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Porträtt av Henrik Smith. Foto.

Henrik Smith

Professor

Porträtt av Henrik Smith. Foto.

Environmental Impacts of Organic Farming

Författare

  • Klaus Birkhofer
  • Henrik G. Smith
  • Maj Rundlöf

Summary, in English

Organic agriculture is a production system that aims at sustaining healthy soils, ecosystems and people by prohibiting the application of synthetic pesticides and fertilisers in crop production and by emphasising animal welfare in livestock breeding. This article shows that organic agriculture is characterised by higher soil quality and reduced nutrient or pesticide leaching compared to nonorganic agriculture, but that positive effects on biological control services or emission of greenhouse gases are less evident. Yield gaps between organic and nonorganic agriculture are on average 20%, but vary between crops and regions. Given the environmental risks that are associated with intensive, nonorganic agriculture, farming practices should be modified to decrease risks. Organic agriculture can be a more environmentally friendly alternative, but individual farming practices need improvement to meet the demands of a growing human population. Further growth of the organic farming sector will contribute to reduce the negative environmental impact of agriculture.

Avdelning/ar

  • Biodiversitet
  • Centrum för miljö- och klimatvetenskap (CEC)
  • BECC: Biodiversity and Ecosystem services in a Changing Climate
  • Biodiversitet och bevarandevetenskap

Publiceringsår

2016-07

Språk

Engelska

Sidor

1-7

Publikation/Tidskrift/Serie

eLS

Dokumenttyp

Artikel i uppslagsverk

Förlag

John Wiley & Sons Inc.

Ämne

  • Environmental Sciences
  • Agricultural Sciences

Status

Published

Forskningsgrupp

  • Biodiversity and Conservation Science

ISBN/ISSN/Övrigt

  • ISBN: 9780470015902