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Special Issue "Land-Use Competition"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Social Ecology and Sustainability".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2018)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Miguel Brandão

KTH - Royal Institute of Technology, SE-100 44, Stockholm, Sweden
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Life Cycle Assessment; bioeconomy systems; land-use competition; industrial ecology; ecological economics
Guest Editor
Dr. Hans Langeveld

Biomass research, 6702 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands
Website | E-Mail
Interests: biomass availability; biobased economy; sustainable land use issues
Guest Editor
Mag. Andreas Mayer

Institute of Social Ecology, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU), Schottenfeldgasse 29, 1070 Vienna, Austria
Website | E-Mail
Interests: environmental and social trade-off assessments; land and resource use competition; agent based modelling; social metabolism; society-nature interactions

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In view of the competing demands on land to adequately feed people, sustain biodiversity and ecosystem services, and mitigate climate change, there is a clear need for a systematic basis for allocating land use with respect to economic, social, and environmental objectives.

The journal Sustainability is hosting a Special Issue on “Land-Use Competition”. Studies are welcome that formulate an integrated environmental and economic assessment of the global consequences of land use strategies for food, feed, fuel, timber and carbon sink, consisting of novel operational approaches that propose resolving the associated methodological issues. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and/or (parallel) economic-equilibrium modelling studies are of particular interest, as are consequential approaches for considering indirect effects when assessing land use strategies, or any other approach for estimating indirect land use change.

Dr. Miguel Brandão
Dr. Hans Langeveld
Mag. Andreas Mayer
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Land-use competition
  • Life cycle assessment
  • Consequential modelling
  • Economic-equilibrium modelling
  • Bioenergy

