, Volume 15, Issue 6, pp 881–882 | Cite as

From Abandoned Farmland to Self-Sustaining Forests: Challenges and Solutions

  • Vânia Proença
  • João Honrado
  • Henrique Miguel Pereira

In a global context dominated by forest loss and degradation, farmland abandonment may constitute a unique opportunity to restore native forest systems and forest ecosystem services. In Europe, 16 million hectares of agricultural land may be released by 2020, according to recent scenarios of land-use change (Keenleyside and others 2010). Farmland abandonment tends to occur in areas where agricultural activities lost economical viability, namely in areas of marginal farmland and in degraded land (Keenleyside and others 2010). The potential impacts of farmland abandonment for biodiversity conservation and the delivery of ecosystem services will vary according to the local environmental and cultural context. The responses to avoid or minimize impacts of abandonment should take into consideration both the environmental conditions of the ecosystem and the economic viability of the restoration or management approach (Chazdon 2008; Benayas and others 2007). In Europe, responses to the threat...


Ecosystem Service Biodiversity Conservation Abandoned Farmland Forest Ecosystem Service Farmland Abandonment 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vânia Proença
    • 1
    • 2
  • João Honrado
    • 3
  • Henrique Miguel Pereira
    • 1
  1. 1.Centro de Biologia AmbientalFaculdade de Ciências da Universidade de LisboaLisbonPortugal
  2. 2.IN+, Centro de Estudos em Inovação, Tecnologia e Políticas de Desenvolvimento, Área Científica de Ambiente e EnergiaInstituto Superior TécnicoLisbonPortugal
  3. 3.Biodiversity and Conservation Ecology Group, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, Faculdade de CiênciasUniversidade do PortoPortoPortugal

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