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Adriatic IPA cross border cooperation (CBC) Low carbon agriculture, soil protection, biodiversity and rural development

Roberto Tinella

Portogruaro , Italy march 2010


Low carbon agriculture, agroforestry, soil protection, biodiversity and rural development

eco-polis

Master Internazionale in Politiche Ambientali e Territoriali per la SostenibilitĂ  e lo Sviluppo Locale

UniversitĂ  degli Studi di Ferrara (Italia)

.


Acknowledgement

i

Acknowledgement I would like to thanks my family, my girlfriend and all my friends for their support. A special thanks to the ecopolis network who gave me a new point of view on many issues and places, and Terra srl studio where I have the possibility to work on this field every day.

“If a man walks in the woods for love of trees half of each day, he is in danger of being regarded as a loafer. But if he spends his days as a speculator, shearing off those woods and making the earth bald before her time, he is deemed an industrious and enterprising citizen.” Henry David Thoreau 1847

“For each of our actions there are only consequences.” James Lovelock

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Czech University of Agriculture, Prague Roberto Tinella (2010)


Abstract

ii

Abstract Agriculture has been shaping the landscape since millennia, performing remarkably well over the last 50 years, by keeping pace with rapid population growth and delivering food at progressively lower prices. But this success has been at the expense of the natural resource base, through overuse of natural resources as inputs or through their use as a sink for pollution. Farmers always adapted on environmental changes but now another risk is going to threat farmers and human society whit an unprecedented possible danger. If we think on climate change and the possible risks that a consistent global warming will produce for many human activities we should consider instruments for prevent the agroecosystem from sharp alterations and moreover if we take in account the tremendous risk that a idle and traditional approach could bring to human security for food storage and more likely natural disasters increase. Since the Bruntland Report, the concept of sustainability is continuously growing and is involving always more fields of research and possible positive actions. Agriculture has been detected as one large source of emissions, and if we consider also forest management defined in Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) activities by the United Nation we can notice huge margin of mitigation and adaptation to climate change possibilities and even reduction of rate of emissions through several best practices implementation. In this field we confront ourselves in a border zone where multiple needing and necessities influence the management of natural resources and the strategic plans for future governance. A directive on soil protection is under analysis by the European Commission, increasing difficulties due to overexploitation and traditional management of this resource has

dramatically reduced soil fertility and increased problems like erosion, compaction, soil organic carbon content decrease and soil biodiversity all around the world. For this reasons we believe that is strongly vital to conduct and implement innovative research and management practices on land use, and an opportunity like the European IPA CBC cooperation could provide extreme successful results in Member states country and help future member states to align to European policies. Considering the possibility to establish this innovative management practices in areas close to natural reserve we will at the same time enhancing biodiversity habitats, or alternatively implementing such procedures in natural disaster sensitive areas we could obtain a interesting tool to prevent this dangerous occurrences. This land management procedures can supply a practical and pragmatic way to prevent or adapt to always more likely extreme meteorological events and their effects, and finally provide a higher income productivity of agriculture activities and less pollution in the ecosystem becoming always more sustainable. The implementation of these techniques could be easily scaled up and exported whit the right knowledge also in developing country to contribute in a strong way to the Kyoto protocol objectives and to rural development in a sustainable way. If these procedure that we will discuss, agroforestry, conservative agriculture and ecological network will be inserted in a landscape planning will contribute actively also to protection of heritage and conservation of tradition, transforming agriculture in a multifunctional activity in a multifunctional landscape through an ecosystem based approach.

KEYWORDS Sustainable

development,

Conservative

agriculture,

Agroforestry,

Natural

resource

management, Biodiversity, Risk prevention, Carbon sink, Climate change adaptationmitigation __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Table of contents iii __________________________________________________________________________________

Table of contents ACKNOWLEDGEMENT......................................................................................................................I ABSTRACT ........................................................................................................................................ II TABLE OF CONTENTS ...................................................................................................................III LIST OF FIGURES............................................................................................................................. V LIST OF TABLES ............................................................................................................................. VI ABBREVIATIONS........................................................................................................................... VII 1

INTRODUCTION ..................................................................................................................... 1

2

LITERATURE REVIEW.......................................................................................................... 3 2.1

European funds .................................................................................................................. 3

2.2

IPA instrument of pre accession ....................................................................................... 5 2.2.1

Management and implementation of the IPA........................................................... 6

2.2.2

Previous experience of cooperation in the Adriatic area ......................................... 6

2.2.3

IPA CBC................................................................................................................ 7

2.2.4

Eligible country and area description ..................................................................... 8

2.2.5

Programme goal .................................................................................................. 10

2.2.6

Priority 2 natural and cultural resources and risk prevention................................ 11

2.3

Biodiversity ....................................................................................................................... 13

2.4

Soil degradation ............................................................................................................... 18

2.5

2.6

2.4.1

Erosion ................................................................................................................ 19

2.4.2

SOC decline ......................................................................................................... 21

2.4.3

Salinisation and sodification................................................................................. 22

2.4.4

Compaction.......................................................................................................... 22

2.4.5

Contamination ..................................................................................................... 23

2.4.6

Decline in soil biodiversity ................................................................................... 24

Climate change................................................................................................................. 26 2.5.1

Climate change and agriculture............................................................................ 28

2.5.2

Adaptation ........................................................................................................... 33

2.5.3

Mitigation and carbon sink option ........................................................................ 37

European directives or conventions involved................................................................. 45 2.6.1

Soil directive proposal.......................................................................................... 45

2.6.2

Nitrate directives.................................................................................................. 48

2.6.3

Rural development policy ..................................................................................... 49

2.6.4

Habitat................................................................................................................. 50

2.6.5

Water framework directives.................................................................................. 50

2.6.6

Bird directives...................................................................................................... 50

2.6.7

Plant protection ................................................................................................... 51

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Table of contents iv __________________________________________________________________________________

2.7

3

2.6.8

European landscape convention ........................................................................... 51

2.6.9

CAP common agriculture policies ........................................................................ 52

International normative or conventions........................................................................... 52 2.7.1

UNFCC ............................................................................................................... 53

2.7.2

UNCCD ............................................................................................................... 54

2.7.3

CBD..................................................................................................................... 54

2.7.4

Convention on migratory species.......................................................................... 55

2.7.5

Ramsar ................................................................................................................ 56

2.7.6

MDG ................................................................................................................... 56

2.7.7

Hyogo framework for action................................................................................. 56

MATERIALS AND METHODS ............................................................................................. 58 3.1

3.2

4

Materials ........................................................................................................................... 58 3.1.1

Agroforestry......................................................................................................... 59

3.1.2

Conservative agriculture ...................................................................................... 75

3.1.3

Other means of land management......................................................................... 82

3.1.4

Ecological networks ............................................................................................. 86

3.1.5

Landscape and heritage protection....................................................................... 89

3.1.6

Risk reduction ...................................................................................................... 97

Methods .......................................................................................................................... 101 3.2.1

Best practices..................................................................................................... 101

3.2.2

Holistic approach............................................................................................... 105

3.2.3

A case study the options for Vallevecchia............................................................ 109

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION ............................................................................................. 114 4.1

Expected results............................................................................................................. 114 4.1.1

Member country ................................................................................................. 114

4.1.2

Candidate (or potential) candidate ..................................................................... 116

5

CONCLUSIONS.................................................................................................................... 117

6

BIBLIOGRAPHY.................................................................................................................. 118

7

APPENDICES ....................................................................................................................... 123 7.1.1

Annex 1 List of all the eligible area..................................................................... 123

7.1.2

Annex 2 example of agroforestry potential in europe........................................... 124

7.1.3

Annex 3 SWOT analysis for agroforestry ............................................................ 125

7.1.4

Annex 4 energy and water conditions.................................................................. 126

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


List of figures v __________________________________________________________________________________

List of figures Figure 1. Map of territory involved ...............................................................................8 Figure 2. Emission percentages divided by sectors 28 .............................................28 Figure 3. The possible advantages of soil carbon sequestration is highly correlated whit many important activities and functions................................................................40 Figure 4. The Holm oak and the cow 1915, Spanish portrait ....................................62 Figure 5. Alleycropping system ................................................................................63 Figure 6. Example of forest farming in Europe .........................................................64 Figure 7. A riparian buffer strip ..................................................................................65 Figure 8 Schematic representation of the complex matrix of activity that could benefit from agroforestry practices ..............................................................................73 Figure 9. Schematic representation of the main components of ecological networks ....................................................................................................................................87 Figure 10. Multifunctionality involve social environmental and economic aspects forming a complex set of integrations

.....................................................................92

Figure 11 Schematic representation of how the social environmental and economic factors are developing from agricultural activities .......................................................95 Figure 12. Complexity diagram of an integrated apprroach ...................................106 Figure 13. Map of study area we can see the localization of Valle Vecchia and the satellite photo in the detail.........................................................................................109 Figure 14. Map of the area of ecological network upgrading in the area ................111 Figure 15 Usually this is the state of the Veneto fields, absolutely flat whit no place adapt to sustain life biodiversity different from cultivated crops. ................................111 Figure 16 The roads and the fields discharge almost directly pollutants into the river, this streets could easily became tracks for bike tourism and a part of the ecological network .....................................................................................................................112 Figure 17 the state of rivers is absolutely unable to prevent possible water flood and whit a proper management could became much more suite for biodiversity .......112

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


List of tables vi __________________________________________________________________________________

List of tables Table 1. Environmental problem on the Adriatic coasts ................................................9 Table 2. Percentage of fund given to each priority in the IPA CBC .............................11 Table 3. Biodiversity functions.....................................................................................14 Table 4. Estimated cost of soil degradation in Europe ................................................19 Table 5. Effects of soil erosion ...................................................................................20 Table 6. Emission level according Kyoto target in Europe ..........................................27 Table 7 list of possible climate change impacts ...........................................................35 Table 8 Extract from climsoil report on the status of soil monitoring ............................42 Table 9 State of Italian spreading of conservative agriculture......................................80 Table 10 Difference of landscape functions according to the scale we observe it........90

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Abbreviations vii __________________________________________________________________________________

Abbreviations AR4

4th Assessment report of IPCC

CBD

Convention on biodiversity

CH4

methane

CO2

Carbon dioxide

COP

Conference of the party

EEA

European environment agency

EU

European union

FAO

Food and agriculture organization

GHG

Greenhouse gas

IPA

Instrument of pre accession

IPA CBC

Instrument of pre accession cross border cooperation

IPCC

International panel on climate change

MIFF Na

Sodium

NOx

Nitrogen oxides

OM

Organic matter

PM

Particulate matter

SIC

Site of communitarian interest

SOC

Soil organic carbon

UNCCD

United nation convention on biodiversity

UNFCC

United nation framework convention on climate change

ZSP

Zone of special protection

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Introduction 1 __________________________________________________________________________________

1 INTRODUCTION

I n agriculture numerous and fundamental interests are involved, the basic need for food of the world population, food health and safety, the rights of farmers and their income necessities, pollution, landscape, risk prevention and mainly soil protection. Multiple problems are emerging due to the traditional management practices and climate change inducted meteorological events (yield loss by severe events, erosion, soil degradation..), and others are even yet not well quantified due to the loss of biodiversity induced in the agro ecosystem and on the surrounding areas. Consumers and farmers are more interested on food quality and sustainable production and more informed on the problems connected whit climate change and environment. Levels of information differ from region to region and if we consider the entire Adriatic area we have also different policies strategies in the future European member states and actual members. The Adriatic area is by the way very similar in its climate conditions among all the countries, and for this reason we believe that the implementation of soil management procedures can be easily spread and shred by the entire territory countries, always keeping in mind the local differences and particularity of each area. The IPA instrument of pre accession fund of the European Community is a powerful tool developed to share knowledge and help the new member countries in their path to align on EU policies. One of the objective of the IPA CBC (cross border cooperation in the Adriatic area priority 2 measure 2.2) is the “Natural and Cultural Resource Management and Prevention of Natural and Technological Risks� and in this field we want to propose a common strategy between several partners (region, municipalities, universities or SME s) from Italy and from the Balkan area that will improve research and implementation of best practices in agro ecosystem management. We propose a holistic, ecosystem based approaches and methods that will consider and blend together many aspects connected whit the problems of soil degradation and agriculture relationships whit the surrounding areas. The main focus obviously is given to agroforestry and land management that could enhance the soil sink capacity in order to reverse the net flux of GHG emission and store them in a permanent way in the ground and simultaneously reduce or stop the main issues of the soil medium like erosion, compaction, loss of nutrient and organic matter, salinisation, contamination and decline in soil biodiversity whit their consequent negative impacts in harvest yield and food quality and. This aspect by the way is strictly connected whit the surrounding ecosystem, because a major need of fertilizers imply a bigger amount of pollution reversed in the water flows and other negative impact into a wider area. The increased use of pesticides as well will compromise the biodiversity of the ecosystem and of the farm itself whit possible harm consequences also for human health. It should be considered also the cumulative impacts of the soil problems which are able to emphasise each other and are going to grow accelerated by shove of climate change effects. The main techniques we propose to slacken this negative feedback are innovative agro management procedures like agroforestry, conservative agriculture (crop cover, crop rotation, and no tillage), ridge tillage, contour farming, intercropping, subsoiling and grassland instauration. All these techniques were tested and analyzed and already introduced in several countries but are not so much spread in the Mediterranean area and they were not systematically applied jointly in a long term perspective. The innovation that we would like to apply is a combined approach of all those techniques in a wider scenario joining as well other strategies of natural resources management like ecological network planning and risk reduction through natural engineering techniques to improve biodiversity and elaborate a inclusive strategic plan to adapt to climate change dangerous effects. The possibility to work in area close to national parks, Natura 2000 network or other protected area trough the implementation of the previous mentioned land management techniques and the establishment of an ecological network following the best known planning procedures, __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Introduction 2 __________________________________________________________________________________

and studying adequately the local condition could bring a cumulative improvement on biodiversity and on other ecosystem features. In all Europe and especially in future member country the requirement for biodiversity enhancement and protection is important moreover during the international year of biodiversity which started last January. Many international reports emphasize the growing risks connected whit biodiversity loss and even much has be done the biodiversity index continues to fall dramatically, so actions are needed to stop the aggravation of this events. The last important component of the project is risk prevention and climate change adaptation. Without any doubt, a more resilient and resistant ecosystem(and whit a higher species richness) is more capable to adapt on external inducted stress and through biodiversity safeguard we believe to active improve ecosystemical features. In addition acting on a initial phase we could as well work at the level of landscape planning through improvement and restoration strategies for prevent natural disaster and increase the adaptation capacity of several ecosystem type both natural and anthropized. Additional values of this program are the possible reclamation of places adaptable for tourist use, a deep survey of soil problems in the participants territory, innovative and multiple research, an intensification of relationship and knowledge sharing between different countries, public sensibilization on soil issues, local policy improvement and social inclusion. The first phase of this program is the individuation of the site-specific conditions of every single area and the determination of which strategy is more applicable and profitable. After that it is essential to implement several pilots project during which is possible to start a formation campaign to inform farmers and local governments on the possibility of such methods. The farmers are a key component of this project, because through their competence and knowledge is possible to improve rural development and save the cultural (but also architectonical) traditions. What we propose is the concept of multifarming where environment sustainability of agriculture could provide multiple productions like agroproducts, fruition and didactical functions, and environmental services for the communities. In this view the primary production has a fundamental role in the protection of the environment, the cultural heritage and a font of vitality of the rural areas. In this way multifunctionality will be the key activity to pursue, multifunctional landscape are requested by society today for their activity and farmers cold be multifunctional providing services and goods that can increase their role on the market and on an environment point of view. The next steps will be the development of ecological network whit a strategic attention to implement the most innovative techniques on the frontier between biodiversity enhancement and risk prevention. A detailed analysis and survey will be carried out by some university researcher during all the phases and a complete report should highlight which are the best local efficient strategies .A campaign of sensibilization for introduce this issues into the public awareness will be as well an important operation. The key elements in ecological network is the concept of ecotone, the border areas between different habitats, this is the most active zone which is usually destroyed by farming activity. We will try finally to create a less fragmented habitat through sustainable farming activities. The expected results, on a short period will be the improvement of soil quality and of the landscape, on a medium period the protection against natural hazard (flood, landslide...), adaptation on climate change and biodiversity enhancing. On the long period the expected results will be the development of regional policies on soil protection and moreover a series of tools ready to be applied and spread through the Mediterranean countries and also in developing country. Last positive effect measurable on longer period will be the carbon sequestration from atmosphere into the agro ecosystem reducing the emission trend of agriculture activities. As suggested by the European Community we will consider policy integration and develop a project that will leave on the territory of the involved actor a permanent centre of excellence for study and develop solutions on these issues.

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Literature review 3 __________________________________________________________________________________

2 LITERATURE REVIEW 2.1 European funds The European Community is living a period of enlargement, many new member states entered in the last years and others are going to start their path in the normative adjustment so that they could gain the right requisitions to be a part of European union. The evolution of European Union needs local actors that turn their attitude from beneficiary to active actors of the European policies and actions. The European funds are a series of financial instruments used by the community to reduce sociologic, economic and environmental imbalance between regions of the member states and an approach to EU policies for the future member states. This is true for actual member and especially for future member where the differences are wider n many fields and sector, principally in policy and regulations, but is important the role that the local actors could gain in active participation through the funds. Since year 2000 financial help is overlooked to three main objectives, promote development and structural adjustment in less developed regions, help to reconstruct areas whit higher structural problems and modernize regional policies. Funding follows these three main objectives and is structured through several principles: 

Concentration. Optimization of interventions in specific sector or regions

Planning. Programmes last more years , following a bottom up approach

Complementariness. European action and national action has to be coherent

Partnership. Implementing collaboration between EU national states and stakeholders

Coordination. Whit other European instruments

Additional , the funds are not a substitution to national public expense

Compatibility. Whit all treats and laws

The time range of the fund program is usually 7 years and now is running the 2007-2013 financial period. The funding opportunities of this financial period are structured in five categories: 1-Pre-Accession Assistance: EU provides funding for candidate countries and potential candidate countries in order to support their efforts to enhance political, economic and institutional reforms. This comprises a broad range of financial support for various types of projects in the fields of agriculture, environment, transport, IT, human rights, civil society, media, etc. The main funds are: IPA -Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance TAIEX -Technical Assistance and Information Exchange Instrument PRINCE- Grants for communication information actions on EU enlargement TWINNING-Grants for communication and information actions on EU enlargement

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Literature review 4 __________________________________________________________________________________

2-External Assistance: EU's external assistance targets other countries than the Member States and aims to support various types of reforms, political and economic stability, as well as countries or regions in crisis. Instrument for Cooperation with Industrialised Countries DCI - Development Cooperation and Economic Cooperation Instrument Financing Instrument for the promotion of democracy and human rights worldwide ENPI - European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument Instrument for Stability Humanitarian Aid Macro Financial Assistance European Development Fund AlĂ&#x;an 3-Regional Assistance: The regional assistance accounts for a larger portion of the expenditures and finances regional development within the Member States in order to obtain economic and social prosperity and to reduce the gaps in development between regions. Funding will be available through the following instruments: European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) European Social Fund (ESF) Cohesion Fund And through the following initiatives: Jeremie, Jessica, Jasper ,Regions for Economic Change, LeaderIP 4-Natural Resources: The Natural Resources section comprises several funding opportunities in agriculture, rural development, environment and fisheries. They are: European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF) European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) European Fisheries Fund (EFF) LIFEIP (Financial Instrument for the Environment) 5-Community Programmes: EU provides financial assistance through various community programmes in a broad range of fields such as research, competitiveness and innovation, media, education, health, youth, culture, etc. Different organisations, bodies and companies from all Member States can participate, as well as participants from Non-Member States according to their agreements with the EU. The main programmes are the following: Civil Protection Financial Instrument CIP , Customs 2007 , Consumer programme eContentplus Programme , Culture Programme (2007-2013) , Erasmus Mundus , Europe for Citizens , FP7 , IDABC , Fundamental Rights and Justice , Integrated Action Programme , in Lifelong Learning ,Media 2007 , Marco Polo II , Public Health , Progress Security and Safeguarding Liberties , Safer Internet plus , Youth in Action , Solidarity and Management of Migration Flows

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Literature review 5 __________________________________________________________________________________

2.2 IPA instrument of pre accession The process of enlargement of European Union which is currently ongoing is for candidate countries a process of structural adjustment especially for Balkan state where the problematic history of the last decades was leaving its sign. Simultaneously the member state cooperating whit the newcomers have the possibility to improve their knowledge and refine planning for a more sustainable future. For this reason the IPA is a powerful tool which can assist potential and actual member through a mutual cooperation for sharing practices and improvement strategies, beneficial to both. The IPA must be consistent with development aid, but its primary aim is to prepare the beneficiary countries for accession in the not too distant future. One of the main characteristics of pre-accession aid is its bridging function, since it is designed to prepare countries for the period after accession. The Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) offers rationalised assistance to countries aspiring to join the European Union for the period 2007-2013 on the basis of the lessons learnt from previous external assistance and pre-accession instruments. The aim of the IPA is to enhance the efficiency and coherence of aid by means of a single framework. This framework incorporates the previous pre-accession and stabilisation and association assistance to candidate countries and potential candidate countries while respecting their specific features and the processes in which they are engaged. There are two categories of possible beneficiary countries, candidate countries under the accession process or potential candidate countries under the stabilisation and association process, namely: -Candidate countries: the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Croatia; -Potential candidate countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia. Exceptionally, and in the interests of coherence and efficiency, other countries may benefit from measures financed under the IPA provided these measures form part of a regional, cross-border, trans-national or worldwide framework and do not duplicate other programmes under Community external aid instruments. The main aim of the IPA is to support institution-building and the rule of law, human rights, including the fundamental freedoms, minority rights, gender equality and non-discrimination, both administrative and economic reforms, economic and social development, reconciliation and reconstruction, and regional and cross-border cooperation , sustainable resource management and risk prevention. The IPA is made up of five components, two concerning all beneficiary countries: 

The “support for transition and institution-building” component, aimed at financing capacity-building and institution-building;

The “cross-border cooperation” component, aimed at supporting the beneficiary countries in the area of cross-border cooperation between themselves, with the Member States or within the framework of cross-border or inter-regional actions.

The other three components are aimed at candidate countries only:

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Literature review 6 __________________________________________________________________________________

the “regional development” component, aimed at supporting the countries' preparations for the implementation of the Community’s cohesion policy, and in particular for the European Regional Development Fund and the Cohesion Fund;

the “human resources development” component, which concerns preparation for cohesion policy and the European Social Fund;

the “rural development” component, which concerns preparation for the common agricultural policy and related policies and for the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD).

In this way candidate countries can prepare the way for introduce European policies into their regulatory system, while candidate country align progressively on the European regulations. The IPA provides a unique and rationalised framework. As such it replaces, from 1 January 2007, the programmes for the period 2000-2006, called: 

the programmes for candidate countries, namely Phare, SAPARD and ISPA, Phare Cross-Border Cooperation (CBC) and Coordination, pre-accession financial assistance for Turkey;

the programmes for potential candidate countries, namely CARDS

2.2.1 Management and implementation of the IPA The IPA is based on strategic multi-annual planning made up of multi-annual indicative planning documents. They are established for each beneficiary country and cover the main intervention areas envisaged for that country. They are implemented in three ways: by centralised, decentralised or shared management. Assistance under the IPA can take, the following forms: 

investment, procurement contracts or subsidies;

administrative cooperation, involving experts sent from the Member States;

action by the Community acting in the interest of the beneficiary country;

measures to support the implementation process and management of the programmes;

budget support (granted exceptionally and subject to supervision).

2.2.2 Previous experience of cooperation in the Adriatic area The relationship between countries involved in the Programme originated many years ago, the Mediterranean area has always been connected since the Roman Empire and during all its history through commercial exchanges, and sharing a common tradition and values background.

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Literature review 7 __________________________________________________________________________________

In modern time since the 1960s these countries have cooperated to resolve their common problems. In 1990 the European Commission launched the INTERREG I Initiative with the following principal objectives: to promote economic development and to foster integration. The first objective concerned support to border areas, to facilitate their particular development problems. The second objective aimed to promote cross-border networks. For this reason the initiative included both cross-border cooperation within the European Union and with non-Member States of the central-eastern area. Trans-national cooperation was introduced only with the INTERREG II Programme (1994-1999), and was later confirmed in the INTERREG III Programme (2000-2006). During the previous period of funding were not implemented several cross border initiatives, and they were characterized by small scale of intervention due especially to the difficulties to find partners for collaboration. One of the most important cooperation initiatives was the INTERREG IIIA programmes. The INTERREG IIIA Adriatic Cross-border Programme 2000-2006, became the principal financial and reference instrument for cross-border cooperation between Italy and Eastern Adriatic Countries. The most important lesson learnt from the programming period 2000-2006 may be summarized by saying that efficient cross-border cooperation can only be achieved with of full symmetry, both in terms of management and in terms of financial resources. The main consideration that could emerge from previous experiences are the validity of the partnership process and of an inter-institutional approach to programming, the importance of adopting project evaluation processes, the necessity of identifying initiatives and projects of strategic relevance, the value of exchanging best-practices and the necessity of maximizing the involvement of local people

2.2.3 IPA CBC The IPA CBC Adriatic Cross-border Cooperation Programme is the result of joint programming work carried out by the relevant participating countries and is part of the cooperation process in the Adriatic area draws its strength and incisiveness from the wide experience, gained during the previous Programme period. Many factors make cooperation in the Adriatic area important today, particularly from a political and economic point of view especially because this area was very instable in the period after the war, for this reason is important to develop and support the European integration, institutionally and commercially helping a sustainable development. Regional and cultural proximity could be the drive for an harmonious development and cohabitation among peoples of the Adriatic area. On the basis of experience gained from three previous programming cycles, concerning Cross–Border Cooperation between Member States and neighbouring candidate/potential candidate countries, the new EU financial framework 2007-2013 provide for a single

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Literature review 8 __________________________________________________________________________________

instrument approach through the new Instrument for Pre–Accession Assistance (IPA). Council Regulation (EC) No. 1085/2006 which establishes an instrument of Pre-Accession Assistance- the IPA Regulation - replaces the previously existing legal basis in the preAccession area. As such it constitutes a framework regulation. The IPA instrument seeks to provide targeted assistance to countries which are Candidates or Potential Candidates for membership of the EU rationalizing Pre-Accession Assistance by replacing the various instruments which previously existed for the assistance.

2.2.4 Eligible country and area description Three EU Member States (Italy, Slovenia and Greece), one Candidate Country (Croatia) and three Potential Candidates Countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Albania) are participating in the Programme. Additionally, a phasing out participation by Serbia is envisaged for joint projects in the field of institutional co–operation. The Adriatic Region, i.e. the uniform area of the states bordering the Adriatic Sea, is socially and economically diversified, mainly between the different states, but also within various national territories. Major changes have occurred in the Adriatic area during the last decade. From an economic viewpoint the eastern Adriatic countries are going through a difficult transition to a self-sustainable economy with the aim of reducing their dependence on international aid. The whole Programme area is 115,714 km2 and has a population of 15,074 million; in terms of population and surface area the Italian areas are very significant and represent 47% and 69% respectively of the population and surface area of the whole Programme,. The average population density of the area is 165 inhabitants/km2 with variations in the different participating countries The territories involved in the Programme are bordering the Adriatic Sea. Only Serbia has no maritime border. The Adriatic coastline extension is about 5.867 km. Geographically, the Adriatic Sea is a part of the Mediterranean Sea. The Adriatic is generally not very deep: the northern basin has an average depth of 70-80 m, with a maximum of 270 m. the southern one is deeper 1222 m. For a number of years the Adriatic has been one of Italian seas that has suffered most from eutrophication. Generally, the Adriatic

Sea

represents

an

extraordinary

environmental ecosystem extremely delicate, an enormous “closed sea” where a possible accident with dumping of pollutants would cause a critical scenario and where it is not thinkable to increase the impact of sea traffic. Today, the northern and Figure 1 Map of the involved territory

central areas of the Adriatic are grappling with an environmental

situation

that

needs

particular

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Literature review 9 __________________________________________________________________________________

attention and actions

IP

IP

SM

SM

MP

SM

IP

Croatia

IP

IP

SM

IP (exp)

SM

SM

IP

Greece

IP

IP

IP

SM

SM

MP

MP

Italy

IP

SM

IP

IP

SM

IP

IP

Slovenia

IP

SM

IP

SM

SM

MP

IP

urbanisation

Bosnia and

Coastal

MP

eutrophication

MP

Coastal

IP

chemicals

SM

effluents

SM

Oily

IP

effluents

IP

Industrial

Urban solid

Albania

COUNTRY

wastes

Urban effluents

Stockpiles of toxic

ISSUE

Herzegovina

Table 1. Environmental problem on the Adriatic coasts IP Important problem; MP : Medium problem; SM : Small problem , exp=expected ( adapted from Priority issues in the Mediterranean environment EEA)

The Mediterranean basin is characterised by diverse climatic and environmental specificities that include a structurally weak availability of water resources. The temporal irregularity translates into relatively abundant rainfalls between autumn and spring, and much less frequent during the summer. There are many differences between landscape and environmental conditions on the two coasts because of

their geomorphological

characteristics, the high pressure of urban development and demographic differences. The Italian coast, in fact, is affected by a high level of urbanisation, with peaks around centres of production and areas of intense tourist development a tendency, which create the formation of a single linear uninterrupted city from Aquileia to Brindisi. Excessive pressure of productive use, localised demand and the consequent transformations of the coastal habitat have caused widespread congestion and a constant reduction of the natural environment. The west coast is generally quite flat, only interrupted by the delta of the river Po and by the promontories of the Conero Mountain and of the Gargano (that extends to the sea with the Tremiti Isles). The northern coast is interrupted by the lagoons of Venice, Marano and Grado and by the Gulf of Trieste There are nonetheless, excellent environmental sites such as national and regional protected areas both in the north and the south of the country The eastern Adriatic extends from the Obalno-kraška region of Slovenia to Greece, there are the Istrian peninsula and the Dalmatian coast, the coast becomes more and more indented and higher and is faced by a myriad of islands among which Krk, Cres, Pag, Isola Lunga, Brač, Hvar, Vis, Korčula, Mljet. The Albanian coast is much flatter and even, divided into the gulfs of Durrës and Vlorë. We can find a continuity of landscape and environmental __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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heritage, which is, however, now increasingly threatened by development processes. The increase of the residential areas along the Croatian, Albanian and Montenegrin coasts, is a serious risks of emulating the construction escalation of Italian coasts, unfortunately devastating for the natural heritage A lack of sewage and waste disposal systems and constant atmospheric emissions of polluting substances deriving from transport and industrial processes and, in particular, combustible fuels for energy production are frequently detected in these countries. Also in this shore of the Adriatic sea we find numerous UNESCO sites and several parks or protected areas. In particular, the exploitation of the territorial resources of both these Regions has been in the past intense and too often lacking the necessary rationality. As is shown by: - The localization along the coasts of highly polluting activities (petrochemical industries ); - Thermal power stations in some of the most valued areas - The development of agriculture that strongly uses chemical substances - An excessive concentration of industrial production plants, along the main waterways - An exponential increase of the production sites and civilian settlements concentration; - An abnormal dilatation of the consumption of natural resources; - A spatial-temporal concentration of the holiday and mass tourism industry whit increasing high-impact; - An exponential increase of the fishing effort ; The on-going tendencies suggest above all taking into serious consideration the potential impact of tourism on the environment, also in order to protect the areas that are still free from urbanization and sealing.

