Sustainable land management

Sustainable land management (SLM[1]) refers to practices and technologies that aim to integrate the management of land, water, biodiversity, and other environmental resources to meet human needs while ensuring the long-term sustainability of ecosystem services and livelihoods. The term sustainable land management is used, for example, in regional planning and soil or environmental protection, as well as in property and estate management.


The World Bank defines sustainable land management as a process in a charged environment between environmental protection and the guarantee claim of ecosystem services on the one hand. On the other hand, it is about productivity of agriculture and forestry with respect to demographic growth and increasing pressure in land use.

SLM is defined as a knowledge-based procedure that helps integrate land, water, biodiversity, and environmental management (including input and output externalities) to meet rising food and fiber demands while sustaining ecosystem services and livelihoods. SLM is necessary to meet the requirements of a growing population. Improper land management can lead to land degradation and a significant reduction in the productive and service (biodiversity niches, hydrology, carbon sequestration) functions of watersheds and landscapes."[1]

— The World Bank

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) applies the term in a much wider context. Besides agriculture and forestry they include the mineral extraction sector, property and estate management.

Land management is the process by which the resources of land are put to good effect. It covers all activities concerned with the management of land as a resource both from an environmental and from an economic perspective. It can include farming, mineral extraction, property and estate management, and the physical planning of towns and the countryside.[2]

In the course of national politics and programmes, few European states use the terminology "sustainable land management". Here Australia and New Zealand are to be mentioned, as both countries have agreed on sustainable land management with respect to climate change as part of their government programmes.[3]

In the European context, the definition of the European Network for Land Use Management for Sustainable European Cities (LUMASEC)[4] may be used as a reference. It emphasizes the inter- and transdisciplinary cooperation on sustainable land management:

As management is the human activity meaning the action of people working together in the aim to accomplish desired goals, land use management is a process of managing use and development of land, in which spatial, sector-oriented and temporary aspects of urban policy are coordinated. Resources of land are used for different purposes, which may produce conflicts and competitions, and land use management has to see those purposes in an integrated way. Therefore, land management covers the debate about norms and visions driving the policy-making, sector-based planning both in the strategic and more operative time spans, spatial integration of sectoral issues, decision-making, budgeting, implementation of plans and decisions and the monitoring of results and evaluation of impacts.[5]

Research examples

Since 2010, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) funds an international research program on "sustainable land management".[6] Module A of the program investigates interactions between land management, climate change, and ecosystem services.[7] It includes projects operating in South America, Africa, Europe, Central Asia, and South Asia. Module B seeks "innovative system solutions" in 13 projects with a Central European focus.

Furthermore, the Economics of Land Degradation (ELD) Initiative seeks to establish a cost benefit analysis on the practice of sustainable land management highlighting its economic benefits. This economic analysis will enable decision makers to take appropriate measures combat land degradation globally. Additionally, the Initiative supports regional case studies focusing on Africa and Central Asia.

See also


  1. ^ a b The World Bank (2006): Sustainable Land Management. Challenges, Opportunities, and Trade-offs. Washington, DC
  2. ^ "Land Administration Guideline. With Special Reference to Countries in Transition" (PDF). UN Economic Commission for Europe, Geneva, ECE/HBP/96. 1996.
  3. ^ vgl. Australian Government – Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities
  4. ^
  5. ^ Didier Vancutsem (LEAD Expert): 2008 Land Use Management for Sustainable European Cities
  6. ^ Weith, T., Schulz, K., Gaasch, N., Seppelt, R., Werntze, A., Eppink, F. (2010): Towards Integration: Sustainable Land Management. A new German Research Funding Measure
  7. ^ Seppelt, R., Dormann, C., Eppink, F. V., Lautenbach, S., Schmidt, S. (2011): A quantitative review of ecosystem studies: Approaches, shortcomings and the road ahead, Journal of Applied Ecology

External links

Australia Prize

The Australia Prize was Australia's pre-eminent prize for scientific research from 1990 until 2000, when it was replaced by the Prime Minister's Prizes for Science. The award was international, 10 of the 28 recipients were not Australians.