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Spatiotemporal Dynamics of Green Spaces in the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei Region in the Past 20 Years
Sustainability 2018, 10(8), 2949; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10082949
Received: 19 July 2018 / Revised: 8 August 2018 / Accepted: 17 August 2018 / Published: 20 August 2018
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Abstract
Rapid urbanization has caused the reduction of green spaces in most cities, disrupting the structure and process of urban and rural ecosystems. The accurate identification of spatiotemporal changes in green spaces is important to delineate future management and planning. We investigated green space
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Rapid urbanization has caused the reduction of green spaces in most cities, disrupting the structure and process of urban and rural ecosystems. The accurate identification of spatiotemporal changes in green spaces is important to delineate future management and planning. We investigated green space types of the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei region in 1995, 2000, 2005, 2010, and 2015 based on the elevation data and land use/cover for those years. Spatiotemporal changes in these identified green spaces between 1995 and 2015 were evaluated as well as the spatial hotspots of disappeared and unstable green patches. The results indicate that the cultivated land in plains and forests and cultivated land in medium-high mountainous areas were the main green space types in the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei region during the period from 1995 to 2015. A large number of green spaces, in particular cultivated lands, in the peripheral areas of big cities were replaced by construction sites over the past 20 years. Hotspots of unstable green spaces were mainly distributed in the western and northern mountainous areas of the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei region, where green spaces changed from one type to another. These findings provide an important reference for the management and planning of land and green spaces towards an integrative and collaborative development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Land-Use Competition)
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Open AccessArticle Tree-Based Ecosystem Approaches (TBEAs) as Multi-Functional Land Management Strategies—Evidence from Rwanda
Sustainability 2018, 10(5), 1360; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10051360
Received: 19 March 2018 / Revised: 13 April 2018 / Accepted: 23 April 2018 / Published: 27 April 2018
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Abstract
Densely populated rural areas in the East African Highlands have faced significant intensification challenges under extreme population pressure on their land and ecosystems. Sustainable agricultural intensification, in the context of increasing cropping intensities, is a prerequisite for deliberate land management strategies that deliver
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Densely populated rural areas in the East African Highlands have faced significant intensification challenges under extreme population pressure on their land and ecosystems. Sustainable agricultural intensification, in the context of increasing cropping intensities, is a prerequisite for deliberate land management strategies that deliver multiple ecosystem goods (food, energy, income sources, etc.) and services (especially improving soil conditions) on the same land, as well as system resilience, if adopted at scale. Tree based ecosystem approaches (TBEAs) are among such multi-functional land management strategies. Knowledge on the multi-functionality of TBEAs and on their scaling up, however, remains severely limited due to several methodological challenges. This study aims at offering an analytical perspective to view multi-functional TBEAs as an integral part of sustainable agricultural intensification. The study proposes a conceptual framework to guide the analysis of socio-economic data and applies it to cross-site analysis of TBEAs in extremely densely populated Rwanda. Heterogeneous TBEAs were identified across Rwanda’s different agro-ecological zones to meet locally-specific smallholders’ needs for a set of ecosystem goods and services on the same land. The sustained adoption of TBEAs would be guaranteed if farmers subjectively recognize their compatibility and synergy with sustainable intensification of existing farming systems, supported by favorable institutional conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Land-Use Competition)
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Open AccessArticle Land-Use Competition or Compatibility between Nature Conservation and Agriculture? The Impact of Protected Areas on German Standard Farmland Values
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1198; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041198
Received: 22 February 2018 / Revised: 30 March 2018 / Accepted: 2 April 2018 / Published: 16 April 2018
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Abstract
Agricultural land provides many different services resulting in a high competition between agricultural production, residential purposes and nature conservation. To give more insight into the competition between nature conservation and agriculture, this study empirically analyzes the impact of nature conservation on German standard
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Agricultural land provides many different services resulting in a high competition between agricultural production, residential purposes and nature conservation. To give more insight into the competition between nature conservation and agriculture, this study empirically analyzes the impact of nature conservation on German standard farmland values by including the shares of different protected areas in a spatiotemporal regression model. The results indicate that nature conservation can influence standard farmland values, but the magnitude and direction of the effect differ depending on the type of protected area, the type of land use and by region. While there is evidence that protected areas can have a price-decreasing impact on arable land, standard farmland values for grassland tend to be mainly affected positively in the study area. Thus, the results suggest that there is not only land-use competition, but also compatibility between agricultural production and nature conservation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Land-Use Competition)
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Open AccessArticle Reducing Amazon Deforestation through Agricultural Intensification in the Cerrado for Advancing Food Security and Mitigating Climate Change
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 989; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10040989
Received: 5 February 2018 / Revised: 19 March 2018 / Accepted: 27 March 2018 / Published: 27 March 2018
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Abstract
Important among global issues is the trilemma of abrupt climate change, food insecurity, and environmental degradation. Despite the increasing use of fossil fuel, about one third of global C emissions come from tropical deforestation and indiscriminate use of agricultural practices. Global food insecurity,
[...] Read more.
Important among global issues is the trilemma of abrupt climate change, food insecurity, and environmental degradation. Despite the increasing use of fossil fuel, about one third of global C emissions come from tropical deforestation and indiscriminate use of agricultural practices. Global food insecurity, affecting one in seven persons, aggravates environmental degradation. The importance of judicious land use and soil sustainability in addressing the trilemma cannot be overemphasized. While intensifying agronomic production on existing land, it is also essential to identify suitable eco-regions for bringing new land under production. Based on 35-years of data from Brazil, we report that C emissions from agroecosystems are 4 to 5.5 times greater by bringing new land under production in Amazon than in the Cerrado for pastures and cropland production, respectively. The data presented indicate that agricultural intensification is feasible in the Cerrado, and the forest in Rondônia and Mato Grosso states must be protected and restored for nature conservancy. Now is the time to think beyond COP 21—Paris 2015 and take concrete actions to address these issues of global significance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Land-Use Competition)
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Open AccessArticle Land Use Change under Biofuel Policies and a Tax on Meat and Dairy Products: Considering Complexity in Agricultural Production Chains Matters
Sustainability 2018, 10(2), 419; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10020419
Received: 22 December 2017 / Revised: 26 January 2018 / Accepted: 1 February 2018 / Published: 6 February 2018
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Abstract
Growing demand for meat and dairy products (MDP), biofuels, and scarcity of agricultural land are drivers of global land use competition. Impacts of policies targeting demand for MDP or biofuels have only been analysed separately. We use the computable general equilibrium model DART-BIO
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Growing demand for meat and dairy products (MDP), biofuels, and scarcity of agricultural land are drivers of global land use competition. Impacts of policies targeting demand for MDP or biofuels have only been analysed separately. We use the computable general equilibrium model DART-BIO to investigate combined effects, since MDP and biofuel production are closely related via feestock use and co-production of animal feed. We implement four scenarios: (a) a baseline scenario; (b) halving MDP consumption in industrialised countries by a tax; (c) abolishing current biofuel policies; and (d) no exogenous land use change. We find that a MDP tax and exogenous land use change have larger effects on land use and food markets than biofuel policies. International trade is affected in all scenarios. With respect to combined effects of a MDP tax and biofuel policies, we find decreasing biodiesel but increasing bioethanol production. In addition, the MDP tax decreases the impact of biofuel policies on agricultural markets and land use. Our results highlight the importance of a detailed representation of different vegetable oils used in biodiesel production and related by-products. Finally, since the MDP tax increases the use of fossil fuels, the net climate mitigation potentials of such a tax should be investigated further. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Land-Use Competition)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Works in Favor of Extraction: Labor in Land-Use Competition
Sustainability 2018, 10(6), 1961; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10061961
Received: 30 April 2018 / Revised: 7 June 2018 / Accepted: 8 June 2018 / Published: 11 June 2018
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Abstract
Despite their negative social and environmental consequences, claims to land for resource extraction are dominantly asserted under conditions of land-use competition. The ‘success’ of the extractive expansion relies on very specific labor arrangements. Through dispossession and unfulfilled promises of long-term employment, an overabundance
[...] Read more.
Despite their negative social and environmental consequences, claims to land for resource extraction are dominantly asserted under conditions of land-use competition. The ‘success’ of the extractive expansion relies on very specific labor arrangements. Through dispossession and unfulfilled promises of long-term employment, an overabundance of labor (or employment gap) is generated at extractive sites. Poverty is exploited in order to sustain business as usual: environmental degradation, low average wages and high wage inequality, and abysmal working conditions. In resolving global land-use competition for sustainability transformations, it is necessary to address labor arrangements as a mechanism through which the claim to land for resource extraction is asserted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Land-Use Competition)
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