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Land 2017, 6(4), 85; doi:10.3390/land6040085

Simulating Stakeholder-Based Land-Use Change Scenarios and Their Implication on Above-Ground Carbon and Environmental Management in Northern Thailand

1
Institute of Agricultural Sciences in the Tropics (Hans-Ruthenberg-Institute), Universität Hohenheim, 70593 Stuttgart, Germany
2
Uplands Programme (SFB 564), Chiang Mai Office, 50100 Chiang Mai, Thailand
3
Multiple Cropping Centre (MCC), Chiang Mai University, 50100 Chiang Mai, Thailand
Current Affiliation: Thünen Institute of International Forestry and Forest Economics, 21035 Hamburg, Germany.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 2 October 2017 / Revised: 26 November 2017 / Accepted: 27 November 2017 / Published: 3 December 2017
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Abstract

The objective of this study was to examine whether the coupling of a land-use change (LUC) model with a carbon-stock accounting approach and participatory procedures can be beneficial in a data-limited environment to derive implications for environmental management. Stakeholder-based LUC scenarios referring to different storylines of agricultural intensification and reforestation were simulated to explore their impact on above-ground carbon (AGC) for a period of twenty years (2009–2029). The watershed of Mae Sa Mai, Northern Thailand was used as a case study for this purpose. Coupled model simulations revealed that AGC stocks could be increased by up to 1.7 Gg C through expansion of forests or orchard areas. A loss of up to 0.4 Gg C would occur if vegetable production continue to expand at the expense of orchard and fallow areas. The coupled model approach was useful due to its moderate data demands, enabling the comparison of land-use types differing in AGC build-up rates and rotation times. The scenario analysis depicted clear differences in the occurrence of LUC hotspots, highlighting the importance of assessing the impact of potential future LUC pathways at the landscape level. The use of LUC scenarios based on local stakeholder scenarios offer a higher credibility for climate mitigation strategies but also underline the need to co-design policy frameworks that acknowledge the heterogeneity of stakeholder needs and environmental management frameworks. View Full-Text
Keywords: Northern Thailand; land-use change; above-ground carbon; model soft-coupling; stakeholder-based scenarios Northern Thailand; land-use change; above-ground carbon; model soft-coupling; stakeholder-based scenarios
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Lippe, M.; Hilger, T.; Sudchalee, S.; Wechpibal, N.; Jintrawet, A.; Cadisch, G. Simulating Stakeholder-Based Land-Use Change Scenarios and Their Implication on Above-Ground Carbon and Environmental Management in Northern Thailand. Land 2017, 6, 85.

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