Azuero Peninsula

Azuero Peninsula (Spanish: Península de Azuero) is a large peninsula in southern Panama. It is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean in the south; the Pacific and Gulf of Montijo to the west, and by the Gulf of Panama in the east. The peninsula is effectively divided into two regions; the Western Azuero and the Eastern Azuero, as no serviceable roads join the two peninsula regions past the Pan-American Highway.

The Eastern Azuero Peninsula is known for baseball and is also a center of activity during the annual carnaval (carnival), with Las Tablas being the hub. Pedasi is a small fishing town with sport fishing.

The Western Azuero Peninsula is known for its cattle ranching, farming, fishing, sunsets and beaches.

Tourism has begun to increase in the area both for the aforementioned sport fishing, surfing and for the local charm of cities like Chitré, Las Tablas and Pedasi. Due to a rise in tourism, real estate development has begun. The area enjoys some of the best weather in Panama being in a region known as the "Arco Seco" (dry arc).

Begbroke Science Park

Begbroke Science Park is a science park located five miles north of Oxford, England. It is owned by Oxford University and managed as part of the university's Mathematical, Physical and Life Sciences Division It lies within the parish of Begbroke, although it is only accessible from the village of Yarnton on the A44.

Ecological farming

Ecological farming is recognised as the high-end objective among the proponents of sustainable agriculture. Ecological farming is not the same as organic farming, however there are many similarities and they are not necessarily incompatible. Ecological farming includes all methods, including organic, which regenerate ecosystem services like: prevention of soil erosion, water infiltration and retention, carbon sequestration in the form of humus, and increased biodiversity. Many techniques are used including no till, multispecies cover crops, strip cropping, terrace cultivation, shelter belts, pasture cropping etc.

Economics of Land Degradation Initiative

The Economics of Land Degradation (ELD) Initiative is a global initiative which aims to increase awareness of the economic consequences of land degradation and promote sustainable land management. The ELD Initiative provides a platform for discussion between stakeholders from the policy, science, and private sectors, and is focused on developing globally relevant data and methodology on the economic benefits of land and land based ecosystems for decision makers. The Initiative highlights the benefits derived from adopting sustainable land management practices and seeks to establish a global economic analyses of land management. The ELD Initiative was co-founded by the Secretariat of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the European Commission (EC) and is hosted by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. The ELD Secretariat is based in Bonn, Germany.

Farmer-managed natural regeneration

Farmer-managed natural regeneration (FMNR) is a low-cost, sustainable land restoration technique used to combat poverty and hunger amongst poor subsistence farmers in developing countries by increasing food and timber production, and resilience to climate extremes. It involves the systematic regeneration and management of trees and shrubs from tree stumps, roots and seeds.FMNR is especially applicable, but not restricted to, the dryland tropics. As well as returning degraded croplands and grazing lands to productivity, it can be used to restore degraded forests, thereby reversing biodiversity loss and reducing vulnerability to climate change. FMNR can also play an important role in maintaining not-yet-degraded landscapes in a productive state, especially when combined with other sustainable land management practices such as conservation agriculture on cropland and holistic management on range lands.

FMNR adapts centuries-old methods of woodland management, called coppicing and pollarding, to produce continuous tree-growth for fuel, building materials, food and fodder without the need for frequent and costly replanting. On farmland, selected trees are trimmed and pruned to maximise growth while promoting optimal growing conditions for annual crops (such as access to water and sunlight). When FMNR trees are integrated into crops and grazing pastures there is an increase in crop yields, soil fertility and organic matter, soil moisture and leaf fodder. There is also a decrease in wind and heat damage, and soil erosion.

In the Sahel region of Africa, FMNR has become a tool in increasing food security, resilience and climate change adaptation in poor, subsistence farming communities where much of sub-Saharan Africa's poverty exists. FMNR is also being promoted in East Timor, Indonesia, and Myanmar.FMNR complements the evergreen agriculture, conservation agriculture and agroforestry movements. It is considered a good entry point for resource-poor and risk-averse farmers to adopt a low-cost and low-risk technique. This in turn has acted as a stepping stone to greater agricultural intensification as farmers become more receptive to new ideas.