2.2.5 Programme goal The Programme objectives contribute to the Lisbon and Gothenburg agendas with particular attention paid to strengthening of sustainable development capabilities of the Adriatic region through a concerted strategy of action between the partners of the eligible territories. The main goals are: 1. Strengthening research and innovation to facilitate development of the Adriatic area through economic, social and institutional cooperation. Pursuing growth for these territories it is essential to improve knowledge that can guarantee innovation and competitiveness 2. Promoting, improving and protecting natural and cultural resources through joint management of technological and natural risks. These areas are potentially extremely rich in natural cultural resources so it is fundamental to protect and valorise them. 3. Strengthening and integrating existing infrastructure networks, promoting and developing transport information and communication services.

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These three goals can be explained through the detection of the priorities of the programme: Priority 1 - Economic, Social and Institutional Cooperation: is necessary because of the lack of competitiveness of some countries and the eventual loss of competitiveness of others, because low investment in research and innovation. Priority 2 – Natural and Cultural Resources and Risk Prevention: is based on the qualities of the Adriatic basin, with its considerably rich environmental, landscape and cultural heritage which retains to a high degree its identifying characteristics. It is a heritage still not fully realised and generally risks becoming limited to use as a seaside resort and for seasonal tourism. Further, the growth of the geomorphologic features and anthropomorphic use make environmental resources increasingly vulnerable and in need of integrated area protection policies as well as targeted and specific measures. Priority 3 – Accessibility and Networks: in the case of aspects linked to Research and Innovation and those connected to Accessibility and Networks, these represent elements that influence the competitiveness dimension of the Adriatic region, and more particularly the factors represented by the intervention policies identified: logistics, inter-modality and integration between the networks, a system of transport services, and communication and information networks. The distribution of funding is shown in Table 2.

PRIORITY

PERCENTAGE (%)

Economic, Social and Institutional Cooperation

30%

Natural and Cultural Resources and Risk Prevention

30%

Accessibility and Networks

30%

Technical Assistance

10%

TOTAL

100%

Table 2. Percentage of fund given to each priority in the IPA CBC division of funding according to the priority , technical assistance is the support needed to implement the programme.

2.2.6 Priority 2 natural and cultural resources and risk prevention The Priority that we analyze better because will be the topic of our IPA proposal is the priority 2 based on the following objective “Promoting, improving and protecting natural and cultural resources through joint management of technological and natural risks”. The general objective is achieved through four Measures: −Measure 2.1 – Protection and Enhancement of the Marine and Coastal Environment −Measure 2.2 – Natural and Cultural Resource Management and Prevention of Natural and Technological Risks −Measure 2.3 – Energy Saving and Renewable Energy Resources

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−Measure 2.4 – Sustainable Tourism On this priority the measure 2.2 will be the field where our proposal will operate so will be more analyzed. The objective of this Measure is to strengthen institutional capacity for preservation and management of territorial resources and prevention of risk and mitigation of accidents through territorial cooperation. As we spoke above, the Adriatic area is extremely rich in environmental and cultural heritage, and is still not widely well known and due to several problems can not be managed properly or sometimes it is in risk from human activities settled on the coast. Social and economic analysis of the area eligible under the Programme has nevertheless shown the presence of threats which if not dealt with promptly, may be an obstacle to the development of the territory. Such resources provide an important development opportunity and not only from tourism. The problems differ from area to area but it is important to underline that some tremendous risk that climate change will bring are a difficult to cope to single entity or country so their cooperation on this way is a strategic step. The measure is in line with the main policy directions for further promotion on ICZM in Europe set out by the EC in COM 2007 (308) of the 7 of June 2007 and will take fully account of the INSPIRE System (Infrastructure for Spatial InfoRmation in Europe) and the GMES (Global Monitoring for Environment and Security). The Expected programme beneficiaries arePublic Authorities, NGOs, SMEs Examples of possible initiatives propsed by the commision are: − Strengthening the competence of Public Authorities in defining long- term environmental strategies (including the SEA use plans); − Innovation and dissemination of technology for the preservation and management of the cultural and natural heritage; − Exchange of best practices on preservation and management of environmental and cultural heritage; − Establishing collaboration between Agencies, Organization and Universities to create networks in the field of environmental and cultural protection and risk management; − Exchange of experience in management of NATURA 2000 sites in respect to the Council Directive 92/43/EEC on the conservation of natural habitats and wild fauna and flora and Council Directive 79/409/EEC on the conservation of wild birds; − Exchange of experience in management of natural resources and protected areas; − Ballast water management; − Joint projects to check and free eligible area from pollution.

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2.3 Biodiversity 2010 is the international year of biodiversity and according to the CBD should be the year of achievement of a consistent progress for halting biodiversity loss. Undoubtedly several progresses were done in the European community to preserve and enhance biodiversity but the high level of urbanization of the entire community can’t guarantee continuity to the habitats developed. New updated report suggests that biodiversity will continue to decline, adversely affecting the health of associated ecosystems. In Italy richness of biodiversity is a huge treasure due to the multiplicity of geomorphological and climatic conditions, but anthropization and unsustainable techniques of agricultural management combined whit industrial plants concentration are dangerous threats to the natural habitats particularly along the coast line and in the Padan plane . The situation in the future member state in the east coast of the Adriatic is different; here the level of naturalness is much higher, but the risks of urban and industrial growth start to emerge severely whit future threats so the necessity of protection is urgent but is potentially more effective because could be integrated in a strategic plan of development. For these reasons actions are needed in both side of the Adriatic but whit different methodologies due to the various environmental situations that we can find. Biodiversity could be defined as “the variability among living organisms from all sources including, terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are part; this includes diversity within species (genetic), between species and of ecosystems.� The biodiversity we see today is the fruit of billions of years of evolution, shaped by natural processes and, increasingly, by the influence of humans. It forms the web of life of which we are an integral part and upon which we so fully depend. Biodiversity also includes genetic differences within each species - for example, between varieties of crops and breeds of livestock. Chromosomes, genes, and DNA determine the uniqueness of each individual and each species. Yet another aspect of biodiversity is the variety of ecosystems such as those that occur in deserts, forests, wetlands, mountains, lakes, rivers, and agricultural landscapes. In each ecosystem, living creatures, including humans, form a community, interacting with one another and with the air, water, and soil around them. The last century has seen the greatest loss of biodiversity through habitat destruction, for instance through conversion of diverse ecosystems to agriculture. Other factors such as the growing threat from introduction of invasive alien species, fostered by globalization of trade and transport, have further exacerbated the situation. Globally, the cost of damage caused by invasive species is estimated to run to hundreds of billions of dollars per year (Pimentel et al., 2001). It is widely predicted that climate change will further increase these threats, favouring species migration and causing ecosystems to become more vulnerable to invasion. By not meeting the 2010 targets, the report estimates the cumulative loss of biodiversity and

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associated ecosystem services between 2000 and 2050, could be equivalent to 7 per cent of the 2050 world Gross Domestic Product (GDP) the estimated annual loss in ecosystem services resulting from the cumulative loss of biodiversity will be worth nearly 14 trillion 1. Biodiversity provides a large number of goods and services that sustain our lives and that are necessary for keep life on earth. "Goods

BIODIVERSITY FUNCTIONS Provision of food, fuel and fibre Provision of shelter and building materials Purification of air and water Detoxification and decomposition of wastes Stabilization and moderation of the Earth's climate Moderation of floods, droughts, temperature extremes and the forces of wind Generation and renewal of soil fertility, including nutrient cycling Pollination of plants, including many crops Control of pests and diseases Maintenance of genetic resources as key inputs to crop varieties and livestock breeds, medicines, and other products Cultural and aesthetic benefits Ability to adapt to change Table 3. Biodiversity functions

and Services" provided by ecosystems are summarized in table 3. In recent time emphasis on the provisioning services of biodiversity has been growing: Biodiversity, including

the

composition

number, of

abundance,

genotypes,

and

populations,

species, functional types, communities, and landscape

units,

strongly

influences the

provision of ecosystem services and therefore human wellbeing. Processes frequently affected by changes in biodiversity dispersal,

include climate

pollination, regulation,

seed carbon

sequestration, agricultural pest and disease control, and human health regulation. Also, by affecting ecosystem processes such as primary production, nutrient and water cycling, and soil formation and retention, biodiversity indirectly supports the production of food, fibre, potable water, shelter, and medicines. Biodiversity contributes directly (through provisioning, regulating, and cultural ecosystem services) and indirectly (through supporting ecosystem services) to many constituents of human well-being, including security, basic material for a good life, health, good social relations, and freedom of choice and action ( table 3). Protecting biodiversity is in our self-interest. Biological resources are the pillars upon which we build civilizations. Nature's products support such diverse industries as agriculture, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, pulp and paper, horticulture, construction and waste treatment. The loss of biodiversity threatens our food supplies, opportunities for recreation and tourism, and sources of wood, medicines and energy. It also interferes with essential ecological functions. Our personal health, and the health of our economy and human society, depends on the continuous supply of various ecological services that would be extremely costly or impossible to replace. These natural services are so varied as to be almost infinite. For example, it would be impractical to replace, to any large extent, services such as pest control performed by various creatures feeding on one another, or pollination performed by insects and birds going about their everyday business. Climate change, ecosystem services and biodiversity are closely linked. The impacts of climate change on biodiversity present new challenges for nature conservation. Adaptation measures will be

1

http://ec.europa.eu/environment/integration/research/newsalert/pdf/119na1.pdf

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necessary to ensure that nature conservation objectives are met under changing climatic conditions. At the same time, the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services has the potential to contribute significantly to mitigating climate change and to helping human societies adapt to its impacts. Therefore maintaining healthy ecosystems is essential for the implementation of any climate change adaptation and mitigation strategy. It is widely accepted that the "safe" level of climate change, which can be countered by adaptation measures across many human systems at acceptable economic, social and environmental costs, is a global mean temperature increase of up to 2°C above pre-industrial levels. However, the ability of many natural ecosystems to adapt to the rapid rate of current climate change is limited and may be exceeded before a 2°C temperature increase occurs. Indeed AR4 by IPCC suggests that the resilience of many ecosystems has already been exceeded. Increasing levels of climate change mean increasing pressure on ecosystems and the services they provide. Sometimes biodiversity is presumed to be a relevant feature of only unmanaged ecosystems, such as wildlands, nature preserves, or national parks. This is incorrect also managed systems plantations, farms, croplands, aquaculture sites, rangelands, or even urban parks and urban ecosystems have their own biodiversity. Given that cultivated systems alone now account for more than 24% of Earth’s terrestrial surface, it is critical that any decision concerning biodiversity or ecosystem services address the maintenance of biodiversity in these largely anthropogenic systems, and multiple possibilities can help a sustainable development of management and policy making on this field. While agriculture is based on the domestication and use of crop and livestock species, the continuum between (wild) biodiversity and agrobiodiversity has been recognized both in research on plant genetic resources and in conservation efforts for many decades. Agrobiodiversity is the heart of food production and an essential resource for plant and animal breeding. Yet it is a resource that is being lost in situ: in farms and agroecosystems. Its conservation is somewhat framed by a paradox: new breeds have boosted agricultural productivity, but simultaneously they displaced traditional cultivars. In response, gene or seed banks have been created to fulfil a double function: to resource plant breeders with the agrobiodiversity needed for further crop development, and to conserve crop diversity that may have disappeared from agricultural systems. Ex situ conservation in seed repositories and gene banks has long been considered to be the central pillar of agrobiodiversity conservation. To be effective, agrobiodiversity management needs to operate at several levels: local, national, and international. Against the overall trend of declining diversity in agricultural systems, crop diversity is still being created and preserved locally, and the importance of local in situ conservation efforts has more recently been acknowledged under Article 8 of the CBD. In situ conservation of crops and seeds on the farm or community level operates under a number of constraints, organizational and economic. These constraints could easily be overcome if biodiversity management is part of an integrated __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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approach: sustainable land management. It is notable that plant varieties and animal breeds, farming systems are linked to languages, environmental knowledge and the evolution of human societies during al history periods. They embody history, both in their form which is a result of selection and adaptation to human needs, and through the knowledge that is associated with them. In participatory research and selection, such knowledge has increasingly been validated and valued. In the contemporary context of rapid land use change, the complex coevolution of agrobiodiversity, ecosystems and human societies needs to be documented, analyzed and validated. An appropriate level for this task is the landscape scale where multiple analysis and consideration could be done. The protection of nature or the creation of parks or the application of land sustainable management has some cost of creation but the results obtained are much bigger economically, and for human health. The initial cost is an obstacle but in a long term perspective this cost could be internalized by several added values. It is the combination of life forms and their interactions with each other and with the rest of the environment that has made Earth a uniquely habitable place for humans. Healthy resilient ecosystems have enormous potential to enable society to mitigate and adapt to climate change. They resist and recover more easily from extreme weather events and provide a wide range of benefits on which people depend. Biodiversity conservation should be an integrated part of mitigation and adaptation efforts. Mitigation activities can be designed to create synergies with adaptation, the conservation of biological diversity and sustainable development. Key to any adaptation and mitigation planning process is the principle of adaptive management, where earlier steps in an iterative and ongoing process inform later steps. Management approaches need to learn from experience and changing conditions, and assess risks to tackle uncertainties. Flexible approaches to policy design are needed. Broadly speaking, climate change mitigation and adaptation requires improved institutional co-ordination, expanded spatial and temporal perspectives, incorporation of climate change scenarios into all planning and action, together with greater effort to address multiple threats and global change drivers simultaneously and in ways that are responsive to and inclusive of human communities. We have to make sure that climate change measures do not come at the expense of biodiversity and ecosystems services and in the same time engage other sectors (e.g. agriculture, finance, transport, energy, regional planning, water management, fisheries, forestry, tourism, development policy) and it can provide multiple economic, social and environmental benefits. The maintenance and restoration of diverse and functioning ecosystems across the wider terrestrial, freshwater and marine environment need to be guiding principles as we move to make all our policies resilient to and protective against adverse events. Spatial planning policy and measures affecting development are important in providing for the protection and maintenance of biodiversity in a changing climate, as these changes act in addition to other pressures, such as fragmentation of habitats and corridors by transport routes and urban expansion. Spatial planning approaches, promoting __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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green infrastructure, that enable natural processes to take place and increase the resilience of ecosystems also can lead to other socio-economic benefits. Plans dealing with climateinduced disasters should identify not only the damage to human settlements, but also to the local ecosystems on which they depend. This approach would protect ecosystems both as economic mainstays of local people, and as havens of biodiversity. The best way we propose to gain this objective is a parallel evolution of agro ecosystem management and spatial planning policies whit farmers and local community on the front line in these changing horizons.

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2.4 Soil degradation Soil is a natural body consisting of layers (soil horizons) of mineral constituents and is the medium through which plant can grow and life is sustained. Soil is defined as the top layer of the earth’s crust and is composed of mineral particles, water, air and organic matter, including living organisms. It is a complex, mutable, living resource which performs many vital functions: food and other biomass production, storage, filtration and transformation of substances including water, carbon and nitrogen. Soil further serves as a habitat and gene pool, and provides a platform for human activities, landscape 2

and heritage, and the supply of raw materials

Soil is a complex system, in continuous evolution, resulting from interaction of the following factors:-Climate-Organisms-slope-Parent rocks-Time The role of soil has been internationally acknowledged as one of the main aim for future policies and as well as a natural and cultural good, which is necessary to protect. It is important as well to inform people on the role that this medium has for the entire ecosystem. Usually the only quality of soil which has been studied for a long time was its fertility connected whit agricultural yield, recently environmental qualities are emerged and widespread known but now is emerging also another component, the role of soil as a cultural value (archaeological values, paleoetnologic and ethnologic ). Soil is a slow renewable resource (which could in extreme case become unsuitable for life) and its degradation could make emerge dangerous problem for entire societies. Soil restoration is costly and need long time to be effective and in some case could as well be impossible to restore the previous fertility. Nowadays many threats are promoting soil degradation in extremely wide area, due to mismanagement, pollution, urbanization or other human actions. Agriculture is one of the responsible of soil degradation; it occupies a substantial proportion of the European land, and consequently plays an important role in maintaining natural resources and cultural landscapes, a precondition for other human activities in rural areas. Unsustainable farming practices and land use, including mismanaged intensification and land abandonment, have an adverse impact on natural resources. Sustained economic growth is based on fertile agricultural ecosystems and good soils. If large parts of European soil are, in the future, no longer suitable for agricultural production, due to pollution, loss of organic matter, erosion, salinisation, sodification or compaction, important economic activities can no longer be sustained. The amount of degradation depends of several factors, soil characteristic, climate and management among the others. Soil degradation is accelerating, with negative effects on human health, natural ecosystems and climate change, as well as on our economy , the main issues affecting the European soils are :-erosion (water, wind and tillage); 2

Source: http://ec.europa.eu/environment/soil/index_en.htm

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-decline in organic carbon content; -compaction; -salinisation and sodification; -contamination (heavy metals and pesticides; excess of nitrates and phosphates); -decline in biodiversity. In addition we can consider the risks caused by landslide and floods, which are always more dangerous threats to human safety and to soil features. As we can see from table 4 the estimated cost of soil degradation inside the European territory is very high and it is impossible to not think a strategic planning for save this resource and as well use funding efficiently not only repairing the damages but solving the driving forces. Degradation process COST(billion) Erosion 0.7 – 14.0 Organic matter decline 3.4 – 5.6 Compaction no estimate possible Salinisation 158 – 321 Landslides 1.2 Contamination 2.4 – 17.3 Sealing no estimate possible Biodiversity decline no estimate possible Total 38 billion euro annually Table 4. Estimated cost of soil degradation in Europe Expressed in billion, costs are spread to all the European countries whit irregularly pattern.

In the following paragraphs are described briefly all the main problems which are increasingly accentuate by human activities, starting from erosion

2.4.1 Erosion Soil is removed much faster by erosion then it could naturally reform again through pedogenesis, its fertility and quality result compromised and the soil transported could increase pollution and water solid transport in the rivers. Erosion is a natural process, but as many other problems has been dramatically increased by human activities, and from intensive agricultural and natural resources management. There are three kind of erosion induced by different causes: Water, wind and tillage related. 1- Water erosion is induced by raindrop which detached soil particles and let them flow whit the runoff. The Mediterranean area is highly hit by this phenomenon because the climate is extremely dry for long period and precipitation are going to be intense and concentrate in wet periods. Bare soils are more afflicted because there is no cover which intercepts the drops, slowing their force (this is extremely dangerous for agriculture soil which are without cover for long time). An estimation of 115 million hectares of Europe which

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is 12% of the entire continent land are subject to water erosion, and also economically the economic cost of erosion is important estimated between 0.7-14 billion euro for EU273. 2-Wind erosion is due to the transport of the finest soil particles by wind forces. Even if this phenomenon is not so evident such as water erosion (but in some case could be extremely dangerous where wind forces are high and constant) afflict negatively soil fertility because the finest particles usually contains necessary nutrients. Other issues generated by these events are the worsening of air quality and the influence on climate cycles (dust is responsible for cloud formation and precipitation patterns) and a series of negative feedback on soil structure and quality. An estimation found 42 million hectares or 4 % of the European territory to be affected by wind erosion4 which depend from wind velocity and soil condition especially its cover. 3-Tillage erosion (which can include also harvesting erosion) is a human induced phenomenon, which not only increase the other forms of erosion but physically move the soil generating various negative aspects. The combination of more of these kind of erosion could produce serious threats to single farmers and as we see to a large number of region of Europe , so it is necessary to observe and prevent the risks through management innovations . The driving forces and pressures of soil erosion are social, economic, ecological and physical but they act in an integrated way. Soil erosion is directly driven by the forces of climate (energy of wind and rainfall), but it occurs when the vegetation and upper soil horizons have their storage and regulation functions impaired or diminished mainly under the Influence of human actions. All kinds of pressures (e.g. pollution, cultivation and land levelling) can lead to the gradual or sudden loss of the (adaptive) capacity of the soil and its ecosystem to retain water and sediment on a slope.

Internal erosion effects

External erosion effects

Organic matter loss

Water pollution

Soil structure degradation

Eutrophization of water

Soil compaction more propbable

Flood increase

Reduced water infiltration

Buildings burial

Less groundwater bringing in

Sewage obstruction

Loss of fertile soil

Rivers shape transformation

Nutrients removal

Lost of ports and ship canal

Coarse fraction increase Cracks and stream formation Table 5. Effects of soil erosion

3

COM(2006) 231

4

EEA, 2003

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Agricultural policies and practices greatly influence erosion, due to the fact that half of the European territory is used for agricultural production and agricultural practises can promote erosion (e.g. through soil compaction, reducing water holding capacity and increasing soil erodibility and influence on soil chemistry and (micro)biology, influence on the protective working of vegetation cover). There are three main method to prevent erosion which are according to FAO definition: -Splash control: Preventing direct rain impact by adequate vegetation cover, or by mulching. -Control of erosion by runoff: Reforestation, terracing, contour ploughing, strip cropping. -Promoting infiltration: Prevention of encrusted soils by tillage, retention of run-off, raised organic matter content of soil, and balanced fertiliser use.

2.4.2 SOC decline SOC is defined as the soil carbon content of the soil includes all carbon-containing constituents like undecomposed organic vegetation residues, soil fauna and humus. It is not a uniform material but is made up of very heterogeneous mixtures of both simple and complex substances containing carbon (C). Soil organic carbon (SOC) can be divided into different pools based on composition and ease of decomposition and is a valuable indicator of the soil status. First the labile pool includes easily decomposable organic materials then there is the slow pool includes well decomposed and stabilised organic materials, often referred to as humus and finally inert pool includes biologically very resistant organic materials which are thousands of years old in soils. For a healthy soil, the three pools of organic carbon are all present and are needed to serve different functions of the ecosystem. For this reason SOC is a good indicator of soil health. A natural ecosystem tends to acquire Carbon during its evolution but in agriculture soils this process is reversed, harvesting and through traditional management this pools of SOC are increasingly diminish in the soil. This trend affects the soil fertility and resilience and forces the farmers to use more chemicals to obtain more yields. According to Kyoto protocol Paragraph 3.4 the role of SOC is important for the storage role on the global cycle of these elements. Carbon dioxide which is responsible for global warming, together whit other greenhouse gas, could be sequestrated by soil in a huge and stabile quantity. The land will act as a carbon sink and simultaneously also the soil quality will be improved. For this reason is important to develop a management of the agro ecosystem, especially in southern Europe where due to arid condition the formation of SOC is slower then in the northern more dry regions. The main problem of SOC management is that it depends on an extreme site specific parameters for a soil typological unit, highly conditioned by particular weather condition and difficult to detect on the short time. By the way improving the SOC will increase also other soil quality and the development of the best site-specific management

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techniques. This is a necessity in the European area and research, experimentation oriented to the creation of best practices should be a priority of many administrations to scale up in rapid time and prevent unwanted crisis.

2.4.3 Salinisation and sodification Salinisation consist of the process of the increase of water soluble salts in the soil, even here we can distinguish between primary and secondary salinisation.

The first is

natural and induced by the normal rocks release of salt through the soil or ground water, the second is human induced, whit practices like wrong irrigation or drainage practices. Sodification is the process by which the exchangeable sodium (Na) content of the soil is increased. [Na+] accumulates in the solid and/or liquid phases of the soil as crystallised NaHCO3 or Na2CO3 salts (salt ‘effloresces’), as ions in the highly alkaline soil solution (alkalisation), or as exchangeable ions in the soil absorption complex. Salinisation and sodification are among the major degradation processes endangering the potential use of European soils. Extreme level of sodification or salinisation could produce plant withering and extremely affect harvest yield but it depends on the soil, climate, cover and geographical position. These processes could also

increase erosion SOC loosening and compaction it is

important to conduct further research and try to stop the phenomenon especially in area near the coast where marine water could enter in the groundwater.

2.4.4 Compaction Soil compaction reduces the water holding capacity of the ground and the oxigen supply for the plants roots. When a soil has less avlaible water capacity, yields lessen andit is more susceptible to erosion. Soil compaction is the process during which the voids are diminished or eliminated and the soil become denser, whit less porosity and permeability. There are two type of soil susceptibility, natural and man induced or both jointly. Compaction is induced mainly by land management (e.g. use of extremely heavy machines wrong irrigation‌) and influence many quality of soil, like water infiltration rate, root growth possibilities and can worsen the yield creating also economic problems. Often is just a question of management practices change but if pass a certain threshold compaction is an irreversible process. Soil compaction can as well create a negative feedback and worsen erosion and SOC decline for this reason is important to consider this phenomenon and plan a right management for prevent cumulative impact on the soil properties.

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2.4.5 Contamination Soil contamination is the main cause of degradation in Europe, in all the industrialized countries the level of inorganic pollutants is much higher then the original background. Unfortunately this trend is increasing in industrialized and developing countries. The presence of xenobiotic (man-made) chemicals or other alteration in the natural soil environment can have significant deleterious consequences for ecosystems, human health, food safety and water pollution. Contamination as defined by the joint research centre “is the occurrence of pollutants in soil above a certain level causing a deterioration or loss of one or more soil functions. Also, Soil Contamination can be considered as the presence of man-made chemicals or other alteration in the natural soil environment. This type of contamination typically arises from the rupture of underground storage tanks, application of pesticides and percolation of contaminated surface water to subsurface strata, leaching of wastes from landfills or direct discharge of industrial wastes to the soil. The most common chemicals involved are petroleum hydrocarbons, solvents, pesticides, lead and other heavy metals. The occurrence of this phenomenon is correlated with the degree of industrialization and intensity of chemical usage�5. The most common substances found in soil as pollutant are heavy metals (cadmium but also chromium, nickel, zinc, lead) they can arrive from several sources , human activities input exceeded the natural inputs due to pedogenesis and atmospheric deposition. Industrial activities, agricultural practices, transport emissions, use of fertilisers and pesticides, waste disposal, oil spills, etc. lead in many cases to high concentrations of heavy metals in soils that can create toxicity problems for living organisms, the decrease of biodiversity and the pollution of groundwater. In agriculture soil fertilisation and amendment practices but especially use of pesticides (herbicides, fungicide ...) are bioresistant they can t be mineralized by microorganisms and they can persist for several month/ year and finally percolate into the groundwater. Other sources of pollution can be atmospheric deposition or the misuse of sewage sludge. The problem whit soil pollution is that it can remain during the chain food, potentially harm human health and create several problems also to water (e.g. eutrophization in the river or in the sea cost). Agriculture is the main polluter for nitrates so it is necessary to introduce and spread techniques for contain use of chemicals (conservative agriculture) or for limit the diffusion of such products in the water or in the surrounding area (buffer strip)were are harmful for biodiversity.

5

http://eusoils.jrc.ec.europa.eu/library/themes/contamination/

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2.4.6 Decline in soil biodiversity It is important to distinguish between biodiversity as a general definition and soil biodiversity, soil is an extremely rich habitat for several forms of life whit essential functions which usually are not well known. Soil itself is a very heterogenic medium which can be extremely different in little space and even in time. Textures, components, organic matter, water content, porosity and soil dynamics are just some of the elements which create and manage the soil habitats and for this reason this factors acting together make the soil a container of an extremely large number of ecological niches which have given rise to a staggering array of biodiversity. Biodiversity refers not only to the components of the system but also to the system’s structure and to the functional interactions between species within the system. Soil represents one of the most important reservoirs of biodiversity. The biological diversity in soils is several orders of magnitude greater than that above ground and is seen as the last frontier for biodiversity on earth. The complex physical and chemical nature of the soil, with its porous structure, immense surface area, and extremely variable supply of organic materials, food, water and chemicals mean that various animal, plant and microbial worlds can co-exist simultaneously and find appropriate niches for their development. This provides a range of habitats for a multitude of fauna and flora ranging from macro- to microlevels depending on climate, vegetation and physical and chemical characteristics of the given soil. Soil biodiversity tends to be greater in forests than grasslands, and in undisturbed natural lands compared to cultivated fields. Soil organisms perform many important functions (FAO, 2001): − 'soil transporters’ like worms and termites, affect soil structure through mixing soil horizons and organic matter and increasing porosity. This is the main feature for plant adaptability and resistance on erosion -Soil biota is responsible of decomposition processes and nutrient cycling. The rate at which the process operates is determined by small grazers (micropredators) Specific soil microorganisms also enhance the amount and efficiency of nutrient acquisition by the vegetation through the formation of symbiotic associations such as those of mycorrhiza and N2-fixing root nodules. Nutrient cycling by the soil biota is essential for all forms of life. − Certain soil organisms, like the build-up of nematodes under certain cropping practices, can be detrimental to plant growth. They can also protect crops from pest and disease − The activities of decomposers, bacteria and fungi (greatly facilitated by mites, Millipedes, earthworms and termites), determine the carbon cycle – the rates of Carbon sequestration and gaseous emissions (CO2 and CH4), and soil organic matter transformation. − Plant roots, through their interactions with other soil components and symbiotic relationships, especially Rhizobium bacteria and mycorrhiza, play a key role in the uptake of

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nutrients and water, and contribute to the maintenance of soil porosity and organic matter content, through their growth and biomass. It is clear the ecological value of soil biota, but it s also important to remark the economic value that those organism provide us, the main effects are: -Waste recycling: Various saprohytic and litter feeding invertebrates (detritivores) -Water cleaning: depuration of water which enter in the groundwater -Soil formation: keep this resource moderately renewable -nitrogen fixation: impossible for plant, reduce need of fertilizers -Bioremediation of chemicals: under a certain threshold soil can recovery from pollutants -Biotechnology: pharmaceutical use of bioproducts -Biocontrol of pests: habitat for predators of pests -Pollination: many pollinators have an underground development stage -Other wild food: mushrooms… The most evident benefice is the possibility of waste recycle (organic) and water cleaning but all this factors should be considered, in fact the esteem provided by Pimentel et al., 1997 arrive to define a total economic value of soil biodiversity output in 1.5 trillion year. So it is clear how biodiversity in the soil is fundamental for crop yield, human health and food safety, but is important to underline how mismanagement could as well produce deep damage to the surrounding ecosystem and even in bigger distance through food chain and water transportation. The most important negative effects of conventional agriculture are, for example: • indiscriminate use of pesticides and chemical

fertilizers which affects human health,

wildlife populations and the quality of the environment; • excessive reliance on synthetic fertilizers, and the improper use and disposal of animal wastes is leading to the break-up of natural nutrient cycles, affecting also water quality and wildlife in aquatic habitats; • larger farms and plantation-type monocultures is leading to a loss of global biodiversity; • inadequate farming management practices can led the increase in soil erosion rates, resulting in the loss of productive farmland in many parts of the world and associated off-site problems such as waterway contamination; • unsustainable irrigation programs throughout the world are resulting in a depletion of freshwater resources and in an undesirable build up of salinity and toxic mineral levels in one out of five hectares under irrigation. The last observation is the innovative research which has been conducted recently (Schulze & Freibauer 2005) which hypothesizes the connection between SOC stability and soil biodiversity. Undoubtedly the implementation of proper techniques of agro management could have beneficial effect in several field and we think research has to go deepened and speeded to determine the best solutions to include effective response to the needing of agriculture.

