agriculture - agriculture and environment - historical ecology - history - colonialism - colonization - africa - asia - nigeria - rainfed agriculture - rain - klimaatverandering - milieuafbraak - milieueffect - landbouwontwikkeling - landbouw - landbouw en milieu - historische ecologie - geschiedenis - kolonialisme - kolonisatie - afrika - azië - regenafhankelijke landbouw - regen

“Global climate change poses one of the most urgent challenges of our age. The increasing frequency and intensity of weather shocks, such as heat waves, droughts, floods, and hurricanes, are all anticipated to adversely affect conditions of agricultural production, and jeopardize efforts to achieve global food security. In recent years, there has been a rapidly growing body of literature across multiple disciplines aiming to quantify and assess the adverse consequences of climate on relatively poor rural societies. Building entirely on original primary sources, this dissertation provides evidence that weather shocks raised property crime, triggered civil conflict and shaped patterns of human settlement in British colonial Africa and Asia during the first half of the twentieth century (~1880-1960). By merging the theoretical and empirical insights of several strands of literature (e.g. economics, history, geography), this dissertation has both academic and social merit. Its academic merit lies in its promise to disentangle the net effect of climate on societies from the many other contextual factors that may affect them. And its social merit lies in its capacity to reveal key factors that can mitigate the adverse consequences of weather shocks, enabling tailor-made policy interventions. In sum, the present dissertation contributes to a better understanding of long-term agrarian development in tropical Africa and Asia, offering fresh input to academic debates on how to mitigate the effects of weather extremes”

Improving environmental sustainability of palm oil production in Thailand
Saswattecha, Kanokwam - \ 2017
University. Promotor(en): Carolien Kroeze; Lars Hein. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463430401 - 277
palm oils - sustainability - environmental protection - environmental management - environmental impact - greenhouse gases - emission - thailand - palmoliën - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - milieubescherming - milieubeheer - milieueffect - broeikasgassen - emissie

Demand for palm oil in Thailand has increased as a result of Thai policies promoting the use of biodiesel. This increased demand results in negative effects on ecosystem services and increases environment pollution. Most existing studies focus on global warming impact alone, while other environmental impacts are being overlooked. Moreover, several mitigation options are widely studied but none of them has been investigated for cost-effectiveness. Such information is crucial for decision makers to explore possibilities for improving environmental performance towards sustainable palm oil production in Thailand. Therefore, this thesis aimed to analyse environmental impacts in the past and future, and to explore possibilities for improving environmental sustainability of the palm oil sector in Thailand. These objectives have been met through an integrated environmental assessment by coupling a landscape model and sectoral model which can be seen as the novelty of this thesis.

Greening of Ethiopian Dairy Value Chains: evaluation of environmental impacts and identification of interventions for sustainable intensification of dairy value chains
Vries, Marion de; Yigrem, Sintayehu ; Vellinga, Theun - \ 2016
Wageningen : Wageningen UR Livestock Research (Livestock Research report 948) - 69
dairy herds - dairy performance - improvement - dairy industry - sustainability - nutrient use efficiency - environmental impact - intensification - ethiopia - melkveestapel - melkresultaten - verbetering - zuivelindustrie - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - nutriëntengebruiksefficiëntie - milieueffect - intensivering - ethiopië
Contra-expertise rapport Milieueffectrapport Windpark Fryslân : deel E passende beoordeling
Buij, R. ; Schotman, A. ; Lammertsma, D. ; Ottburg, F.G.W.A. - \ 2016
Wageningen : Wageningen Environmental Research (Wageningen Environmental Research rapport 2774) - 55
windmolenpark - milieueffect - milieueffectrapportage - friesland - wind farms - environmental impact - environmental impact reporting
What does Life-Cycle Assessment of agricultural products need for more meaningful inclusion of biodiversity?
Teillard, Félix ; Maia de Souza, Danielle ; Thoma, Greg ; Gerber, Pierre J. ; Finn, John A. - \ 2016
Journal of Applied Ecology 53 (2016)5. - ISSN 0021-8901 - p. 1422 - 1429.
agricultural production systems - conservation - environmental assessment methods - environmental impact - food products - life-cycle assessment (LCA) - livestock - off-farm impact - policy - sustainable agriculture