Glastir (Welsh Green land) is a sustainable land management scheme in Wales launched by the Welsh Assembly Government in 2012. Its goals include "combating climate change, improving water management and maintaining and enhancing biodiversity." It aims to "deliver measurable outcomes at both a farm and landscape level in a cost effective way". The scheme is funded by the Welsh Government and the European Union.

Gwen Bridge

Gwen Bridge is an environmental scientist and conservation advocate. Her work has focused on sustainable land management practices to help facilitate the cultural preservation of Indigenous communities across North America.

Kulen Promtep Wildlife Sanctuary

The Kulen Promtep Wildlife Sanctuary (Khmer: ដែនជម្រកសត្វព្រៃគូលែនព្រហ្មទេព - Daen Chomrok Satprey Kulen Promtep) is the largest protected area in Cambodia and was set aside to protect the critically endangered, possibly extinct Kouprey.

Mafa people

The Mafa, also called Mahayana, is an ethnic group localized in northern Cameroon, eastern Nigeria and also other countries like Mali, Chad, Sudan and Sierra Leone.

Nándor Tánczos

Nándor Steven Tánczos (; born 29 May 1966) is New Zealand social ecologist, researcher, educator, activist and political commentator. He is currently a councillor in the Whakatāne District. He is also co-director of He Puna Manawa social and political change agency.

He was a member of the New Zealand Parliament from 1999 to 2008, and represented the Green Party as a list MP.

Soil governance

Soil governance refers to the policies, strategies, and the processes of decision-making employed by nation states and local governments regarding the use of soil. Globally, governance of the soil has been limited to an agricultural perspective due to increased food insecurity from the most populated regions on earth. The Global Soil Partnership, GSP, was initiated by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and its members with the hope to improve governance of the limited soil resources of the planet in order to guarantee healthy and productive soils for a food-secure world, as well as support other essential ecosystem services.

Governing the soil requires international and national collaboration between governments, local authorities, industries and citizens to ensure implementation of coherent policies that encourage practices and methodologies that regulate usage of the resource to avoid conflict between users to promote sustainable land management. In the European Union's environmental policies, soil is recognized as a non-renewable resource, but its governance is maintained at a national level, unlike other non-renewable and climate sensitive resources. In the developing world, soil governance is biased towards promoting sustainable agriculture and ensuring food security.

Governance of the soil differs from soil management. Soil management involves practices and techniques used to increase and maintain soil fertility, structure, and carbon sequestration, etc. Soil management techniques are heavily utilized in agriculture, because of the need to regulate the various practices, such as tillage techniques, fertilizer application and crop rotation (among others) by the various stakeholders involved. The need to monitor and avoid the negative effects of agricultural land use such as soil erosion has formed the basis of the discourse and awareness on soil governance, and has also seen the emergence of science and technology as the link between soil management and governance. Soil governance mechanisms are usually encapsulated within the context of land governance, with little focus on urban and industrial soil governance especially in developing countries that have rapid urbanization rates; thus, soil governance is highly interlinked with other atmospheric and anthropogenic processes which may contribute to the difficulty in distinguishing it as an entity.

With an aim to make soil data available to all, the Food and Agriculture Organization and UNESCO created a global soil map in 1981 as the main information on the distribution of soil resources. Currently, under the GSP framework, a new global soil information system will be developed.In 2002, the International Union of Soil Sciences proposed December 5 to be "World Soil Day" to celebrate the importance of soil in our lives. Under the framework of the GSP, the sixty-eighth session of the United Nations General Assembly in December 2013 designated December 5 as the World Soil Day and declared 2015 as the International Year of Soils with the aim to raise awareness on the importance of soils for ecosystem functions and food security .

