Agricultural ecosystem

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  • The editors would like to thank the governments of Canada (idrc, International Development Research Centre) and Switzerland (Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation) for their generous fi nancial support of this book.

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  • The book deals with several aspects of soil erosion, focusing on its connection with the agricultural world. Chapters' topics are various, ranging from irrigation practices to soil nutrient, land use changes or tillage methodologies. The book is subdivided into fourteen chapters, sorted in four sections, grouping different facets of the topic: introductive case studies, erosion management in vineyards, soil erosion issue in dry environments, and erosion control practices.

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  • Compared to other ecosystems, wetlands have received an exceptional amount of attention. Wetlands are valuable as sources, sink and transformers of a multitude of chemical, biological and genetic materials. They stabilize water supplies, clean polluted waters, protect shorelines, and recharge groundwater aquifers. They have increasingly become recognized for their unique ecological functions in the environment and are the focus of increased research by scientists and study programs by schools, communities, and nature centers.

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  • The idea for this book arose during the planning phases of an International Conference in Edmonton, Canada in July 2004 entitled “The Science of Changing Climates — Impacts on Agriculture, Forestry and Wetlands.” The conference was organized jointly by the Canadian Societies of Animal Science, Plant Science and Soil Science with support from Natural Resources Canada/Canadian Forest Service because they saw climate change as one of the most serious environmental problems facing the world....

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  • It is a general belief that the fruits and vegetables that our parents ate when they were growing up were more nutritious and enriched with essential mineral nutrients and were less contaminated with toxic trace elements than the ones that are being consumed by us currently. A study of the mineral content of fruits and vegetables grown in Great Britain between 1930 and 1980 has added weight to that belief with findings of such decreases in nutrient density.

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  • It was not until the eighteenth century that the subject of this book, the pollination services of bees, began to be understood and valued. Nevertheless, the association between man and bees has been long and close, and dates from at least 2400 BC. Beekeeping with the Western honey bee, Apis mellifera, was a well-developed craft in ancient Egypt during the fi fth dynasty of the Old Kingdom.

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  • This book is a compilation of 29 chapters focused on: pesticides and food production, environmental effects of pesticides, and pesticides mobility, transport and fate. The first book section addresses the benefits of the pest control for crop protection and food supply increasing, and the associated risks of food contamination.

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  • The last few years have witnessed tremendous changes in the syllabi of environmentally related courses at Advanced Level and in tertiary education. Moreover, there have been major alterations in the way degree and diploma courses are organised in colleges and universities. Syllabus changes reflect the increasing interest in environmental issues, their significance in a political context and their increasing relevance in everyday life.

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  • This volume, the first in a series, presents the findings of an ambitious project—to measure the impact of fishing on the ecosystems that make up the North Atlantic Ocean and to propose ways to mitigate that impact. The project arose from a request by Dr. Joshua Reichert, the Director of the Environment Program of the Pew Charitable Trusts, Philadelphia, to answer six specific questions about the North Atlantic: • What are the total fisheries catches from the ecosystems, including reported and unreported landings and discards at sea?...

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  • The present book is the final milestone in the radioecology programme, RAD, carried out from 1990 to 1993 under the Nordic Committee for Nuclear Safety Research, NKS. This work was done in parallel to three other NKS programmes: Reactor safety (SIK), Waste and decommissioning (KAN), and Emergency preparedness (BER). The NKS was established in 1966 and was financed by the Nordic Council of Ministers from 1977 to 1989.

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  • Biofertilisers are defined in this application as microbial inoculants, isolated from soil or the rhizosphere of plants, assisting the mobilisation of soil nutrients such as N and P and others in the plant rhizosphere and thus promoting the growth rate and yield of plants. Successful biofertilisers can contribute to increases in food production in a highly sustainable manner, with economic and environmental advantages.

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  • Urban agglomerations and their resource uses are becoming the dominant feature of the human presence on earth, profoundly changing humanity’s relationship to its host planet and its ecosystems. The cities of the 21 century are where human destiny will be played out and where the future of the biosphere will be determined.

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  • The Ramsar Convention defined the wise use of peatlands as “their sustainable use for the benefit of mankind in a way compatible with the maintenance of the natural properties of the ecosystem.” Land sustainability relates to definite periods and land uses.

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  • Since the Second World War, and especially since the publication of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring in 1962, there has been growing concern about contamination of the environment by “man-made” chemicals. These chemicals may be present in industrial and municipal effluents, in consumer or commercial products, in mine tailings, in petroleum products, and in gaseous emissions. Some chemicals such as pesticides may be specifically designed to kill biota present in natural or agricultural ecosystems. They may be organic, inorganic, metallic, or radioactive in nature.

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  • Today, the world faces many problems. The most important problem is the population explosion. The population of 2.8 billion around 1945 doubled during the following 50 years, and it will approximately double again, reaching 10 billion during the next 50 years. This population increase will produce serious effects on worldwide food consumption and distribution; however, a sharp production increase in agricultural products cannot be expected.

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  • Wetland ecosystems are a natural resource of global significance.Historically, their high level of plant and animal (especially bird) diversity is perhaps the major reason why wetland protection has become a high priority worldwide, supported by international agreements, such as the Ramsar Convention and the International Convention of Biological Diversity (Fig. 1.1).

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  • If better management (BMP) was adopted in Vietnam there is evidence that the current trends and past environmental degradation can be stopped and even reversed, and shrimp production efficiency can be increased.

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  • Winrock International Institute for Agricultural Development has been created from the merger of Agricultural Development Council (A/D/C), International Agricultural Development Service (lADS) and Winrock International Livestock Researclk and Training Center (WILRTC). Suggested citation: Gordon R. CONWAY, Agroecosystem Analysis for Research and Development. Bangkok: Winrock International, 1986. The publication and distribution of the Papers On Survey Research Methodology have been r.

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  • Since the 1940s the use of pesticides has grown steadily at about 11 percent a year, reaching five million T in 1995. Pesticides and fertilizers play a central role in agriculture and contribute to an enhanced food production worldwide. Agrochemical use, mainly in developed countries, is being reduced while organic (no synthetic chemicals) farming methods are being reinvented.

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  • Pesticides are divided to insecticides, fungicides, herbicides, rodenticides, acaricides and nematocides according to the organisms that they affect. There are various forms of insecticides; most are repellants or insect growth regulators used in agriculture, public health, horticulture or food storage. It is evident that insecticides have been used to boost food production to a considerable extent and to control disease vectors.

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