Biological conservation in dynamic agricultural landscapes: Effectiveness of public policies and trade-offs with agricultural production
Land use change and land management intensification are major drivers of biodiversity loss, especially in agricultural landscapes, that cover a large and increasing share of the world's surface. Incentive-based agri-environmental policies are designed to influence farmers' land-use decisions in order to mitigate environmental degradation. This paper evaluates the effectiveness of agri-environmental schemes for biological conservation in a dynamic agricultural landscape under economic uncertainty. We develop a dynamic ecological economic model of agricultural land-use and spatially explicit population dynamics. We then relate policies (subsidies to grassland, taxation of agricultural intensity) to the ecological outcome (probability of persistence of a species of interest). We also analyze the associated trade-offs between agricultural production (in value) and biological conservation (in probability of persistence) at the landscape scale.
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