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Agricultural intensification by smallholders in the Western Brazilian Amazon: from deforestation to sustainable land use

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  • Vosti, Stephen A.
  • Witcover, Julie
  • Carpentier, Chantal Line
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    Abstract

    "Despite the importance of tropical moist forests for conserving biodiversity and storing carbon, forests continue to fall, because the private benefits of clearing land for agriculture far outweigh tangible economic gains from retaining forests. This report measures the financial disparity between forested and cleared land for small-scale farmers in two settlements in the western Brazilian Amazon where pastures are expanding and forests receding. Considering smallholder land use decisions—when and how much to deforest and for what purpose—the report weighs the trade-offs and complementarities among three development objectives: economic growth through agriculture, environmental sustainability, and poverty alleviation. Drawing on field data collected in the mid-1990s, it uses multivariate analysis to explore how factors such as soil quality and market access shape deforestation and use of cleared land. It introduces a farm-level bioeconomic linear programming model to illuminate how such factors influence land use over time, taking into account soil fertility shifts and exploring policy and technology options that give farmers incentives to slow deforestation without decreasing farm household income." Authors' Abstract

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in its series Research reports with number 130.

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    Date of creation: 2002
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    Handle: RePEc:fpr:resrep:130

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    Keywords: Agricultural policies; Small farmers; Deforestation Brazil; Land use; Sustainable agriculture Latin America;

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    1. Walker, Robert, 1996. "Land Use Dynamics in the Brazilian Amazon," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 1-2, July.
    2. Tomich, Thomas P. & van Noordwijk, Meine & Vosti, Stephen A. & Witcover, Julie, 1998. "Agricultural development with rainforest conservation: methods for seeking best bet alternatives to slash-and-burn, with applications to Brazil and Indonesia," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 19(1-2), pages 159-174, September.
    3. Walker, Robert & Homma, Alfredo Kingo Oyama, 1996. "Land use and land cover dynamics in the Brazilian Amazon: an overview," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 67-80, July.
    4. Walker, Robert & Moran, Emilio & Anselin, Luc, 2000. "Deforestation and Cattle Ranching in the Brazilian Amazon: External Capital and Household Processes," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 683-699, April.
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    Cited by:
    1. Borner, Jan & Mendoza, Arisbe & Vosti, Stephen A., 2007. "Ecosystem services, agriculture, and rural poverty in the Eastern Brazilian Amazon: Interrelationships and policy prescriptions," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 356-373, December.
    2. Vosti, Stephen A. & Braz, Evaldo Munoz & Carpentier, Chantal Line & d'Oliveira, Marcus V. N. & Witcover, Julie, 2003. "Rights to Forest Products, Deforestation and Smallholder Income: Evidence from the Western Brazilian Amazon," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(11), pages 1889-1901, November.
    3. Börner, Jan & Wunder, Sven & Wertz-Kanounnikoff, Sheila & Tito, Marcos Rügnitz & Pereira, Ligia & Nascimento, Nathalia, 2010. "Direct conservation payments in the Brazilian Amazon: Scope and equity implications," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(6), pages 1272-1282, April.
    4. Holden, Stein & Shiferaw, Bekele & Pender, John, 2005. "Policy analysis for sustainable land management and food security in Ethiopia: a bioeconomic model with market imperfections," Research reports 140, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    5. Angelsen, Arild, 2007. "Forest cover change in space and time : combining the von Thunen and forest transition theories," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4117, The World Bank.

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