Ecological impacts of early 21st century agricultural change in Europe - A review

C. Stoate, A. Báldi, P. Beja, N. D. Boatman, I. Herzon, A. van Doorn, G. R. de Snoo, L. Rakosy, C. Ramwell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

628 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The impacts of agricultural land use are far-reaching and extend to areas outside production. This paper provides an overview of the ecological status of agricultural systems across the European Union in the light of recent policy changes. It builds on the previous review of 2001 devoted to the impacts of agricultural intensification in Western Europe. The focus countries are the UK, The Netherlands, Boreal and Baltic countries, Portugal, Hungary and Romania, representing a geographical spread across Europe, but additional reference is made to other countries. Despite many adjustments to agricultural policy, intensification of production in some regions and concurrent abandonment in others remain the major threat to the ecology of agro-ecosystems impairing the state of soil, water and air and reducing biological diversity in agricultural landscapes. The impacts also extend to surrounding terrestrial and aquatic systems through water and aerial contamination and development of agricultural infrastructures (e.g. dams and irrigation channels). Improvements are also documented regionally, such as successful support of farmland species, and improved condition of watercourses and landscapes. This was attributed to agricultural policy targeted at the environment, improved environmental legislation, and new market opportunities. Research into ecosystem services associated with agriculture may provide further pressure to develop policy that is targeted at their continuous provisioning, fostering motivation of land managers to continue to protect and enhance them. Crown

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22-46
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Volume91
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2009

Fingerprint

agricultural change
twenty first century
ecological impact
Ecosystems
agricultural land
agricultural policy
Biodiversity
Ecology
Irrigation
Land use
Agriculture
Dams
Water
agricultural intensification
environmental legislation
Contamination
Managers
soil air
Antennas
Soils

Keywords

  • Aquatic ecology
  • Arable ecology
  • Biodiversity
  • Climate change
  • Common agricultural policy
  • Ecosystem services
  • Grassland
  • Multifunctionality
  • Soil

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

Cite this

Ecological impacts of early 21st century agricultural change in Europe - A review. / Stoate, C.; Báldi, A.; Beja, P.; Boatman, N. D.; Herzon, I.; van Doorn, A.; de Snoo, G. R.; Rakosy, L.; Ramwell, C.

In: Journal of Environmental Management, Vol. 91, No. 1, 10.2009, p. 22-46.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Stoate, C, Báldi, A, Beja, P, Boatman, ND, Herzon, I, van Doorn, A, de Snoo, GR, Rakosy, L & Ramwell, C 2009, 'Ecological impacts of early 21st century agricultural change in Europe - A review', Journal of Environmental Management, vol. 91, no. 1, pp. 22-46. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2009.07.005
Stoate, C. ; Báldi, A. ; Beja, P. ; Boatman, N. D. ; Herzon, I. ; van Doorn, A. ; de Snoo, G. R. ; Rakosy, L. ; Ramwell, C. / Ecological impacts of early 21st century agricultural change in Europe - A review. In: Journal of Environmental Management. 2009 ; Vol. 91, No. 1. pp. 22-46.
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