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Agroforestry as a restoration strategy: Motivations of farmers to plant more biodiverse systems in the Eastern Amazon

Coudel E., Navegantes L., Ferreira J., Carneiro R., Galvão L., Almeida A., Carvalho R.. 2019. In : Dupraz Christian (ed.), Gosme Marie (ed.), Lawson Gerry (ed.). 4th World Congress on Agroforestry. Book of abstracts. Montpellier : CIRAD; INRA, p. 159. World Congress on Agroforestry. 4, 2019-05-20/2019-05-22, Montpellier (France).

In Brazil, the forest legislation has opened up new options for forest restoration by smallholders, allowing in particular the use of agroforestry in conservation areas. This has triggered a vigorous national debate, involving social movements, scientists and policy makers: while these legislative changes may encourage farmers to engage in restoration, the provision of environmental services greatly varies according to the type of agroforestry system (AFS). However, few studies go beyond the technical aspects of restoration and studies assessing the social drivers are urgently needed. To contribute to this debate, we analyzed restoration experiences of farmers in the Eastern Amazon, where there is a great diversity of AFS. Our objective was to understand why farmers had engaged in forest restoration and how these motivations influenced their management practices. Based on 136 questionnaires with farmers and in-depth analyses of their AFS, we elaborated a typology of different restoration systems based on the practices involved, in particular the number of species (see figure 1). 78% of farmers restore through AFS. Most of those who have pragmatical motivations (water, soil, products) have less diverse AFS. Those with broader environmental motivations (preoccupation with overall degradation and biodiversity loss) have more diverse systems. This points to the importance of building more awareness about the potential role of biodiversity in restoring environmental services.

Mots-clés : agroforesterie; biodiversité; reconstitution forestière; brésil; amazonie

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