Presenter/Author Information

Anne-Gaelle Ausseil
Alexander Herzig
John Dymond

Keywords

land use change, spatial optimisation, ecosystem services, landscape modelling, trade-off

Start Date

1-7-2012 12:00 AM

Description

In New Zealand there has been rapid land-use change over the last 170 years, from all natural ecosystems to a mix of natural ecosystems (alpine ecosystems, indigenous forests, and tussock grasslands) and managed ecosystems (primarily pastoral farming and forestry). Tools are required to assess the balance between natural and managed ecosystems, and to ensure the sustainability of human development and equity in resource use. We use the ecosystem services approach to help resource managers achieve that balance. In this paper we combine several critical ecosystem services (provision of food and fibre, provision of clean water, regulation of water-flow, provision of natural habitat) into a framework for land-use optimisation, LUMASS. We developed spatial explicit models of these services based on process-based models upscaled to national level using look-up tables. Quantification depends on land use, climate, and soil, and can be used to analyse trade-offs and the optimal configuration of the landscape that would maximise the benefits for humans. The Waitaki catchment is subject to such trade-offs with the conversion of natural areas (mainly tussock grasslands) into dairy farming, which, while increasing the provisioning of food, will impact on water quality and quantity, and reduce habitat provision. We applied the LUMASS optimisation algorithm with an objective function designed to maximise regulating services (clean water provision, water-flow regulation) while still maintaining provisioning services (food). The land-use options are managed agro-ecosystems (dairy, sheep, and beef) and natural ecosystems (conservation land). We explain differences between the current land-use pattern and the optimal land-use pattern.

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Jul 1st, 12:00 AM

Optimising Land Use for Multiple Ecosystem Services Objectives: A Case Study in the WaitakiCatchment, New Zealand

In New Zealand there has been rapid land-use change over the last 170 years, from all natural ecosystems to a mix of natural ecosystems (alpine ecosystems, indigenous forests, and tussock grasslands) and managed ecosystems (primarily pastoral farming and forestry). Tools are required to assess the balance between natural and managed ecosystems, and to ensure the sustainability of human development and equity in resource use. We use the ecosystem services approach to help resource managers achieve that balance. In this paper we combine several critical ecosystem services (provision of food and fibre, provision of clean water, regulation of water-flow, provision of natural habitat) into a framework for land-use optimisation, LUMASS. We developed spatial explicit models of these services based on process-based models upscaled to national level using look-up tables. Quantification depends on land use, climate, and soil, and can be used to analyse trade-offs and the optimal configuration of the landscape that would maximise the benefits for humans. The Waitaki catchment is subject to such trade-offs with the conversion of natural areas (mainly tussock grasslands) into dairy farming, which, while increasing the provisioning of food, will impact on water quality and quantity, and reduce habitat provision. We applied the LUMASS optimisation algorithm with an objective function designed to maximise regulating services (clean water provision, water-flow regulation) while still maintaining provisioning services (food). The land-use options are managed agro-ecosystems (dairy, sheep, and beef) and natural ecosystems (conservation land). We explain differences between the current land-use pattern and the optimal land-use pattern.