Decision-makers increasingly use life-cycle assessment (LCA) as a tool to measure the environmental sustainability of products. LCA is of particular importance in globalized agricultural supply chains, which have environmental effects in multiple and spatially dispersed locations. Incorporation of impacts on biodiversity that arise from agricultural production systems into environmental assessment methods is an emerging area of work in LCA, and current approaches have limitations, including the need for (i) improved assessment of impacts to biodiversity associated with agricultural production, (ii) inclusion of new biodiversity indicators (e.g. conservation value, functional diversity, ecosystem services) and (iii) inclusion of previously unaccounted modelling variables that go beyond land-use impacts (e.g. climate change, water and soil quality). Synthesis and applications. Ecological models and understanding can contribute to address the limitations of current life-cycle assessment (LCA) methods in agricultural production systems and to make them more ecologically relevant. This will be necessary to ensure that biodiversity is not neglected in decision-making that relies on LCA.

Disentangling the domestic contract : understanding the everyday-life construction of acceptability -or non-acceptability- of keeping and killing animals for food
Nijland, Hanneke J. - \ 2016
University. Promotor(en): Cees van Woerkum; Noelle Aarts. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789462578296 - 325
meat - vegetarians - vegetarianism - vegetarian diets - killing of animals - meat animals - meat production - households - environmental impact - sustainability - animal welfare - animal production - animal ethics - food - dairy cattle - beef cattle - pigs - poultry - broilers - hens - vlees - vegetariërs - vegetarisme - vegetarische diëten - doden van dieren - slachtdieren - vleesproductie - huishoudens - milieueffect - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - dierenwelzijn - dierlijke productie - dierethiek - voedsel - melkvee - vleesvee - varkens - pluimvee - vleeskuikens - hennen

When we were children learning the names of animals, farm utensils and food products from picture books, talking about farming animals and related food products appeared simple. However, the intricate realities of modern-day farming practices differ momentously from this primary reference - the picture books. The topic brings about polarized responses, both rationally and emotionally, reflecting very diverse outlooks on the world. This dissertation reports on a research, set in the Netherlands and Turkey, that was designed to improve our understanding of the everyday-life construction of the acceptability -or non-acceptability- ofkeeping and killing animals for food, or in other words: to disentangle the domestic contract.

Indicatieve impact maatregelen zeebaars : eerste indicatie van de mogelijke impact van zeebaarsbeschermende maatregelen op de Nederlandse zeevisserij
Strietman, W.J. ; Weegh, J.B.M. op de - \ 2016
Wageningen : LEI Wageningen UR (Nota / LEI Wageningen UR 2016-007) - 23 p.
zeebaars - zeevisserij - visserijbeheer - visbestand - bescherming - quota's - milieueffect - nederland - sea bass - marine fisheries - fishery management - fishery resources - protection - quotas - environmental impact - netherlands
The neurotoxin BMAA in aquatic systems : analysis, occurrence and effects
Faassen, E.J. - \ 2016
University. Promotor(en): Marten Scheffer, co-promotor(en): Miguel Lurling. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789462577855 - 194 p.
cum laude - neurotoxins - aquatic environment - urban areas - effects - environmental impact - daphnia magna - elisa - water quality - analytical methods - aquatic ecology - neurotoxinen - aquatisch milieu - stedelijke gebieden - effecten - milieueffect - waterkwaliteit - analytische methoden - aquatische ecologie

Eutrophication is a major water quality issue and in many aquatic systems, it leads to the proliferation of toxic phytoplankton species. The neurotoxin β-N-methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA) is one of the compounds that can be present in phytoplankton. BMAA has been suggested to play a role in the neurodegenerative diseases Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, although this hypothesis still needs to be confirmed. It is expected that the main human exposure pathways to BMAA are through direct contact with BMAA containing phytoplankton and through ingestion of BMAA contaminated food, such as fish and shellfish. However, reports on the occurrence of BMAA in aquatic systems have been conflicting and the cause of these reported differences was heavily debated. The use of different analytical methods seems to play a crucial role in the observed discrepancies, but initially, there was little consensus on which method produced most reliable results. The objectives of the work presented in this thesis therefore were to find out what has caused the differences in published results on BMAA concentrations, and to identify and produce reliable data on the presence of BMAA in aquatic systems. In addition, I aimed to determine the effect of BMAA exposure on a key species in many freshwater ecosystems, the grazer Daphnia magna.

