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Title: Changes of land use, associated livelihood, plant biodiversity in traditional tea agroforestry in Yunnan, China
Authors: WANG YI
Keywords: tea agroforestry, tea market boom, land use, plant biodiversity, temporal change, Yunnan
Issue Date: 8-Aug-2012
Citation: WANG YI (2012-08-08). Changes of land use, associated livelihood, plant biodiversity in traditional tea agroforestry in Yunnan, China. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Agriculture intensification is one of the leading causes of biodiversity loss. Traditional tea agroforestry systems provide a potential model for the reconciliation between biodiversity conservation and socioeconomic developments. The tea market experienced a dramatic boom in Yunnan from 2002 to 2008, especially for ?old tea?, produced in traditional tea agroforests. The niche price premiums given to ?old tea? production led to changes in land use, livelihoods and management practices, as well as plant biodiversity. Whether the economic incentive have a role in protecting these systems or, conversely, in driving the degradation of these systems was explored in terms of plant biodiversity. A re-survey was conducted in 2012 based on the base survey conducted in 2002 on the plant biodiversity of tea agroforests and the socioeconomic factors of associated livelihoods. My results show that the price premium protected tea agroforests from being transformed to other intensified land uses such as monocultures. However, the systems were still under degradation in terms of plant biodiversity. Athough the changing pattern of trees was relatively stable, important species and giant trees were still lost. Intensified management was an important driving force for plant species richness loss, while more increase in profitability or average price of ?old tea? corresponded to less richness loss. In addition, management strength did not necessarily positively correlate with profitability under increased market interferences. Therefore, better marketing of ?old tea? products and setting environment-friendly policies against intensified land use are suggested for sustainable development, which balances both ecological needs and economic benefits.
Appears in Collections:Master's Theses (Open)

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