Agricultural landscapes across the Caribbean and the Americas: conservation through a prominent crop/s approach
Summary: Improving conservation within agricultural landscapes: connecting landscapes across the Caribbean and the Americas, from rainforest to reef through a prominent crop/s approach.
Ms. Melissa Vogt. UNSW Australia
Description: Conservation efforts can use the common attribute of agriculture to bundle approaches across particular regions and/or countries. Agriculture can be considered an aspect of connection between the Caribbean and the Americas; an element of commonality and therefore appropriate for similar conservation approaches. While this can be agreed, the detail to which such commonality and therefore appropriateness of similar conservation approaches for all agricultural landscapes is uncertain.
This symposium will consider how crop consideration, focusing on necessary contexts within which different crops grow rather than a general agriculture consideration, assuming similar conservation efforts for agriculture of any nature will be sufficient, could enhance conservation efforts. This is based on the idea that each crop will benefit from slightly different conditions and environments to produce yield. These conditions can be created through regeneration and conservation of natural and perhaps native habitats.
The most commonly grown agricultural crops across the Caribbean and the Americas can therefore become themes of specialised connected and improved conservation efforts. This is expected to further enhance conservation efforts particularly, but not limited to tropical and naturally forested agricultural landscapes where impact on biodiversity is considered most significant, in relation to the natural biodiversity that could exist where agriculture is not intensified or grown in monocultures.
This crop focus can then encourage sharing of knowledge and techniques, upscaling biodiversity conservation and regeneration. Where cropland coverage varies across landscapes, the approach can become farm/s specific.
The damage caused by agricultural practices is not limited to farming and can also be significant in processing of harvested crops. Both aspects of agricultural practices represent follow on impact for waterways and marine areas. This symposium will therefore include presentations related to both topics by crop focus. They may explore commercial constraints on conservation efforts and/or examples of best practice.
The symposium will hope for an audience with knowledge to contribute to the discussion, as this cannot be guaranteed the presenters will intend to provide best practice, and/or greatest challenges. There will be time for discussion and questions.
The symposium will hope to establish a network for conservation considerations by prominent crops.
Keywords: Ecological integrity; agricultural landscapes; conservation
Justification: Agricultural landscapes, particularly those located in or in close proximity to tropical or semi-tropical forested areas can represent significant damage on biodiversity and conservation efforts. Damage is not isolated to terrestrial scope, it can reach the ocean through leaching and contamination of waterways.
This symposium will therefore address a need to improve specificity of and connectivity between conservation efforts in agricultural landscapes across the Caribbean and the Americas, similar to efforts of protected areas across countries and regions. Or wild animal conservation across regions and countries according to standard movement patterns. This improvement considers cropping in or alongside forested areas, riparian zones and flow-on implications for waterways and oceans.
Symposium Length: 6 - Presentations total