Ecoagriculture Landscapes: Mobilizing Action Together

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Author: Sara J. Scherr, Ecoagriculture Partners. …

Author: Sara J. Scherr, Ecoagriculture Partners.
Side Event at the 2nd World Agroforestry Congress, 27 August 2009, Nairobi, Kenya.

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  • Highlight most important lessons of book What do we know, what are we learning, what don’t we know? Talk 30-40 minutes (total 55 min) – End with need for landscape measures work, need language across disciplines
  • Agricultural landscapes play a centrally important role in producing and conserving ecosystem services, because they are such a dominant role in land use. On the one hand are the ‘provisioning’ services—productiion of goods like food, fuel, fiber, etc. On the other side are ecosystem services providing clean air, fresh water, flood protection, pest and disease regulation, etc. These ecosystem services provide direct and indirect benefits for the economy and people’s livelihoods, and thus have an economic value.
  • Conventionally, it has been assumed that tradeoffs between agricultural production and biodiversity conservation objectives are unavoidable. However, in many circumstances, agricultural practices depend and capitalize upon the inherent benefits and services provided by natural ecosystems, while many farming, herding, forest and fisher communities play an important role in conserving wild biodiversity. Approaches to managing agricultural landscape mosaics to minimize trade-offs and optimize synergies between agricultural livelihoods and biodiversity are emerging (or being recognized) in agroecosystems worldwide. These diverse approaches have come to be known collectively as ‘ecoagriculture’ (McNeely and Scherr 2003).
  • Which regions, and examples particularly are we talking about?
  • Out of this came ecoagriculture partners May 2001: Future Harvest – IUCN Collaboration on Agriculture & Biodiversity: “Common Ground, Common Future” (leading to 2003 book on ‘Ecoagriculture’) 2002: Consultations (New York, Montreal, Bali); Formed at Implementation Conference, WSSD Johannesburg February 2003: Strategic Planning Workshop, Gland, Switzerland (Co-sponsors: Forest Trends, IUCN, ICRAF) September 2004: International Ecoagriculture Conference, Nairobi
  • From Sara: “This list includes the main practices for which there is scientific evidence confirming the positive impacts on biodiversity for at least three taxa (you can review the chapter by Buck et al for details) “ Buck is not exhaustive Strategy most often correlated with biodiversity was maintenance of hedgerows and woodlots (21 studies documented positive correlations with eight taxa plus the conservation of nat habitat) Org ag-correlated with increase of 7 taxa, plus habitat, in eight studies Shaded tropicl aag prod.- especially coffe and cocoa-had higher species richness og 3 taxa according to 11 studies (few of these studies included economic or productivity data or could be linked directly to parallel studies with such data What is pasture enrichment


