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Article

Adaptation of Mediterranean Olive Groves to Climate Change through Sustainable Cultivation Practices

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RodaxAgro Ltd., Kottou 48, Metamorphosis, Athens, 144 52 Attikis, Greece
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Development Agency of Eastern Thessaloniki’s Local Authorities “ANATOLIKI S.A.”, Thermi, 57001 Thessaloniki, Greece
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Hellenic Agricultural Organisation “DEMETER”, Institute of Olive Tree, Subtropical Crops & Viticulture, Chania, 73100 Crete, Greece
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Hellenic Agricultural Organisations “DEMETER”, Soil and Water Resources Institute, 57400 Sindos, Greece
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Hellenic Agricultural Organisation “DEMETER”, Soil and Water Resources Institute, Department of Soil Science of Athens, 1 Sof. Venizelou Str., Likovrisi, 14 123 Attiki, Greece
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Department of European and Mediterranean Culture (DICEM), University of Basilicata, 85100 Potenza, Italy
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Union of Agricultural Cooperatives of Mirabello, Sergaki 2, Neapoli, Lasithi, 72400 Crete, Greece
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Union of Agricultural Cooperatives of Peza Heraklion Crete S.A., Kalloni Heraklion, 70100 Crete, Greece
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A.S. Nileas–Agricultural Olive oil Cooperative, Agiou Dimitriou 36, Hora Messinias, 24600 Peloponnese, Greece
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Climate 2020, 8(4), 54; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli8040054
Received: 9 March 2020 / Revised: 7 April 2020 / Accepted: 9 April 2020 / Published: 11 April 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Water Security and Management under Climate Change)
Olive cultivation is considered as one of the most significant agricultural activities in Greece, from a financial, social, and ecological point of view. Intensive cultivation practices in combination with the Mediterranean climate, lead to depletion of soil organic matter, erosion, desertification, and degradation of water resources. This paper describes sustainable olive crop management practices that were comparatively applied in 120 olive groves in Greece for 5 years with the participation of three farmers groups. Organic materials recycled in the olive groves during the present study were valuable sources of carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Carbon content was highest in pruning residue (53.8–54.2%) while all materials studied were considered rich in C ranging between 41.9–46.2% (compost) and 34.9–42.5% (three-phase olive mill waste-OMW). The highest content in nitrogen was detected in compost (2–2.45%) followed by pruning residue (0.93–0.99%) and OMW (0.03–0.1%). Compost was considered a good source of phosphorus (0.3–0.6%) followed by pruning residue (0.08–0.13%) and OMW (0.01–0.3%). Potassium was also considerable in the organic materials recycled ranging 0.5–1.5% in compost followed by pruning residue (0.5–0.7%) and OMW (0.3–1.1%). Adoption of modified pruning also had important contribution toward sustainable management of olive trees. Sustainable pruning resulted in a well-balanced ratio between vegetative growth and fruiting (balanced, every year, in order to eradicate biennial bearing). Significant fluctuation in olive yields was observed in the first years of the project while yields were gradually stabilised by applying sustainable crop management. In parallel, yield increase without additional inputs, lowers the carbon—environmental footprint of the product regarding several environmental impact categories. Results can be integrated in the national agricultural and environmental policy in Mediterranean countries toward the achievement of a circular economy. View Full-Text
Keywords: carbon sequestration; circular economy; compost; cover crops; pruning carbon sequestration; circular economy; compost; cover crops; pruning
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MDPI and ACS Style

Michalopoulos, G.; Kasapi, K.A.; Koubouris, G.; Psarras, G.; Arampatzis, G.; Hatzigiannakis, E.; Kavvadias, V.; Xiloyannis, C.; Montanaro, G.; Malliaraki, S.; Angelaki, A.; Manolaraki, C.; Giakoumaki, G.; Reppas, S.; Kourgialas, N.; Kokkinos, G. Adaptation of Mediterranean Olive Groves to Climate Change through Sustainable Cultivation Practices. Climate 2020, 8, 54. https://doi.org/10.3390/cli8040054

AMA Style

Michalopoulos G, Kasapi KA, Koubouris G, Psarras G, Arampatzis G, Hatzigiannakis E, Kavvadias V, Xiloyannis C, Montanaro G, Malliaraki S, Angelaki A, Manolaraki C, Giakoumaki G, Reppas S, Kourgialas N, Kokkinos G. Adaptation of Mediterranean Olive Groves to Climate Change through Sustainable Cultivation Practices. Climate. 2020; 8(4):54. https://doi.org/10.3390/cli8040054

Chicago/Turabian Style

Michalopoulos, G., K. A. Kasapi, G. Koubouris, G. Psarras, G. Arampatzis, E. Hatzigiannakis, V. Kavvadias, C. Xiloyannis, G. Montanaro, S. Malliaraki, A. Angelaki, C. Manolaraki, G. Giakoumaki, S. Reppas, N. Kourgialas, and G. Kokkinos. 2020. "Adaptation of Mediterranean Olive Groves to Climate Change through Sustainable Cultivation Practices" Climate 8, no. 4: 54. https://doi.org/10.3390/cli8040054

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