Follow us:

2.3 Ecosystem services of the Dehesa (economic and social valorisation...)

Consumer goods produced in agrosystems entail providing a good number of services and environmental impacts that are increasingly known publicly. The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (2005) established the first theoretical framework for systematic assessment of such services and impacts (support, regulatory, provision and cultural services). This terminology is adopted and adapted by the European Union for Mapping and Evaluation of Ecosystems and their Services. This project is evaluating the Environmental Services of dehesas and montados according to this methodology and updates as agreed by the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services.

Production of food, fibres and other materials produced by intensive agroecosystems is usually carried out by generating multiple environmental impacts of a more or less diffuse nature. However the products generated in agricultural systems of high natural value, such as dehesas and montados, entail lower environmental impacts or even public environmental benefits. Society to a great extent are not aware of the difference in terms of environmental impacts and services between the two production models, and the lack of knowledge prevents them from being conveniently incorporated into the market price of these products, which implies that the products of dehesas and montados reach the market in not a very competitive way. Only a rigorous and thorough evaluation that produces high quality information accessible to consumers will allow for filling this gap.

In this activity, first, the theoretical framework has been defined and the data record forms have been designed to be able to evaluate the group of services and environmental impacts generated by standard dehesas and montados. Second, the data collection work has been carried out through surveys of owners of farms selected from among the project partners. And finally, the information has been processed for its incorporation in the life cycle analysis.

One of the results of this action is the study on the current state of associations within the framework of the Dehesa.