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2.5 Climate change The European Union is the world’s third largest greenhouse gas emitter after the United States and China, accounting for 13 percent of global emissions in 2007. The European Community and the EU member states are parties to the UN Framework convention and the Kyoto Protocol. The 15 EU member states at the time of the Protocol’s negotiation agreed collectively to reduce emissions 8 percent below 1990 levels by 2008-2012. In 2007 the EU-27 emitted a total of 5045 million tonnes CO2-equivalent (Mt CO2-equivalent) greenhouse gases, excluding net CO2 removals from land use, land-use change and forestry (LULUCF). This represents the lowest emission level achieved in the EU-27 during the whole period 1990–2007. Italy is the third GHG emitter after Germany and UK arriving to 11%of EU -15 emission but is the second country after Spain whit less decrease in emission in Europe 15 (EEA, 2009) standing outside the GHG reduction target for 7,1% from the 1990 target. The main responsible of

greenhouse effect and global warming among all the GHG is

carbon dioxide, it s chemical nature and its abundance in the atmosphere determine a series of effect which trap warm in the lower zone of the troposphere. The carbon cycle is an extremely complex matter; oceans land and biosphere are involved and interact actively in different scale during time and space. Theoretically the planet should be able to absorb and recycle through the elements cycle all the natural components in an equilibrium that longed for million of years, but now human activity brutally changed this cycles (especially carbon dioxide) and whit several activities interfere in the natural regulations .This change is globally recognized as one of the main threat to our contemporary society. The Fourth Assessment report (AR4) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) provides an overview of recent scientific understanding on climate change (IPCC,2007). It brings together observations and modelling studies that confirm that humaninduced temperature increases are taking place, with measurable and increasing effects on snow cover and ice caps, sea levels, precipitation patterns and tropical storm activity. Climate change represents an immediate and unprecedented threat to several human activities whit potential catastrophic results if nothing will be done to prevent the worst scenario of forecasting. There are many causes of global warming but without doubt human activities are influential, transport, energy, building and quite every our activity is contributing every day to some emission of GHG. Energy production and consumption, transport and construction sectors are the main emitters but also other activities contribute like animal breeding, solid waste disposal and other. Agriculture and related activities also contribute to climate change, by intensifying greenhouse gas (GHG) emission and altering the land surface. A new research initiative is needed to inform this action – one that integrates and applies the best and most promising

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approaches, tools and technologies emerging from numerous disciplines. The involvement of farmers, policy-makers, researchers, donors and other stakeholder groups in the research process is key6

Country grouping EU-15 Member States

EU-12 Member States

Other EEA member countries, EU candidate country

Party to the Kyoto Protocol with current average emissions lower than target • France • Germany • Greece • Sweden • United kingdom

• Bulgaria • Czech Republic • Estonia • Hungary • Latvia • Lithuania • Poland • Romania • Slovakia • Croatia

Party to the Kyoto Protocol with current average emissions higher than target • Austria • Belgium • Denmark • Finland • Ireland • Italy • Luxembourg • Netherlands • Portugal • Spain • Slovenia

• Iceland • Liechtenstein • Norway • Switzerland

Table 6. Emission level according Kyoto target in Europe

Climate change is one of the greatest environmental, social and economic threats facing our planet today. Profound shifts are under way to the systems supporting life on Earth that will have far-reaching impacts for decades to come. The Earth’s climate is warming rapidly due to emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities such as the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation. Since 1850, the average surface temperature has risen by 0.76ºC, with most of the warming occurring over the last half-century. Soil is one of the most important carbon stores in the world. Just 0.1 per cent of carbon emitted into the atmosphere from European soils is the equivalent to the carbon emissions of 100 million extra cars on our roads. The EU has taken steps to protect this important resource in its Soil Thematic Strategy and it recently published a report and a study on the links between soil and climate change. Two articles of the Kyoto Protocol refer in particular to the forest and agro sectors in order to calculate the effects of land management on the national carbon balance since 1990, adopted as the reference year. - Article 3.3 permits industrialized countries to take into account the greenhouse gas effect of “direct human-induced activities” such as afforestation, reforestation and deforestation; 6

CCAFS. 2009. Climate Change,Agriculture and Food Security. A CGIAR Challenge Program.The Alliance of the CGIAR Centers and ESSP, Rome and Paris __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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- Article 3.4 permits them to consider the effect of additional land-use measures such as forest management, cropland management, grassland management and revegetation.

2.5.1 Climate change and agriculture 2.5.1.1

Agriculture Emissions

Agriculture contributes to climate change (as shown in figure 2) and the levels of its emissions are determined by various aspects of agricultural production: frequency of cultivation,

presence

of

irrigation, the size of livestock production, the burning of crop residues and cleared areas.

In

emissions

many are

cases,

difficult

to

mitigate because they are linked to the very nature of Figure 2. Emission percentages divided by sectors

production; in a number of

cases, however, technical measures can be adopted to mitigate emissions from specific sources. Worldwide, agricultural soils are being heavily degraded by inappropriate cultivation and grazing practices. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) figures show that even without adding deforestation, agriculture accounts for up to 14% of total global anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases. Two-fifths of these emissions are a result of land use or soil management practices. There is considerable potential in agriculture for mitigating climate change impacts. Changing crop regimes and modifying crop rotations, reducing tillage, returning crop residues into the soil and increasing the production of renewable energy are just a few options for reducing emissions. Agricultural sector influence climate change but could possibly be one of the most damaged activity by global warming or wheatear variations, whit potential catastrophic risk for food security and human well being. Thinking on the dramatic consequences is logical to think that actions in agroecosystems are necessary as soon as possible. The agricultural sector affects the climate system whit greenhouse gas emissions associated largely from soil management (fertilizer use) and livestock in four major ways distinct, but interrelated ways: • Land conversion and plowing releases large amounts of stored carbon as CO2 from original vegetation and soils; • Carbon dioxide and particulate is emitted from fossil fuels used to power farm machinery, irrigation pumps, and from drying grain, etc., as well as fertilizer and pesticide production;

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• Nitrogen fertilizer applications and related cropping practices such as manure applications and decomposition of agricultural wastes result in emissions of nitrous oxide (N2O); • Methane (CH4) is released mostly through livestock digestive processes and rice production. The agricultural sector is also an end user for electricity and transportation fuels and should be considered also the huge amount of energy needed for pesticides and fertilizers production and their negative impact on environment. Agriculture is a part of the global carbon cycle because agricultural practices and land use change alter the amount of carbon stored in plant matter and soil and, consequently, the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere. Biomass from the agricultural sector can be used besides to displace fossil fuels for energy purposes, increasing the share of emissions Agriculture interacts with the climate system also in other ways that are not related to GHG emissions or storage, for example, by changing the amount of heat absorbed or reflected by the earth’s surface. The impact of agriculture even if is smaller compared to other more pollutant activities has to be kept in calculation because agricultural land, which includes cropland, managed grassland, and permanent crops, occupies about 40-50 percent of the world’s total land surface. Agriculture accounts for 60 percent of global N2O emissions and 50 percent of CH4 emissions. With appropriate policies, each of these well-known sources of GHG can be mitigated to some extent. A combination of population growth and changing diets has led to increased emissions of these gases from the agricultural sector since at least 1990. This increase can be attributed to the increased use of nitrogen-based fertilizers and the increased number of livestock being raised, especially cattle. Future trends forecast an increase of the impact of the agro activities due to population growth, changing diets, and changing standards of living that will continue to affect even more the amount and type of food demanded. Recent years have also seen greater interest in and demand for dedicated energy crops. These trends have several possible implications : 

Increasing land use change to increase the amount of cropland available for food or energy crops will affect carbon storage. An expansion of croplands could result in an overall loss of plant and soil carbon.

Increasing crop yields will likely require larger amounts of inputs, such as water and fertilizer, for a given unit of land. Increasing agricultural inputs will result in higher emissions because more energy will be required to produce the inputs and direct emissions from fertilizer use.

Increasing demand for meat and dairy products will increase methane emissions from enteric fermentation and manure production.

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According to this scenario a business as usual agriculture is not applicable on global scale for future generations so integrated development strategies has to be implemented in industrialized and developing countries to guarantee a sustainable agricultural development. About 90% of the potential for C mitigation could be achieved through C sink enhancement and ca 10% from emissions reductions. The largest mitigation potential lies in cropland management, grazing land management and the restoration of cultivated organic soils and degraded lands.

2.5.1.2

Agriculture risks induced by climate change

Agriculture will also be affected in a variety of ways as temperatures rise and precipitation patterns change. The impacts of climate change on agriculture will vary by crop, across regions, and through time. Since the linkages between climate and agriculture are dynamic, the impacts of the climate on agriculture will in turn alter the way agriculture affects the climate providing a difficult predictable feedback. Weather is an important production factor in agriculture and is a major source of uncertainty for farmers. Perhaps the most obvious impact of weather risk is on crop yields, but its relevance is not limited to crop production. The performance of livestock farms, the turnover of processors, the use of chemicals and fertilizers and the demand for many food products also depend on the weather. Climate change is also likely to impact on agricultural genetic resources. For example, impacts on the distributions of crop wild relatives (themselves bearers of genes potentially critical for adaptation) are predicted to be significant, with 18% of species in important crop genepools likely to become extinct by 2050. Additionally, farmers may drop traditional landraces no longer adapted to the local climate, resulting in genetic erosion and a lowering of the diversity in crop genepools. Climate change impacts on agriculture could be roughly divided into two groups: biophysical impacts: physiological effects on crops, pasture, forests and livestock (quantity, quality); changes in land, soil and water resources (quantity, quality); increased weed and pest challenges; shifts in spatial and temporal distribution of impacts; sea level rise, changes of salinity; socio-economic impacts: decline in yields and production; reduced marginal GDP from agriculture; fluctuations in world market prices; changes in geographical distribution of trade regimes; increased number of people at risk of hunger and food insecurity; migration and civil unrest.

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The existing variations between predictions generated by different models, and according to different time horizons, are an important factor when considering impacts. However, a broad set of expected impacts in climate variables can be described as follows: • An increase in mean temperature (1-7°C) by 2100 depending on the region, • In most regions a higher increase in temperatures in the summer and autumn • Wetter winters and dryer summers • Decrease in average precipitation due in particular to decline in summer rainfall in Southern Europe, • Increased frequency of hot, dry summers, • Increased frequency of mild, wet winters, • Sea level rises in may cause particular problems in some regions, •Potential increased frequency of extreme events such as hail, storms, heat waves and droughts. Across Europe, the south-east regions and Mediterranean areas are considered the most vulnerable. These changes are likely to have downstream economic and social effects, exacerbated in more sensitive areas where agricultural or forestry activities are already marginal (e.g. Alpine area). They might also bring pressure in northern countries to increase production to compensate for decreases in production elsewhere. Changes in mean temperatures, precipitation patterns, increased climate variability and extreme events affect a number of physical and biological processes that intervene in agriculture systems. It is likely that the slightly warmer winters will be the most influential over the longer term. In the short term, the increased frequency of extreme events could be more important than the change in mean climate variables. In terms of the downstream impacts on agriculture, there is a mix depending on the specific region. By the way there are a series of potential positive impacts: • more efficient use of water in plants (under elevated CO2 concentrations), • CO2 fertilisation of plants, • longer growing seasons (Northern Europe), • new cropping opportunities (Northern Europe), • some pests and diseases may be reduced. Potential negative impacts are much more likely and overwhelming especially in south Europe : • increased water deficit in temperate and semi-arid regions, due to changes in summer precipitations, which may lead to lack of water for irrigation and reduced soil moisture content, • soil-compaction and cracking in relation to lack of water, • loss of soil carbon content, • mineralization of soil carbon due to temperature increase, __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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• increase of CO2- and CH4-emissions from permafrost soils, • heat stress will affect crop yields and livestock activities • changes in pests and diseases requiring, for example, increased pesticides input • increased night frost damage, • sea level rise-related changes in some coastal areas, such as loss of land and salinisation, • increased short-term natural extremes such as storms and droughts frequency, which may lead to crop damage and soil erosion, • less cropping opportunities in some regions (Southern Europe). There is an expectation that the climatic suitability of crops will generally be moving northwards as a result of these impacts. This movement can be attributed to the changes in temperature, changes in rainfall distribution over time and an increased variability in climate patterns in general. Many regions will face a combination of these potential impacts and adaptive measures will have to be prioritized. However, the degree of uncertainty over the impact of climate change is such that the necessary steps might be unclear and it is likely that more crop failures will be experienced. The results of such impact could be extremely dangerous starting from loss of biodiversity, agrobiodiversity, field yield, soil degradation arriving in a macro scale where could be possible the loss of resource and the consequent increase of hunger and insecurity. The most troubling finding of many studies on climate change impacts is that the response patterns are highly localized. Drastically different responses can occur within a few kilometres of one another. Recommendations for adaptation to climate change cannot, therefore, be regional and must be made locally specific. Much can be done by using farmers’ knowledge of variation in the past to adapt to future extreme events valorising the tradition and culture of every location. Magnitude and impact of climate change on agricultural systems is still not fully understood, innovations has to be carried out today so that farmers can better avoid risk avoiding an uncertain tomorrow. Given the local-scale heterogeneity in predicted climate change impacts, the research challenges lie in ensuring that the most appropriate technologies, practices and risk-avoidance strategies get to the individual farmers. Climate change poses the question of risks for food security both globally and for marginal or vulnerable agroecological zones. Change in water runoff by 2050 is expected to be considerable as well. Some regions will have up to 20% less runoff, while others will experience increases of the same order, and only few countries will have similar conditions as at present. This will worsen soil degradation and desertification process enhancing all the problems for farmers and environment. Improving water use efficiency, adapting to the risks related to topography, and changing the timing of farming operations are some examples of adaptation that will be required.

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Climate is a principle factor of soil development and drives major soil-forming processes including transformation, accumulation and transport of substances that result in the diversity of soil types on the Earth. Halting soil degradation will therefore also reduce emissions. Even better, rehabilitating degraded soils by restoring their fertility and increasing their soil organic carbon (SOC) levels would thus not only benefit farmers directly: soils could act as a carbon sink until they are restored. Changes in land use, especially those associated with agriculture, have negatively affected the net ability of ecosystems to sequester carbon. For instance the carbon rich grasslands and forests in temperate zones have been replaced by crops with much lower capacity to sequester carbon. Agriculture as we see is on the front line, between its role in GHG emission and the potential danger that climate change will place to the farmers. What we will try to focus on the following parts is how to implement adaptation strategies that at the same time could be part of a mitigation process providing direct benefit to farmers and reducing emission. The consequent step will be the scaling up moving into the landscape unit, providing an adaptation tool which can be multifunctional and effective for local exigencies.

2.5.2 Adaptation Even under the most optimistic emission scenarios, we are already facing a certain level of climate change and related impacts. The strong trends in climate change already evident, the likelihood of further changes occurring, and the increasing scale of potential climate impacts give urgency to addressing agricultural adaptation more coherently. Adaptation to climate change is not an option is a necessity, mitigation and adaptation are to be seen as a ‘co-exercise’ and even if there is a huge level of uncertainty, could not be delayed any more an action plan at local level. According to the literature, adaptation refers to practices, policies and projects with the effect of moderating damages and/or realizing opportunities associated with climate change, including climate variability and extremes, and sea level rise. The IPCC defines adaptation as ‘Initiatives and measures to reduce the vulnerability of natural and human systems against actual or expected climate change effects. Various types of adaptation exist, e.g. anticipatory and reactive, private and public, autonomous or planned’. Key definition provided by the IPCC 2007 reports are: Vulnerability : is the degree to which a system is susceptible to, and unable to cope with, adverse effects of climate change, including climate variability and extremes. Vulnerability is a function of the character, magnitude and rate of climate change and variation to which a system is exposed, its sensitivity, and its adaptive capacity. Resilience: is the ability of such system to absorb disturbances while retaining the same basic structure and ways of functioning

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Adaptation to climate change takes place through adjustments to reduce vulnerability or enhance resilience in response to observed or expected changes in climate and associated extreme weather events. Adaptation occurs in physical, ecological and human systems. It involves changes in social and environmental processes, perceptions of climate risk, practices and functions to reduce potential damages or to realise new opportunities. Adaptations include anticipatory and reactive actions, private and public initiatives, and can relate to projected changes in temperature and current climate variations and extremes that may be altered with climate change. In practice, adaptations tend to be on-going processes, reflecting many factors or stresses, rather than discrete measures to address climate change specifically. Adaptive capacity is the ability or potential of a system to respond successfully to climate variability and change, and includes adjustments in both behaviour and in resources and technologies. There is a huge difference between adaptation in agriculture, where several researches were carried out and other sector that are not so well organized and prepared to future emergencies. In agriculture several potential adaptation responses have already been well explored. It is also important to note that there is some autonomous adaptive capacity at the regional and in particular at the farm level, triggered already today by weather or climate variability. These autonomous adaptations include, for example decisions regarding infrastructure, irrigation or choice of crops. Proactive adaptation options have been identified and include: 

changes in breeding programmes to develop better drought and heat resistant varieties,

plans for more effective use of irrigation. However, in most cases this would accentuate water stress, with climate change-related water shortage adding tension to such an approach, and in many areas water-use for irrigation is already environmentally unsustainable,

shift away from autumn sowing, where feasible,

new crops and new management techniques e.g. requiring less water, monitor soil changes and develop land management practices to adapt to these changes,

monitor pests and diseases and develop sustainable farming practice that minimizes susceptibility to pests and diseases e.g. by practicing land rotations and avoiding monocultures,

minimum tillage techniques,

changing field design to increase ground cover in some cases, expanded field margins,

suitable upland farm or land management is important so that upland areas are used to slow run off and reduce peak water flows,

putting back natural features such as hedgerows to help reduce erosion,

It has to be considered that all the potential adaptive measures are not appropriate everywhere and need to be assessed at the appropriate spatial level.

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Decisions about options have to be taken with due consideration to the contributions that the agriculture and forestry sector make to the mitigation agenda, and also to other environmental services, such as biodiversity. Some views among stakeholders are that a more thorough analysis of climate change and its expected impacts on agriculture and forestry needs to be undertaken to underscore robust proposals and strategies for adaptation in these two important sectors, although it must be stressed that this should not be a deterrent for delaying action. Farmers are masters in adapting to changing environmental conditions because this has been their business for thousands of years. This is a knowledge base farmers will need to maintain and improve, even if climate change may pose challenges that go beyond problems tackled in the past, for this reason involving stakeholders in adaptation and risk management processes is the key. Preparing agriculture for adaptation to climate change requires advance knowledge of how climate will change and when. The direct physical and biological impacts on plants and animals must be understood. The indirect impacts on agriculture's resource base of soils, water and genetic resources must also be known. We lack such information now and will, likely, for some time to come. Thus impact assessments for agriculture can only be conjectural at this time. How-ever, guidance can be gotten from an improved understanding of current climatic vulnerabilities of agriculture and its resource base, from application of a realistic range of climate change scenarios to impact assessment, and from consideration of the complexity of current agricultural systems and the range of adaptation techniques and policies now available and likely to be available in the future. There are many potential adaptation options available for marginal change of existing CLIMATE CHANGE PROBABLE IMPACTS Heatwaves Storms

agricultural systems, often variations of existing climate risk management. Implementation of these options is likely to have substantial

Increased sea surface temparature

benefits under moderate climate change for

Variation of marine currents

some cropping systems. However, there are

Variation of hydrological regimes

limits to their effectiveness under more severe

Floods

climate

Droughts

changes in resource allocation need to be

Landslide

considered, such as targeted diversification of

Submersion Salinisation of water table and soil Table 7 list of possible climate change impacts

changes.

Hence,

more

systemic

production systems and livelihoods. Because adaptation is very site and content specific and needs to deliver benefits where the impacts occur, every country has to determine

its own adaptation priorities. Specific activities, research and development has to be carried out according to the European union and they have been organized into four categories: information and knowledge (Give to all member states and potential candidate the right __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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information on climate change issues and strategy management , research on potential impact and improve communication and knowledge transfer between states, identifying stakeholder and create training programmes), planning processes (understanding how to achieve a more integrated approach to land management that would take into account adaptation and mitigation needs and at the same time other sectors, no regret measures), economic stimuli (cost of inaction , benefit of action, incentives), and risk and disaster management (risk management tool). In other sector outside agriculture little scientific research was done on climate change adaptation options, but several activities will be influenced by adverse weather condition, e.g. rain increase precipitation could afflict road and transportation or a more probability of landslide could make unsafe urban areas, flood will be more and more frequent, fires will be chronic issue just to speak of some of them. A further element of instability is that also several insurance company are worried to not be able to cover in a near future the costs of weather damages. The development of an EU research agenda on adaptation to Climate Change has been initiated and research on adaptation will play a bigger role in near future policy and actions, many disciplines and sectors are and will be more affected/involved. This requires integration and cooperation to reduce risks of fragmentation and more effective use of resources because adaptation should be considered within the ‘triangle’ mitigation, socioeconomic development and adaptation. Key topics identified at institutional level in the EU for the development of a roadmap for research on adaptation to Climate Change: -Improvement of the information base and analysis of climate change impacts; -Limits to resilience, thresholds and points of ‘no return’ in human systems and ecosystems; -Costs and benefits of adaptation and the global dimension; -Support to governance at implementation level; -Comparative analysis of developed adaptation strategies with regard to support or constraints at EU, national, regional and local level. Adaptation has a cost and often requires investments in infrastructure. Therefore, where resource endowments are already thin, adverse impacts may be multiplied by the lack of resources to respond. An adaptation programme is a process, a plan, or an approach for addressing climate change impacts that is broader than the scope of an individual project The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) provides that all Parties must formulate and implement national or regional programmes containing measures to facilitate adequate adaptation to climate change (Art. 4.1 b). It lists specific domains in particular need of adaptation, namely coastal zones, water resources, agriculture, and areas affected by drought and desertification, as well as floods.

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We argue that achieving increased adaptation action will necessitate integration of climate change-related issues with other risk factors, such as climate variability and market risk, and with other policy domains, such as sustainable development. Dealing with the many barriers to effective adaptation will require a comprehensive and dynamic policy approach covering a range of scales and issues, for example, from the understanding by farmers of change in risk profiles to the establishment of efficient markets that facilitate response strategies. Science, too, has to adapt. Multidisciplinary problems require multidisciplinary solutions, i.e., a focus on integrated rather than disciplinary science and a strengthening of the interface with decision makers. A crucial component of this approach is the implementation of adaptation assessment frameworks that are relevant, robust, and easily operated by all stakeholders, practitioners, policymakers, and scientists. Considering the specificity of problems connected whit climate change the best way to create an adaptation strategy is following two paths, one bottom up which can develop and conserve local tradition of adaptation and that strictly tied in the territory can improve local strategies for preserve environment and safety of the people living there. The other aspect is top down, where the European Community, the national state and region, knowing the specificity (detected during the bottom up projects) of their region, the risks and the possible scenarios develop a policy and a more comprehensive strategy of adaptation. Summarizing , we can say that the most affected area in Europe will be south eastern Europe (the Mediterranean region) and the potential impact of Climate Change (at least in the beginning ) is higher in sectors which rely on ecosystem services, water availability and climatic conditions, such as agriculture and forestry, fisheries and aquaculture, energy and tourism which are important sustaining sectors of the Adriatic area, so they will be the first sectors to protect . Planned adaptation measures will therefore be needed to provide a multi-sectoral approach also in all the other sectors, aimed at improving the resilience of the natural and economic system and/or facilitating specific adaptation, often with a medium- and long-term approach. Public action will also target the production of public goods and the provision of a level playing field for information on climate vulnerability and on costs and benefits of adaptation options

2.5.3 Mitigation and carbon sink option To face the risks that climate change is placing to our society is necessary to implement and spread in many areas and ways the best technologies and practices that could in some way slacken the emission of GHG into the atmosphere. This process is called mitigation and has to be carried out simultaneously whit adaptation practices as suggested

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by the IPCC. The objective to pursue in the short time is the reduction of GHG gas emission and this can be obtained through: 1. Improving the efficiency of energy use 2. Reducing the emissions per unit of energy consumption. By the way to get concrete results in reasonable time scale the mitigation capacity has to be implemented in policy, technology, research even in the following fields : 1. CO2 from energy and industry. 2. CO2 from land-use change. 3. The full basket of non-CO2 emissions from all relevant sources. Anthropogenic emissions between 1850 and 2006 are estimated at ~ 330 Pg C due to fossil fuel combustion and cement manufacture, and an additional 158 Pg from land use change and soil cultivation. Furthermore, the emissions due to fossil fuel combustion have increased constantly during the last years. Consequently, the atmospheric concentration of CO2 in January 2010 of 388 ppm is the highest since several million years (NOAA). It is clear that human activities are unsustainable and emissions of pollutant in atmosphere has to be reduced but the pollutant already present in the air will be effective and dangerous for several years, so should be developed a parallel strategy able to sequester them into a stable sink. This is roughly what mitigation is, a double side medal composed by reduction of emission and sequestration of actual GHG (mainly CO2) which has to be implemented together and in parallel whit adaptation strategies. This process of sequestration is far to be the solution to climate change but it is a necessary and primary step to take into a broader politic of responsibility that will be one key aspect of our near future. Complicating this scenario, are the costs of mitigation practices, which will actually influence costs of economy and of technology productions and the will to implement them world wide. By the way without entering into the complicate international relationships existing on climate change issues, where extremely different positions and need are too often incompatible, the difficult of mitigation is enhanced by the role of other GHG, such as methane or nitrogen oxide. An efficient policy of mitigation has to consider the emission of all the GHGs and try to reduce them in an effective way , which can be sufficient to guarantee the standard of safety to stop the temperature rise before an extreme threshold (acknowledged as 2째C). Mitigation can be achieved through several measures, efficiency, energy saving, market prices adjustments, emission credit scheme or GHG sequestration (through land management or through technology research). There are several concrete and relative cost efficient options to implement mitigation in agriculture one of this is changes in land management practices and soil, as we will see, has an enormous potential for carbon sequestration among this possibility but also other means are possible and suitable. Agricultural N2O and CH4 mitigation opportunities include, between the other, also proper application of nitrogen fertilizer, effective manure management and use of feed that increases livestock digestive efficiency. To date, there is __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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little policy or legislation that recognizes the ability of the agricultural sector to provide GHG reductions through mitigation of N2O and CH4 and that provides positive incentives for farmers to adopt more sustainable practices. Mitigation opportunities can be identified from each of the four types of interactions that agriculture has with the climate system. A wide range of options exist, but with different levels of technical feasibility, cost-effectiveness, and measurement certainty. A number of the mitigation options for the agricultural sector, including soil management practices, also bring a variety of co-benefits, such as improved water quality and reduced erosion. To date, a number of policies thought to have climate benefits have been pursued in order to achieve one or more of these co-benefits. These measures are: 

Reduce GHG emissions 

Reduce GHG emissions from energy use: Energy-related GHG emissions from the

agricultural sector can be reduced in a number of ways, including the use of more fuelefficient machinery and the installation of on-site renewable energy systems. 

More efficient fertilizer use: Increasing the efficiency of nitrogen use reduces the

need for additional fertilizer inputs. This can be achieved by fertilizing during the most appropriate period for plant uptake, fertilizing below the soil surface, and balancing nitrogen fertilizers with other nutrients that can stimulate more efficient update. 

Improve manure management: When manure is held in an oxygen-poor (anaerobic)

environment for an extended period of time, bacteria decompose this material and release methane as a by-product. Reducing the moisture content and the amount of storage time are two options for reducing methane emissions from manure. 

Improved animal feed management : Facilitating the digestive process for livestock

such as using easy-to-digest feed can reduce methane emissions from enteric fermentation. 

Improved rice cultivation practices: When rice paddies are flooded, the oxygen-poor

(anaerobic) environment allows certain bacteria to create methane through a process called methanogenesis. Periodically draining rice paddies can inhibit this process. 

Increase vegetation and soil carbon stocks 

Land-use changes to increase soil carbon: Reforestation and afforestation initiatives

can increase the amount of biomass in a given area of land, thereby sequestering carbon in plant material. 

Land management practices that increase soil carbon: A variety of land

management practices can be implemented to increase soil carbon. These include conservative agriculture, agroforestry, the efficient use of manures, nitrogen fertilizers, and irrigation. 

Substitute biomass feedstocks and products for fossil fuels

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The use of bio-based products as fuels and product substitutes has the potential to reduce fossil fuel combustion and associated GHG emissions. However, careful lifecycle analysis is necessary to determine the positive effects for GHG emissions. 

Non-GHG related climate interactions Less attention has been given to options that do not affect GHG emissions, but studies suggested that crops could be bred (or engineered) to be more reflective to solar energy.

