Tradeoffs between economic and ecosystem services in Argentina during 50 years of land-use change

Publication year: 2011
Source: Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, In Press, Corrected Proof, Available online 15 June 2011

L., Carreño , F.C., Frank , E.F., Viglizzo

Farmland expanded quickly at the expense of natural lands in Argentina since the mid-1950’s without consideration of ecological costs. In order to analyze the implications of such changes we aimed to (i) develop a simple biophysical model to estimate the relative (0–100) provision of ecosystem services, (ii) calculate the economic value of food and fiber production derived from farming activities (economic services), and (iii) assess the tradeoffs between the provision of ecosystem and economic services. Land-use/land cover changes were studied through data from agricultural censuses in three historical periods (1956–1960, 1986–1990 and 2001–2005). The model uses biophysical data about biomass,…

 Highlights: ► Different regions respond quite differently to human intervention. ► Rainforests were the most critical areas within the study region. ► Argentine Pampas have high agricultural value but low provision of eco-services. ► Multiple criteria should be balanced as a pre-requisite to design land-use policies.