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Title: Designing agricultural landscapes for biodiversity-based ecosystem services

Abstract

Sustainable and resilient agricultural systems are needed to feed and fuel a growing human population. However, the current model of agricultural intensification which produces high yields has also resulted in a loss of biodiversity, ecological function, and critical ecosystem services in agricultural landscapes. A key consequence of agricultural intensification is landscape simplification, where once heterogeneous landscapes contain increasingly fewer crop and non-crop habitats. Landscape simplification exacerbates biodiversity losses which leads to reductions in ecosystem services on which agriculture depends. In recent decades, considerable research has focused on mitigating these negative impacts, primarily via management of habitats to promote biodiversity and enhance services at the local scale. While it is well known that local and landscape factors interact, modifying overall landscape structure is seldom considered due to logistical constraints. Here, I propose that the loss of ecosystem services due to landscape simplification can only be addressed by a concerted effort to fundamentally redesign agricultural landscapes. Designing agricultural landscapes will require that scientists work with stakeholders to determine the mix of desired ecosystem services, evaluate current landscape structure in light of those goals, and implement targeted modifications to achieve them. I evaluate the current status of landscape design, ranging from fundamental ecologicalmore » principles to resulting guidelines and socioeconomic tools. Finally, while research gaps remain, the time is right for ecologists to engage with other disciplines, stakeholders, and policymakers in education and advocacy to foster agricultural landscape design for sustainable and resilient biodiversity services.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]
  1. Michigan State Univ., East Lansing, MI (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
OSTI Identifier:
1318759
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1418525
Grant/Contract Number:
FC02-07ER64494; ACO5-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Published Article
Journal Name:
Basic and Applied Ecology
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 18; Journal Issue: C; Journal ID: ISSN 1439-1791
Publisher:
Elsevier
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; Agricultural biodiversity; Ecosystem function; Ecosystem services; Pest suppression; Pollination

Citation Formats

Landis, Douglas A. Designing agricultural landscapes for biodiversity-based ecosystem services. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.1016/j.baae.2016.07.005.
Landis, Douglas A. Designing agricultural landscapes for biodiversity-based ecosystem services. United States. doi:10.1016/j.baae.2016.07.005.
Landis, Douglas A. Thu . "Designing agricultural landscapes for biodiversity-based ecosystem services". United States. doi:10.1016/j.baae.2016.07.005.
@article{osti_1318759,
title = {Designing agricultural landscapes for biodiversity-based ecosystem services},
author = {Landis, Douglas A.},
abstractNote = {Sustainable and resilient agricultural systems are needed to feed and fuel a growing human population. However, the current model of agricultural intensification which produces high yields has also resulted in a loss of biodiversity, ecological function, and critical ecosystem services in agricultural landscapes. A key consequence of agricultural intensification is landscape simplification, where once heterogeneous landscapes contain increasingly fewer crop and non-crop habitats. Landscape simplification exacerbates biodiversity losses which leads to reductions in ecosystem services on which agriculture depends. In recent decades, considerable research has focused on mitigating these negative impacts, primarily via management of habitats to promote biodiversity and enhance services at the local scale. While it is well known that local and landscape factors interact, modifying overall landscape structure is seldom considered due to logistical constraints. Here, I propose that the loss of ecosystem services due to landscape simplification can only be addressed by a concerted effort to fundamentally redesign agricultural landscapes. Designing agricultural landscapes will require that scientists work with stakeholders to determine the mix of desired ecosystem services, evaluate current landscape structure in light of those goals, and implement targeted modifications to achieve them. I evaluate the current status of landscape design, ranging from fundamental ecological principles to resulting guidelines and socioeconomic tools. Finally, while research gaps remain, the time is right for ecologists to engage with other disciplines, stakeholders, and policymakers in education and advocacy to foster agricultural landscape design for sustainable and resilient biodiversity services.},
doi = {10.1016/j.baae.2016.07.005},
journal = {Basic and Applied Ecology},
number = C,
volume = 18,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Jul 28 00:00:00 EDT 2016},
month = {Thu Jul 28 00:00:00 EDT 2016}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record at 10.1016/j.baae.2016.07.005

Citation Metrics:
Cited by: 19works
Citation information provided by
Web of Science

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  • Sustainable and resilient agricultural systems are needed to feed and fuel a growing human population. However, the current model of agricultural intensification which produces high yields has also resulted in a loss of biodiversity, ecological function, and critical ecosystem services in agricultural landscapes. A key consequence of agricultural intensification is landscape simplification, where once heterogeneous landscapes contain increasingly fewer crop and non-crop habitats. Landscape simplification exacerbates biodiversity losses which leads to reductions in ecosystem services on which agriculture depends. In recent decades, considerable research has focused on mitigating these negative impacts, primarily via management of habitats to promote biodiversity andmore » enhance services at the local scale. While it is well known that local and landscape factors interact, modifying overall landscape structure is seldom considered due to logistical constraints. Here, I propose that the loss of ecosystem services due to landscape simplification can only be addressed by a concerted effort to fundamentally redesign agricultural landscapes. Designing agricultural landscapes will require that scientists work with stakeholders to determine the mix of desired ecosystem services, evaluate current landscape structure in light of those goals, and implement targeted modifications to achieve them. I evaluate the current status of landscape design, ranging from fundamental ecological principles to resulting guidelines and socioeconomic tools. Finally, while research gaps remain, the time is right for ecologists to engage with other disciplines, stakeholders, and policymakers in education and advocacy to foster agricultural landscape design for sustainable and resilient biodiversity services.« less
  • The world is faced with a difficult multiple challenge of meeting nutritional, energy, and other basic needs, under a limited land and water budget, of between 9 and 10 billion people in the next three decades, mitigating impacts of climate change, and making agricultural production resilient. More productivity is expected from agricultural lands, but intensification of production could further impact the integrity of our finite surface water and groundwater resources. Integrating perennial bioenergy crops in agricultural lands could provide biomass for biofuel and potential improvements on the sustainability of commodity crop production. This article provides an overview of ways inmore » which research has shown that perennial bioenergy grasses and short rotation woody crops can be incorporated into agricultural production systems with reduced indirect land use change, while increasing water quality benefits. Current challenges and opportunities as well as future directions are also highlighted.« less