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Economic profitability of agroforestry in nitrate vulnerable zones in Catalonia (NE Spain)
Blanc, Simone (Università degli studi di Torino. Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Forestali e Alimentari)
Gasol, Carles M. (Institut de Ciència i Tecnologia Ambientals)
Martínez Blanco, Julis (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. Institut de Ciència i Tecnologia Ambientals)
Muñoz Odina, Pere (Institut de Recerca i Tecnologia Agroalimentàries)
Coello, Jaime (Centre Tecnològic Forestal de Catalunya)
Casals, Pere (Centre Tecnològic Forestal de Catalunya)
Mosso, Angela (Università degli studi di Torino. Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Forestali e Alimentari)
Brun, Filippo (Università degli studi di Torino. Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Forestali e Alimentari)

Date: 2019
Abstract: The impact of agricultural practices and the excess application of nitrogen can negatively impact the environment and cause human health problems. In Spain, the liquid manure applied in areas of intensive agriculture is creating groundwater nitrate pollution problems. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the economic profitability of agroforestry practices in North East Spain. Therefore, it deals with an alternative land use that has attracted attention in recent years, considering its potential to reduce the negative impact of modern agriculture that combines concurrent forestry and agricultural production in the same area. Specifically, silvoarable practices, such as alley cropping (AC), edge row planting and riparian buffer (RB) strips were compared to conventional agricultural land use. Considering the current agricultural policy framework in Spain, which does not favour these practices, our results showed the economic profitability of alley-cropping practices in comparison to conventional barley production of 25 to 64 € ha yr . However, AC systems presented negative results compared to the traditional wheat crop (-122 to -63 € ha yr ). The results for RB strips were strongly influenced by the high initial costs, both in irrigated and non-irrigated scenarios. Economic results were negative (between -137 and -85 € ha yr ) compared to the conventional crops, barley and corn. These figures could be greatly increased with a policy framework that promotes these practices based on the fundamental ecosystem services they provide. Moreover, these practices allow an economic diversification that could prove to be beneficial for the majority of farmers.
Note: Unidad de excelencia María de Maeztu MdM-2015-0552
Rights: Aquest document està subjecte a una llicència d'ús Creative Commons. Es permet la reproducció total o parcial, la distribució, la comunicació pública de l'obra i la creació d'obres derivades, fins i tot amb finalitats comercials, sempre i quan es reconegui l'autoria de l'obra original. Creative Commons
Language: Anglès
Document: article ; recerca ; publishedVersion
Subject: Silvoarable practices ; Alley cropping ; Riparian buffer strips ; N-leaching ; Economic evaluation
Published in: Spanish journal of agricultural research, Vol. 17, Issue 1 (March 2019) , art. e0101, ISSN 2171-9292

DOI: 10.5424/sjar/2019171-12118


16 p, 495.9 KB

The record appears in these collections:
Research literature > UAB research groups literature > Research Centres and Groups (scientific output) > Experimental sciences > Institut de Ciència i Tecnologia Ambientals (ICTA) > Sustainability and Environmental Protection (Sostenipra)
Articles > Research articles
Articles > Published articles

 Record created 2020-06-03, last modified 2020-09-29



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