Next Article in Journal
The Vietnamese Legal and Policy Framework for Co-Management in Special-Use Forests
Next Article in Special Issue
Recent Patterns in Climate, Vegetation, and Forest Water Use in California Montane Watersheds
Previous Article in Journal
Adapting Tropical Forest Policy and Practice in the Context of the Anthropocene: Opportunities and Challenges for the El Yunque National Forest in Puerto Rico
Previous Article in Special Issue
Mixing It Up: The Role of Hybridization in Forest Management and Conservation under Climate Change
Article Menu
Issue 7 (July) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Forests 2017, 8(7), 260; https://doi.org/10.3390/f8070260

Barriers to the Adoption of Alley Cropping as a Climate-Smart Agriculture Practice: Lessons from Maize Cultivation among the Maya in Southern Belize

Climate Change Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) Unit at the Plant and AgriBiosciences Research Centre (PABC), National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG), University Rd, H91 TK33 Galway, Ireland
Academic Editors: Glenn Juday and Timothy A. Martin
Received: 9 May 2017 / Revised: 14 July 2017 / Accepted: 17 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
Full-Text   |   PDF [3189 KB, uploaded 24 July 2017]   |  

Abstract

Climate-smart agriculture (CSA) is proposed as a necessity, as the agricultural sector will need to adapt to resist future climatic change, to which high emissions from the sector contribute significantly. This study, which is an exploratory case study based on qualitative interviews and field observations, investigates the barriers to making a CSA-adjustment in maize production among Maya communities in southern Belize. The adjustment is alley cropping, which is a low-input adjustment that has the potential to result in both adaptation and mitigation benefits, and furthermore, to enhance food security. The findings show that a CSA-adjustment in small-scale maize production in Maya villages in southern Belize is possible in principle, though several barriers can make the overall climate-smart objective difficult to implement in practice. The barriers are of a proximate and indirect nature, exist at different spatial scales, and involve various levels of governance. The barriers are shown to be land tenure, market access, and changes in the traditional culture, however, these barriers are not homogenous across the villages in the region. To break down the barriers an overall district-level strategy is possible, but the toolbox should contain a wide variety of approaches. These could happen, for instance, through alterations to land tenure and the land taxation system nationally, enhancement of the agricultural extension system to ease access to knowledge and input at the district level, and support to a less complex governance structure at the village level. View Full-Text
Keywords: adaptation; Belize; Central America; climate-smart agriculture; deforestation; livelihoods; maize; Maya; mitigation; shifting cultivation adaptation; Belize; Central America; climate-smart agriculture; deforestation; livelihoods; maize; Maya; mitigation; shifting cultivation
Figures

Figure 1

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).

Supplementary material

SciFeed

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Kongsager, R. Barriers to the Adoption of Alley Cropping as a Climate-Smart Agriculture Practice: Lessons from Maize Cultivation among the Maya in Southern Belize. Forests 2017, 8, 260.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Forests EISSN 1999-4907 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top