Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in Agrarian Landscapes
Project title: Biodiversity and ecosystem services in agrarian landscapes
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU)
Project term: 2016 to 2020
The global expansion of agricultural land coupled with continuing intensification of production is having a negative impact on ecosystems and biodiversity. Agriculture accounts for 70 per cent of biodiversity loss and more than half of all areas dedicated to farming are affected by degradation. These regions need to reconcile the increase in agricultural production with conservation of biodiversity and ecosystem services. Stakeholders in the agricultural sector still have very little experience with methods for assessing and mainstreaming biodiversity, and good practices are not widespread. There is a need for documented experience of applying land use systems that promote biodiversity and of integrating the issue of biodiversity into policy and planning instruments.
Individual and institutional capacities have been strengthened, and knowledge on increasing biodiversity and sustainable use of ecosystem services in agrarian landscapes has been boosted.
The project is part of the International Climate Initiative (IKI) of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU). It sets out to strengthen individual and institutional capacities as well as to boost knowledge on increasing biodiversity and sustainable use of ecosystem services in agrarian landscapes.
Public and private sector decision-makers are made aware of the importance of biodiversity and ecosystem services as cornerstones for the economic development of the agricultural sector. The project involves activities at the national, regional and local level through different work packages:
- Methods for assessing and mainstreaming biodiversity and good practices are evaluated to determine how practical they are. On this basis, starting points for the promotion of biodiversity and ecosystem services in agrarian landscapes are identified. The integration of biodiversity into regional and national strategies and planning is also supported.
- Land use methods that promote biodiversity are planned and implemented.
- Successful methods are selected and disseminated; they are also incorporated into strategies and programmes. Practical local experience is communicated via intersectoral political dialogue and learning platforms and thereby feeds into the development and overhaul of programmes, strategies and plans at federal and national levels.
- Knowledge management and sharing is enhanced: examples of good practice and instruments for integrating biodiversity and ecosystem services are developed and publicised in national and international networks and forums.
To some extent, the project also makes a direct contribution to conserving biodiversity. It implements pilot projects designed to restore ecosystems suffering from degradation and to safeguard and encourage sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services.
Deutsche Welthungerhilfe (WHH) is the implementing partner in Tajikistan, while AMBERO Consulting Gesellschaft mbH is carrying out the project in Kenya. The Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF) is responsible for conducting the biodiversity assessments in India and Tajikistan.