The performances of different analytical techniques were compared, and LC-MS/MS analysis, either preceded by derivatisation or not, was found to produce most reliable results. LC-FLD and ELISA should not be used for BMAA analysis, as both methods risk misidentifying BMAA or overestimating its concentrations due to their low selectivity. When reviewing literature on the presence of BMAA in aquatic systems, it was found that the observed discrepancies in results could be explained by the use of unselective analytical methods in some studies, and by severe reporting deficiencies in others. When only studies that used appropriate analytical techniques and that correctly reported their work were taken into account, it was shown that BMAA could be present in phytoplankton and higher aquatic organisms, in concentrations of µg/g dry weight or lower. These results are in agreement with our findings of BMAA in cyanobacterial scums from Dutch urban waters. In a 2008 screening, BMAA was found to be present in 9 out of 21 analysed cyanobacterial scums, at concentrations ranging from 4 to 42 µg/g dry weight. When this screening was repeated 8 years later with 52 similar samples, BMAA was detected below the quantification limit in one sample and quantified in another sample at 0.6 µg/g dry weight.

In order to perform the work presented in this thesis, sensitive and selective analytical methods, mostly based on LC-MS/MS analysis without derivatisation, were developed. This resulted in a standard operating procedure for the underivatised LC-MS/MS analysis of BMAA in cyanobacteria. Also, a CYANOCOST initiated workshop was given, in which a group of scientists from 17 independent laboratories evaluated LC-MS/MS based methods in different matrices. A bound BMAA from found in the supernatant was the most abundant fraction in the positive samples that were tested: cycad seed, seafood and exposed D. magna. In addition, it was found that the deuterated internal standard used for quantification was not a good indicator for the release of BMAA from bound forms, resulting in unprecise quantification of total BMAA.

BMAA was found to reduce survival, somatic growth, reproduction and population growth in D. magna. Animals did not adapt to BMAA exposure: exposed animals born from exposed mothers had a lower brood viability and neonate weight than animals exposed to BMAA, but born from unexposed mothers. In addition, D. magna was shown to take up BMAA from the growth medium and to transfer it to its offspring. D. magna therefore might be an important vector for BMAA transfer along the pelagic food chain, but whether BMAA plays a role in preventing zooplankton from controlling cyanobacterial blooms needs further investigation.

Although BMAA research has much progressed between the start of this thesis’ work and its completion, some important questions still require an answer. Most urgently, it should be determined whether BMAA is indeed involved in the neurological diseases mentioned above, and if so, which doses trigger the onset of these diseases. Human exposure pathways should then be more systematically quantified, and it might be prudent to investigate if the occurrence of BMAA is restricted to aquatic systems, or whether sources from terrestrial systems contribute to BMAA exposure as well.

Feed sources for livestock : recycling towards a green planet
Zanten, H.H.E. van - \ 2016
University. Promotor(en): Imke de Boer, co-promotor(en): Paul Bikker; Bastiaan Meerburg. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789462578050 - 251 p.
cum laude - livestock - livestock feeding - feeds - resources - food wastes - leftovers - recycling - greenhouse gases - environmental impact - innovations - sustainable animal husbandry - animal production - vee - veevoeding - voer - hulpbronnen - voedselafval - etensresten - broeikasgassen - milieueffect - innovaties - duurzame veehouderij - dierlijke productie

Production of food has re-emerged at the top of the global political agenda, driven by two contemporary challenges: the challenge to produce enough nutritious food to feed a growing and more prosperous human population, and the challenge to produce this food in an environmentally sustainable way. Current levels of production of especially animal-source food (ASF), pose severe pressure on the environment via their emissions to air, water, and soil; and their use of scarce resources, such as land, water, and fossil energy. The livestock sector, for example, is responsible for about 15% of the global anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases and uses about 70% of global agricultural land.

Many proposed mitigation strategies to feed the world sustainably, therefore, focus primarily on reducing the environmental impact of the livestock sector, so-called production-side strategies. Other strategies focus on changing consumption patterns by reducing consumption of ASF, or on shifting from ASF with a higher environmental impact (e.g. beef) to ASF with a lower environmental impact (e.g. pork or chicken), so called consumption-side strategies.

