Tradeoffs around crop residue biomass in smallholder crop-livestock systems - What's next?
Tittonell, P.A. ; Gérard, B. ; Erenstein, O. - \ 2015
Agricultural Systems 134 (2015). - ISSN 0308-521X - p. 119 - 128.
sub-saharan africa - define conservation agriculture - soil fertility management - south-western niger - food-feed crops - ecological intensification - farming systems - impact assessment - appropriate use - 4th principle
Much has been written on the tradeoffs that smallholder farmers face when having to allocate their biomass resources among competing objectives such as feed, fuel, mulch, compost or the market. This paper summarises yet a new body of evidence from 10 studies on tradeoffs in the allocation of cereal crop residue biomass between soil management and livestock feeding in developing regions, published in the special issue of Agricultural Systems ‘Biomass use tradeoffs in cereal cropping systems: Lessons and implications from the developing world’. The studies cover a diversity of socio-ecological contexts, farming system types and scales of analysis. We reflect on their main findings and methodological progress, and on the new and not-so-new implications of these findings for research and action in the development agenda. We propose stylised graphical models to portray tradeoffs and plausible trajectories towards synergies, in the hope that such generalisations would prevent further efforts to ‘reinvent the wheel’ in the realm of tradeoffs analysis. We advocate an ex-post impact assessment of recent investments in systems research to help focus such research further and clearly define its future role in prioritizing and targeting development interventions.
Regional consequences of the way land users respond to future water availability in Murcia, Spain
Fleskens, L. ; Nainggolan, D. ; Temansen, M. ; Hubacek, K. ; Reed, M.S. - \ 2013
Regional Environmental Change 13 (2013)3. - ISSN 1436-3798 - p. 615 - 632.
input-output tables - location quotients - southeast spain - appropriate use - china - framework - trade - consumption - resources - footprint
Agricultural development in the Murcia autonomous region, Spain, has led to overexploitation of groundwater resources, and climate change will further increase pressures. Policy options to tackle the current unsustainable situation include the development of inter-basin water transfer (IBWT) schemes from wetter regions in the north and the introduction of taxation to further control groundwater abstraction. Under these scenarios, farmers with current access to water could face higher water cost, whereas farmers in areas where water was previously not available could see first time availability of water resources. In this paper, we combine discrete choice-based interviews with farmers in the Torrealvilla catchment, in which they indicate how they would adapt their land use under different scenarios, with an input–output model to assess the aggregate effects of individual land use decisions on the economy and water consumption of the Murcia region. The paper presents steps taken in the development of an input–output table for Murcia, including disaggregation of the agricultural sector, accounting for sector water use and consideration of back- and forward linkages. We conclude that appropriate taxation can lead to better water use efficiency, but that this is delicate as relatively small changes in prices of agricultural products can have significant impacts on land use and water consumption. Although new IBWT schemes would enable water to be used more efficiently, they would considerably increase regional water consumption and the regional economy’s dependence on water. As this is not sustainable under future climate change, water saving development pathways need to be explored.