To close the yield-gap while saving biodiversity will require multiple locally relevant strategies

Cunningham, Saul A. and Attwood, Simon J. and Bawa, Kamal S. and Benton, Tim G. and Broadhurst, Linda M. and Didham, Raphael K. and McIntyre, Sue and Perfecto, Ivette and Samways, Michael J. and Tscharntke, Teja and Vandermeer, John and Villard, Marc-Andre and Young, Andrew G. and Lindenmayer, David B. (2013) To close the yield-gap while saving biodiversity will require multiple locally relevant strategies. Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment , 173. pp. 20-27. ISSN 0167-8809


Increasing yield has emerged as the most prominent element in strategies to deal with growing global demand for food and fibre. It is usually acknowledged that this needs to be done while minimising harm to the environment, but historically land-use intensification has been a major driver of biodiversity loss. The risk is now great that a singular focus on increasing yields will divert attention from the linked problem of biodiversity decline, and the historical pattern will continue. There are options that increase yields while reducing harm to biodiversity, which should be the focus of future strategies. The solutions are not universal, but are locally specific. This is because landscapes vary greatly in inherent biodiversity, the production systems they can support, and the potential for them to be adopted by landholders. While new production techniques might apply at local scale, biodiversity conservation inevitably requires strategies at landscape and larger scales.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © 2013 Published by Elsevier B.V. Published version made not accessible
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - USQ Other
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - USQ Other
Date Deposited: 27 May 2013 23:52
Last Modified: 11 Jul 2014 05:39
Uncontrolled Keywords: agriculture; conservation; ecosystem services; food; land use; society
Fields of Research (2008): 05 Environmental Sciences > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity
07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0703 Crop and Pasture Production > 070305 Crop and Pasture Improvement (Selection and Breeding)
16 Studies in Human Society > 1605 Policy and Administration > 160505 Economic Development Policy
Fields of Research (2020): 41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410401 Conservation and biodiversity
30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3004 Crop and pasture production > 300406 Crop and pasture improvement (incl. selection and breeding)
44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4407 Policy and administration > 440703 Economic development policy
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): B Economic Development > 82 Plant Production and Plant Primary Products > 8298 Environmentally Sustainable Plant Production > 829899 Environmentally Sustainable Plant Production not elsewhere classified
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