  • 1. Mobilizing PES at Landscape Scale: Sara J. Scherr, Ecoagriculture Partners World Agroforestry Congress, Nairobi, Kenya August 27, 2009 Ecoagriculture Partners
  • 2. Challenges for agricultural production in the 21 st century
    • Reduce rural food insecurity and poverty
    • Secure urban food supply
    • Meet global demand for food rising by 50-100% by 2030
    • Contribute to sustainable energy through biofuels
    • Adapt to climate change
    • Restore degraded resources critical for production
    • Reduce the ecological ‘footprint’; become net contributor to ecosystem services
  • 3. Carbon sequestration and storage Soil formation and fertility Plant pollination Watershed protection and regulation Air quality Pest & disease control Wild species & habitat protection Decomposition of wastes Landscape beauty Challenges for conserving our “natural infrastructure” in the 21 st century
  • 4. Importance of cropping landscapes for biodiversity and ecosystems
  • 5. Importance of grazing landscapes for biodiversity & ecosystem services
  • 6. Prevalence of crop production in public protected areas
  • 7. Prevalence of crop cover in major watersheds
  • 8. Emissions reduction and sequestration in working landscapes
  • 9. Our Vision Importance of Ecosystem Services for Rural Livelihoods
    • Direct
    • Nutrition: direct consumption of wild plants and game; micro-nutrients, “safety net”
    • Medicines
    • Fuel and construction materials
    • Farm inputs (fodder, fertilizer, packaging)
    • Income from sale of wild species
    • Quality water supply for domestic use
    • Reliable irrigation water supply
    • Pollinate crops, key wild species
    • Cultural, spiritual, aesthetic value
    • Indirect
    • Maintain soil fertility
    • Maintain healthy human habitat
    • Maintain microclimate for crops
    • Pest & disease control
    • Nutrient cycling, detoxification
    • Wild crop/livestock relatives
    Providing biodiversity & ecosystem services for rural livelihoods
  • 10. Agricultural landscapes managed to enhance rural livelihoods and sustainable agricultural production (of crops, livestock, fish and forest), while conserving or restoring ecosystem services and biodiversity. Ecoagriculture landscapes
  • 11. Achieving positive synergies for agricultural production and ecosystems
    • Increase input efficiency
    • Enhance biological and
    • ecological synergies
    • Improve spatial organization of species, fields and farms
    • Manage wild species to
    • benefit farming
    • Realize economies of scale through collective action
    • Substitute natural capital for financial capital
  • 12. Ecoagricultur Strategies
    • In conservation areas of mosaic
    • Create conservation reserves that benefit local farming communities
    • Provide connectivity of native habitat thru non-farmed areas
    • Reduce or reverse land conversion by increasing farm productivity
    • Develop species conserv. plans
    • In production areas of mosaic
    • Minimize agricultural pollution
    • Use ecologically-compatible management of soil, water, and vegetation
    • Modify farming systems to mimic natural ecosystems
    • Maintain diversity of crop species & varieties
    Ecoagriculture strategies to meet diverse goals in the landscape
  • 13. Productivity-enhancing innovations with positive impacts on ecosystems 1 2 3 4 4
  • 14. Conservation innovations with positive impacts for farmers 5 6 7 8
  • 15. Multi-stakeholder planning & action key to ecoagriculture landscapes
  • 16.
    • Vision :
    • Farmers around the world produce enough food while protecting ecosystem services and the biological diversity of plant and animal life
    • Mission:
    • To mobilize scaling up of successful ecoagriculture approaches, by catalyzing strategic connections, dialogue and joint action among key actors, at local, national and international levels
    Ecoagriculture Partners
  • 17.
    • 2001: Common Ground, Common Future
    • (report from Future Harvest & IUCN)
    • 2002: EP initiated at Stakeholder Conference of
    • World Summit on Sustainable Development
    • 2004: International Conference in Nairobi
    • 2005: EP registered as U.S. non-profit (501c3)
    • 2006-9: “Laying the foundations for ecoag..”
    • 2010-13: “Scaling up ecoag landscapes…”
    History of Ecoagriculture Partners
  • 18. Ecoagriculture Partners programs Understanding Ecoagriculture Landscapes Community Knowledge-Service Enabling Markets & Policies Learning Landscapes Leadership Development Learning Landscapes
  • 19. Learning landscapes: East Africa, Mesoamerica, USA Kabale, Uganda Willamette Valley, USA Eastern Region, Burkina Faso Tea Zone, Kenya
  • 20. The Landscape Measures Resource Center: Tools for landscape planning & assessment
    • Contents
      • Process
      • Practice
      • Case Studies
      • Glossary
    • A web-based hub for a virtual learning network
    • Testing in “learning landscapes”
  • 21. Our Vision
    • Leadership courses with UC-Berkeley &
    • regional partners
    • Ecoagriculture Working Groups (Kenya, Uganda,
    • Mesoamerica, DC)
    Supporting ecoagriculture leaders
  • 22. AgricultureBridge: Linking students and ecoag practitioners
    • Cornell Univ, Ecoagriculture
    • Partners, UC-Berkeley (Habitat-7)
    • USDA-funded (Higher Education)
    • Web platform for knowledge-
    • sharing and curriculum development
    • (cross-disciplinary)
    • 10 initial landscape cases: 5 U.S.,
    • 1 China, 3 Central America, 2 E. Africa
    • - video
    • - case summary
    • - background materials
    • - teaching notes and questions
    • - practitioner requests
  • 23.
      • 2) Community knowledge-sharing
    Community Knowledge Service
  • 24. Markets and policies supporting ecoagriculture strategies
    • Eco-certified ag’l commodities (incl. biofuels),
    • including BACP
    • PES in agricultural landscapes
    • Ecoagriculture in CBD, CSD, UNFCCC, MDGs
    • Climate adaptation & mitigation thru ecoag
  • 25. eco agriculture PES: Int’l newsletter on agricultural payments for ecosystem serv.
    • Commentary
    • Market developments
    • - Biodiversity
    • - Carbon
    • - Water
    • - Eco-certification
    • Policy and law
    • Science & technology
    • New tools
    • Announcements
    • Upcoming events
    • Learning corner
  • 26. Thank you! Please visit our website at…
  • 27.
    • 2006-2008:
    • - Kenya, Uganda Working Gr.
    • - 2 Leadership courses
    • - Scoping in 11 landscapes
    • - Policy, regional mapping
    • 2009 +:
      • Support to TerrAfrica (M&E,
      • knowledge mgmt, capacity-
      • building, climate & SLM)
      • Carbon Fund scoping, ag PES
      • Landscape carbon monitoring
      • Learning Landscapes (Gates,
      • UNEP, AGRA?)
    Ecoagriculture Partners in Africa