Agroforestry Systems for Ecological Restoration: How to reconcile conservation and production. Options for Brazil’s Cerrado and Caatinga biomes

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The main objective of this book is to guide the adoption of agroforestry systems (AFS) to restore and recover altered and degraded areas, using strategies that reconcile conservation with social benefits. It came about through a participatory research process involving extensionists, farmers, researchers, policy makers and practitioners in the field of restoration and AFS. We began by analyzing norms governing the use of AFS in environmental protection areas (Permanent Preservation Areas – PPAs and Legal Reserves – LRs), to make their practical implications in the field clear to extensionists, farmers and policy makers. A broad-ranging survey of relevant literature investigated the feasibility of AFS and the most suitable systems to accomplish the ecological and social goals of restoration. In May 2015, during a participatory seminar on “Conservation with Agroforestry: pathways to restoration on family farms,” 70 participants drafted principles and criteria to reconcile conservation with production. We then systematically analyzed 19 AFS experiences to draw lessons for best practices to be replicated, including visits to 16 farmers who shared their examples of promising management systems and practices, and consulted experts. With those inputs in hand, we propose recommendations to overcome challenges facing AFS and to draft enabling legislation for Brazil’s new Forest Code. We developed an approach to social-environmental diagnoses in AFS planning attuned to the aspirations and conditions of families in their own environments. For some of the most common situations, like degraded pastures and areas with secondary plant growth, we present 11 agroforestry options to be adapted to each farm’s specific characteristics. Recommendations include detailed descriptions of 19 key species for the recovery of degraded areas, and a total of 130 species deemed important for AFS-based restoration in a general table with functional attributes. Although this book focuses on Brazil’s Cerrado and Caatinga biomes, the approach for socio-environmental diagnoses, the principles and criteria for selecting species and designing systems, as well as the implementation and management techniques, can be applied in other regions as well.
Authors: Miccolis, A.; Peneireiro, F.M.; Marques, H.R.; Vieira, D.L.M.; Arco-Verde, M.F.; Hoffmann, M.R.; Rehder, T.; Pereira, A.V.B.
Subjects: agroforestry, ecological restoration
Publication type: Book
Year: 2016

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