Most of the environmental impact of production of ASF is related to production of feed. One production-side strategy to reduce the environmental impact is the use of products that humans cannot or do not want to eat, such as co-products, food-waste, and biomass from marginal lands for livestock feed (referred to as ‘leftover streams’ in this thesis). This strategy is effective, because feeding leftover streams to livestock transforms an inedible food stream into high-quality food products, such as meat, milk, and eggs.

Two production-side strategies that use leftover streams as livestock feed were explored in this thesis: replacing soybean meal (SBM) in diets of growing pigs with either rapeseed meal (RSM) or with waste-fed larvae meal. Replacing SBM with RSM in growing-pig diets was assessed because RSM became increasingly available following an increase in bio-energy production in the EU. In this strategy, therefore, the RSM content in pig diets increased at the expense of SBM. SBM is an ingredient associated with a high environmental impact. It was expected, therefore, that replacing SBM with RSM in pig diets would lead to a decrease in the environmental impact of pork production. Replacing SBM with waste-fed larvae meal was assessed because recent developments show the environmental benefits of rearing insects as livestock feed. Insects have a low feed conversion ratio (kg feed/kg product) and can be consumed completely, without residual materials, such as bones or feathers. The nutritional value of insects is high, especially as a protein source for livestock. Insect-based feed products, therefore, can replace conventional feed ingredients, such as SBM. Altogether this strategy suggests that waste-fed larvae meal might become an important alternative feed source in the future.

To gain insight into the status quo of the environmental impact of both mitigation strategies, replacing SBM with RSM or with waste-fed insects, we first used the attributional life cycle assessment (ALCA) method. Based on the ALCA method, results showed that each mitigation strategy was promising. Replacing SBM with RSM in growing pig diets hardly changed either global warming potential (GWP) or energy use (EU), but decreased land use (LU) up to 16% per kg body weight gain. As expected, feed production had the largest environmental impact, responsible for about 50% of the GWP, 60% of the EU, and 77% of the total LU. Feed production in combination with feed intake, were the most sensitive parameters; a small change in both these two parameters changed the results. Replacing SBM with waste-fed larvae meal in growing-pig diets showed that EU hardly changed, but GWP (29%) and LU (54%) decreased per kg body weight gain. Based on ALCA results, each mitigation strategy, therefore, seems to offer potential to reduce the environmental impact of pork production. An ALCA, however, has two disadvantages: it does not account for product-packages and it does not consider feed-food competition.

The first disadvantage of ALCA was that the complexity of dealing with product-packages is not fully considered. ‘Product-package’ refers to a multiple-output situation. During the processing of sugar beet, for example, beet-pulp and molasses are produced in addition to sugar. Sugar, beet-pulp, and molasses together form a ‘package of products’ because they cannot be produced independently from each other. An ALCA does not account for the fact that the production volume of the co-product(s) depends on the demand for the determining product (e.g. sugar), which results in the limited availability of co-products. Increasing the use of co-products in animal feed, consequently, results in reducing use of a co-product in another sector, requiring them to be replaced with a different product. The environmental impact of increasing the use of a co-product or food-waste, therefore, depends on the net environmental impact. The net environmental impact refers to the environmental benefits of using the product in its new application minus the environmental cost of replacing the product in its old application.

A consequential theoretical framework was developed to account for product-packages. The results, based on the consequential framework, contradicted standard ALCA results. The consequential LCA (CLCA) method we used for replacing SBM with RSM showed an increased GWP (up to 15%), EU (up to 12%), and LU (up to 10%) per kg body weight gain. Moreover, this CLCA method showed that replacing SBM with waste-fed larvae meal increased GWP (60%) and EU (90%), but decreased LU (73%) per kg body weight gain.

Accounting for product-packages increased the net environmental impact of each strategy, replacing SBM with RSM or with waste-fed larvae meal. The difference in results between ALCA and CLCA was especially large in the strategy with waste-fed larvae meal. The difference was caused mainly by the use of food-waste. Food-waste fed to larvae was used initially to produce bio-energy via anaerobic digestion. In CLCA, the environmental impact related to replacing the bio-energy function of food-waste with fossil-energy was included. The net environmental impact became negative, because environmental benefits of replacing SBM with waste-fed larvae meal were less than environmental costs related to the marginal energy source, i.e. fossil energy, replacing the bio-energy. Results of the indirect environmental impact, however, are situation specific: if the marginal energy source were wind or solar energy, the net environmental impact of using waste-fed larvae meal might be positive. Waste-fed larvae meal, therefore, appears to be an interesting mitigation strategy only when energy from wind and solar energy are used more dominantly than energy from fossil sources.

