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Profitability of erosion control with cover crops in European vineyards under consideration of environmental costs

AuthorsSchütte, Rebekka; Plaas, Elke; Gómez Calero, José Alfonso ; Guzmán, Gema
KeywordsCover crops
Environmental costs
Issue DateMay-2019
Citation172nd EAAE Seminar (2019)
AbstractVine cultivation on slopescauses serious erosion with significant losses of nutrients, organic matter and water, followed by an overall loss of soil biodiversity and ecosystem services (ES). Cover crops (CC) in inter-rows can reduce these effects, but are often renounced by winegrowers due to economic causes. Soil erosion rates which were obtained from field data and simulations with ORUSCAL (Orchard RUSle CALibration) lay the basis for comparing three different scenarios of soil management; conventional tillage (CT), temporary cover crops (TCC) and permanent cover crops (PCC). We use the Policy Analysis Matrix (PAM) to include on-and off-side costs oferosion and to demonstrate their economic implications. The scenarios are calculated for two different European wine regions, Montilla-Moriles (Spain) and Carnuntum (Austria). Results from ORUSCAL show that erosion is decreased in most cases with increasing use of vegetation cover. Overall, the consideration of erosion costs in the budget of farmers has only minor effects on their competitiveness and additional costs for CC are not covered by private erosion cost savings. However, if social erosion costs are added, CC are cost-effective in both regions. This is even without the valuation of non-marketed ecosystem services such as cultural and aesthetic aspects which most likely will increase social costs of erosion. Furthermore, our results show that higher revenues are of greater importance for management decisions than lower input prices. Therefore, CC should be rewarded either through a higher willingness to pay from consumers or government support.
DescriptionTrabajo presentado en el 172nd EAAE Seminar ("Agricultural policy for the environment or environmental policy for agriculture"), celebrado en Bruselas el 28 y 29 de mayo de 2019.
Appears in Collections:(IAS) Comunicaciones congresos
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