Tuesday, 31 January 2017

The benefits of agro-forestry in Europe (journal)

Do European agroforestry systems enhance biodiversity and ecosystem services? A meta-analysis

The available evidence for the societal benefits of agroforestry is fragmented. The authors extracted a total of 365 comparisons. Results revealed an overall positive effect of agroforestry over conventional agriculture and forestry. However there were differences among the types of agroforestry practices and ecosystems. Erosion control, biodiversity, and soil fertility are enhanced by agroforestry while there is no clear effect on provisioning services. The effect of agroforestry on biomass production is negative. Both silvopastoral and silvoarable systems increase ecosystem service provision and biodiversity. Mediterranean tree plantation systems should be targeted as soil erosion could be reduced while soil fertility increased. In conclusion, agroforestry can enhance biodiversity and ecosystem service provision relative to conventional agriculture and forestry in Europe.

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