Key aspects of the agricultural sector’s climate interactions involve complex biological processes. These processes continue to be studied by scientists to fill gaps in our understanding of how these processes work and to reduce the uncertainty associated with current data on GHG fluxes from agricultural systems. Although the agricultural sector is sometimes identified as having a potentially large role in mitigating climate change, especially by increasing carbon storage in developing countries, further scientific advances will be necessary for the agricultural sector to achieve its full mitigation potential . Soil is one of the key life support systems responsible for the performance of major ecological functions and holds twice as much organic carbon as vegetation. The stock of organic carbon MITIGATI ON

LAND DEGRAD ATION

present

in

natural

soils

represents a dynamic balance between the input of dead plant material and loss from decomposition

SOIL BIODIVE RSITY

INCREAS E SOIL ORGANIC MATTER

carbon sequestration

(mineralization). In aerobic soil conditions, most of the carbon entering soil is labile and only a very small fraction of what enters the soil accumulates in the stable, humic fraction

FOOD SECURIT Y

INCREAS E PLANT PRODUC TIVITY

Within a EU context, the role of soils in the temperate and boreal regions is critical. Soil in the EU contains about 71 GtC in the upper 0.3 m layer and

Figure 3 The possible advantages of soil carbon 140 ±14 GtC to a depth of 1.0 m. sequestration is highly correlated whit many important This value is 7% of global total. activities and functions The capacity of land sink has globally progressively declined, probably due to an increase in the extent and severity of desertification and degradation of world soils and ecosystems. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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Soil management has a large impact on soil carbon. Under the Kyoto Protocol Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), deliberate land management actions that enhance the uptake of carbon dioxide (CO2) or reduce its emissions have the potential to remove a significant amount of CO2 from the atmosphere in the short and medium term. The quantities involved may be large enough to satisfy a portion of the Kyoto Protocol commitments for some countries (but are not large enough to stabilize atmospheric concentrations without additional major reductions in fossil fuel consumption). Carbon sequestration options or sinks that include land-use changes (LUCs) can be deployed relatively rapidly at moderate cost and could play a useful bridging role while new energy technologies are being developed. A challenge remains to find a commonly agreed and scientifically sound methodological framework and equitable ways of accounting for carbon sinks. These should encourage and reward activities that increase the amount of C stored in terrestrial ecosystems but at the same time avoid rewarding inappropriate activities or inaction. Collateral issues, such as the effects of LUC on biodiversity and on the status of land degradation, should be addressed simultaneously with the issue of carbon sequestration in order to exploit potential synergies between the goals of UNCBD, UNCCD, UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol. Such measures would also improve local food security and alleviate rural poverty (FAO, 2004). Measures directed towards effective management of soil carbon are available and identified, and many of these are feasible and relatively inexpensive to implement. It may be possible to increase the rate at which ecosystems remove CO2 from the atmosphere and store the carbon in plant material, decomposing detritus, and organic soil. In essence, forests, cropland and other productive ecosystems can become biological scrubbers by removing (sequestering) CO2 from the atmosphere. Much of the current interest in carbon sequestration has been prompted by suggestions that sufficient lands are available to use sequestration for mitigating significant shares of annual CO2 emissions, and related claims that this approach provides a relatively inexpensive means of addressing climate change. Reducing atmospheric CO2, that is sequestering carbon , can take place three ways:  carbon production or trapping carbon within plants. The more permanent vegetation that is present, the more CO2 is required (pyhto-sequestration) .  minimizing organic carbon mineralization. That means managing crops and soil to reduce conditions that break down or oxidize organic matter -- letting plant material decompose more slowly and naturally (land management).  reducing soil erosion and keeping carbon trapped in the soil. Eroded soil is exposed soil -and exposed carbon (soil carbon sink). When it comes to managing soil for organic matter and carbon sequestration, there is no single practice that works alone to enhance soil function, and no prescribed set of practices can work everywhere. The goal is to improve soil organic matter and soil function everywhere croplands, pastures, and woodlands. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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The most often recommended practices include some familiar strategies and some not so familiar. Using higher residue cover crops and rotations, such as oats and hay, creates larger volumes of plant biomass and stores more carbon in the soil. And less soil disturbance means less erosion. Some of the best candidates include a high-biomass crop rotation and cover crops, residue management (mulch-till, no-till, strip-till), compaction prevention, and rotational grazing. Changes in soil properties and environmental quality as management changes could make appear benefits in several ways. The first is improved soil structure, with surface structure becoming more stable and less prone to crusting and erosion. Water infiltration could improve, meaning less surface runoff. As soil organic matter increases, soil water and nutrient capacity increases significantly. And crops will fare better during drought because infiltration and water holding capacity have improved. Also, organic matter and the associated soil biological population will increase in vigour and numbers with more diverse crop rotations. Organic matter also may bind pesticides, suppress disease organisms, and improve crop health and strength as soil biological activity and diversity increase. Improvements can be expected in air quality as dust, allergens, and pathogens in the air decline; in water quality as sediment and nutrient loads decline in surface water from better soil aggregation; and in agricultural productivity. Wildlife habitat also is improved with higher residue levels. The concept is real, and we should expect more dialogue and attention not less, about the issue worldwide. The carbon and greenhouse gas balances of soil are also affected by land use. A change from one land use to another induces changes in the balances. For example, afforestation of an agricultural field usually results in accumulation of soil carbon. In addition, changes in land management practices within the same land use type, such as new forestry practices or changed cultivation methods, cause changes in the carbon and greenhouse gas balances. Land use management is thus a way to control the carbon and greenhouse gas balance of soil. Land use decisions can be used to combat the adverse effects of climate change or promote the favourable ones. In addition, land management can be an option to mitigate climate change if more carbon can be accumulated in soil or greenhouse gas emissions from soil can be decreased. As we can see from the examples in table in Europe there are different situation of soil monitoring station and consequently prevention strategy is afflicted by reperibility of data. N : actual monitoring sites Italy Slovenia

341 468

n1:number of sites needed to detect a relative decrease of5% 1331 850

additional sites needed 990 382

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In contrast to other monitoring programmes, soil carbon monitoring deals with a global problem. As most countries have not yet chosen or fixed a methodology, there is a considerable scope for harmonization of soil carbon monitoring. A systematic and harmonized monitoring across EU27 would allow for adequate representation of changes in soil carbon in reporting emissions from soils and sequestration in soils to the UNFCCC. Despite significant economic potential for GHG mitigation through agricultural carbon sequestration, there are many barriers that could prevent the implementation of these measures. These have recently been reviewed by Smith et al, Trines Economic barriers include the cost of land, competition for land, continued poverty, lack of existing capacity, low price of carbon, population growth, transaction and monitoring costs. Risk related barriers include the delay on returns due to slow system responses, issues of permanence (of carbon sinks) and issues concerning leakage and natural variation in carbon sink strength. Political and bureaucratic barriers include the slow land planning bureaucracy, the complexity and lack of clarity in carbon greenhouse gas accounting, lack of political will. logistical barriers considered by Trines et al. (2006) were the fact that land owners are often scattered and have very different interests, that large areas are unmanaged, the managed areas can be inaccessible and some areas are not biologically suitable. Education / societal barriers relate to the sector and legislation governing it being very new, stakeholder perceptions and the persistence of traditional practices. Competition with other land uses is a barrier that necessitates a comprehensive consideration of mitigation potential for the land-use sector. It is important that forestry and agricultural land management options are considered within the same framework to optimise mitigation solutions. Costs of verification and monitoring could be reduced by clear guidelines on how to measure, report and verify GHG emissions from agriculture. Transaction costs, on the other hand, will be more difficult to address. The process of passing the money and obligations back and forth between those who realise the carbon sequestration and the investors or those who wish to acquire the carbon benefits, involves substantial transaction costs, which increases with the number of landholders involved. Organisations such as farmers’ collectives may help to reduce this significant barrier by drawing on the value of social capital. Farmers are in touch with each other, through local organisations, magazines or community meetings, providing forums for these groups to set up consortia of interested forefront players. For a number of practices, especially those involving carbon sequestration, risk related barriers such as delay on returns and potential for leakage and sink reversal, can be significant barriers. Education, emphasising the long term nature of the sink, could help to overcome this barrier, but fiscal policies (guaranteed markets, risk insurance) might also be required. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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Education / societal barriers affect many practices in many regions. There is often a societal preference for traditional farming practices and, where mitigation measures alter traditional practice radically (not all practices do), education and extension would help to reduce some of the barriers to implementation. A significant barrier to implementation of mitigation measures in poorer parts of Europe is economics. Given the challenges many farmers in these regions already face, climate change mitigation may be a low priority. Capacity building and education in the use of innovative technologies and best management practices would also serve to reduce barriers. Maximizing the productivity of existing agricultural land and applying best management practices would help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Ideally agricultural mitigation measures need to be considered within a broader framework of sustainable development. Policies to encourage sustainable development will make agricultural mitigation more achievable. The UK’s Stern Review warns that unless we take action in the next 10-20 years, the environmental damage caused by climate change later in the century could cost between 5 and 20% of global GDP every year. The barriers to implementation of mitigation actions need to be overcome if we are to realise even a proportion of the global agricultural climate mitigation potential. In both environmental and economic terms, we cannot afford not to act strongly and quickly. However, the main drawback of LULUCF activities is their potential reversibility and nonpermanence of carbon stocks as a result of human activities, (with the release of GHG into the atmosphere), disturbances (e.g. forest fires or disease), or environmental change, including climate change and a potential sink saturation. Even though effective in reducing or slowing the build up of CO2 in the atmosphere, soil carbon sequestration is surely no ‘golden bullet’ alone to fight climate change due to the limited magnitude of its effect and its potential reversibility; it could, nevertheless, play an important role in climate mitigation alongside other measures, especially because of its immediate availability and relative low cost for 'buying' us time. The last consideration on carbon sequestration issue is that even whit the uncertainty it hold, can provide many beneficial effects on other quality of soil, biodiversity, landscape and risk reduction that has to be not underestimated.

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2.6 European directives or conventions involved For the potential candidate or candidate state, the IPA process is an unique occasion to adapt to European policies, to shape the national laws and increase awareness on many issues that have to be faced during the process of became a member of the EU. For the member states this occasion is as well useful because it could be used as a process of integration of many different policies and an improvement of the actual legislation. In the following paragraphs we briefly describe the main directives or conventions that could well be improved during the IPA process by member state or candidate country.

2.6.1 Soil directive proposal The European communities acknowledging the importance of the environment challenge of the soil management realized a series of studies, actions and projects to determine the status and the possible action to be implemented to preserve this resource. Soil as we described is subject to a series of degradation processes or threats. These include erosion, decline in organic matter, local and diffuse contamination, sealing, compaction, decline in biodiversity, salinisation, floods and landslides. A combination of some of these threats can ultimately lead arid or sub-arid climatic conditions to desertification. Given the importance of soil relating to climate change, food production, biodiversity and human health is needed a further prevention of soil degradation, for these reasons the Sixth Environment Action Programme called for the development of a Thematic Strategy on Soil Protection . Soil degradation is a serious problem in Europe. It is driven or exacerbated by human activities such as inadequate agricultural and forestry practices, industrial activities, tourism, urban and industrial sprawl and construction works. These activities have a negative impact, preventing the soil from performing its broad range of functions and services to humans and ecosystems. This results in loss of soil fertility, carbon and biodiversity, lower water-retention capacity, disruption of gas and nutrient cycles and reduced degradation of contaminants. Soil degradation has a direct impact on water and air quality, biodiversity and climate change. It can also impair the health of European citizens and threaten food and feed safety. The European Commission has recently adopted the Thematic Strategy on the protection of soil and its accompanying proposal for a Soil Framework Directive. This is a strategy to ensure that Europe’s soils remain healthy and capable of supporting human activities and ecosystems. Member States have to identify the areas in their national territory where there is a decisive evidence ground for suspicion that the following soil degradation has occurred or is likely to occur: erosion by water or wind, organic matter decline, compaction, salinisation and landslides. Climate change is identified for all of these threats as a common element for the identification of areas at risk.

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In this Thematic Strategy, the European Commission has announced that it “will build a robust approach to address the interaction between soil protection and climate change from the viewpoints of research, economy and rural development so that policies in these areas are mutually supportive”. It includes a proposal for a Soil Framework Directive aiming at strengthening, among other things, the role of soil in climate change mitigation. In fact, soil as a carbon pool is explicitly mentioned as a soil function that should be preserved. It is on this background that the Commission intends to assess the actual contribution of the protection of soil to climate change mitigation and the effects of climate change on soil productivity and the possible depletion of soil organic matter as result of climate change. The main information sources were the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 4th Assessment Report and other (supra)national assessment reports, published literature, national and European reports and documents, results from ongoing national and European projects and expert knowledge. The European commission quantified the risk of soil degradation in an economic point of view and even if the data are incomplete or some component is not well analyzed, the results are absolutely interesting and costs are extremely high, this is one of the reason, together whit environment, human and food safety why it is necessary to develop a common European strategy in soil protection.7 The Communication ‘Towards a Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection’ (COM 2002/179 final) paved the way towards a common EU soil policy. In addition, the Commission commented on the inter-relationship of soil protection with other areas of Community policy (the Nitrates Directive and Water Framework Directive, the Air Quality Directive, the Common Agricultural Policy, Transport Policy and Research Policy). Hence, attention is also paid to measures already taken by and within Member States to evaluate the current integration of soil protection objectives into several areas of EU policy. A Proposal for a ‘Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing a framework for the protection of soil and amending Directive, 2004/35/EC’ was presented by the Commission on the 22nd of September 2006. The aim of the Directive is to ensure the protection of soil, based on the principles of preservation of soil functions, prevention of soil degradation, mitigation of its effects, restoration of degraded soils and integration into other sectoral policies by establishing a common framework and actions. The objective of the contract is to carry out an analysis of certain measures adopted by the Member States (EU-25) in plans and programmes pursuant to Community and international legislation including the Water Framework Directive (WFD), Cross Compliance (CC) und United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).

7

IMPACT ASSESSMENT OF THE THEMATIC STRATEGY ON SOIL PROTECTION {COM(2006)231 final

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The variety of functions, the difficulty to define soil quality standards due to the variability and complexity of soils, the specific features of soils and the range of degradation processes to which they are subject, require a comprehensive approach to soil protection based on the general objective of preservation of soil functions rather than soil quality standards. Consequently, the guiding principles for the protection of soil are: (1) Preventing further soil degradation and preserving its functions: – When soil is used and its functions are exploited, action has to be taken on soil use and management patterns – When soil acts as a sink/receptor of the effects of human activities or environmental phenomena, action has to be taken at source. (2) Restoring degraded soils to a level of functionality consistent at least with current and intended use, thus also considering the cost implications of the restoration of soil. Most of the soil threats represent risks in specific areas. These are linked to natural conditions (climate, topography, soil type etc.) and to human activities. Identification of different risk areas and contaminated sites within the EU territory will therefore be necessary as a first step, followed by the setting of risk reduction targets and adoption of measures to achieve such targets and the overall general objectives. In particular, the Council: • underlined the need for appropriate Community action to protect soil and provide for its sustainable use. It should take already existing Community policies and measures and subsidiarity appropriately into account; • considered that the proper functioning of the single market may require also a common approach to soil policy, in so far as its protection and remediation at all relevant levels may also affect competitiveness. • requested the Commission to bring forward the Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection, based on an integrated approach and with a comprehensive and long-term perspective with a view to maintain the vital functions of the soil, which should include where appropriate relevant qualitative and quantitative targets and timetables, general principles for assessing and managing the threats, as well as identify actions for its implementation, including appropriate sustainable use and soil protection measures. It should also consider the possible long distance degradation effects of some human actions including inappropriate soil management, in particular through water and air pollution. The Commission believes that important reasons call for an intervention at EU level, as: Soil degradation affects other environmental areas for which Community legislation exists. Failure to protect soil will undermine sustainability and long-term competitiveness in Europe Distortion of the functioning of the internal market

the wide differences between

national soil protection regimes, in particular as regards soil contamination, sometimes impose very different obligations on economic operators, thus creating an unbalanced situation in their fixed costs. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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Impacts in other areas soil degradation has negative impacts on other areas also considered of common interest, such as quality of air and water, biodiversity and climate change. Transboundary impacts soil, though generally immobile, is not completely so and therefore degradation in one Member State or region can have transboundary consequences. Food safety uptake of contaminants in the soil by food and feed crops and some food producing animals can have an impact on the safety of products which are traded freely within the internal market by increasing their level of dangerous substances and, hence posing a risk to human or animal health. International dimension soil degradation is receiving increasing attention in international agreements and charters. By establishing an appropriate and coherent framework which will translate into better knowledge and management of soil, the EU can play a leading role internationally, facilitating the transfer of know-how and technical assistance whilst at the same time ensuring the competitiveness of their economies. The Community acquis has not hitherto sufficiently ensured soil protection although different Community policies can be expected to contribute to soil protection provisions concerned are fragmented and do not represent a coherent soil protection policy. All these reasons could make foresee a growing role of soil protection in international, European and national policy so it is important at the same time provide a bottom up approach which can provide more confidence on soil issues whit stakeholders.

2.6.2 Nitrate directives The European Union has introduced a series of measures designed to reduce and prevent water pollution caused or induced by nitrates from agricultural sources. These measures include the requirement to identify polluted zones and zones which contribute to pollution, as well as to establish codes of good practice and action programmes. Council Directive 91/676/EEC of 12 December 1991 concerning the protection of waters against pollution caused by nitrates from agricultural sources. This Directive (known as the "Nitrates Directive") is designed to protect the Community's waters against nitrates from agricultural sources, which are the main cause of water pollution from diffuse sources. Member States must identify, on their territory: surface waters and groundwater affected or liable to be affected by pollution, in accordance with the procedure and criteria set out in the Directive (in particular when nitrate concentrations in groundwater or surface waters exceed 50 mg/l); vulnerable zones which contribute to pollution. Member States must establish codes of good agricultural practice to be implemented by farmers on a voluntary basis, as defined in Annex II to the Directive. Member States must

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establish and implement action programmes for vulnerable zones. These must include the measures set out in the codes of good practice, as well as measures: 

to limit the application of any nitrogenous fertilisers to the soil;

to set limits for the spreading of livestock manure.

The Directive authorises Member States to take additional measures or to reinforce their action programmes in order to achieve the objectives of the Directive. Member States must monitor water quality, applying standardised reference methods to measure the nitrogen-compound content. Provisions for adapting the Annexes to scientific and technical progress are also included. Member States must report regularly to the Commission on the implementation of the Directive. Water pollution by nitrates has been made worse by the introduction of intensive farming methods, with increased use of chemical fertilisers and higher concentrations of animals in smaller areas. Nitrate pollution is causing problems in all Member States. The sources of nitrate pollution are diffuse (multiple discharges which are difficult to locate), and the main polluters - farms - are sensitive to anything which affects their economic viability. The 1980s saw a progressive worsening of the situation (nitrate concentrations in water rose by an average of around 1 mg/l per year) owing to the growth of intensive livestock farming in areas that were already saturated, and of intensive crop-growing involving the use of chemical weedkillers and overfertilisation.

2.6.3 Rural development policy The essential rules governing rural development policy for the period 2007 to 2013, as well as the policy measures available to Member States and regions, are set out in Council Regulation (EC) No. 1698/2005. Under this Regulation, rural development policy for 2007 to 2013 is focused on three themes (known as "thematic axes"). These are: 

improving the competitiveness of the agricultural and forestry sector;

improving the environment and the countryside;

improving the quality of life in rural areas and encouraging diversification of the rural economy.

To help ensure a balanced approach to policy, Member States and regions are obliged to spread their rural development funding between all three of these thematic axes. The European Union has an active rural development policy because this helps us to achieve valuable goals for our countryside and for the people who live and work there. The EU's rural areas are a vital part of its physical make-up and its identity. According to a standard definition, more than 91 % of the territory of the EU is "rural", and this area is home to more than 56 % of the EU's population. Furthermore, the EU's fantastic ranges of striking and beautiful landscapes are among the things that give it its character – from mountains to steppe, from great forests to rolling fields. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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2.6.4 Habitat The Habitats Directive (together with the Birds Directive) forms the cornerstone of Europe's nature conservation policy. It is built around two pillars: the Natura 2000 network of protected sites and the strict system of species protection. All in all the directive protects over 1.000 animals and plant species and over 200 so called "habitat types" (e.g. special types of forests, meadows, wetlands, etc.), which are of European importance.

2.6.5 Water framework directives On 23 October 2000, the ‘Directive 2000/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing a framework for the Community action in the field of water policy’, known as the Water Framework Directive (WFD), was adopted. It requires all inland and coastal waters to reach ‘good status’ by 2015. The Water Framework Directive establishes a River Basin management planning process. For each river-basin district (RBD), a River Basin management plan (RBMP) will be prepared, implemented and reviewed every six years. River Basin Characterisation, required by Article 5 of the Directive, is an important early part of this process; for each RBD, an analysis of the characteristics, a review of the impact of human activity on the status of the water bodies within the RBD, and an economic analysis of water use are required.

2.6.6 Bird directives Council Directive 79/409/EEC on the conservation of wild birds, commonly referred to as the Birds Directive, is the EU’s oldest piece of nature legislation and one of the most important, creating a comprehensive scheme of protection for all wild bird species naturally occurring in the Union. Its was adopted unanimously by the Members States in 1979 as a response to increasing concern about the declines in Europe's wild bird populations resulting from pollution, loss of habitats as well as unsustainable use. It was also in recognition that wild birds, many of which are migratory, are a shared heritage of the Member States and that their effective conservation required international co-operation. The directive recognises that habitat loss and degradation are the most serious threats to the conservation of wild birds. It therefore places great emphasis on the protection of habitats for endangered as well as migratory species, especially through the establishment of a coherent network of Special Protection Areas (SPAs) comprising all the most suitable territories for these species. Since 1994 all SPAs form an integral part of the NATURA 2000 ecological network. The Birds Directive bans activities that directly threaten birds, such as the deliberate killing or capture of birds, the destruction of their nests and taking of their eggs, and associated activities such as trading in live or dead birds, with a few exceptions (listed in Annex III - III/1 allows taking in all Member States; III/2 allows taking in Member States in __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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agreement with European Commission). The Directive recognises hunting as a legitimate activity and provides a comprehensive system for the management of hunting to ensure that this practice is sustainable. This includes a requirement to ensure that birds are not hunted during the periods of their greatest vulnerability, such as the return migration to the nesting areas, reproduction and the raising of chicks. It requires Member States to outlaw all forms of non-selective and large scale killing of birds. It promotes research to underpin the protection, management and use of all species of birds covered by the Directive .

2.6.7 Plant protection EU legislation regulates the marketing and use of plant protection products and their residues in food. Council concerning the placing of plant protection products on the market lays down rules and procedures for approval of the active substances at EU-level and for the authorisation at Member State level of plant protection products (PPPs) containing these substances. This Directive states that substances cannot be used in plant protection products unless they are included in a positive EU list. Once a substance is included in the positive list Member States may authorise the use of products containing them. Pesticides residues in food are regulated by Regulation (EC) No 396/2005. The legislation covers the setting, monitoring and control of pesticides residues in products of plant and animal origin that may arise from their use in plant protection. The maximum levels set are those consistent with good agricultural practice in Member States and third countries. The levels are set after an evaluation of any risks to consumers of different age groups and they are only set if they are considered safe. Nonetheless, MRLs exceedences are closely monitored, evaluated and communicated to the authorities in the Member States through the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed whenever there is a potential risk to consumers. Both Directive 91/414 on the placing on the market of plant protection products and Regulation 396/2005 on pesticide residues in food and feed aim at a high level of protection of human health and the environment.

2.6.8 European landscape convention The landscape is part of the land, as perceived by local people or visitors, which evolves through time as a result of being acted upon by natural forces and human beings. “Landscape policy� reflects the public authorities' awareness of the need to frame and implement a policy on landscape. The public is encouraged to take an active part in its protection, conserving and maintaining the heritage value of a particular landscape, in its management, helping to steer changes brought about by economic, social or environmental necessity, and in its planning, particularly for those areas most radically affected by change, such as peri-urban, industrial and coastal areas. The Convention sets great store by

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identifying and assessing landscapes through field research by professionals working in conjunction with local inhabitants. Each landscape forms a blend of components and structures: types of territories, social perceptions and ever-changing natural, social and economic forces. Once this identification work has been completed and the landscape quality objectives set, the landscape can be protected, managed or developed. The European Landscape Convention introduced a Europe-wide concept centring on the quality of landscape protection, management and planning and covering the entire territory, not just outstanding landscapes. Through its ground-breaking approach and its broader scope, it complements the Council of Europe’s and UNESCO’s heritage conventions.

2.6.9 CAP common agriculture policies Many important changes to the CAP were already made in the 1980s but, above all at the beginning of the 1990s. Production limits helped reduce surpluses (milk quotas in 1983). A new emphasis was then placed on environmentally sound farming. Farmers had to look more to the market place, while receiving direct income aid, and to respond to the public’s changing priorities . This shift of emphasis, which was acted in 1999 (the “Agenda 2000” reform) and which promotes the competitiveness of European agriculture, also included a major new element – a rural development policy encouraging many rural initiatives while also helping farmers to re-structure their farms, to diversify and to improve their product marketing. A ceiling was put on the budget to reassure taxpayers that CAP costs would not run out of control. Finally, in 2003 a further fundamental reform was agreed. Farmers are no longer paid just to produce food. Today’s CAP is demand driven. It takes consumers’ and taxpayers’ concerns fully into account, while giving EU farmers the freedom to produce what the market needs. In the past, the more farmers produced the more they were subsidised. From now on, the vast majority of aid to farmers is paid independently of how much they produce Under the new system farmers still receive direct income payments to maintain income stability, but the link to production has been severed. In addition, farmers have to respect environmental, food safety, phytosanitary and animal welfare standards. Farmers who fail to do this will face reductions in their direct payments (a condition known as ‘cross-compliance’). Severing the link between subsidies and production (usually termed ‘decoupling’) will enable EU farmers to be more market-orientated. They will be free to produce according to what is most profitable for them while still enjoying a required stability of income.

2.7 International normative or conventions Also several international conventions deal directly or indirectly whit the subject of soil protection, climate change, rural development and biodiversity protection the more

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significant are described below and the IPA process could strongly enhance application of this treaty, in potential country but as well in member states.

2.7.1 UNFCC Over a decade ago, most countries joined an international treaty -- the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to consider what can be done to reduce global warming and to cope with whatever temperature increases are inevitable. More recently, a number of nations approved an addition to the treaty: the Kyoto Protocol, which has more powerful (and legally binding) measures. The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement which major feature is that it sets binding targets for 37 industrialized countries and the European community for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions .These amount to an average of five per cent against 1990 levels over the five-year period 2008-2012. The major distinction between the Protocol and the Convention is that while the Convention encouraged industrialised countries to stabilize GHG emissions, the Protocol commits them to do so. Recognizing that developed countries are principally responsible for the current high levels of GHG emissions in the atmosphere as a result of more than 150 years of industrial activity, the Protocol places a heavier burden on developed nations under the principle of “common but differentiated responsibilities.” The Kyoto Protocol was adopted in Kyoto, Japan, on 11 December 1997 and entered into force on 16 February 2005. 184 Parties of the Convention have ratified its Protocol to date. The detailed rules for the implementation of the Protocol were adopted at COP 7 in Marrakesh in 2001, and are called the “Marrakesh Accords.” Under the Treaty, countries must meet their targets primarily through national measures. However, the Kyoto Protocol offers them an additional means of meeting their targets by way of three market-based mechanisms which are: •Emissions trading – known as “the carbon market" •Clean development mechanism (CDM) •Joint implementation (JI). The mechanisms help stimulate green investment and help Parties meet their emission targets in a cost-effective way. Under the Protocol, countries’ actual emissions have to be monitored and precise records have to be kept of the trades carried out. A compliance system ensures that Parties are meeting their commitments and helps them to meet their commitments if they have problems doing so. The Kyoto Protocol, like the Convention, is also designed to assist countries in adapting to the adverse effects of climate change. It facilitates the development and deployment of techniques that can help increase resilience to the impacts of climate change. Taking action on C sequestration under the Kyoto Protocol or any post-Kyoto treaty will not only stimulate important changes in land management but will also, through the increase in organic matter content, have significant

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direct effects on soil properties and a positive impacton environmental or agricultural qualities and biodiversity. The Kyoto Protocol is generally seen as an important first step towards a truly global emission reduction regime that will stabilize GHG emissions, and provides the essential architecture for any future international agreement on climate change.

2.7.2 UNCCD The international community has long recognized that desertification is a major economic, social and environmental problem of concern to many countries in all regions of the world. In 1977, the United Nations Conference on Desertification (UNCOD) adopted a Plan of Action to Combat Desertification (PACD). Unfortunately, despite this and other efforts, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) concluded in 1991 that the problem of land degradation in arid, semi-arid and dry sub-humid areas had intensified, although there were �local examples of success �. As a result, the question of how to tackle desertification was still a major concern for the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), which was held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. The Conference supported a new, integrated approach to the problem, emphasizing action to promote sustainable development at the community level. It also called on the United Nations General Assembly to establish an Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INCD) to prepare, by June 1994, a Convention to Combat Desertification, particularly in Africa. In December 1992, the General Assembly agreed and adopted resolution 47/188. Working to a tight schedule, the Committee completed its negotiations in five sessions. The Convention was adopted in Paris on 17 June 1994 and opened for signature there on 14-15 October 1994. It entered into force on 26 December 1996, 90 days after the fiftieth ratification was received. 193 countries were Parties as at August 2009. The Conference of the Parties (COP), which is the Convention's supreme governing body, held its first session in October 1997 in Rome, Italy.

2.7.3 CBD The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) entered into force on 29 December 1993. It has 3 main objectives: 1. The conservation of biological diversity 2. The sustainable use of the components of biological diversity 3. The fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources Biological diversity - or biodiversity - is the term given to the variety of life on Earth and the natural patterns it forms. The biodiversity we see today is the fruit of billions of years of

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evolution, shaped by natural processes and, increasingly, by the influence of humans. It forms the web of life of which we are an integral part and upon which we so fully depend Protecting biodiversity is in our self-interest. Biological resources are the pillars upon which we build civilizations. Nature's products support such diverse industries as agriculture, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, pulp and paper, horticulture, construction and waste treatment. The loss of biodiversity threatens our food supplies, opportunities for recreation and tourism, and sources of wood, medicines and energy. It also interferes with essential ecological functions. Although still in its infancy, the Convention on Biological Diversity is already making itself felt. The philosophy of sustainable development, the ecosystem approach, and the emphasis on building partnerships are all helping to shape global action on biodiversity. The data and reports that governments are gathering and sharing with each other are providing a sound basis for understanding the challenges and collaborating on the solutions. Much, much more needs to be done. The passage of the Earth's biodiversity through the coming century will be its most severe test. With human population expected to rise dramatically, particularly in developing countries, and the consumer revolution set for exponential expansion - not to mention the worsening stresses of climate change, ozone depletion, and hazardous chemicals - species and ecosystems will face ever more serious threats. Unless we take action now, children born today will live in an impoverished world. The Convention offers a comprehensive, global strategy for preventing such a tragedy. A richer future is possible. If governments and all sectors of society apply the concepts embodied in the Convention and make the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity a real priority, we can ensure a new and sustainable relationship between humanity and the natural world for the generations to come.

2.7.4 Convention on migratory species The Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (also known as CMS or Bonn Convention) aims to conserve terrestrial, marine and avian migratory species throughout their range. It is an intergovernmental treaty, concluded under the aegis of the United Nations Environment Programme, concerned with the conservation of wildlife and habitats on a global scale. Since the Convention's entry into force, its membership has grown steadily to include 112 (as of 1 August 2009) Parties from Africa, Central and South America, Asia, Europe and Oceania. Migratory species threatened with extinction are listed on Appendix I of the Convention. CMS Parties strive towards strictly protecting these animals, conserving or restoring the places where they live, mitigating obstacles to migration and controlling other factors that might endanger them. Besides establishing obligations for each State joining the Convention, CMS promotes concerted action among the Range States of many of these species.

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Migratory species that need or would significantly benefit from international co-operation are listed in Appendix II of the Convention. For this reason, the Convention encourages the Range States to conclude global or regional Agreements. In this respect, CMS acts as a framework Convention. The Agreements may range from legally binding treaties (called Agreements) to less formal instruments, such as Memoranda of Understanding, and can be adapted to the requirements of particular regions.

2.7.5 Ramsar The Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, Iran, 1971) called the "Ramsar Convention" is an intergovernmental treaty that embodies the commitments of its member countries to maintain the ecological character of their Wetlands of International Importance and to plan for the "wise use", or sustainable use, of all of the wetlands in their territories. Unlike the other global environmental conventions, Ramsar is not affiliated with the United Nations system of Multilateral Environmental Agreements, but it works very closely with the other MEAs and is a full partner among the "biodiversity-related cluster" of treaties and agreements.

2.7.6 MDG The Millenium development goal is an ambitious objective of many countries of the united nation that are trying to solve many of the problems that are afflicting the world in recent times , poverty , instruction , gender , child and maternal health, HIV , environmental sustainability and global partnership. The Target number 7 describe the main objectives to achieve an environmental sustainability, and the road maps to arrive in 2015 (or 2010 for biodiversity) to a stable situation which can guarantee a conscious use of natural resources. The main objective is to integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programmes reversing loss of environmental resources, reducing biodiversity loss, keeping the right proportion of land area covered by forest, of fish stocks within safe biological limits, of total water resources used, of terrestrial and marine areas protected, reducing the consumption of ozone-depleting substances, reduce by half the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation , increasing the proportion of population using an improved drinking water source and sanitation facility and achieving significant improvement in lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers, by 2020.

2.7.7 Hyogo framework for action In January 2005, 168 Governments adopted a 10-year plan to make the world safer from natural hazards at the Word Conference on Disaster Reduction, held in Kobe, Hyogo, Japan.

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The Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) is a global blueprint for disaster risk reduction efforts during the next decade. Its goal is to substantially reduce disaster losses by 2015 - in lives, and in the social, economic, and environmental assets of communities and countries. The Framework offers guiding principles, priorities for action, and practical means for achieving disaster resilience for vulnerable communities. Priorities for action include: 1. Ensure that disaster risk reduction is a national and a local priority with a strong institutional basis for implementation. 2. Identify, assess and monitor disaster risks and enhance early warning. 3. Use knowledge, innovation and education to build a culture of safety and resilience at all levels. 4. Reduce the underlying risk factors. 5. Strengthen disaster preparedness for effective response at all levels.