Special Report on Climate Change and Land

The United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Special Report on Climate Change and Land (SRCCL), also known as the "Special Report on climate change, desertification, land degradation, sustainable land management, food security, and greenhouse gas fluxes in terrestrial ecosystems", is a landmark study by 107 experts from 52 countries. The SRCCL provides a comprehensive overview of the entire land-climate system for the first time, and addressed land itself as a "critical resource". On Wednesday, August 7, 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland the IPCC's 50th session (IPCC-50) adopted the SRCCL's Summary for policymakers (SPM) and approved the underlying report. The SPM and the full text of Special Report on Climate Change and Land—in an unedited form—were released on Thursday, August 8. The report is over 1,300 pages long and includes the work of 107 experts from 52 countries. The IPCC Twitter account announced the release of the report with, "Land is where we live. Land is under growing human pressure. Land is a part of the solution. But land can't do it all."The report is the second of three Special Reports in the current Sixth Assessment Report (AR6) cycle which began in 2015 and will be completed in 2022. The first was Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C, and the third is the Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate

(SROCC) released on September 25, 2019. The AR6 cycle is considered by the IPCC to be their most ambitious since the panel was formed in 1988.

Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate

The United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC) was approved at the IPCC's 51st Session (IPCC-51) in September 2019 in Monaco. The SROCC's approved Summary for policymakers (SPM) was released on September 25, 2019. The 1,300-page report by 104 authors and editors representing 36 countries referred to 6,981 publications.The report is the third in the series of three Special Reports in the current Sixth Assessment Report (AR6) cycle which began in 2015 and will be completed in 2022. The first was Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C and the second was the Special Report on Climate Change and Land (SRCCL), also known as the "Special Report on climate change, desertification, land degradation, sustainable land management, food security, and greenhouse gas fluxes in terrestrial ecosystems" which was released on August 7, 2019.

Sustainable agriculture

Sustainable agriculture is farming in sustainable ways, which means meeting society's food and textile present needs, without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. It can be based on an understanding of ecosystem services. It includes profit, environmental stewardship, fairness, health, business and familial aspects on a farm setting. There are many methods to increase the sustainability of agriculture. Sustainability focuses on the business process and practice of a farm in general, rather than a specific agricultural product.Agriculture has an enormous environmental footprint; it is simultaneously causing environmental changes and being impacted by these changes. If the human population increase does not abate an increase in food production will be required. Sustainable agriculture provides a potential solution to enable agricultural systems to feed a growing population within the changing environmental conditions. Given the finite supply of natural resources at any specific cost and location, agriculture that is inefficient or damaging to needed resources may eventually exhaust the available resources or the ability to afford and acquire them.

Terrafrica partnership

The TerrAfrica partnership is a US$4 billion, 12-year campaign supported by the African Union, World Bank, United Nations, European Commission, and regional sub-Saharan African governments, and aimed at fighting current, and preventing future desertification and other land degradation in Africa through sustainable land management.

It began October 2005.

The Lacassane Company

The Lacassane Company is a land management company, with a goal of sustainable land management using an environmental management scheme that involves a host of tools including holistic management. Located primarily in Jefferson Davis and Cameron parish, with property in Ragley, Louisiana, the company headquarters is in Lake Charles, Louisiana.

Trail ethics

Trail ethics deals with ethics as it applies to the use of trails. It is similar to both environmental ethics and human rights in that it deals with the shared interaction of humans and nature. There are multiple agencies and groups that support and encourage ethical behavior on trails.Trail ethics applies to the use of trails, by pedestrians, dog walkers, hikers, backpackers, mountain bikers, equestrians, hunters, and off-road vehicles.

Whiterock Conservancy

Whiterock Conservancy is a 501(c)(3) land trust located in west-central Iowa that stewards over 4,000 acres of contiguous land located in the Middle Raccoon River watershed, and an additional 1,000 non-contiguous land located in the Brushy and Middle Raccoon River watersheds. The Whiterock landscape almost exclusively made possible by an extraordinary planned land gift from the Garst family to Whiterock Conservancy. The landscape is a mosaic of agricultural land, wetlands, preserved prairie and oak savanna, riverine woodlands, and upland forest. The land is also home to the historic Roswell and Elizabeth Garst Farmstead, which hosted Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev in 1959, and is now on the National Register of Historic Places. The land is used for recreation, environmental conservation, and for the production of agricultural products, and is managed as a working landscape where cultural, environmental, agricultural, and recreational land uses are held in equal importance.

Related fields


This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.