If results were based solely on ALCA, then these potentially negative impacts would have been overlooked. Consideration of the environmental consequences of product-packaging, therefore, is essential to determine total environmental costs. If policy makers or the feed industry want to assess the net environmental impact of a potential mitigation strategy, then we recommend to perform a CLCA instead of an ALCA. The framework developed in this thesis can be used to perform such an assessment.

The second disadvantage of an LCA was that it does not take into account feed-food competition, e.g. competition for land between humans and animals. Most LCA studies focus on the total amount of land required to produce one kg ASF. LCA studies do not account for competition for land between humans and animals, or so-called feed-food competition. In other words, they do not include, differences in the consumption of human-edible products by various livestock species or differences in the suitability of land used for feed production as land to cultivate food-crops directly. Given the global constraints on land, it is more efficient to grow food directly for human consumption rather than for livestock. To address the contribution of livestock to a future sustainable food supply, a measure for land use efficiency was developed, called the land use ratio (LUR). The LUR accounts for plant productivity, efficiency of converting human-inedible feed into ASF, and suitability of land for crop cultivation. The LUR also has a life-cycle perspective.

Results of the LUR illustrated that dairy cows on sandy soil, laying hens, and pig production systems in the Netherlands have a LUR >1.0. In terms of protein produced per m2, therefore, it is more efficient to use these soils for livestock production to produce crops for direct human consumption than to produce feed for livestock. Only dairy cows on peat soil produce human digestible protein (HDP) more efficiently than crops do, because peat is not suitable for crop production. The LUR allows identification of livestock production systems that are able to produce HDP more efficiently than crops do. Livestock systems with a LUR<1.0, such as dairy on peat, have an important role to play in future sustainable nutrition supply.

Results of the LUR showed that livestock production systems using mainly co-products, food-waste, and biomass from marginal land, can produce human digestible protein more efficiently than crop production systems do. The availability of those leftover streams, however, is limited and, therefore, the amount of ASF produced based only on leftover streams is also limited. Because LUR is a ratio, LUR results do not give an indication of how much ASF can be produced based on livestock systems that feed mainly on leftover streams.

The third, and last, mitigation strategy, therefore, focused on the amount of ASF that can be consumed by humans, when livestock are fed only on leftover steams, also referred to as “default livestock”. The calculation of the amount of ASF was based on the assumption that a vegan diet was consumed in principle. The resulting co-products and food-waste were fed to pigs and, biomass from grazing land was fed to ruminants. Results showed that in total 21 g animal source protein per person per day could be produced by feeding livestock entirely on leftovers.

Considering feed-food crops and feeding food-waste made an important contribution to the 21 g of protein that could be produced from default livestock. Considering feed-food crops implies that choices have to be made between different crops, based on their contribution to feed and food production. Oil production from soy cultivation, for example, resulted in the co-product SBM. Results showed that considering feed-food crops can affect the final protein production from pork. The practice of feeding food-waste to livestock is currently prohibited due to problems of food safety but the practice shows potential in extensively reducing the environmental impact of livestock production. Considering feed-food crops and feeding food-waste are examples of mitigation strategies that currently can be implemented to reduce further the environmental impact of the livestock sector.

On average, it is recommended to consume about 57 g of protein from ASF or plant-origin per person per day. Only ASF from default livestock does not fulfil the current global protein consumption of 32 g per person per day, but about one third of the protein each person needs can be produced without any competition for land between feed and food production. To feed the world more sustainably, by requiring livestock production systems with a LUR <1.0, however, a paradigm shift is needed. Global average consumption of ASF should decrease to about 21 g of protein per person per day. Innovations are needed, moreover, to overcome problems of food safety and technical concerns related to collecting the leftover streams. This applies, in particular to food-waste, which is currently unused in livestock production but which presents a valuable strategy in mitigating environmental impacts caused by livestock production. Livestock systems should change their focus, furthermore, from increasing productivity per animal towards increasing protein production for humans per ha. By using leftover streams optimally, the livestock sector is able to produce a crucial amount of protein, while still avoiding competition for land between feed and food crops. Livestock, therefore, can make an important contribution to the future nutrition supply.

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