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3 MATERIALS AND METHODS 3.1 Materials In the previous sections were described the main issues, biodiversity loss, soil degradation, risk reduction, climate change and its potential effects and the normative framework where the IPA project proposal is intended to operate. In the growing concern on soil problems it is fundamental to find an immediate programmed action, and it’s not possible to tackle this multiple challenges described above whit single and punctual actions carried out by lone actors. The possibility that the IPA CBC offer to the Adriatic region is a unique and extraordinary occasion for multiple actors to develop and coordinate a synchronized plan. Obviously spreading new methodologies is not an immediate thing, but whit a coordinate development of best practice in all the countries involved and promoting an international awareness and knowledge sharing in the Adriatic area will be a stimulus to implement in future actions all the results obtained. The possible results are wide and depending on the actor needs and condition, differencing from member state and candidate-potential member. Unifying a series of tools of land management that are going to be described in the following pages, could be an extremely innovative process in strategic planning, an incentive to multiple research, a concrete response to several environmental issues, a way to improve policy application and a rapid mitigation-adaptation option development. The methodologies of soil management practices are an important tool to affect the soil carbon stocks and the soil fertility and quality and consequently farm yield. Suitable soil management strategies have been identified within all different land use categories and are available and feasible to implement. These are: - On cropland, soil carbon stocks can be increased by 

agronomic measures that increase the return of biomass carbon to the soil,

tillage and residue management

water management

agro-forestry

On grassland, soil carbon stocks are affected by 

grazing intensity

grassland productivity

fire management

species management

On forest lands, soil carbon stocks can be increased by 

species selection

stand management

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minimal site preparation

tending and weed control

increased productivity

protection against disturbances

prevention of harvest residue removal

On cultivated peat soils the loss of soil carbon can be reduced by higher ground water tables.

On less intensively / un-managed heathlands and peatlands, soil carbon stocks are affected by 

water table (drainage),

pH (liming), fertilisation,

burning

grazing.

On degraded lands, carbon stocks can be increased after restoration to a productive situation. Other possibilities not included in the previous techniques are integrated pest management Ecological networks: forestation, renaturalization, planning of ecological network Landscape management: heritage and landscape enhancement, naturalistic engineering Risk prevention: naturalistic engineering for reduce risks of natural disaster Water management: naturalistic engineering, irrigation

On this project proposal we will focus more on crop management, so we will describe the best practices that can be applied in the agro ecosystem and in its surroundings, which are mainly Agroforestry and conservative agriculture. Each of these techniques is easily applicable, even if whit some cost of transition but they can guarantee very good results even in short time.

3.1.1 Agroforestry One of the most promising management practice in land management is agroforestry. There are many definitions of agroforestry from “growing trees on farm” (Young 1987), to the definition of Sommariba (1992) there are at least 2 species interacting biologically and One of this species is a perennial plant. The World Agroforestry Centre defines agroforestry as “a dynamic, ecologically based, natural resources management system that, through the integration of trees on farms and in the agricultural landscape, diversifies and sustains production for increased social, economic and environmental benefits for land users at all levels.”8

8

World agroforestry centre www. worldagroforestrycentre.org

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Agroforestry is a farming system Integrating trees and shrubs on a farm that can create additional sources of income, spread farm labour throughout the year, and increase the productivity of the other enterprises, while protecting soil, water, and wildlife. Agroforestry systems can be classified according to spatial disposition, temporal succession or according to the different integration between the species involved; commonly the most widespread techniques are alleycropping, silvopasture, windbreaks, riparian buffer strips, and forest farming for non-timber forest products. While they clearly offer economic and ecological advantages, these systems also involve complex interactions, which complicate their management sometimes needing the consociation of several farmers to front the initial expenses. The resulting biological interactions provide multiple benefits (some clearly scientific demonstrated, some not yet but extremely promising), including diversified income sources, increased biological production, better water quality, and improved habitat for both humans and wildlife. Farmers should adopt agroforestry practices for two reasons. They can increase their economic stability and they can improve management of natural resources . For example, an agroforestry system might produce firewood, biomass feedstocks, pinestraw mulch, fodder for grazing animals, and other traditional forestry products. At the same time, the trees are sheltering livestock from wind or sun, providing wildlife habitat, controlling soil erosion, and (in the case of most leguminous species) fixing nitrogen to improve soil fertility. Farming systems are faced with increasing pressures of globalized markets (agrocorporations, low prices, subsides) and escalating levels of urbanization. Diversified and integrated production systems using agroforestry on small farms can help farmers remain competitive, endure land use and cultural transitions, as well as provide environmental amelioration and thus societal benefits. Agroforestry has long been recognized for its potential as a stable and sustainable production system and for its potential contribution to broader agricultural systems. Also thinking on the European landscapes it was some century ago much more agroforestry oriented then now, because mechanization and chemical amelioration shifted the farm into a monotone land unit to optimize the yield. Agroforestry can extend the amount of time that a given area can be productive, improve livelihoods, and contribute to forest and biodiversity conservation. Constraints to agroforestry systems include high interest rates, unclear institutional responsibilities, limiting policy frameworks, poorly developed markets, and inadequate research and extension. Support to agroforestry needs to face this problems and the policy maker have to create a series of flexible tools that can promote a sustainable use of the territory. Agroforestry investments present opportunities to address natural resource management and agricultural needs through on-farm and off-farm tree production. Agroforestry investments have been accepted as an appropriate investment area for many years, and they should be combined with other rural development activities to be more effective. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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Generally, agroforestry investments aim either at ensuring environmental sustainability through the conservation of soil or forests or at reducing poverty by generating new income opportunities and this should be a common objective in all European countries. Agroforestry investments can take one of two forms: simultaneous agroforestry, in which trees are intercropped with crops or livestock, and sequential agroforestry, in which trees and crops are rotated. There are many classification of agroforestry system according to 9

their composition or their temporal succession one proposed by the World Bank is : •Boundary planting. Trees are planted as living fences along field borders to provide fodder and limit soil erosion and water runoff. •Hedgerow intercropping. Leguminous, nitrogen-fixing trees are planted in rows, interspersed with rows of crops in areas where fallow periods are not possible. •Parkland system. Trees and crops are grown together, with trees acting as a permanent upper canopy providing shade or protection from wind. •Silvopastoral system. Trees are planted on pastureland to provide shade and forage for grazing livestock. •Home gardens. Trees are planted for productive purposes within small plots with other crops, including vegetables, fodder, grains, herbs, and medicinal plants. •Multistrata system. Trees and crops are interplanted with multiple tree species maturing at different rates and occupying different canopy positions. •Improved fallow. Tree species are planted either just before or just after crops have been harvested in areas entering a fallow cycle. •Taungya system. Trees are intercropped with other crops until the trees become mature, at which point cultivation of the other crops is abandoned. •Relay cropping. Trees and crops are planted together with planting dates staggered such that crops mature before trees become very large at the end of the rainy season. Most of authors believe the most common Agroforestry practices definitions in use could be well represented by the following five categories : alleycropping, silvopasture, windbreaks or shelterbelts, riparian buffer strips, forest farming (special forest products). An overview of each of these major systems is presented below, whit the description of the potential beneficial effects and positive feedback they can provide. Supplementary categories could be according other sources improved fallow, when tree are one phase of the rotation or multipurpose tree where tree are planted randomly on the field, but they could be some how considered as variations of these described categories.

9

Agriculture investment sourcebook: agriculture and rural development

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3.1.1.1

Silvopastue

Silvopastoral agroforestry is defined when tree and pasture are present on a farm in combination. Hardwoods (sometimes nut trees, pines or Holm oak in the case of the Dehesa in Spain see fig 3) are planted in single or multiple rows, and livestock graze between them. Although both the trees and the livestock must be managed for production, some systems emphasize one over the other. In a well managed system the benefits could be for farmers, animals and plants. Usually, in the early years of establishment, even crops or hay are harvested from the planting bringing the system to operate whit 3 components. Figure 4 The Holm oak and the cow 1915, Spanish portrait

Grazing generally begins after two or three years, when the trees are large enough that the livestock

can't damage them. In other instances, trees can be protected and grazing could begin immediately. Grazing livestock on silvopasture eliminates some of the costs of tree maintenance. With good grazing management, for example, herbicides and mowing may become unnecessary, whit the immediate benefit this option guarantee to the environment. Grazing also enhances nutrient cycling and reduces commercial fertilizer costs; the animals remove few nutrients, and their waste is a valuable input for the trees. Well-managed grazing will increase organic matter and improve soil conditions. The problems are connected whit overgrazing and the risk of compaction but whit appropriate rotations this could be easily avoided. Competition for water between the pasture and the trees could as well be an ulterior concern. In silvopasture, for example, seasonal water shortages during late summer can negatively affect and the production of fruit tree for following year's harvest. Proper irrigation could be adopted in the worst cases but water competition may not be as critical for timber silvopastures. As we see from the painting in figure 3 of JoaquĂ­n Mir i Trenxet this technique was quite common in pre-industrial agriculture and even today could be adopted to substain a more friendly pasture and tree cultivation or as a more wide rotation technique, to consent to the soil more time to regenerate its quality and keep its fertility. Positive effect could be also in rural development of abandoned mountain area or in several other applications .

3.1.1.2

Alleycropping

Alleycropping involves growing crops (grains, forages, vegetables, etc.) between trees planted in rows. The spacing between the rows is designed to accommodate the mature size of the trees while leaving room for the planned alley crops. The design of the

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corridors width depend on the crop characteristic it could be a sun-loving plants like corn or need be alleycropped in alleyways wide enough to let light pass even when the trees have matured. For shade plants a more tight alley could be managed. The cropping sequence could be planned to change

with

the

trees'

growth

and

the

consequent decreases of available light for the crops. This strategies could as well be planned Figure 5 Alleycropping system

in advance, providing the best crop rotations to improve further

soil

quality following

the

principles also of conservative agriculture (explained in the following paragraps) Like all integrated systems, alleycropping requires skillful management and careful planning. Both the crop and the trees have requirements that sometimes necessitate trade-offs between them. For example the space has to guarantee the crossing of the machineries and the root sub-products of one enterprise should not inhibit the growth of the other. These examples indicate how crucial planning is to the ultimate success of an agroforestry system and for this reason a deep information and knowledge has to be passed efficiently and rapidly to the farmers, so they can freely choose how to manage their farm. There are also other advantages to planting trees in curves or on the contour. These include the slowing of surface-water movement and the reduction of soil erosion. The trees can be planted in single rows or in blocks of multiple rows between alleys. The first row in a block is planted on the contour line; subsequent rows are planted below the original line according to the slope of the land. If we add also shrubs on this landscape composition we guarantee a perfect habitat for several birds and insect, improving environmental condition and obtaining a natural control of pest. This bio-control could dramatically reduce use of pesticides, giving a strong contribution to nature preservation and landscape enhancement especially in area devasted by monoculture. An ulterior step could be, were feasible the passage to an organic agriculture, but this is not the case for several farmers, whit an additional positive environment contribution and a possible high income. The width of the alleys is determined by the size of the equipment of the farm, keeping in mind that huge machinery could worsen soil sealing .If planting on the contour is impractical, another option is to plant trees in curved zigzags so that water running downhill is captured or at least slowed. Islands of trees can offer some of the same advantages if they don't interfere with cropping operations. Other shrewdness could be used to improve tree production, depending on what they were planting for , fruit , wood (building, paper). Interesting results were obtained in the SAFE project in Europe and it will be described in the best practices sections. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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3.1.1.3

Forest farming

Many Forest are private owned in Europe, many of them are in wonderful natural aspect and hopefully they will continue to be so for long time. But other forest system are managed for wood and for this kind we propose a

forest management principle that

constitute an ecological approach through efforts to find a balance between conservation of native biodiversity and wildlife habitat within the forest and limited, judicious utilization of the forest's varied resources. For example many mountain area are abandoned, whit risk for the entire

territory

techniques could

and

this

attempts to

bring secondary growth forests that have been overused and whose ecosystems have become so fragmented that their natural processes are out of equilibrium, Figure 6 Example of forest farming in Europe

back into ecological balance and as a resource for habitants.

Obviously this management has to follow principles of careful, intentional manipulation that emulate natural processes to restore original, natural diversity of species and ecosystem stability. Special forest products or non-timber forest products are high-value specialty product items derived from green plants, fungi, invertebrates, and other organisms that inhabit forested areas. These products fall into four general categories : • food (e.g., mushrooms and nuts) • botanicals (e.g., herbs and medicinal) • decorative (e.g., floral greenery and dyes) • handicrafts (e.g., baskets and wood products) This technique need an high level of knowledge in forest management and it s not applicable in a wide scale such alleycropping but in some case could be a reliable situation for protect forest guarantying a decent income to workers, especially if we think on the Balkan area where this could be a first step to sensibly increase environment knowledge in the poorest rural classes.

3.1.1.4

Riparian buffer strips

A riparian buffer strip is made of natural or naturalised wetland vegetation or woodland, usually ranging from 1-50 m wide situated alongside watercourses, particularly small streams, is an area or strips of land in permanent vegetation, designed to intercept pollutants and manage other environmental concerns. They can be made to encourage vertical infiltration of soluble nutrients. There is no definitive width for these strips, although

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there is little evidence that strips less than 5 m width have any effect. Strategically placed buffer strips in the agricultural landscape can effectively mitigate the movement of sediment, nutrients, and pesticides within farm fields and from farm fields. When coupled with appropriate upland treatments, including crop residue management, nutrient management, integrated pest management, winter cover crops, and similar management practices and technologies, buffer strips should allow farmers to achieve a measure of economic and environmental sustainability in their operations. Buffer strips can also enhance wildlife habitat and protect biodiversity. The anaerobic zones created in flooded soils encourage denitrification. Extremely good habitat creation possibilities. As well as reducing pesticides, P, N and suspended solids run-off to the surrounding water environment, buffer strips also help to restore semi-natural habitats with consequent beneficial effects on biodiversity. Figure 7 A buffer strip

riparian

Numerous research studies showed variable results for field strips although there seems to be some agreement that they

are more efficient at removing suspended solids in run-off than nutrients. The size depends on the vegetation, slope and soil type. Most useful in drained fields where the drainage system can be disrupted across the buffer and the field drains allowed discharging onto it to create continually wet conditions. Buffer strips can be considered as “ecological corridor” but they can be managed profitable by the farmers, which can increase their role in a “Multifarming” strategy and at the same time they can be a part of a more strategic ecological matrix, both are concepts we describe in the expected results. The immediate benefits of riparian buffers are obtained in: 1. Water Quality 1. Slow water runoff and enhance infiltration 2. Trap pollutants in surface runoff 3. Trap pollutants in subsurface flow 4. Stabilize soil 5. Reduce bank erosion 2. Biodiversity 1. Increase habitat area 2. Protect sensitive habitats 3. Restore connectivity 4. Increase access to resources 5. Shade stream to maintain temperature 3. Productivity of soil 1. Reduce water runoff energy __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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2. Reduce wind energy 3. Stabilize soil 4. Improve soil quality 5. Remove soil pollutants 4. Economic Opportunities for farmers 1. Produce marketable products 2. Reduce energy consumption 3. Increase property values 4. Provide alternative energy sources 5. Provide ecosystem services 5. Protection and Safety 1. Reduce wind energy 2. Modify microclimate 3. Enhance habitat for predators of pests 4. Reduce flood water levels and erosion 5. Reduce hazards 6. Aesthetics and Visual Quality 1. Enhance visual interest 2. Screen undesirable views 3. Screen undesirable noise 4. Filter air pollutants and odors 5. Separate human activities 7. Outdoor Recreation 1. Increase natural area 2. Protect natural areas 3. Protect soil and plant resources 4. Provide a corridor for movement 5. Enhance recreational experience

3.1.1.5

Shelterbelts or Windbreaks

A shelterbelt is a barrier of trees or shrubs, extensive research on windbreaks, also called shelterbelts, has been carried out .Trees are planted in single or multiple rows along the edge of a field to reduce wind effects on crops or livestock. Windbreaks have been shown to reduce wind impact over a horizontal distance equalling at least ten times the height of the trees. Wind and water erosion are reduced, creating a moist, more favourable microclimate for the crop. In winter the windbreak traps snow, and any winter crops or livestock are protected from chilling winds. Beneficial insects find permanent habitat in windbreaks, enhancing crop protection.

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Although the trees compete for available water along the edges between the windbreak and the crop rows, potentially reducing crop yield near the windbreak, the net effect on productivity is positive. In fact, even on land that's well suited for high-value crops, a windbreak can increase the crop yield of the entire downwind field by as much as 20%, even when the windbreak area is included in the acreage total. Studies have shown the economic advantages of providing protection from windchill, a major stress also on animals that live outside in the winter. Reduced feed bills, increases in milk production, and improved calving success have resulted from the use of windbreaks. Besides providing protection to crops and livestock, windbreaks offer other advantages. They benefit wildlife, especially by serving as continuous corridors along which animals can safely move. Farmers can even develop windbreaks into additional profit centres for the farm, hunting leases, selective timber harvests, firewood sales, and special forest products are some of the possibilities. Any tree species can be used in a windbreak. However, deciduous species, even in multiple rows, will lose effectiveness when they lose their leaves. For year-round use, some of the species selected should be evergreen. Fast-growing trees should be included; it's best to plant deep-rooted, non-competitive species along the edges. Regular deep chisel-plowing along the edges will keep roots from spreading into the crop rows. If some of the trees are harvested periodically, replacements can be planted, establishing a long-term rotation within the windbreak Properly designed field shelterbelts, as part of a crop management system approach, revent or greatly reduce the risk of wind erosion. Properly placed field shelterbelts provide agronomic and other benefits. The main agronomic benefits include the following: 

reduced soil erosion by wind

increased moisture for crop growth due to two factors:

snow trapping

reduced moisture loss through evaporation

potential for increased crop yields

reduced wind damage to crops

wildlife habitat and shelter

improved safety in winter travel due to reduced snow drifting

lower costs of snow removal from roads

beautification of the prairie landscape

reduced environmental effects of agriculture

provide potential source of income for farmers (e.g. biomass, timber and non-timber products)

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Many species of trees and shrubs can be used in field shelterbelts and conservation plantings. Each species has both positive and negative features that should be considered in designing field shelterbelts Field shelterbelts reduce soil erosion by wind, conserve soil moisture and reduce wind damage to crops. They complement good crop residue management and other conservation practices to protect the soil. Field shelterbelts should be considered as a complement for other conservation agriculture practices and other agroforestry system to preserve soil and enhance a respectful management of farm and its surrounding. Field shelterbelts are a part of conservation management systems that will help safeguard the productive quality of our soils and of the entire environment in a sustainable way. Researcher s results suggest that on medium erosion sites, combining alleycropping and contouring could significantly reduce erosion by up to 80% .

3.1.1.6

Common consideration

As we described in the previous chapter the problems that we are facing, climate change, soil degradation, natural disaster increase and biodiversity loss go far beyond the capacity of single actors to solve them. The same consideration can be done for farmers they will not be able, in future worsening climate condition, to respond efficiently to the challenge they will face. The possible risks are huge, but looks like that in the common sense is growing concern throughout the world about the dangers we are running through. Some of the destruction of natural habitat has taken place to make room for human agriculture, particularly pastures, plantations, and other monocultures. Agriculture was shaping the world since millennia (even if now industry is much more a threat to nature) we believe there could be rediscovered a way of farming that can provide for human needs while benefiting all forms of life and environment. Intensive agricultural systems are often based on optimising the productivity of monocultures. In those systems, crop diversity is reduced to one or very few species that are generally genetically homogeneous, the planting layout is uniform and symmetrical, and external inputs are often supplied in large quantities. Such systems are widely criticised today for their negative environmental impacts, such as soil erosion and degradation, chemical contamination, loss of biodiversity, and fossil fuel use. Conversely, multispecies cropping systems may often be considered as a practical application of ecological principles based on biodiversity, plant interactions and other natural regulation mechanisms. They are assumed to have potential advantages in productivity, stability of outputs, resilience to disruption and ecological sustainability, although they are sometimes considered harder to manage. Agroforestry systems increase species diversity within farming systems, providing for human needs while supporting wildlife, soil microorganisms, rural communities, farmers, economic __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Results and discussion 69 __________________________________________________________________________________

interests, watersheds, clean air concerns, biodiversity, and more. The benefits arrive further more far than the farm itself, arriving to improve the entire surrounding areas. The key is to maximize the number of beneficial connections formed between trees and other elements on the farm. Agroforestry is about mimicking and recreating the natural web of life, creating an integrated farm system (agro-ecosystem) with a multitude of beneficial connections between trees and other parts of the farm. For example, alley cropping is an agroforestry technique that could integrates nitrogen fixing trees to provide fertilizer and mulch for crops. With careful design, this technique can also provide erosion control, windbreak, and animal fodder. Some agroforestry systems are very simple, forming just a few connections. Other agroforestry systems are more complex, and their form and function can ultimately resemble a multi-storied forest. Trees are valuable elements in agricultural systems because by their nature, they lend themselves to making connections to other plants, animals, people, soil, etc. One reason why trees have been such a huge success in natural ecosystems is their ability to benefit all forms of life, and contribute to natural ecological stability and fertility. Some of the benefits of agroforestry to the community : 

Greater long-term economic stability through diversified products

Reduced need for purchasing off-farm inputs

Broader opportunities for rural enterprises

Reduced risk to the farmer

Increased overall yields

Year-round production

Local creation of resources like firewood, animal fodder, construction materials, etc.

Some ecological benefits: 

More efficient use of land to provide for human needs, allowing more land to be left to nature

Decreased use of manufactured fertilizers, insecticides, fuels, etc.

Protection of the land from wind and erosion

Trees provide habitat for wildlife (which in turn can balance insect pests on the farm)

Support for a diversity of soil microlife

Planting more trees stores more carbon from the air, helping to reduce carbon dioxide pollution and global warming

By implementing agroforestry systems, we approach human understanding about how the many forms of life can interact to benefit everyone. The integration of trees in cropping systems is desirable because can improve soil organic matter, nutrient cycling and the efficient use of water, reduce erosion and store carbon due to improved plant growth. Also considering the potential of agroforestry as a empowering tool for carbon sequestration (both improving soil sequestration capacity and adding a strong plant sequestration) can reveal the further utility of this measure, early assessments of national and

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global terrestrial C sinks reveal two primary benefits of agroforestry systems: direct near-term C storage (decades to centuries) in trees and soils, and, potential to offset immediate greenhouse gas emissions associated with deforestation and shifting agriculture. Considering the tropical latitudes, it is estimated that one hectare of sustainable agroforestry can potentially offset 5 to 20 ha of deforestation. On a global scale, agroforestry systems could potentially be established on 585 to 1275Ă—106 ha of technically suitable land, and these systems -1

could store 12 to 228 (median 95) tonnes C ha under current climate and soil conditions. Landscape scale management holds significant potential for reducing off-site consequences of agriculture, leading to integrated natural resources management, and the combination whit other means like conservative agriculture could increase this effort. The ecological benefits of low-input agroforestry systems are more compatible with small-scale farming systems than for large farms. However, the coincidence of land degradation, biodiversity loss and pollution put considerable relevance on agroforestry practices for the attainment of development and sustainability management. This could be obtained considering our area of interest especially in the Balkan area where a more naturalness state exist, due to the morphological situation and the historical background of the area but even in an extremely anthropized environment like in Italy or other member states. Disseminating and implementing a range of agroforestry practices, tailored to particular social and environmental conditions, which has to be detected and emphasized whit the right scientific base, on a wide scale will require large-scale investment and wide formation. Rehabilitation of degraded land

and

improving

soil

fertility

can

be

accomplished

by

promoting

a

range

of

ecological/environmental services such as: (1) erosion control, (2) nutrient cycling, (3) protection of biodiversity in farming systems, (4) carbon sequestration, (5) promoting natural enemies of pests, weeds and diseases, (6) improving water availability, and (7) the restoration of agroecological functions. Agroforestry practices can also improve soil fertility in the future, which is crucial for achieving food security, human welfare and preserving the environment for smallholder farms. Considering also the important role of the agro landscape in adaptation to climate change and the many people who lives in rural area we recognize how rural areas could be an important actor whit a major role for future development of the entire society. An integrated soil fertility management approach that combines agroforestry technologies especially improved leguminous species use and biomass transfer can increase crop yields several fold. A healthier agroecosystem require fewer purchased chemical inputs, while the diversity alleviates risks for small-scale farmers. ree crops can be established within a land use mosaic to protect watersheds and reduce runoff of water and erosion restoring ecological processes as the above- and belowground niches are filled by organisms that help to perform helpful functions such as cycle nutrients and water, enrich organic matter, and sequester carbon. Many of these niches can be filled by species producing useful and marketable food and non-food products, increasing total productivity and economic value . On large mechanized farming systems the larger-scale ecological functions associated with a land use mosaic can be beneficial. As the science and practice of agroforestry are complex and comprise a range of disciplines, communities and institutions, strengthening strategic

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partnerships and alliances (farmers, national and international research organizations, government agencies, policy makers, development organizations, NGOs) is crucial in order to foster the role of agroforestry in tackling future challenges. Local participation could be mobilized by incorporating traditional knowledge and innovations, as well as ensuring the scaling up and long-term sustainability Rights to land and trees tend to shape women’s incentives and authority to adopt agroforestry technologies more than other crop varieties because of the relatively long time horizon between investment and returns. Agroforestry systems have high potential to help. Land degradation is caused by deforestation, erosion and salinization of drylands, agricultural expansion and abandonment, and urban expansion. Data on the extent of land degradation are extremely limited and paradigms of desertification are changing . Approximately 10% of the drylands are considered degraded, with the majority of these areas in Asia and Africa. Considering the area where the IPA will operate, the Adriatic we find a biogeographical classification which divide the regions into continental (the north Italian area and the coastal side of Slovenian and a little part of Croatia, Mediterranean quite all the rest of Italy, Greece Albania the rest of Croatia and a part of Bosnia, and alpine a little area in central Italy, all the alpine part of Italy and the rest mountainous area of the Balkans. Agroforestry has for long time be neglected in Europe because governments thought they has to be two completely separate sectors, this lead to the loss of quite all European agroforestry system.

While recent EU Rural Development policy clearly recognises the economic, ecological, and social advantages of agroforestry systems, to date the implementation of such systems remains poor throughout most of Europe In Europe, agroenvironmental subsidies have been used as incentives to maintain and promote biodiversity-friendly land use on agricultural land. There has been some criticism that the schemes do not deliver all of the environmental and biodiversity benefits for which they were designed, especially as the scale of implementation becomes too small and fragmented. One option that avoids this situation is the adoption of regional planning approaches (e.g., the OECD environmental farm plan programs) to generate more coordinated land use patterns across larger landscapes.

In Europe, positive environmental effects are expected from new land-use systems. The investigation of the environmental performance of land-use systems through experiments, however, is costly – especially at landscape scale. If trees are involved, long–term experimentation requires many years before results are available. Initiation of such experiments becomes increasingly difficult (Poulton, 1995) Reisner et al. (2006) identified 90 million hectares (Mha) of European arable land potentially suitable for agroforestry systems using hybrid walnut, wild cherry, poplar, holm oak and stone pine. Within this area, the study identified 65 Mha where agroforestry could potentially reduce soil erosion and nitrogen leaching, and increase landscape biodiversity. Eight million

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hectares of European arable land are seriously threatened by erosion and an action is needed to prevent the wosening of these conditions, and agroforestry, with one of the five tree species cited above, could potentially be implemented on 2.6 Mha of this land (Reisner et al., 2006). If farmers in these areas would combine agroforestry with contouring on the best 50% of their farm land, soil erosion could be reduced by as much as 65%. Nitrogen leaching could be reduced on 12 Mha of land (Reisner et al., 2006) through use of agroforestry, mainly in central and northern Europe. These reductions could potentially be as high as 28%, if S agroforestry AF was implemented at high densities (113 trees ha-1) on 50% of the best farm land. In addition, nitrogen uptake below the root zone of annual crops might further reduce nitrogen leaching at these sites, although this has not been considered here and requires future investigations. Carbon sequestration could also be increased on the 90 Mha of European arable land potentially suitable for agroforestry. As tree density and land quality did not significantly affect cumulative sequestration, carbon sequestration could be maximized by maximizing the area of land converted to agroforestry. The use of medium-fast growing tree species in agroforestry systems when implemented on 50% of the agricultural land could contribute 0.77-1.6 t C ha- 1a-1 (46-96 t C ha-1) to sequestration over a 60-year period. However, values up to 3 t C ha-1a-1 (179 t C ha-1) are potentially feasible. This assessment of potential carbon sequestration differs from that of the European Climate Change Program (ECCP), which estimates that less than one million hectare of land in Europe is suitable for agroforestry, and that no net change in annual carbon balance will occur by 2010 (ECCP, 2003). The actual adoption of agroforestry will depend on both, its profitability and its legal status, which could change in the coming years, stimulating the uptake of agroforestry systems by European farmers. Monotonous arable landscapes, defined by Reisner as areas where arable land covers over 50% of the total land area in a 25 km2 area, cover about 100 Mha in Europe. Approximately 21 Mha of this land would be suitable for agroforestry using one of the five tree species tested here, which could significantly increase landscape biodiversity. This broad assessment, however, needs further refinement by taking into account specific landscape characteristics on the one hand and target species on the other hand. it is impossible to design a management scheme that favours all species. Agroforestry systems are highly diverse; many more tree species and crop types can and have to be considered. Their choice and the manifold possible layouts of the system with respect to the density and arrangement need to be adapted to local conditions and farmer’s preferences. All those options can only be fully explored with modelling approaches. Such models, however, must be validated on the basis of experimental data from these systems and such data are scarce.

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In Europe, new land-use systems should yield environmental benefits. The environmental benefits that can be expected from modern agroforestry systems and an economic analysis of such systems is a feasible work to carry out for future implementation plan. Research has to provide a model which can at the same time consider the physical situation and interaction between plants (detecting the best possible options) and offering a cost analysis and possible income tool that can guarantee to each single farm an accurate choice of how the transition will impact his business. This is impossible without a proper preliminary survey of geological, climatic and botanic condition.

