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Agroforestry: A Holistic Approach for Agricultural Sustainability

  • Abhishek Raj
  • Manoj Kumar Jhariya
  • Dhiraj Kumar Yadav
  • Arnab Banerjee
  • Ram Swaroop Meena
Chapter

Abstract

Agroforestry is gaining a higher position and becoming a specialized science with integration of both crops and forestry science. The sustainable land use farming practices are involved in various life forms of plants/trees with livestock on a single piece of land creating more diversification with multiple outputs, enhance biomass productivity, reduce atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) through absorption and fixation and protect the environment through ecosystem services. In modern day, the adoption of agroforestry is continuously rising due to their biophysical, socio-economical, cultural and environmental services in the tropical condition. In the era of climate change, it gives diversifying food and fruits under different type of agroforestry models (AFM) and can solve the food and nutritional problem of the people in society. From the Indian perspective, agroforestry is being practiced about 14 Mha, but if explored properly it has further higher potential to increase the land area under agroforestry. It was found that up to 65.0% of timber and 50.0% of fuelwood come from the agroforestry sector. Therefore, agroforestry has also the potentiality to reduce poverty, increase income generation and provide alternate economic sources. Along with other benefits, the practices of agroforestry are economically viable for the farmers which generate employment. Various choices for farmers are available for adopting different types of AFM integrating numbers of the tree crop with livestock in various agroclimatic zones. Farmers have an option to select AFM as per socio-physical conditions (i.e. land holding, economic condition, climatic condition, resource availability, market economy). Apiculture- and sericulture-based agroforestry is another option for farmers for alleviating poverty and enhancing socio-economic conditions. From the ecological point of view, agroforestry may potentially maintain the soil quality and health which is linked with the fertility of soil and decomposition of soil organic matter. Thus, there is a nexus between soil fertility and crop productivity in various agroforestry systems (AFS). From a research point of view, there is a need for conservation of superior germplasm of agroforestry components along with their proper domestication and utilization. This chapter deals with interrelationship between soil health, productivity under AFS addressing natural resource conservation, food security and livelihood security towards sustainability. Research should be undertaken for maximizing the productivity of trees and crops under agroforestry for continuous benefits to farmers along with environmental protection and ecological security and sustainability.

Keywords

Agroforestry Ecological security Productivity Soil fertility Sustainability 

Abbreviations

AFS

Agroforestry system

AFM

Agroforestry models

C

Carbon

CO2

Carbon dioxide

GHGs

Greenhouse gases

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Abhishek Raj
    • 1
  • Manoj Kumar Jhariya
    • 2
  • Dhiraj Kumar Yadav
    • 2
  • Arnab Banerjee
    • 3
  • Ram Swaroop Meena
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Forestry, College of AgricultureIndira Gandhi Krishi Vishwavidyalaya (I.G.K.V.)RaipurIndia
  2. 2.Department of Farm ForestrySarguja UniversityAmbikapurIndia
  3. 3.Department of Environmental ScienceSarguja UniversityAmbikapurIndia
  4. 4.Department of Agronomy, Institute of Agricultural SciencesBanaras Hindu UniversityVaranasiIndia

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