Newell Price J.P.1, Bufe C.2, Frewer L.3, Hejduk S.4, Hunter E.5, Klopčič M.6, Lively F.7, Lombardi G.8, Mulvenna C.7, Rankin J.9, Ravetto Enri S.8, Schils R.L.M.2, Smith K.1, ten Berge H.2, Tindale S.3, Tonn B.10 and Williams J.R.1
1ADAS, Spring Lodge, 172 Chester Road, Helsby, Frodsham WA6 0AR, United Kingdom; 2Agrosystems Research, Wageningen Plant Research, Droevendaalsesteeg 1, 6708 PB Wageningen, the Netherlands; 3School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, Newcastle University, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, NE1 7RU, United Kingdom; 4Mendel University, Zemědělská 1, 613 00 Brno, Czech Republic; 5Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P.O. Box 7070, 750 07 Uppsala, Sweden; 6University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty, Dept. of Animal Science, Groblje 3, 1230 Domžale, Slovenia; 7Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute, Large Park, Hillsborough, BT26 6DR, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom; 8University of Torino – DISAFA, largo P. Braccini 2, 10095 Grugliasco (TO), Italy; 9AgriSearch, Large Park, Hillsborough, BT26 6DR, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom; 10Department of Livestock Sciences, Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL), Ackerstrasse 113, Postfach 219, 5070 Frick, Switzerland
Permanent grasslands (PG) occupy around 34% of the utilized agricultural area across the EU-27 and provide a suite of important ecosystem services (ES), including supporting biodiversity, regulating climate, mitigating risks of erosion risk and downstream flooding, and providing clean water, food and fibre. However, the degree to which these ES are delivered varies significantly between countries, regions and farms, reflecting differences in production systems and the specific livestock types, stocking rates and management practices employed. Given the large areas involved, the general lack of soil disturbance and the important role of ruminant livestock, changes to PG management and the farming systems in which PG are integrated have the potential to make significant contributions to meeting current biodiversity and climate change challenges. Understanding the potential of PG to deliver different ES requires quantification of the extent, state and functioning of PG in Europe; an assessment of existing and new data on the land use; testing and adoption of beneficial management practices through coinnovation with farmers; understanding of social, behavioural and economic barriers to uptake; and an appreciation of citizens’ priorities and preferences. This paper provides an overview of how the Horizon 2020 SUPER-G project is contributing to these challenges.
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