SOIL CONSERVATION

NUTRIENT CYCLING

LANDSCAPE QUALITY

WATER BIODIVERSITY

DEPURATION

CARBON SEQUESTRATION

AGROFORESTRY SYSTEM PEST

ADAPTATION

RISK MITIGATION

YIELD

Figure 8 Schematic representation of the complex matrix of activity that could benefit from agroforestry practices Mixed systems of agriculture incorporating combinations of trees and crops have formed key elements of the landscape of Europe throughout historical times, and many such systems continue to function in the present day. In many cases they represent formerly widespread traditional systems in decline and a number have already become extinct or exist only in a threatened state. The causes are both practical and economic. The agricultural subsidy regime within the European Union is presently unfavourable towards silvoarable practices, which has been a major factor in their recent decline. The silvoarable systems of Europe can be split into two classes according to location – northern Europe and the Mediterranean. The latter contains not only a greater area of silvoarable cultivation, but also a greater diversity of systems due to the broader range of commercial tree and crop species grown. In general, the systems of northern Europe are limited by light, whilst those of the Mediterranean are limited by the availability of water. Mixed systems of agriculture present an opportunity for future European rural development and have the potential to contribute towards the increased sustainability of agriculture and enhancement of __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Results and discussion 74 __________________________________________________________________________________

biodiversity, whilst preserving landscapes that are both culturally important and aesthetically pleasing. A better understanding of the legacy of traditional silvoarable systems, combined with the formulation of a consistent definition and specific European policy towards them will be invaluable in ensuring that the benefits of mixed agriculture are fully exploited in the future. In the context of European research the project of silvoarable agroforestry (SAFE, 2001), was probably the most advanced in Agroforestry in the continent, although already in developing countries and even in Canada or USA this series of tools are already spreading in their territories and will be discussed later. Further more the new Rural Development Regulation (2007-2013), which includes an Article (44) allowing payments for establishment of new agroforestry systems. The conference also considered the opportunities for new agro-environment and forest-environment payments. However, the environmental potential of agroforestry is still not realised in Europe and very few have been done to address directly granting to the environmental services of agroforestry in Europe. Hence, a scientific effort is still needed to demonstrate that agroforestry systems can effectively bring to society diverse environmental services (e.g. erosion control, C capture, N leaching reduction, biodiversity, landscape amenity, etc). For these environmental reasons, and for their inherent cultural value, all the traditional agroforestry systems should be eligible for any specific measure, throughout the European Union. For this reason research, pilot action and concrete support to action is expected by the European community to help Agroforestry in this early stage of its development. Current eligibility status of grants to agroforestry • France – reduced crop payment, full livestock payment, good tree-planting and agrienvironmental payments – see Liagre et al (this meeting). • UK –full livestock and reduced crop payments, pro-rata reduced tree planting payment (now only poplar) but no agri-environment subsidy (see Burgess et al – this meeting) • Spain – Full livestock payment, crop payment reduced by 2 times crown area, no agrienvironment (see Moreno et al – this meeting) • Netherlands – new status of ‘temporary forest’ introduced but no tree-planting grants at wide spacing, crop payments still uncertain. • Greece – only livestock grants for forest grazing. • Italy - only livestock grants for forest grazing. • Germany – only livestock grants for forest grazing. In other countries for examples these involved by the IPA much has to be done also in policy

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3.1.2 Conservative agriculture Another effective strategy of land management is conservative agriculture, which is a concept for resource-saving agricultural crop production that strives to achieve acceptable profits together with high and sustained production levels while concurrently conserving the environment. Conservation Agriculture is based on enhancing natural biological processes above and below the ground. Interventions such as mechanical soil tillage are reduced to an absolute minimum, and the use of external inputs such as agrochemicals and nutrients of mineral or organic origin are applied at an optimum level and in a way and quantity that does not interfere with, or disrupt, the biological processes. Conservative agriculture is characterized by three principles which are linked to each other: 1. Continuous minimum mechanical soil disturbance. (reduced tillage) 2. Permanent organic soil cover. (cover crop) 3. Diversified crop rotations in the case of annual crops or plant associations in case of perennial crops. 10(crops rotation) Conservation Agriculture, understood in this way, provides a number of advantages on global, regional, local and farm level: 

It provides a truly sustainable production system, not only conserving but also

enhancing the natural resources and increasing the variety of soil biota, fauna and flora (including wild life) in agricultural production systems without sacrificing yields on high production levels. As Conservative agriculture depends on biological processes to work, it enhances the biodiversity in an agricultural production system on a micro- as well as macro level. 

No till fields act as a sink for CO2 and conservation farming applied on a global scale

could provide a major contribution to control air pollution in general and global warming in particular. Farmers applying this practice could eventually be rewarded with carbon credits. 

Soil tillage is among all farming operations the single most energy consuming and

thus, in mechanized agriculture, air-polluting, operation. By not tilling the soil, farmers can save between 30 and 40% of time, labour and, in mechanized agriculture, fossil fuels as compared to conventional cropping. 

Soils under CA have very high water infiltration capacities reducing surface runoff

and thus soil erosion significantly. This improves the quality of surface water reducing pollution from soil erosion, and enhances groundwater resources. In many areas it has been observed after some years of conservation farming that natural springs that had dried up many years ago, started to flow again. The potential effect of a massive adoption of conservation farming on global water balances is not yet fully recognized.  10

Conservation agriculture is by no means a low output agriculture and allows yields

FAO www.fao.org.ca

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comparable with modern intensive agriculture but in a sustainable way. Yields tend to increase over the years with yield variations decreasing. 

For the farmer, conservation farming is mostly attractive because it allows a

reduction of the production costs, reduction of time and labour, particularly at times of peak demand such as land preparation and planting and in mechanized systems it reduces the costs of investment and maintenance of machinery in the long term. Disadvantages in the short term might be the high initial costs of specialized planting equipment and the completely new dynamics of a conservation farming system, requiring high management skills and a learning process by the farmer. Long term experience with conservation farming all over the world has shown that conservation farming does not present more or less but different problems to a farmer, all of them capable of being resolved. Particularly in Brazil the area under conservation farming is now growing exponentially having already reached the 10 million hectare mark. Also in North America the concept is widely adopted. Conservation agriculture systems utilize soils for the production of crops with the aim of reducing excessive mixing of the soil and maintaining crop residues on the soil surface in order to minimize damage to the environment. By doing this Conservation agriculture will: 

Provide and maintain an optimum environment of the root-zone to maximum possible depth. Roots are able to function effectively and without restrictions to capture high amounts of plant nutrients and water.

Ensure that water enters the soil so that (a) plants never, or for the shortest time possible, suffer water stress that will limit the expression of their potential growth; and so that (b) residual water passes down to groundwater and stream flow, not over the surface as runoff.

Favour beneficial biological activity in the soil in order to (a) maintain and rebuild soil architecture; (b) compete with potential in-soil pathogens; (c) contribute to soil organic matter and various grades of humus; (d) contribute to capture, retention, chelation and slow release of plant nutrients.

Avoid physical or chemical damage to roots that disrupts their effective functioning.

We describe briefly this three main operation of Conservative agriculture starting from cover crop. 3.1.2.1

Cover crop

A permanent soil cover is important to: protect the soil against the deleterious effects of exposure to rain and sun; to provide the micro and macro organisms in the soil with a constant supply of "food"; and alter the microclimate in the soil for optimal growth and development of soil organisms, including plant roots. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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Cover crops need to be managed before planting the main crop. This can be done manually or with animal or tractor power. The important point is that the soil is always kept covered. The effects of soil cover are: 

Improved infiltration and retention of soil moisture resulting in less severe, less prolonged crop water stress and increased availability of plant nutrients.

Source of food and habitat for diverse soil life: creation of channels for air and water, biological tillage and substrate for biological activity through the recycling of organic matter and plant nutrients.

Increased humus formation.

Reduction of impact of rain drops on soil surface resulting in reduced crusting and surface sealing.

Consequential reduction of runoff and erosion.

Soil regeneration is higher than soil degradation.

Mitigation of temperature variations on and in the soil.

Better conditions for the development of roots and seedling growth.

Means and practices: 

Use of appropriate/improved seeds for high yields as well as high residue production and good root development.

Integrated management and reduced competition with livestock or other uses e.g. through increased forage and fodder crops in the rotation.

Use of various cover crops, especially multi-purpose crops, like nitrogen-fixing, soilporosity-restoring, pest repellent, etc.

Optimization of crop rotations in spatial, timing and economic terms.

“Targeted" use of herbicides for controlling cover crop and weed development COVER CROP Opportunities 

Protect the soil

Maintain nitrogen in organic form (-NH2) to prevent it from leaching

Control weed growth

Repel soil borne pests

Add organic matter to the soil and favour soil fertility and preparation activities

Can solve compaction problems

Increase soil porosity and internal drainage and thus reduce the chance of flooding

Legumes increase available nitrogen

Challenges 

Require a higher level of management

Decomposition of cover crops can lead to a deficit of nitrogen at the beginning of the growing period

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3.1.2.2

Crop rotation

The rotation of crops is well known to increase soil fertility it is not only necessary to offer a diverse "diet" to the soil micro organisms, but as they root at different soil depths, they are capable of exploring different soil layers for nutrients. Nutrients that have been leached to deeper layers and that are no longer available for the commercial crop, can be "recycled" by the crops in rotation. This way the rotation crops function as biological pumps. Furthermore, a diversity of crops in rotation leads to a diverse soil flora and fauna, as the roots excrete different organic substances that attract different types of bacteria and fungi, which in turn, play an important role in the transformation of these substances into plant available nutrients. Crop rotation also has an important phytosanitary function as it prevents the carry over of crop-specific pests and diseases from one crop to the next via crop residues The effects of crop rotation: 

Higher diversity in plant production and thus in human and livestock nutrition.

Reduction and reduced risk of pest and weed infestations.

Greater distribution of channels or biopores created by diverse roots (various forms, sizes and depths).

Better distribution of water and nutrients through the soil profile.

Exploration for nutrients and water of diverse strata of the soil profile by roots of many different plant species resulting in a greater use of the available nutrients and water.

Increased nitrogen fixation through certain plant-soil biota symbionts and improved balance of N/P/K from both organic and mineral sources.

Increased humus formation.

Means and practices: 

Design and implementation of crop rotations according to the various objectives: food and fodder production (grain, leaf, stalks); residue production; pest and weed control; nutrient uptake and biological subsurface mixing / cultivation, etc.

Use of appropriate / improved seeds for high yields as well as high residue production of above-ground and below-ground parts, given the soil and climate conditions.

3.1.2.3

Reduced tillage

Reduced tillage is the last component of the

conservation practices, that is

economical (saving on fuel, farm machinery-life and reduced labor costs, while maintaining or improving crop yields); and it is environmentally friendly (increased soil-organic matter, improved soil tilth, improved moisture conservation and use efficiency, and reduced soil erosion). No-till seeding also has the potential to sequester atmospheric carbon dioxide, an important factor in the mitigation of green house gas emissions. Adoption of no-till on the

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farm depends on the assumption that it will maximize net farm income and/or reduce risk taking. Factors that contribute to the net farm income include yield, cost of inputs used in crop production (labour, fuel, fertilizer, pesticide, seed and machinery), and expected output (commodities) prices. On average crop yields are generally higher in no-till systems, There is a lower cost for labour, there is a significant reduction in fuel consumption with reduced and no-till as compared to conventional tillage No-till and minimum tillage require fewer trips across the field, allow two or more activities to be combined into one, and permit the use of machines with greater capacity and lower draft No-till reduces run-off because increases runoff infiltration by slowing the flow of rainwater or snowmelt from the field. In no-till fields, there is also more infiltration as compared to tilled yields; consequently this results in fewer pollutants entering the streams and open water bodies. Reduced runoff in no-tillage is also associated with decreased flooding and an increase in soil moisture. However, by not tilling the soil, there is a concern that it may increase leaching of water, nutrients and pesticide to the ground water. There are conflicting reports in the literature about the role of no-till in enhancing leaching. Some studies have found little or no difference in leaching of water and nutrients between no-till and tilled fields while others report greater leaching in no-till soils than in tilled soils No-till reduces sediment loss – The most common pollutants in environmentally impaired waterways are sediment, nutrients, and bacteria. No-till practices reduce the amount of sediment by 60 – 90%. No-till reduces phosphorus loss – No-till practices typically reduce soil erosion and sedimentation losses and may result in less phosphorus lost in runoff. Information on the effects of tillage systems on phosphorus loss is contradictory. Some studies have reported significantly lower dissolved phosphorus losses under no-till as compared to conventional tillage, while other studies have demonstrated that no-till reduced the loss of particulate and total phosphorus in surface runoff; however, it does increase the loss of soluble phosphorus to ground water. No-till reduces nitrogen losses – No till may reduce runoff resulting in less nitrogen loss. Several studies have shown that no-till reduces sedimentation up to 97 % (relative to conventional tillage), and this results in a 75 to 90 % reduction in total nitrogen loss for soybeans planted following corn and 50 to 73 %reduction in nitrogen loss for corn following soybeans. No-till crop production also increases the amount of soil macropores and allows for greater water infiltration, increasing potential for nitrate leaching No-till impact on weeds, diseases and insect population – Adoption of no-till has an impact on weeds, diseases, and insect species diversity and numbers No-till sequesters atmospheric CO2 – In Canada, conservation tillage practices on the farmland offer a large opportunity to sequester carbon and consequently enhance the soil carbon sink. Over the years, various models have been developed to estimate the national potential of CO2 sequestration on the cultivated land Notill enhances wildlife habitat Studies in Canada and the United States have shown that no-till

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farming practices, especially fall-seeded winter cereals, have greater abundance and diversity of songbirds, ducks, small mammals and soil arthropods. No-till enhances the physical, chemical and biological properties of the soils – Tillage practices affect soil quality indicators in a complex way.

Country

Minimum

No-till

Cover

tillage

(1000 ha)

perennial

(1000 ha) Italy

480

80

crops

in

woody

Total surface

%

% NT/arable

CA

CA/a

land

(1000

crops (1000 ha)

ha)

rabl

n.d.

560

6.8

1.0

Table 9 State of Italian spreading of conservative agriculture Direct seeding involves growing crops without mechanical seedbed preparation and with minimal soil disturbance since the harvest of the previous crop. The term direct seeding is understood in Conservative agricutlure systems as synonymous with no-till farming, zero tillage, no-tillage, direct drilling, etc. Planting refers to the precise placing of large seeds (maize and beans for example); whereas seeding usually refers to a continuous flow of seed as in the case of small cereals (wheat and barley for example). The equipment penetrates the soil cover, opens a seeding slot and places the seed into that slot. The size of the seed slot and the associated movement of soil are to be kept at the absolute minimum possible. Ideally the seed slot is completely covered by mulch again after seeding and no loose soil should be visible on the surface. Land preparation for seeding or planting under no-tillage involves slashing or rolling the weeds, previous crop residues or cover crops; or spraying herbicides for weed control, and seeding directly through the mulch. Crop residues are retained either completely or to a suitable amount to guarantee the complete soil cover, and fertilizer and amendments are either broadcast on the soil surface or applied during seeding. Excessive tillage of agricultural soils may result in short term increases in fertility, but will degrade soils in the medium term. Structural degradation, loss of organic matter, erosion and falling biodiversity are all to be expected. This process will then require farmer to insert more chemical input into the agricultural system to keep productivity acceptable exacerbating environmental problems in a negative feedback. Soil organic matter not only provides nutrients for the crop, but it is also, above all else, a crucial element for the stabilization of soil structure and now is needed a strong effort to rehabilitate soil structure and quality around Europe. Most soils degrade under prolonged intensive arable agriculture, especially under high intensive monoculture. This process is running faster across all Europe and the consequences could be very dangerous. This structural degradation of the soils results in the formation of crusts and compaction and leads in the end to soil erosion. The process is getting more and more evident in Europe creating an increasing risk perception but it can be noticed all over the world. Mechanization __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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of soil tillage, allowing higher working depths and speeds and the use of certain implements like ploughs, disk harrows and rotary cultivators have particularly detrimental effects on soil structure. Soil erosion resulting from soil tillage has forced us to look for alternatives and to reverse the process of soil degradation. The logical approach to this has been to reduce tillage. This led finally to movements promoting conservation tillage, and especially zero-tillage, particularly in southern Brazil, North America, New Zealand and Australia. Over the last two decades the technologies have been improved and adapted for nearly all farm sizes; soils; crop types; and climatic zones. Experience is still being gained with this new approach to agriculture. Many researchers have conducted different field survey but still more has to be done.

Experience has shown that these techniques, summarized as conservative agriculture (CA) methods, are much more than just reducing the mechanical tillage. In a soil that is not tilled for many years, the crop residues remain on the soil surface and produce a layer of mulch. This layer protects the soil from the physical impact of rain and wind but it also stabilizes the soil moisture and temperature in the surface layers. Thus this zone becomes a habitat for a number of organisms, from larger insects down to soil borne fungi and bacteria (soil biodiversity). These organisms macerate the mulch, incorporate and mix it with the soil and decompose it so that it becomes humus and contributes to the physical stabilization of the soil structure (soil organic carbon). At the same time this soil organic matter provides a buffer function for water and nutrients. Larger components of the soil fauna, such as earthworms, provide a soil structuring effect producing very stable soil aggregates as well as uninterrupted macropores leading from the soil surface straight to the subsoil and allowing fast water infiltration in case of heavy rainfall events. Keeping the soil covered and planting through the mulch will protect the soil and improve the growing environment for the crop. This process carried out by the edaphon, the living component of a soil, can be called "biological tillage". However, biological tillage is not compatible with mechanical tillage and with increased mechanical tillage the biological soil structuring processes will disappear. Thus agriculture with reduced, or zero, mechanical tillage is only possible when soil organisms are taking over the task of tilling the soil. This, however, leads to other implications regarding the use of chemical farm inputs. Synthetic pesticides and mineral fertilizer have to be used in a way that does not harm soil life.

As the main objective of agriculture is the production of crops, changes in the pest and weed management become necessary with conservative agriculture. Burning plant residues and ploughing the soil is mainly considered necessary for phytosanitary reasons: to control pests, diseases and weeds. In a system with reduced mechanical tillage based on mulch cover and biological tillage, alternatives have to be developed to control pests and weeds. Integrated Pest Management becomes mandatory. One important element to achieve is crop rotation, __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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interrupting the infection chain between subsequent crops and making full use of the physical and chemical interactions between different plant species. Synthetic chemical pesticides, particularly herbicides are, in the first years, inevitable but have to be used with great care to reduce the negative impacts on soil life. To the extent that a new balance between the organisms of the farm-ecosystem, pests and beneficial organisms, crops and weeds, becomes established and the farmer learns to manage the cropping system, the use of synthetic pesticides and mineral fertilizer tends to decline to a level below that of the original "conventional" farming system. Burning crop and weed residues destroy an important source of plant nutrients and soil improvement potential. The phytosanitary motives for burning and ploughing can better be achieved by integrated pest management practices and crop rotations.

As we read the benefits of conservative agriculture are manifold, depending on the local and particular situation several solutions are applicable. The main issue to implement these techniques is the initial cost of transition, the farmers’ cultural background and the possibility to inform him whit the best updated knowledge. Considering that is possible to implement simultaneously Conservative agriculture and Agroforestry this can provide several cumulative positive effects. First of all try to optimize investment for a long term vision strategy multi inclusive (farmer will not buy equipments for Conservative agriculture and after 10 year will arrive a new bloom of agroforestry that will need him to change), that can only be improved and should be more and more considered in the future. Environmental effects will have a positive feedback from the parallel implementation Research could be more multi-sectoral and local features oriented Yield increase, possible biological agriculture, tourism Biodiversity Landscape Environmental services funding.

3.1.3 Other means of land management 3.1.3.1

Ridge tillage

Ridge tillage, i.e. cultivating crops on pre-formed ridges, alternated with furrows protected by crop residues, has positive effectson moisture-holding capacity, soil fertility maintenance (including organic carbon content) and biological activity and thus on water erosion and nutrient run-off. Evidence suggests that ridge tillage can be an economically able alternative to conventional tillage with higher net returns and lower conomic risk. Ridge tillage has only been studied in experiments in most parts of Europe. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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Contour farming Contour farming involves activities, such as ploughing, furrowing and planting, carried out along contours instead of up and down the slope. It aims at creating detention storage in the soil surface horizon and slowing down the rate of run-off. Contour farming thus increases the soil’s infiltration capacity, may have positive effects on organic carbon content, and results in controlling water and tillage erosion. However ,climate, soil type, slope aspect and land use should be taken into account when judging the suitability of this practice. Data on cost-benefit analyses are scarce.

3.1.3.2

Subsoiling

Subsoiling involves loosening deep hardpans in soils, thereby improving the soil’s infiltration rate and root penetration. In particular, it has a beneficial effect on infiltration rate and capacity, but shows variable effects on nutrient cycling. The effects of subsoiling are influenced by many other parameters such as a combination of practices, type of crop and soil, (micro-) climate, period of soil cultivation, etc.

3.1.3.3

Intercropping

Intercropping involves growing two or more crops in alternating rows on adjacent strips of variable width or in different layers (under-sown crops) on the same piece of land, during the same growing season. By exploiting the ecological characteristics of different plant species or varieties, intercropping aims at enhancing the overall stability of the farming system, including a significant resilience against pests, diseases and weeds, and at a better use of the available resources. This practice increases soil porosity and supports organic carbon and nitrogen cycles; there are indications of positive effects on soil biology and biodiversity too. Studies highlight the variability in net returns for a number of intercrops.

3.1.3.4

Grassland

Maintenance and establishment of permanent grassland (grass sward over five years) and temporary grassland (grass sward less than five years) can improve soil protection. Permanent grasslands significantly contribute to aggregate size and stability and soil biology (from micro- to macro-organisms). They also support the cycling of nutrients (organic carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium) in the soil. The continuous vegetative cover reduces the erosion risk by water and wind. Permanent grassland covers 32 % of the European UAAwith important differences between the Member States: e.g. in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Slovenia, permanent grassland covers at least 60 % of the UAA. Both permanent and temporary grasslands have undergone a gradual decline over the past 25 years, having been converted into cropland or forest, returned to fallow land or abandoned. However, the 2003 CAP reform introduced the obligation to maintain permanent pastures in

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order to prevent massive conversion into arable land. This resulted, in 2006 and 2007, in a limited increase in permanent pasture in most Member States.

3.1.3.5

Terracing

Bench terraces consist of a series of levelled or nearly levelled platforms built along contour lines, at suitable intervals and generally sustained by stone walls (FFTC, 2007). Terracing is one of the oldest means of cultivating slopes while saving soil and water. Terraces are created to stop or reduce the degrading effect of soil erosion by intercepting Surface run-off, facilitating its infiltration, evaporation or channelling it at a controlled velocity to avoid soil erosion (Dorren and Rey, 2004). This is a type of technique very much used in the past and seen as an important cultural heritage in some areas. Most of the available literature on terracing focuses on the effects on soil erosion. Little is known on other soil conservation problems

3.1.3.6

Conservation buffers

Conservation buffers, or buffer zones, are areas or strips of land maintained in permanent vegetation (NRCS, 2008). Most studies report that buffer strips next to arable land can significantly reduce the volume of suspended solids, nitrates and phosphates transported by agricultural run-off to water bodies. They can abate 70 - 80 % of suspended solids, 70 - 98 % of phosphorus and 70 - 95 % of nitrogen but their effectiveness remains linked to the mechanisms by which these pollutants are transported demonstrated also that the width of the buffer strips and the degree of plant interception are two of the most significant parameters determining their effectiveness. Furthermore, found that widening as opposed to lengthening the buffers might also have a positive effect on flora species concentration.

3.1.3.7

Integrated pest management

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is an effective and environmentally sensitive approach to pest management that relies on a combination of common-sense practices. IPM programs use current, comprehensive information on the life cycles of pests and their interaction with the environment. This information, in combination with available pest control methods, is used to manage pest damage by the most economical means, and with the least possible hazard to people, property, and the environment. IPM takes advantage of all appropriate pest management options including, but not limited to, the judicious use of pesticides. In contrast, organic food production applies many of the same concepts as IPM but limits the use of pesticides to those that are produced from natural sources, as opposed to synthetic chemicals. Inspired by the pioneering work in Canada and California in the early 1950s, the first European IPM task force was established by the International Organisation for Biological and Integrated Control of Noxious Animals and Plants (IOBC) in 1959. From the beginning, the implementation of IPM proved to be a problem because of its complicated and non-

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uniform requirements and insufficient economic benefits. In spite of these obstacles, IPM has become an accepted model for plant protection in all European countries and in the European Union. More than 30 working groups organise research programs and information exchanges and actively promote the implementation of IPM into practice. IPM can be well implemented within the scope of Integrated Production (IP). Studies have shown that IPM systems yield greater biodiversity and reduce pesticide use by at least 20% compared to conventional farming, as assessed using the treatment index. Some countries, such as Denmark, Germany and Switzerland, have developed national pesticide reduction programs. The European Union also supports IPM by issuing regulations and directives and by funding research programs. National action plans shall help to achieve faster and more consistent implementation of IPM in the Member States. IPM enables farmers to make informed decisions to manage their crops. Successful IPM programmes replace reliance on most spraying, including calendar spraying, of pesticides. It builds on the knowledge of women and men farmers of crop, pest and predator ecology, to increase the use of pest-resistant varieties, beneficial insects, crop rotations and improved soil management. Supportive agricultural research, training of extension workers and farmers, and farmer participation in pest management solutions, are key elements. Integrated Pest Management (IPM) creates synergies by integrating complementary methods drawing from a diverse array of approaches that include biocontrol agents, plant genetics, cultural and mechanical methods, biotechnologies, and information technologies, together with some pesticides that are still needed to address the most problematic pests and face critical situations. Importantly, such a diversity of solutions is also needed for sustainability purposes: the continuous use of a single method to control a given pest, be it the most favourable solution initially, will rapidly induce pest populations to evolve and overcome this method, whether a chemical one or not. IPM is a continuously improving process in which innovative solutions are integrated and locally adapted as they emerge and contribute to reducing reliance on pesticides in agricultural systems.

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3.1.4 Ecological networks The ecological network is a model that has been developed over the past 30 years with the broad aim of maintaining the integrity of environmental processes, always more threatened by anthropic actions. The creation of ecological network is a well known fundamental phase in the development of landscape planning, a powerful tool to enhance environmental quality and a fundamental step to guarantee biodiversity and spatial pattern connectivity and often a mitigation tool for extremely pollutant infrastructures. In the deeply anthropized landscape of several parts of Europe there is quite a continuum of urban areas alternated by agroecosystem which differs from region and country. Fortunately some area have been protected and are still in natural condition but urbanization is growing and stealing space to the environment sometimes directly influencing the quality even of those protected areas and to the quality of life.. The power of environmental network is that they could benefice both natural spaces (like park or natural reserve or natural ecosystem) and urbanized or environmentally damaged areas (cities, motorways). The role of ecological network is to guarantee a spatial connection to different environments and in these ways offering a bigger space to several species to live according their exigencies in a wider habitat. The final aim of ecological networks is enhance biodiversity. All the species during their lifetime use different component of the landscape because resources (food, shelter, partners...) are not uniformly present in the entire area. For this reason habitats are usually composed of multiple elements of the landscape. The possibility to reach and obtain all the resource an organism need is a prerequisite for its survival, the range of this displacement depend from organism to organism and sometimes is even different between the same specie. There are displacement inside and outside the population, the first represent the need of resources of the organisms, the latter the migration and colonization of new habitat. This is important for study the dynamics of population and especially because isolated population of every species react worst and are in higher risk of extinction and considering the risks of climate change and its implication in possible mass migration for many species this could be a dramatic barrier for continuity of life on earth as we know it. Planning a really effective ecological networks have to take in consideration the exigencies of all the species present in the ecosystem, their quality quantity, distribution, rarity and need specific scientist to survey every specific location and develop the best realization strategies. Anyway the main concepts, between many other, to study for develop an effective ecological network are home range (area covered in the organism lifetime) and migration distance (area covered by the entire population) of every specie present in the area.

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There are some constant principles and tools recognized by several authors in ecological networking and they are the constituents of the web: - Core areas: where the conservation of biodiversity takes primary importance, even if the area is not legally protected -Buffer zones: which protect the network from potentially damaging external influences and which are essentially transitional areas characterized by compatible land uses -Stepping stones: are isolated areas of habitat, such as a small woodland set on its own, a hilltop area with a range of associated grassland heath and scrub vegetation or a lager area -Corridors: which serve to maintain vital ecological or environmental connections by maintaining physical (though not necessarily linear) linkages between the core areas They can be of several types depending on their own characteristic. -Sustainable use areas: where opportunities are exploited within the landscape mozaic for the sustainable use of natural resources together with maintenance of most ecosystem services Buffer zones Stepping tones Core areas

Corridors

Sustainable areas

Landscape corridor Figure 9 Schematic representation of the main components of ecological networks

There are many initiatives on local, regional and European level to promote the creation of ecological networks like the European green belt which is a huge green corridor involving several countries and several protected areas, going to be realized on the former border of the “iron curtain “ passing from Finland to Greece. The importance of the presence of ecological networks in member states is essential to be a resource of life space for many species in an extremely anthropized land, as a seam for what remain of natural resources or to connect the areas of high values reducing impacts of urbanization and pollution. In the Balkan area as well the proper creation of a network of ecological corridor is essential to prevent the repetition of the urbanization path of Western Europe and to protect the rich and fabulous quantity of natural area of this region. To establish an ecological network, is much of the time needed to restore the condition of the habitats due to some previous mismanagement or action. Restoration attempts to return an __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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ecosystem to its historic trajectory. Historic conditions are therefore the ideal starting point for restoration design. An example of ecological network could be the restoration of a river, creating some riparian buffer strip (as we spoke above), creating shrub condition ideal for as many form of life to live or simply pass through that place. This operation will need a good knowledge of the local condition, history and environmental situation before certain disturb modified it. An ecosystem has recovered - and is restored – when it contains sufficient biotic and abiotic resources to continue its development without further assistance or subsidy. It will sustain itself structurally and functionally. Afforestation, restoration, re-naturalization and forestation are obviously good practices to implement doing the creation of ecological network. Especially, planting more tree and plant will contribute not only to biodiversity protection and landscape but also as a concrete biosink of carbon sequestration in the tissue of the vegetables and in a bigger rate of soil sequestration due to organic matter decomposition and other positive impact on this medium. The abundance of plants will therefore contribute in several way like a concrete adaptation measure for ensure life and a protection for possible negative weather condition. The weakness of ecological network if they have one is the limitation of the spatial area they cover and still a huge fragmentation close to urban settlement due to infrastracture. The concept we want to underline in this work is the possibility to create a more integrated network, while we operate on the landscape level and on farm methodologies. The border between agroecosystem and natural ecosystem is a possible huge quantity of territory that if properly managed could turn into an ulterior part of natural habitat. At this point is important to introduce one concept of landscape ecology which is very important to describe the properties of the fragmented landscape, the ECOTONE. An ecotone could be described as the space between different patches in the mosaic of the fragmented landscape; they have an important role in many ecological properties and processes.

11

Sometimes borders could be clearly identifiable but depending on the situations

they could also very vanishing and hard to detect. In the agroecosystem the ecotone zones are huge areas that most of the time are not considered for the services they could provide. In this area there is a so called “border effect� which could be summarized as an increase along the borders of the activity of organisms (more biodiversity or species richness) an increased flux of nutrients, energy and organisms. For the closeness of many patches a bigger number of niches is expectable and consequently a bigger species richness. It is complicated to describe briefly an ecotone but it is remarkable to know that it exist only considering the species that feel it like a limitation or a possible environment where live. Now considering all the ecotone generated by agriculture (field borders, streets...) we can understand how this could limit biodiversity in the agroecosystem if management is not aligned whit an ecological planning.

11

Almo farina Landscape Ecology

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As we spoke above, through agroforestry and conservative agriculture techniques could be possible to restore this field borders (or ecotone) and in the best management also the field itself whit a relative minimum cost investment compared to the many benefits obtainable. Management will then be the key to stitch up the agroecosystem into the entire landscape. Sustainable practices have to be promoted by national and international governments, which have to provide the best instruments and knowledge base to the farmer. The farmer therefore will implement this appropriate management will be environmental responsible, needing less chemicals and in long term more profitable. The possibility to connect these techniques of management whit the creation of ecological network will therefore boost biodiversity, because we will pass from linear corridors, limited and too much under human pressure to a potential matrix network where the possible habitat could be several time bigger. This procedure need an adequate planning but could eventually be one of the best chances to adapt a coherent strategy to tackle climate change dangers. It is clear to everybody, that leading the hope of the planet in the hands of year after year meeting will be a lost of time for concrete action that has to start as oon as possible. Will be much more profitable to start the reaction from the bottom, to be prepared on the risk that could come involving population. In the other country eligible to the IPA , like the candidate (or potential ) state , there is a less deep impact of human activities on the region (except for some region deeply polluted by war or other old industry or big cities) so it is even more important to act rapidly to save this precious patrimony, through an integrated planning.

3.1.5 Landscape and heritage protection Landscape comprises the visible features of an area of land, including physical elements such as landforms, living elements of flora and fauna, abstract elements like lighting and weather conditions, and human elements like human activity and the built environment. The European landscape in the Adriatic area is an extremely different series of environmental and cultural features. Both shores of the Adriatic share a common history through the time of the Roman Empire, and fortunately several regions still preserve in their territory many archaeological sites of that time and of the following ages. The Mediterranean climate in all the region can guarantee hot summers and this could be the cause of an unsustainable mass tourism (like Italian beaches and now also in Croatia). For this reason summing the environmental issues cited above (land degradation, climate change, natural risks...) whit the anthropic stress induced by urbanization, tourism and transport we should start to think seriously on the protection of the landscape. Europe’s traditional cultural landscapes have undergone significant land-use and land-cover changes in the past 50 year. Land-cover inventories facilitate the quantification of the conversion from one land-cover unit to another. However, they often fail to detect finegrained modifications that occur within one land-cover category.

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Loss of biodiversity through simplification of habitats when monocultures are established in large areas is a major concern. The negative impact of increased soil erosion on downstream aquatic ecosystems and other activities such as fisheries can also be discerned. The positive and negative impacts of chemical inputs, particularly inorganic fertilizers and pesticides, are also well documented. Sustainable use of natural resources is critical for sustainable livelihoods and it has a direct impact on the improvement of natural capital. We should recognize that in agriculture, there is most often a continuum between a farming system and a natural ecosystem, as the term agroecosystem indicates. Farmers have a pivotal role as managers of these systems, and as stewards of their resource base. Their role includes for example the conservation of soil properties and water availability, the development and maintenance of crop species and the pursuit of multipurpose production objectives. It is now generally stated that the intensification of agriculture in Europe from the 1960’s, favoured by agricultural policies, has led to a decrease in the variety of landscapes and an increase in the use of pesticides and fertilizers, being at the origin of water and soil pollution. From this statement, new policies arose to counter such effects, even to reorient land use toward more environmentally friendly management. The status of agriculture in the current frame of policies is actually not even, and it notably reveals tensions between integrating and

Local

Regional

Global

segregating agriculture and environment into the landscape. Environmental

Social

Ecosystem resilience Mitigation of climatic change (carbon sequestration, land cover) Biodiversity

Social stability Poverty alleviation

Ecosystem resilience Soil conservation (erosion, siltation, salinisation) Water retention/availability (flood and landslide prevention) Biodiversity (agricultural and wildlife) Pollution abatement

Balanced migration Social stability (and sheltering effects during crisis) Unemployment prevention Poverty alleviation Social stability (employment, family) Livelihoods Balanced gender relations

Ecosystem resilience Soil conservation Water retention Biodiversity Pollution abatement

Food security Food security/ food for all

Economic

Cultural

Growth, internationa l trade

Cultural diversity

Access to food National security Food safety

Economic stability Employmen t Foreign exchange Tourism

Landscape Cultural heritage Cultural identity Social capital

Local and househol d food security

Employmen t effects on secondary and tertiary sectors

Landscape Indigenous, local knowledge Traditional technology Cultural identity

Table 10 Difference of landscape functions according to the scale we observe it.

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We should start to frame agriculture’s contribution to natural resource management, and consequently to the landscape positively: farmers create and enhance resources such as arable soil, agrobiodiversity, productive forest stands. Working with the natural resource base, they could enrich and enhance it. To restore the natural, environmental and aesthetic values in the landscape, the landscape as a whole needs to be considered. Biodiversity protection on single farms does not enhance the biodiversity. Water levels, tables and quality can only be managed at a regional scale, climate change threats or mitigation strategy could take place only if inserted in a wide scenario. Spatial coherence is one of three factors determining the quality of landscape experience in agricultural area’s.

Therefore

makers,

policy

planners

individual

and

farmers

interested

in

multifunctional

the concept

have to consider the landuse on field and farm level within

the

configuration

total

spatial

of

the

landscape. Even more if we Figure 10 Multifunctionality involve social environmental and want to deal whit issues economic aspects forming a complex set of integrations like

flood,

landslide

or

heatwaves it is impossible to pretend to find a concrete and efficient response in simple and punctual actions. The landscape is the reasonable unit, whit a future scaling up on entire region countries and even future transboundary actions. The interest of scientists, policy makers, and the general public in the concept of ‘multifunctional’ landscapes has increased enormously in recent years. The fact that landscapes provide a large number of beneficial functions and services to human beings, which go far beyond agro- and silvicultural production, is now widely accepted. Non-commodity outputs as well as a wide array of ecosystem functions are considered to be indispensable properties of landscapes, and decision-makers are challenged by the need to consider all relevant landscape functions in management decisions at all spatial scales and each administrative level. The concept of landscape multifunctionality is obviously closely related with landscape sustainability, but emphasizes more strongly the land user’s and stakeholder’s perspective. In the European Union, the ‘multifunctionality of agriculture’ has become the key concept of the Common Agricultural policy (CAP). Multifunctionality is promoted by the EU in response to liberalisation pressures, and is seen as a way to address social and ecological concerns such as farm abandonment and biodiversity loss through agricultural subsidy policies. The resulting regional agrienvironmental schemes of the member states pursue to secure the __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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conservation and sustainable development of the old cultural landscapes. However, while the concept of ‘multifunctionality’ receives also recognition outside the EU (USA Canada, Australia), it becomes increasingly evident that there is often a gap between the claim and reality of environmental, economic, or social effects of agricultural policies. Despite research and methodological progress in this field, overall appraisal of multifunctionality (quantitative and qualitative) is still difficult to carry out, especially because of the complexity of the interactions between productive and environmental functions, and the social perception (as shown in fig 8) that result in a complex set of feedbacks and in several fields simultaneously. Multifunctionality modifies the approach to farming activity, whether viewed from a political or a scientific standpoint providing an interesting and effective set of tools for improve environmental, economic and social standards. The acquisition of knowledge and the "efficacy" of this concept are, therefore, heavily dependent on methodological research in this field, justifying further work towards improving the applicability of methods and analysis to other scales, more functions, and other agricultural contexts. “Multifunctionality” has become a popular term in Landscape design and planning. It has been particularly influential in Europe, where it resonates strongly with the protective and creative measures being promoted through the European Landscape Convention Multifunctionality–distinctive features: • Integration of different land-use goals to promote simultaneous and interactive operation of functions • Integration of rural, urban, and urban fringe • Reconnection–social, economic, and environmental • Synergistic–landscape that is more than the sum of its parts • Elusive, emergent property • Operation at landscape scale–upward and downward linkages between neighbourhood, district, and region • Delivery entails integrated, partnership-based, participatory management and planning, social learning • Risk-taking to enable serendipitous outcomes Green infrastructure–distinctive features: • Multifunctional • Landscape scale • Includes blue infrastructure (surface and groundwater systems) and airsheds • Connected–structurally, functionally, socially • Fundamental to planning and design–not an add-on

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where it became an underpinning concept of the Convention on Biological Diversity, and was later described as: 'a strategy for the integrated management of land, water and living resources that promotes conservation and sustainable use in an equitable way.' Multifarming could be the driver of a new management for farmers providing the most profitable features to protect the farms, the environment and cultural landscape.

3.1.5.1

Multifarming

As we spoke above there is a mutual relationship between land and farmer practices: on the one hand, the current state of the land is a result of farming practices and changes in landscapes could not be decided without farmers participation, but on the other hand, the choice and location of cropping and grassland systems by farmers all over the world takes into account their own land characteristics. A number of farming systems researchers have shown the central role played by land use patterns and farmer’s practices in the evolution of soil erosion, surface and ground water quality as well as of animal diversity. It is clear that farming has to cope since the beginning of agriculture whit the limits and the possibilities of the land where it operates. At the same time these actions on the land provided many feedbacks to the entire societies, for this reason agriculture is defined as multifunctional and goes far beyond food production. Other important functions for sustainable development include 

provision of non-food products, wood paper,timber; underpinning other categories of services. This category includes: solar energy fluxes, matter cycling including water, photosynthesis, soil formation;

provision of ecological services and environmental protection; regulating: cleaning water, modifying climatic conditions, controlling rates of matter recycling, regulating appearance of diseases, etc.;

advancement of livelihoods;

economic development;

creation of employment opportunities;

food safety and nutritional quality;

social stability;

maintenance of culture and tradition and identity.

However, the promotion and achievement of multifunctionality is hindered by a lack of systematic quantitative and other data that allow a complete assessment of the impacts of wider functions. Nevertheless, enhanced recognition of the wider functions of agriculture has prompted efforts towards developing integrated land use systems that deliver a diverse set of social, economic and environmental functions, and address the tradeoffs between them. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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Multifunctional agriculture recognizes the many ecosystem services of soil, including: services that support the growth of plants, including nutrient regulation, water supply and water cycle; storage of carbon in soil organic matter and hence regulation of GHGs; regulation of the impact of pollutants through biological activities and absorption on soil particles; habitat for a very large component of biodiversity (e.g., soil microorganisms and invertebrates); biodiversity pool, such as habitats, species and genes; physical and cultural environment for humans and human activities; source of raw materials; archive of geological and archeological heritage . The framework European Commission strategy for soil protection (CEC, 2006) is based on identification of risk of loss of function, and putting in place remediation measures to mitigate threat. Many of these remediation measures could be applied to agricultural lands, but will need to be driven by a different mix of command and control, incentive-based, or market-based trading policy measures appropriate to different situations. Policy measures that promote carbon sequestration in soils would most likely generate positive results for the other functions listed in the precedent paragraphs. Sustainable development of agriculture should make use of positive joint production effects that

are related to farmer’s activities and benefit from the structuring of agricultural

landscape with biogeochemical barriers providing ecosystem services which are brought by operation of natural processes. The general principle depending upon the diversification of agricultural landscape structures and agrotechnologies should be observed. It will lead to the resistance to threats and the promotion of sustainability. The ecosystem services were recognised by capitalising ecological knowledge that ecosystem processing solar energy and elements builds structures that can increase or retard water fluxes, clean or pollute water, modify microclimatic conditions, product biomass and so on. The ecosystem services are those ecosystem’s goods or processes, which benefit people (Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, 2003). Landscape is a result of spatial activities and their externalities. Multifunctionality of landscape can be regarded as the potential of landscape to satisfy various claims of consumers. Multifarming Agriculture is the most important part of a multifunctional landscape because is a considerable extent of land use. Multifunctionality of agriculture contains the multiple non-commodity outputs and positive externalities of agriculture. Multifunctionality of agriculture so could be easily correlated whit multifunctionality of landscape, because the need of societies are going to be always more connected whit wellness and positive contribute that nature can provide. Multifunctionality of landscape could be the possibility to use natural spaces for the most different activities, hunting, hiking, riding horses, walk, fishing or many others. This need for green space will grow especially near urban areas where people need to find space adequate for their recreation. As we can see from figure 9 as far we move from agriculture entering in other fields we introduce many complication and sometimes incompatibility through different activities. For this reason the process of integration of multifunctionality of agriculture into the multifunctionality of the landscape has __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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to be well planned and implemented through a huge cooperation between many organization and whit the collaborative contribute of many researcher as well . The complexity is going to grow passing from farm to landscape and regional scale, as the hierarchic theory say a system is made of subunit and is itself a part of a higher elements. If we consider that we are handling whit ecosystem we have to keep in mind as well the capacity, of every step in this growing ladder, of new properties to emerge, creating an hard subject to analyze properly by single actors or planners. Returning on the farm scale which has to be the first step of this process of multifunctionality, agricultural intensification is known to be a major pressure on biodiversity although few studies have monitored its impact over time. More recently, regular surveys in the european countryside have provided evidence of change in several species As concern for the impact of agricultural practice on biodiversity as grown, so too has the appreciation of low-intensity farming systems and the way in which particular agricultural practices influence biodiversity. Agricultural practices, such as drainage and weed management, are key to the survival of many species.

SPATIAL FUNCTION

CULTURAL FUNCTION

ECOSYSTEM FUNCTION

ENVIRONMENT SOCIETY AGRICULTURE

PRODUCTION FUNCTION

REGENERATION PROTECTION FUNCTION

ECONOMY EMPLOYMENT EARNING POWER

Figure 11 Schematic representation of how the social environmental and economic factors are developing from agricultural activities The type of field margin, for example, influences bumblebee diversity. The plant species present in the field margins also affects bumblebee presence. Field margins have less of an influence on other taxa such as Coleoptera and spiders, which benefit more from hedgerows. More generally, habitat heterogeneity appears to be the key to promoting biodiversity conservation in agroecosystems. Agricultural practices, such as manure application, can also promote dispersal of high conservation value species. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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Multifunctionality is seen as one of the solutions to society’s demand for new functions in the rural areas and the problems with the unsustainability of the agricultural sector in the European Union. In contrast to the traditional functions of income, labour and food production these new functions can not be provided by a single field or a farm. Planning and production of functions like: Nature Conservation, environment and landscape aesthetics can only be achieved when the landscape is considered as a whole. Multifunctionality is seen as one of the solutions to society’s demand for new functions in the rural areas and the problems with the unsustainability of the agricultural sector in the European Union.

The impact of future development of agriculture will have a major influence on the countryside not in terms of a change in landscape use patterns but in terms of more intensive methods of production. The present growing interest of human society in productive, multifunctional, and ecologically ‘healthy’ countryside, also as part of regional cultural heritage, is a powerful driving force for the development of rural landscapes and for a sustainable development of society starting from the primary production. It is necessary to find and to implement such forms of land use that guarantee the maintenance of ecological functions to the largest extent, and which integrate a sustainable, resource-protecting development as much as possible. It is, however, obvious that the economic situation of the farmers managing the landscape is the crucial point for the future of rural landscapes.

3.1.5.2

Cultural landscape

Cultural landscape born from the interaction between natural processes and processes, used by man through complex feedback during space and time. The necessity of protection of cultural landscape is well spread over all the world especially through the action of UNESCO or other international organization. These places are organized by feedback that influence the presence of many species and of man too. The long history of coevolution between mankind and cultural landscape was shaping the area where they were happening and conditioning the society which lived there. These places are important for a series of reasons, they are an historical background witness of previous times, they create dependence relationship which modify many components of the biodiversity becoming an hot spot for many form of life and they contain as well numerous tradition and adaptive strategy of the local people. Cultural Resources are evidence of past human activity. These may include pioneer homes, buildings or old roads; structures; prehistoric village sites or artifacts or objects; rock inscription; human burial sites; earthworks, such as battlefield entrenchments, prehistoric canals, or mounds. These nonrenewable resources often yield unique information about past societies and environments, and provide answers for modern day social and conservation problems. Although many have been discovered and protected, there are numerous forgotten, undiscovered, or unprotected cultural resources in rural Europe. If we add on this __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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basket also the tradition and the cultural heritage, folklore of every local community we realize how much this cultural resource are important and how they need to be preserved, rediscovered and enhanced or in the worst case if they belong to past societies studied and protected . Cultural resources has to be conserved for the same reason that we need to protect the natural resources — the soil, water, air, plants and animals. Keeping natural resources in balance helps provide the basis for a healthy and profitable farm environment; keeping cultural resources provides the basis for understanding our human past. Cultural landscapes are complex but spatially bounded expressions of ecosystems that have evolved under the influence of biophysical factors as well as of human societies. They provide the context to understand how management practices have shaped the productive and characteristic landscapes of cultivated systems, and how crop knowledge fits into these patterns. Cultural landscapes reflect the relationship between human and environment during space and time; sometimes they can provide information on how people adapted on different conditions and how environment was modified according to the necessity of the time. Farina (2001) explains how economy changed the way we perceive the landscape, many of the local resources are not used in that place for sustain life of the society as it was for our predecessor so they lost their economic value, we depend on products that arrive from outside our ecosystem and we don t fully recognize the intrinsic value of the ecosystem to provide other services essential to our life. In our globalized time people are leaving the rural landscape moving into the cities and we could lose the possibility to protect these important areas whit their fundamental traditions and architecture. If we finally consider that these places are as well a biodiversity source, without an appropriate protection strategy we could face an ulterior worsening for the landscape. For this reason a rural development plan has to be carried out simultaneously whit all the actions we spoke above into an integrated management to protect the richness of cultural landscape and guarantee a more harmonious development. This consideration is valid both in European member country but especially in future member country where the process of industrialization is not fully complete and much can be done to create rural development policies.

3.1.6 Risk reduction Natural events like severe precipitation, fire, landslide, flood are tragedies dangerous for human health but they can as well destroy landscape, heritage, biodiversity and soil quality. In the actual state of environment we assist to always more common intense phenomena and a worsening of the condition is predicted by several expert agencies.

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The more creditworthy forecasts of future trends of such events speak about an increase of dramatic events due to global warming. Even insurance companies are more and more worried about the growing risk connected to the increase of probability of such events. The best way to reduce the danger of threats caused by global warming is a strategic planning which will consider all the fragility of the ecosystems and will amplify the possibility to auto defends against such dangers. Increasing biodiversity will enhance resilience of the ecosystem as we spoke above. Climate change is expected to increase the severity and frequency of weather-related natural hazards such as storms, high rainfalls, floods, droughts and heat-waves (IPCC Fourth Assessment Report). Coupled with sea level rise, this will lead to more disasters in future – unless prompt action is taken. Over the period 1995-2004, a total of 2,500 million people were affected by disasters, with losses of 890,000 dead and US$ 570 billion costs. Most disasters (75%) are related to weather extremes (ISDR disaster statistics). Of particular concern is the fact that disasters have been increasing over recent decades, mainly owing to increased populations in hazardprone locations, unplanned settlements and environmental degradation, but evidence is also mounting that climate change is a factor too, for example in more intense hurricanes, higher rainfall intensities and heat-waves. Climate change is altering the face of disaster risk, not only through increased weather related risks and sea-level and temperature rise, but also through increases in societal vulnerabilities from stresses on water availability, agriculture and ecosystems. Disaster risk reduction and climate change mitigation and adaptation share a common space of concern: reducing the vulnerability of communities and achieving sustainable development. SDR secretariat focuses it efforts on there areas of action: I.

Achieve recognition, understanding and specific policies at the international level on the synergies between reducing disaster risk and responding to climate change,

II.

Mobilize, guide and facilitate action at national and regional levels to integrate disaster reduction and climate change policies and practice, and

III.

Strengthen the capacities of the ISDR system and secretariat to support the integration of disaster reduction and climate change by all actors.

Many agencies but also European union and also many counties are asking further concrete actions that are required to introduce disaster risk reduction into climate change agendas at international, national and local levels and in key sectors. In order to scale up progress significantly in the next years, specific joint initiatives have to be planned particularly with a substantial focus on delivery at national and sub-national level. This can only be achieved through concerted effort among partners. To effectively adapt to climate change through disaster risk reduction, and to support related development objectives, countries will require better information tools, supported with clearer advocacy messages, capacity development

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and financing and probably the best way to act in a international, cross border way is the utilization of funding of the European community. There is growing recognition of the role that well-managed ecosystems can play in supporting adaptation - through increasing resilience and decreasing vulnerability of people and their livelihoods to the impacts of climate change. Well-managed ecosystems have a greater potential to adapt to climate change, resist and recover more easily from extreme weather events, and provide a wide range of benefits on which people depend. In contrast, poorly managed, fragmented and degraded ecosystems can increase the vulnerability of people and nature to the impacts of climate change. Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) includes a range of local and landscape scale strategies that enable both people and nature to adapt in the face of climate change. An ecosystembased approach to adaptation is compatible and supportive of a wide range of local and national development objectives, as well as with ongoing adaptation efforts at community level, and with existing priorities identified in many of the most vulnerable countries. EbA is appropriately implemented as part of a suite of adaptation responses including education, training, awareness-raising, and structural and engineering measures where appropriate. EbA shares the attributes associated with good practice adaptation, and as with all adaptation options, there remains uncertainty associated with the costs and limits of EbA. It is therefore important to monitor and review EbA measures, and implement adaptive management approaches. EbA provides opportunities for synergy in policy and practice, including in the following sectors: Sustainable Water Management Many climate change impacts will be felt through water – through drought, floods, storms, ice melting and sea-level rise. Water management is therefore central to effective adaptation policies, planning and action. River basins, aquifers, coasts and their associated ecosystems are natural infrastructure for coping with climate change. They provide water storage, flood regulation and coastal defences vital for reducing the vulnerabilities of communities and economies to climate change. Ecosystem-based adaptation that builds and maintains natural infrastructure in river basins strengthens water, food and energy security in the face of climate change. Disaster risk reduction Well-managed ecosystems act as natural barriers and can mitigate the impact of (and aid recovery from) extreme weather-related events, such as flooding, drought, extreme temperatures, fires, landslides, hurricanes and cyclones. Restoration of coastal habitats, and watershed vegetation to provide natural infrastructure can be particularly cost-effective measure against storm-surges when compared with alternative coastal flood defence options. Development of natural-resource dependent communities

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EbA is complementary to community-based adaptation. By maintaining and restoring healthy ecosystems that are more resilient to climate change impacts, EbA strategies can help ensure continued availability and access to water and other essential natural resources and ecosystem services so that communities can better cope with climate variability and change. EbA approaches can further support local communities by harnassing traditional knowledge in order to adapt to changing climatic conditions, and can also acknowledge the gender specific needs in relation to resources as well as recognizes women’s knowledge and capacities to cope with climate change adaptation strategies. Sustainable agricultural production EbA has many synergies with sustainable approaches to agriculture, including supporting agricultural resilience, landscape-scale management, protection of water resources and the incorporation of local knowledge into agroecological production systems. Many indigenous farming practices are already based on in-depth knowledge of adaptive techniques, using specific crop and livestock varieties to suit changing local ecosystem conditions, and thereby help adapt to the impacts of climate change and climate variability on local agricultural production. Conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity EbA includes practices such as ensuring ecosystems remain intact and interconnected to allow for ecosystems and people to adjust to changing environmental conditions. It can include approaches to maintain and restore fragmented or degraded ecosystems, or directly support important ecosystem processes such as pollination and nutrient cycling, and therefore yields sustainable benefits for the conservation of biodiversity. Summarizing the benefits of a large scale risk reduction procedure through Ecosystem-based Adaptation we can say that it provides a balanced approach to managing climate and non-climate risks, supports adaptation to current and future climate conditions, avoids inappropriate adaptation, encourages gender-sensitive community engagement, promotes integrated solutions and multi-agency cooperation and is delivered through adaptive management

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3.2 Methods Many projects funded by the European Union was handling this topics but often they focussed on specific research or specific region. Absolutely we understand how it is important to prepare the way to appropriate action through scientific research and solid knowledge of the phenomena that are happening but probably climate change could hit sooner that we expect. For this reason it is fundamental to operate and implement concrete pilot action that could at the same time be a research centre and a spreading point for the strategy developed in the shorter time. This will consent a more adaptive strategy that could be more flexible depending on the real situation, but always ready and effective even for the worst possible scenarios. The possibility to operate in the Adriatic area is an unique occasion to involve many organization, govern and university from different countries of the area which share many common problem and a probable similar impact by climate change. We will present some of the best practices that we find between many other that the European community is financing and we briefly present them because of the similarity whit the project we are going to face.

3.2.1 Best practices 3.2.1.1

SAFE project silvoarable agriculture for Europe

This project focuses mainly on these countries France, Spain, UK, Netherlands and Greece. Even if a lot of work was carried out we believe that this research has to be implemented whit the country of Adriatic area and whit the Balkan state to provide a complete representation of key aspect on the Mediterranean countries. In the context of SAFE four environmental benefits, which can be expected from agroforestry, were investigated: a) Reduction of water-induced soil erosion which can preserve productive soil functions and mitigate the pollution of surface waters with soil particles and absorbed phosphorus and pesticides; b) Reduction of nitrate leaching through the formation of a “safety net” of tree roots under the crops and increased water uptake of the system; c) Carbon sequestration through the storage in wood not used for combustion; d) Increase of landscape biodiversity due to an increased availability of habitats for wild species. Following the indications suggested by the SAFE project, we can easily detect some potential “Target regions” across Europe. They propose a method that overlaps the geographical space distribution of three fundamental components, which are:

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-productive tree growth Where the selected species of tree could grow, more species selected better results and spreading options -arable land use Situation of the land use in agriculture, how they are managed where they are what they produce, soil quality and fertility -risk areas Already exist some kind of database of danger zone, but a further research will be helpful, for all the partners and a necessity in Balkan states It is clear that the research of SAFE project is an extremely interesting tool, but it is not possible to start the IPA project without broaden this research, both in wide scale (models, simulation) and (especially) on local scale (soil texture, quality, problems, climate….) to detect the best location for pilot actions. The results obtained by The SAFE group give evidence of how agroforestry could be spread into the European territories: The target area discovered as suitable is 65 million ha (= 38% of arable land) 38% of arable land there is at least one environmental problem and the possibility to plant one or more tree species (the project consider just few tree species more could be done). Going further area where at least one environmental problem exists is 138 million ha (= 81% of arable land) and from this area: 47% is suitable for one or more tree species. Possible number of area recovered from mismanagement: •Soil erosion can be reduced on 6 million ha •Nitrate leaching can be reduced on 30 million ha •Landscape diversity can be enhanced on 42 million ha Although limited by constrained data availability, the study shows that the implementation of trees in arable landscapes in Europe would be possible throughout all climatic zones. In the Adriatic Basin region, is interesting to observe that for member countries the Padan Valley and the coast line are extremely suitable for agroforestry, for non member countries is needed an immediate research but is expectable to obtain similar values for the cost line until the hilly strip. These observations are based on few tree species as provided by the safe project, integrating more species could absolutely bring more results and more space to be involved. As we can see the numbers are really high and they represent an opportunity that can t be lost. Research in the southern part of the Mediterranean is one priority because this area will be the most afflicted by future climate changes and a new European funding is needed to build a cooperative work from several countries of the Adriatic area to explore the possibilities of implement this strategies on their regions. Other interesting results of this project were strictly agronomical, root growth associations benefits and many other parameter were studied. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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3.2.1.2

Integrated Management of Agriculture in the Surroundings of Wetlands of Community Importance

The second best practice that we propose among the many funded by EU is HUMEDALES SOSTNIBLES .Land management is a constantly growing sector of interest for European funding strategies and many projects and action has been done to develop pilot actions and to support research . Humedales Sostenibles - Integrated management of agriculture in the surroundings of community importance wetlands, is a good example of how to behave in the proximity of a wetland of international value. Once the area has been declared protected much has still to be done in order to integrate this area into a wider scenario and implement good management even in the surrounding areas. Integrated Management of Agriculture in the Surroundings of Wetlands of Community Importance was a project of ECAF is a partner of the Project LIFE04 ENV/E/000269. The beneficiary of this Project is ASAJA-Seville (Spain) (2004-2007). Objectives, actions and expected results of the Project are as follows: 1. Reduction of soil loses caused by erosion compared with conventional techniques; 2. Reduction of the colmatation of wetlands by sediments; 3. Increase in the primary and secondary biological productivity of wetlands (not quantified) due to water transparency; 4. Training activities regarding conservation agriculture and integrated production reaching a minimum of 25% of the farmers within the ambit of the project; 5. Increase awareness on the part of farmers regarding the meaning and importance of the Natura 2000 Network; 6. Publicity activities reaching all sectorial organisations of farmers, livestock farmers and ecologists of the 6 municipalities involved (Lebrija, Utrera, Coripe, Osuna, La Lantejuela y MartĂ­n de la Jara); 7. Recuperation (not quantified) of freatic levels: 8. Investigate possibilities of going towards organic farming. Actions and means involved were: 1. Inventory of the erosion levels of the agricultural soils within the ambit of the project on a scale 1:20.000 with U.S.L.E. methodology and geographical information system (GIS) with download of data in Arcview software; 2. Developed a GIS of the project area (using Arcview software) including agronomic and ecological data; 3. Selection of the most adequate conservation technique according to the characteristics of the demonstrative plots through the development of a Virtual Decision Making System;

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4. Monitoring of the process using technical specification cards, including parameters such as climate, soil, crops, proposed conservation technique and monitoring criteria; 5. Creation of a Sustainable Agro-wetlands Office which will centralize and coordinate the actions taken; 6. Training courses for farmers of the demonstration plots regarding soil conservation agriculture, integrated production, efficient use of fertilisers, Natura 2000 Network and EU Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS); 7. Publicity actions regarding the techniques used and results obtained reaching all the farmers of the project area; 8. Analysis of the technical specifications cards compared with conventional agriculture results; 9. Actions on demonstration plots following the proposed model; 10. Quantification and documentation of the environmental benefits: colmatation of wetlands, transparency, BOD5, primary and secondary productivity, census of the fauna, soil structure and composition; 11. Elaboration of a web page, posters and informative leaflets 12. Organisation and celebration of an International Conference regarding “Active participation by farmers in the conservation of wetlands through sustainable farming systems�; 13. Design of a Wetlands Management Model which could be transferred to other areas with similar problems; 14. EMAS certification of the demonstration plots by authorized entities. The results obtained were very interesting such as: 1. 60 ha of demonstration plots adopting sustainable farming techniques and EU EcoManagement and Audit Scheme within a period of 3 years; 2. Elaboration of a Virtual Decision Making System based on the GIS of the project area with agro-ecological parameters; 3. Establishment of a Sustainable Agro-wetlands Office; 4. Reduction of the levels of sediments, fertilisers and pesticides in the runoff flows and improvement of the conservation status of the wetlands within the ambit of the project; 5. Development of a methodology to evaluate the economic benefits for the local inhabitants of using sustainable agriculture techniques and EMAS certification; 6. Development of a model for the active participation of farmers in land management. As we can see from these two projects presented much can be done to improve the management of protected areas and interesting techniques are going to be studied and earning common scientific validation.

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For this reason we believe that connect protected areas whit the rest of the territory is a priority and doing this many other results could be obtained through an inclusive management that will take in consideration many factors and synergic forces that could bring to a sustainable future for the entire landscape at a regional scale. It is necessary to proceed through an holistic approach and to involve many competent actors so will be possible to obtain better results and in the same way working for a better unification of several normative and legislation that rule these different sectors. We will explain why it is necessary to take in consideration all the issues and strategies explained above. Climate change could then be an occasion to change our relation whit environment, not just a risk and the implementation of the IPA will leave on the territories involved a permanent centre of research and prevention on such issues.

3.2.2 Holistic approach The Ecosystem Approach provides more detailed grounds for the reorientation of nature protection activities. The Ecosystem Approach is “a strategy for the management of land, water and living resources that promotes conservation and sustainable use in an equitable way�As was written above one of the priority of European commission is to develop an harmonization of policies acting in different sectors. Also other international institution like OECD, united nation, world bank and many other are working and developing strategies to transform agriculture from the business as usual activity that was until now into a provider of environmental services through a multifuncionality that can ensure several benefices to the farmers, the community and the environment. The stage of European funding should follow these guidelines proposed by the most important international organizations and should be the appropriate place where bring the international debate to effectiveness into a regional scale. The development of appropriate land management practices can guarantee multi-beneficial effects from the soil properties to human well being passing through an healthier environment. The crucial step is the development of the correct techniques, related to specific condition of every site. Another important necessity is the scaling up of these detected best practices into a larger part of the territory or region involved. As we saw above there are many interests taking part in this process from the farmer income to environmental sustainability which could seem incompatible each other.

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Analyzing the objectives of the common agricultural policy and also other European legislation or international convention, we understand how this dualism between profitability and environmental respect has to be surpassed. BIODIVERSITY, NATURE PROTECTION SOIL DEGRADATION PROCESSES LAND MANAGEMNT, IPM AGROFORESTRY, CONSERVATIVE AGRICOLTURE, OTHER MEANS ECOLOGICAL NETWORK LANDSCAPE , CULTURAL LANDSCAPE CLIMATE CHANGE, ADAPTATION, MITIGATION, CARBON SINK RISK REDUCTION, NATURAL DISASTER PREVENTION

GROWING COMPLEXITY

EFFECTIVELY

Figure 12 Considering all the topics presented in the box means a crescent degree of complexity more we move outside the center of the circle, and through a larger environment, but it is a necessity to involve as many institutions and actors to manage more subject properly in an holistic ecosystem approach

The most advanced legislation in EU recognize the importance of the environmental and cultural services that agricultural activities provide to the society and try to maximize this benefit through incentives and formation. Even the customers are today more informed on the important role that agriculture can carry out on environmental protection. International treaty are even more advanced and are trying to overlap agricultural sustainability whit other necessities, like biodiversity enhancement or water protection. Following these advice we believe that it is necessary to increase the role of agriculture, keeping in mind that at the same time there are several menaces to the natural ecosystem, and consequently to human safety, and integrate in a future development strategic planning more simultaneous tools to protect the environment. Risks connected whit climate changes are growing various dangers which could not be faced without a holistic approach. “Holistic� has to be seen in a double way, first of all the problems and the damages to prevent are so various and they are often reinforcing each other through cumulative impacts,

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so it is necessary to face them whit an analytical response which has to provide in the shortest time the most effective solution. This is impossible through a classical land management, and for this the only possible response has to comprise a wiser land planning composed by conservative agriculture, agroforestry (and all the possible soil enhancement), the creation of ecological network strong overlapped and connected whit the landscape tissue and a correct plan of afforestation-renaturalization, so as to totally strength the ecosystem capacity to resist on external stress. Second mean of the word holistic is that this effort has to be carried out by more organization, (universities, public body, private firms) because the expertise needed is extremely wide and site specific, for this reason the IPA funding represent the perfect scenario where develop strong relationship between partners, where cooperate actively and share knowledge in the future objective of expand the best practices developed into a wider region. Implementing so much interdisciplinary research is absolutely impossible for single actors. For this act through the IPA funding is the best way to increase cooperation between the states of the Adriatic region. The initial step is to find the right local partners between public bodies, NGO, SME and universities to create the strategic network, enough wide to cover several climate region of the area and the maximum availability of States. The purpose of this project is to create a stable network of good practices development and implementation in the wider possible area of the Mediterranean region. The climatic conditions are similar and the possible impacts of climate change are a common threat for the whole area so it’s fundamental to involve many actors. For this reason should be overwhelmed every form of “parochialism� and follow a common greater interest. What we are going to face are problems for the entire population of the Adriatic area so the common aim should be an active and fast reaction for develop mitigation and adaptation tools which simultaneously could enhance the natural ecosystem (water, soil, air)) and improve farm income and landscape qualities. The technical operating plan, should be divided in 3 phases Surveys , Pilot action , Scaling up . The first step is essential to determine the entity of the problems of every partner, soil degradation, pollution, natural resource management and legislation, water resources use, natural disaster risks, climate change forecasting for the area, crop production, biodiversity and every other useful data has to be collected and updated according to international standards, such as to guarantee sharing of information and data comparison in every moment. It s easy to understand, that a strong collaboration will be needed between all the partners from the beginning of the operations. Once the appropriate data has been detected is necessary to interpret all the information and elaborate a strategic plan for the pilot (better if more then one) action. This __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


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procedure has to be supported by the most advanced GIS and informatics techniques and has to contain all the data collected and the future scenario available or predictable. This step is delicate because a deep knowledge of European policy and legislation has to be passed to the future member so they can start to adapt on the European legislation. The emerging of the critical situation should be published in some web site as well as the best solution proposed to solve it and in parallel whit a awareness campaign for the public opinion. A national web site could be interesting but an international platform will be much more useful, collecting all the cases and working as a real-time information system for the project workers but also for experts and public worldwide. The pilot action has to be carried out following the best sustainable principles in agriculture, landscape and heritage planning, risk reduction, water management and ecological network creation. The simultaneous operation on several fields of intervention will be absolutely more complicated then a punctual action but can guarantee deeper results. On the pilot action research has to be done to describe how the situation can be improved , and whit short time concrete results has to be detected. The last step of the program that we propose could happen only after the formation of the farmers even through the creation of regional permanent centre of information on soil issues and local strategies to respond on climate change. This centre should not stop to operate after the end of funding but should turn into a national research point on adaptation and mitigation, working as a spreading point for implements the best future actions needed in the area. The climate is not so much different inside this area so many expected results could be shared whit enormous advantages for all the partners. Through the creation of a network of this research centre much will be done to fight actively on climate change impacts.

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3.2.3 A case study the options for Vallevecchia Vallevecchia is an extremely interesting environmental area, located in the Veneto region in Venice province, between two important tourist urban centres Caorle and Bibione Is one of the few not urbanized sites in the north Italian Adriatic cost. Even if it was reclaimed by several actions of drainage during the last 50 years, the area maintained important natural features like the biggest dune system of the entire region. For this reason Vallevecchia has been recognized as a ZPS zone (zone of special protection) and SIC (site of communitarian interest). The water matrix is an essential feature of this area, it is necessary to keep drained this land through the help of a hydraulic pump, because a huge part was collapsing under the sea level after drainage operations. The main rivers are Tagliamento, Livenza and Lemene whit numerous canals of intense ramifications. Landscape is characterized by farm of considerable dimensions mostly of maize and wheat, whit some cottage house along the main street (Sp 42). On the canal is interesting the presence of Casoni, a typical old house for the local people(important heritage feature) Climate here is sub Atlantic, differing from the rest of the southern cost where Mediterranean type is dominant.

Figure 13. Map of study area we can see the localization of Valle Vecchia and the satellite photo in the detail

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We find several habitats interesting for their biodiversity, like wet prairies, riparian forest, several dune system and a pine forest. The dune system deserve a special interest because there are several ecological successions that are hardly found in the rest of the peninsula. The importance of this area is evident by its classification in the Natura 2000 network as site of communitarian interest (IT 3250041). Has to be considered that in the surrounding areas there are other important ecosystems of the Natura 2000 network which complete and integrate in a more complex system this wet area. The original vegetation is no more present because the pine forest was plant in its place but along the dune several rare plants are still present. In the zone closest to the sea where the farm are not present a high degree of animal biodiversity can be found, snakes (like Vipera aspis) , turtles (like Emys orbicularis), amphibian (like Rana latastei) and a huge number of birds, migratory (like Sternula Albifrons) or local.These areas are important like ecological network because through the sea line many species have the possibility to move and live in an anthropized place. This area has been already invested by European funds in previous projects. Many actions and researches were conducted to understand how to develop at the best conditions this special place. The surrounding areas on east and west are two summer mass-tourism beaches, very crowded and the area in the interior is high urbanized whit intense traffic road over all the year. The level of pollution is high like all the Padan plane, high NOx and Pm10 are the most damaging features for health. Antrophization is much spread and ecosystem functions are overexploited by human actions even in agricultural landscape. Many scientific discussion is now taking place on the possibility to refill whit water all the area, somebody believe to bring it to its previous state and somebody absolutely disagree thinking that is more healthy and useful in this state. Finally a compromise should be adopted arriving to a partial flooding of the area. Without entering in this complicated discussion, that should probably be more studied, whit a detailed plan that could describe all the possible options benefits and disadvantages for every scenario, we believe this could be a perfect occasion to develop a deep research on how to manage this area. As we can see from figure 9 where is presented the possible ecological network development of the area we clearly understand how the gaps in the matrix are wide and spread. The green pointed areas are part of the ecological network but can easily seen that many gaps remain in the agroecosystem. In these zone unsustainable agriculture combined whit soil erosion is stressing the environment in higher proportion and quite no significative biodiversity can be found.

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Results and discussion 111 __________________________________________________________________________________

Ecological network

Area to be filled sustainable management

whit

Core areas

Figure 14. Map of the area of ecological network upgrading in the area, we suggest to fill the gaps through agroforestry to create a ecological matrix (yellow circles areas) This is extremely bad management because to obtain some yield and income is needed an overexploitation of this already exploited land. This means more need for chemicals and more compromising to surrounding environment. Taking a walk on this farm is quite strange; we can find interesting birds walking on uncovered fields and we can feel that the connection in the ecotone zone is totally absent, there is an abrupt shift from natural ecosystem into mismanaged agroecosystem. Looking to the pictures presented below we can see the actual state of the fields, rivers and street just few kilometres far from the sic area. The landscape is typical for the area, totally plane whit few trees growing, and proceeding into the land, urbanization is the only thing that interrupt the monotony of the agroecosystem. These shots were taken no more than 5 km from the cost line and it is clear that this area is not the most suitable for biodiversity.

Figure 15 Usually this is the state of the Veneto fields, absolutely flat whit no place adapt to sustain life biodiversity different from cultivated crops.

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Results and discussion 112 __________________________________________________________________________________

There are also many wonderful natural areas but they are really small and limited by anthropization, especially by road infrastructures and an high load of traffic that during the summer time arrive to extreme peaks. The possibility to operate on these areas, like street borders and rivers is immediate and whit several beneficial effects. Also in this zone always more often rivers are in danger of esondation and action could be planned for prevent such events.

Figure 16 The roads and the fields discharge almost directly pollutants into the river, this streets could easily became tracks for bike tourism and a part of the ecological network

Once a minimum standard of environment quality is ensured in these areas more beneficial effects are expected, like soil degradation prevention, water quality improvement(in the proximity of a sic zone is even more important, but this will prevent also pollution disposal on the sea) , birds but also more species will double their habitat and soil biodiversity too will increase.

Figure 17 the state of rivers is absolutely unable to prevent possible proper management could became much more suite for biodiversity

water flood and whit a

A series of positive feedback will interact and whit the right formation farmer will contribute to this improvement actively. Considering the high tourist vocation of the area is not improbable

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Results and discussion 113 __________________________________________________________________________________

to transform even the abandoned rural houses into some dispersed touristy infrastructure for sustainable tourism becoming a possible ulterior form of income for the operators of the area. Eventually all the area could turn into a bike excursion track. We have absolutely to rethink on this landscape management, whit easily implementing actions and formation much could be done in a short time. The passage from natural ecosystem to farm has to be gradual, and the gaps into the ecological network could be filled forming an essential matrix for many form of life. An ecotonal landscape will be the best solution for many reason, income of the farmers, biodiversity,

landscape

enhancement,

heritage

and

tradition recovery even tourism and land degradation preventing. But the prime reason to implement these

techniques

underlined, environment

building

as

to

be

a

healthier

means a

healthier

society and an adaptive approach to climate change issues. As we see from figure 18, many old Figure 18 This is the common state of the traditional heritage of the area, abandoned cottage where farmers buildings are abandoned and falling were living before industrialization. in the fields, but as well along the river where the typical casoni building structure exist, much can be done to preserve these forms of our past which are the box where many traditional practice and folklore is going to be forgetted. A final consideration is on the role of wet areas in ghg compensation and water cycle regulation is well known, and implementing these actions in the surrounding area their properties could only be improved through many positive feedbacks, creating the essential requirements to build a safer environment against natural disaster, like floods or drought. These areas are a source of biodiversity, they regulate water cycle, they are a fish reproduction place and interact in many ways in the health of their surrounding. The price of losing such important places is extremely high also in a strictly economic poin of view, for these reason a cliver management has to be carried out in a deeper way considering a bigger amount of landscape to be really effective. In the same time carbon sinks in these zones will sequester carbon mitigating the GHG emissions in atmosphere and the entire system to a better resilience will be more able to adapt to future threats. Considering that this pilot action will be simultaneously carried out also in another site in Veneto region we understand how this could turn into a radical turn for the whole area to fully understand the risk that we could face, forming the beginning of a strategy of reaction that will move into an ecosystem approach through a sustainable development to ensure the better life conditions to us and to future generation. __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Results and discussion 114 __________________________________________________________________________________

4 RESULTS AND DISCUSSION We presented just one site of the future action that will be taken by the consortium of many actors involved in the project, in the previous section. In our IPA proposal, that we are going to organize in the following months are involved two big partners for Italy (Veneto Agricoltura, and Ascoli province) which will cover 3 areas 2 in the Veneto region and one in the Marche region. It is important to underline that for the case of Veneto these will be two experimental site of testing these practices and that will in short time work actively to the completion of the ecological network of the area. Simultaneously

the

similar

actions

will

be

taken

in

Albania

in

3

different

municipalities(Durazzo, Tirana), in Croatia, Bosnia and Montenegro (ministry of environment) in one location for every state. We can understand that the results will be amplified by knowledge sharing promoting this kind of land management in the entire Adriatic area. Each of this pilot action has not to finish after the funding has gone as the commission wish in its guideline, the actors involved will be Ministry, public agencies and municipalities and they have all the necessity to develop a coherent strategy to tackle the issues presented above. Reasonably every location has its own necessity and priority and a simultaneous implementation of all the actions proposed could not be feasible but a preliminary study absolutely will and will promote future coherent actions. We believe that the most advanced research that could be done will stimulate further research and even funding from the competent authorities for develop better techniques of sustainable management of their territory and to face the risk that global warming will pose.

4.1 Expected results The forecasted results of the simultaneous application of more tools of land improvement will be expected positively in several fields. First of all will be possible through the collaboration between many universities, to carry out an interdisciplinary study, whit different conditions and different problems. This will bring more valuable results to the research and will guarantee a deep collaboration and knowledge sharing among the various actors involved.

4.1.1 Member country The possible member countries involved are Italy, Slovenia. Italy could be the possible more damaged from the member country by climate change, we have already an

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Results and discussion 115 __________________________________________________________________________________

hot summer climate and always more often we face water scarcity or flood in a complex alternation. Slovenia could be afflicted as well but whit a minor intensity. Anyway all these countries are afflicted by soil degradation processes and have not developed an adaptation national strategy. They are afflicted by several natural disasters (e.g. fire in Italy, flood landslide in Slovenia and Italy just to quote the most common) and intensity and frequency of such phenomena are growing rapidly. Landscape is high anthropized and tourism is an important voice on economy of each of these countries. These problems could be faced simultaneously in an ambitious project of land management integration. What is necessary is to act rapidly; responses are needed now, so starting whit several pilot actions will help to develop a bottom up approach on soil issues that could also help policy development through sensibilization of the population. As we spoke above the stakeholder are the key to an effective adaptation on climate change but they need support of policy makers and researcher to develop and learn the best practices of management. In member country environment protection is included in European policy so find a better integration between these regulations and agriculture will be fundamental for every state as suggested by the Commission in several documents. Actions to develop have to be site specific but cooperation between al the countries involved in the project is essential. The results expected by these projects in the member countries are: -sensibilization of the public, awareness on soil issues -farmer formation -landscape enhancing -biodiversity protection -heritage and cultural tradition valorisation -risk reduction (depending on the site condition) -implementing of adaptation strategy -mitigation effect (carbon sink, less emission from agriculture afforestation) -pollution reduction -soil quality improvement -soil degradation halting -increase farmers earn -policy integration -international cooperation -multidisciplinary research

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Results and discussion 116 __________________________________________________________________________________

4.1.2 Candidate (or potential) candidate In candidate or potential candidate countries, Croatia, Montenegro, Albania, Macedonia, Bosnia Herzegovina and Serbia the situation is different from European countries. They need a concrete support for developing policies coherently whit European Union targets. By the way they could as well be highly afflicted by potential climate change effects and probably they are less prepared to find efficient solution. All the region is surely afflicted by soil erosion and degradation and there is a concrete lack of policy structurality according to the European standards. The results that should be expected are: -sensibilization of the public, awareness on soil issues -farmer formation -landscape enhancing -biodiversity protection -heritage and cultural tradition valorisation -risk reduction (depending on the site condition) -implementing of adaptation strategy -mitigation effect (carbon sink, less emission from agriculture afforestation) -pollution reduction -soil quality improvement -soil degradation halting -increase farmers earn -policy integration -international cooperation -multidisciplinary research In these countries the priority is also increase the rural development, both in policy and in concrete action and helping the gender issue to be solved. As we seen before some project were already studied in Europe on this field while not in the Balkan area, so will be fundamental at this early stage to create an appropriate environment to establish the right competence to the competent authorities. Pilot actions will be absolutely carried out here but probably in smaller scale due to other institutional necessities and priorities that this area has.

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Conclusions 117 __________________________________________________________________________________

5 CONCLUSIONS The numerous benefits that we expect from a capillary diffusion of this techniques Of land management are extremely fundamental step in a sustainable use of natural resource. Many times sustainability could sound like an empty box where everything could be putted in, but we believe strongly that whit concrete action we can change the way we act in our world, and informing properly the population create a profitable bottom up approach that will really drive the change as the Bruntland report was declaring some years ago. In the last time we see a growing interest in environment problems, and involving the actors like farmers and the society that lives in the area is a participative process that has to be taken. Only in this way the protection of nature can really be effective. We are going to face too much hard consequences if we proceed in our buisness as usual scenario. The population has to own the tools for determine its own destiny, but this is not possible if the right formation is not provided, and science doesn’t help the decision makers. Waiting action just from international organization or government is a non effective procedure that will probably take a longer time to be applied. The role of policy maker is fundamental to build the right path, but then much has to be done by local authorities and collectivity and the role of the superior organization will be to provide tools and control the harmonization in a larger scale. As suggested by the European commission, the IPA funding should work in policy harmonization, and we tried to involve as much directive and convention as we could, to create a coherent background both in member and not member state. The commission also focus on the durability of the project further more then the funding period and for this reason we believe that the creation of this „excellence centers“ will be a extraordinary occasion to promote a multifunctional laboratory that will work much longer then the project itself. In this laboratories will be discussed and implemented the possible solutions and the results have to be shared by the entire population of the area that has to be the final user of the environment goods. These techniques could even bring in longer term to further results, like organic farming, sustainable tourism spreading and even life cycle assessment for product certification. This will lead to a total harmonization between environment and human pressure as it has always been since the industrial revolution. The commission also suggest the cooperation between states and a positive management of natural resources and natural heritage to prevent natural risks, and we think to follow all the suggestions proposed in our plan, that for this reasn could gain an interesting applicability in a short time and whit a modest funding compared to the benefits that could generate.

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Bibliography 118 __________________________________________________________________________________

6 BIBLIOGRAPHY Agriculture at a Crossroads International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development SOIL CARBON SEQUESTRATION FOR IMPROVED LAND MANAGEMENT Michel Robert Institut national de recherche agronomique Paris, France FAO 2001 United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction(UNISDR) Secretariat Evaluation Final report 02/2010 European Climate Change Programme Working Group II Impacts and Adaptation Agriculture and Forestry Sectoral Report

COM(2007) 354 definitivo Green paper : adaptation on climate change Bruxelles, 29.6.2007 Good Practice Guidance for Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry IPCC National Greenhouse Gas Inventories Programme UNEP Jim Penman, Michael Gytarsky, Taka Hiraishi, Thelma Krug, Dina Kruger, Riitta Pipatti, Leandro Buendia, Kyoko Miwa, Todd Ngara,

Kiyoto Tanabe and Fabian Wagner MAPPING CLIMATIC RISKS IN THE EU AGRICULTURE JAVIER GALLEGO, COSTANZA CONTE, CHRISTOPH DITTMANN, MARIA BIELLA , JOSEF STROBLMAIR Agrifish Unit, JRC Ispra, Italy

Greenhouse gas emission trends and projections in Europe 2009 Tracking progress towards Kyoto targets ISSN 1725-9177 Review of Experience with Ecological Networks, Corridors and Buffer Zones Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, Montreal, Technical Series No. 23 Graham Bennett and Kalemani Jo Mulongoy(2006)

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Bibliography 119 __________________________________________________________________________________

Corridoi ecologici. Una relazione specifica. Quadro dei principali strumenti relativi ai corridoi ecologici Alpimedia The Economic, Agronomic and Environmental Impact of No-Till on the Canadian Prairies Mirza N. Baig, Peter M. Gamache 2Alberta Reduced Tillage Linkages Agroforestry and Farm Diversification in the Southeastern United States S.W. Workman and P.K.R. Nair

“REVIEW OF EXISTING INFORMATION ON THE INTERRELATIONS BETWEEN SOIL AND CLIMATE CHANGE” Contract number 070307/2007/486157/SER/B1

Extreme Temperatures and Precipitation in Europe: Analysis of a High-Resolution Climate Change Scenario Rutger Dankers & Roland Hiederer ISSN 1018-5593 Soils, Society & Global Change Celebrating the Centenary of Conservation and Restoration of Soil Vegetation in Iceland 31 August – 4 September 2007, Selfoss, Iceland EUR 23784 EN ISBN 978-92-79-11775-6

Contribution of Working Group III to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 2007 B. Metz, O.R. Davidson, P.R. Bosch, R. Dave, L.A. Meyer (eds) Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA. International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development Global Report Beverly D. McIntyre, Hans R. Herren, Judi Wakhungu

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COMMISSION STAFF WORKING DOCUMENT accompanying the WHITE PAPER Adapting to climate change: Towards a European framework for action Contribution of Working Group II to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 2007 M.L. Parry, O.F. Canziani, J.P. Palutikof, P.J. van der Linden and C.E. Hanson (eds) Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA

Agricoltura: inventario nazionale delle emissioni e disaggregazione provinciale. Istituto superiore per la protezione e la ricerca ambientale, ISPRA Rapporto tecnico 85/2008. Roma, Italia R.D. Cóndor, E. Di Cristofaro, R. De Lauretis, 2008. BIODIVERSITY AND CLIMATE CHANGE The role of the Natura 2000 network Towards a Strategy on Climate Change, Ecosystem Services and Biodiversity A discussion paper prepared by the EU Ad Hoc Expert Working Group on Biodiversity and Climate Change

Integrated

Pest

Management

in

Europe

History,

Policy,

Achievements

and

Implementation Bernd Freier and Ernst F. Boller Il suolo come geosito: elementi, metodi ed esempi per la sua valutazione. Edoardo A.C. Costantini, Giovanni L’Abate, Claudio Bini2 e Rosario Napoli.

Biodiversity at the landscape level: recent concepts and perspectives for multifunctional land use Annette Otte, Dietmar Simmering Volkmar Wolters Landscape Ecol (2007) 22:639–642 DOI 10.1007/s10980-007-9094-6 SUMMARY OF THE IMPACT ASSESSMENT SEC(2006)1165 IMPACT ASSESSMENT OF THE THEMATIC STRATEGY ON SOIL PROTECTION

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Bibliography 121 __________________________________________________________________________________

SEC(2006)620 COMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE COUNCIL, THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMITTEE AND THE COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection COM(2006)231 Soil degradation Prepared by Dominic Ballayan from FAO Soil biodiversity Ciro Gardi, Simon Jeffery “Environmental science:Carbon unlocked from soils”. Nature, 437, pp.205-206 Schulze E.D. & Freibauer A. (2005) International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development Global Report ISBN 978-1-59726-538-6 Beverly D. McIntyre, Hans R. Herren , Judi Wakhungu et al.. Natural resources: the climate change challenge North – south nccr No. 4 December 2009 Addressing soil degradation in EU agriculture : relevant processes, practices and policies Report on the project ‘Sustainable Agriculture and Soil Conservation (SoCo)’ SoCo Project Team Geertrui Louwagie, Stephan Hubertus Gay, Alison Burrell ISBN 978-92-79-11358-1 ISSN 1018-5593 Guida ai finanziamenti europei A cura di: Gian Angelo Bellati, Francesco Pareti, Roberta Lazzari, Francesco Voltan, Sara Codognotto, Elisabetta Bianchini e Anna Legrenzi 2009

Web bibliography __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Bibliography 122 __________________________________________________________________________________

http://www.adriaticipacbc.org/ http://www.cbd.int/

http://www.ccafs.cgiar.org http://www.cgiar.org/icraf/ag_facts/ag_facts.htm http://www.cgiar.org/icraf/ag_facts/ag_facts.htm

http://www.cms.int/documents/index.htm http://www.dal.ca/~dp/reports/haynesst.htm http://www.dal.ca/~dp/reports/haynesst.htm

http://www.ec.europa.eu/agriculture/climate_change/index_en.htm http://www.echonet.org/tropicalag/technote.html http://www.echonet.org/tropicalag/technote.html http://www.europa.eu/legislation_summaries/environment/soil_protection

http://www.fao.org/DOCREP/005/Y4586E/y4586e10.htm#SOIL http://www.isprambiente.it/site/it-IT/ http://www.missouri.edu/~afta/About_Agfo.html http://www.missouri.edu/~afta/About_Agfo.html http://www.soco.jrc.ec.europa.eu

http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/environ.shtml http://www.unl.edu/nac/agroforestry.html http://www.unl.edu/nac/agroforestry.html http://www.jrc.ec.europa.eu/ http://www.ies.jrc.ec.europa.eu/ http://www.ecaf.org/ http://www.epa.gov/opp00001/factsheets/ipm.htm http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/ http://www.agassessment.org/ http://www.ec.europa.eu/food/plant/protection/index_en.htm http://www.agroforestry.net/overstory/overstory7.html http://www.humedales.org/hmd/proyecto/proyectos.asp?id=1 http:/www./afboard.org/index.html http://www.insea-eu.info/

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Appendices 123 __________________________________________________________________________________

7 APPENDICES

7.1.1 Annex 1 List of all the eligible area As far as concerns Italy, eligible areas are the provinces of Pescara, Teramo, Chieti (Abruzzo), Ferrara, Forlì-Cesena, Rimini, Ravenna (Emilia Romagna), Trieste, Gorizia, Udine (Friuli Venezia Giulia), Pesaro-Urbino, Ancona, Macerata, Ascoli Piceno (Marche), Campobasso (Molise), Foggia, Bari, Brindisi, Lecce (Puglia), Venezia, Rovigo, Padova (Veneto). Territorial derogation applies in Italy to the provinces of L’Aquila, Pordenone, Isernia and Taranto. Slovenia’s eligible territory is the Obalno-kraška regija. Territorial derogation applies in Slovenia to the regions of Notranjsko-kraška and Goriška. Greece’s eligible territory is the Prefectures of Kerkyra and Thesprotia. Croatia’s eligible territory consist of seven equivalent NUTS III eligible areas (counties): Dubrovnik-Neretva, Istra;Lika-Senj; Primorje-Gorski kotar; Šibenik-Knin; SplitDalmatia and Zadar Territorial derogation applies in Croatia to the County of Karlovac. Bosnia and Herzegovina’s eligible territory includes 3 cantons from the Federation of BiH and southern part of the Republika Srpska with the following 23 Municipalities: Bileća, Čapljina, Čitluk, Gacko, Grude, Jablanica, Konjic, Kupres, Livno, Ljubinje, Ljubuški, Mostar, Neum, Nevesinje, Posušje, Prozor/Rama, Ravno, Široki Brijeg, Stolac, Berkovići, Tomislavgrad, Trebinje and Istočni Mostar. Territorial derogation applies in Bosnia and Herzegovina to Sarajevo Economic Region, North-West Economic Region, and Central BiH Economic Region. The eligible territory of Montenegro consist of ten Municipalities: Bar, Budva, Cetinje, Danilovgrad, Herceg Novi, Kotor, Nikšić, Podgorica, Tivat and Ulcinj. Territorial derogation applies in Montenegro to the municipalities of Pljevlja, Bijelo Polje, Berane, Rožaje, Plav, Andrijevica, Kolašin, Mojkovac, Šavnik, Žabljak and Plužine. The eligible territory of Albania consists of six Prefectures: Fier, Durrës, Lezhë, Shkodër, Tiranë and Vlorë. Although not being territorially eligible for the Programme (lack of costal area), but taking into accountits previous eligibility in the 2004–06 Italy–Adriatic Programme, Serbia has been granted a phasing out participation in the IPA Adriatic Cross-Border Cooperation Programme until 2012 included.. This transitional and specific support will allow participation of Serbian partners in institutional co–operation activities between universities, cultural institutions, research institutes, etc.

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Appendices 124 __________________________________________________________________________________

7.1.2 Annex 2 example of agroforestry potential in europe

This map was taken by the results of the SAFE project research and shows clearly the potential expansion of agroforestry in Europe just for poplar but many other species could be grown. We can see the gap in the Balkan that need to be filled __________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Appendices 125 __________________________________________________________________________________

7.1.3 Annex 3 SWOT analysis for agroforestry STRENGTH agroforestry is compatible with modern machinery agroforestry is productive agroforestry may have strong environmental advantages(not yet demonstrated in most cases)

OPPORTUNITIES Farm diversification and income Landscape enhancement Tree induced biodiversity (both in soil and surroundings) Tree stimulated biological control of crop pests Flood mitigation with tree stands Control of nitrate leaching by tree roots

WEAKNESS – No EU Forest Policy (or mention of forestry in the Constitution) – Lack of experience of old or new agroforestry systems – Too complicated to work out the grant regimes (‘If agroforestry so good why does it need a grant’) – Most countries cant bend grant rules for experimental trials – Falls between agriculture, forestry and environment departments. – Agriculture Department– Forestry Department contrasts – Environment Department doesn’t like regimented rows, intensive management and control of weeds. – Perception that EU doesn’t allow it THREAT – Low subsidies – Classification as permanent forest land (lower tax but lower land value & irreversible planning control) – Perception of increased pest problems – Likely damage to field drains – Trees owned by landlord and not tenants – Uncertainties over management, time consumption and yield – Little knowledge of markets – Possible lower timber quality – Scepticism of professionals and advisors Time and bureaucracy for grant application process Obstacles to AF Uptake - Officials

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Appendices 126 __________________________________________________________________________________

7.1.4 Annex 4 energy and water conditions The last consideration for implement agroforestry techniques is a consideration for heat and water balances, considering that these factors are going to be shaped more from future trends of climate variability. The relation between energy input and water supplies determines the climatic condition as well as the primary production of the landscape. The energy and water conditions are best described by the equations of heat and water balances: Rn + LE + S +G + A + F + M = 0 P + E + H ± ΔR = 0 with: Rn - net radiation, LE - latent heat of evapotranspiration, S - sensible heat of air heating, G – soil heat, A – heat of advection, F – heat of biogeochemical processes, M – heat stored by plant cover (all expressed in watts per square meter), P - precipitation, E evapotranspiration, H - run-off, ΔR - changes bin soil water retention (all expressed in mm). These two balances are coupled by latent heat of evapotranspiration LE and evapotranspiration E . Usually, from quantitative point of view, the two last components of heat balance are neglected because their small values not overcoming 2% of net radiation. The structure of these two balances depend on many factors, but one of the most important is plant cover. Forest can use for evapotranspiration as much as 88% of net radiation, while bare soil uses for this process only 55% In terms of landscape heat and water balances, cultivated fields can be considered as “landscape ovens” and shelterbelts or forests as “landscape water pumps”.

If we consider also the possible role of trees, plants and weeds in stopping or reducing water fluxes during flood (that we could not develop properly in this work) we could gain another added value for the implementation of this management practices

__________________________________________________________________________________ MSc. thesis; Ecopolis international master, Ferrara Roberto Tinella (2010)


Ipa cross border project, eu funding