What are biological resources? Resources that affect agriculture Resources that provide scientific inputs Resources that generate natural goods and services Agriculture and Genetic Resources Comparing Wildlife and Genetic Resources
What are biological resources? Biological resources refer to the living landscape -- the plants, animals, & other aspects of nature that occur on farmland, forests, and other natural lands.
Resources that affect agriculture Natural resources that directly affect agriculture. It can be a positive or negative affect. Examples: cultivated plants, pollinators, pests, soil microbes, and domesticated animals.
Resources that provide scientific inputs Animal and plants genes that can be collected and analyzed for future scientific uses. Protecting genes preserve materials that may be useful in production of industrial and pharmaceutical products.
Resources that generate natural goods and services It is hard tp place a commodity value on these resources. Examples of these include wildlife, fish, and scenic beauty present in farmed and natural landscapes. These resources are divided into three categories based on the type of benefits they supply.
Types of Benefits Provided by Natural Goods and Services Consumptive Benefits --> active use of wildlife for activities such as hunting as fishing. Nonconsumptive Benefits--> activities such as wildlife viewing that do not directly harm plant and animal populations. Nonuse benefits--> people require no physical connection to acquire benefits from the resource. An example is the “existence value” of an ecosystem.
Agriculture and Wildlife Wildlife is important to the American people and to the U.S. economy. Wildlife oriented activities such as bird watching have increased in recent years. Hard to place a $ value. Abundant species value < Rare species value. White-tailed deer vs. bighorn sheep
Agriculture and Wildlife Agricultural lands are a major supplier of both wildlife habitat and access to wildlife- related goods and services. An example of agriculture, wildlife and economics all coming together is the leasing of farmland for recreational hunting. Economic incentives for farmers to allocate land as habitat is also helpful.
Agriculture and Genetic Resources Genetic resources: the genes found in all living things Can be stored in gene banks and enhance domestic and world food security through increased productivity and protection against yield variability due to diseases, pests, and environmental stress. Maintained by 2 techniques of preservation: In situ- maintained in their natural environment Ex situ- maintained in gene banks
Comparing Wildlife and Genetic Resources Both share a common feature: benefits they provide to society are not marketable commodities. Hard to value dollar-wise. Government programs to help include: the EQIP and CRP. Increase the overall supply of wildlife habitat. Both will be examined in greater detail by my other team members.
Crop Genetics Relationship with Agriculture In-situ Found in wild / fields Ex-situ Found in banks, botanical gardens, zoos Research & Development Productivity of Ag Production
Benefit Cost Analysis of Genetic Resources Direct use values Agricultural inputs - breeding, pesticides, microorganisms Indirect use valuesEcosystem role Option valuesUse in Future Quasi-option values Information in conserved resources Bequest valuesFuture generations Existence valuesExistence
Genomics Mapping the genome of an organism Sequencing a single ind. From a given species Identifying genes Genetic variability and similarities within species Gene function Gene regulation Gene interaction
Crop Genetics Benefits Crop genetic enhancements - $115 million welfare increase in U.S. Constitutes a large percentage of Agriculture Economy in other nations
Genetic Erosion Habitat Conversion –for Urban or Agricultural Use Widespread adoption of genetically uniform crop varieties
Genetic Conservation In-situ Conservation Benefits –Evolutionary process continues –Some germoplasm more efficient –Existing wild relatives pereserved In-situ Conservation Costs –Bourne by farmers –Can reduce farm productivity –Requires land –Farmer selections may not preserve targeted diversity
Genetic Conservation Con’t Ex-situ Conservation Benefits –Costs centralized –Large amounts of diverse germplasm –Readily accessed by more breeders –High security storage from natural disasters Ex-situ Conservation Costs –Some germplasm not easily stored –Regeneration costly, time consuming –Genetic drift –Insufficient funds, organization, documentation
Long-term conservation of genetic material Store large amounts at low cost Not all resources can be held Ex Situ To costly to keep material alive
International Access to Genetic Resources Critical to maintaining rate of varietal improvement. Most important plant species originate outside the U.S.
Policies Protecting Genetic Resources NPGS Primary player in effort to secure and utilize germplasm Maintains base collection and backup seeds for germplasm
Policies to Protect Genetic Resources NPGS 85 Crops Elite, Landrace and wild
Polices to Protect Genetic Resources Genetic materials be held in situ Genetic materials be held ex situ Focus primarily on ex situ preservation International ex situ agreements
Policies to Protect Genetic Resources Collection Preservation ex situ Characterization Enhancement
Policies to Protect Genetic Resources Ex situ preservation efforts successful Results in NPGS becoming largest collectors and distributors Management system has yielded economic benefits for U.S. and World Agriculuture.
Problems with Current Gene Bank System Few wild relatives are held in banks Few may be receiving the adequate funding for material to fulfill its mission Lacks funding to complete evaluation regeneration of seed accessions
Internationally Held Genetic Resources Addressed by International Agreements Funding International germplasm preservation efforts CGIAR coordinates germplasm efforts
FAO-led International Undertaking 1983 Major Controversy Free access to all germplasm Developing Countries disagreed Some resisted to it
FAO-led International Undertaking Meetings of FAO began to resolve issues 1993 Called for Soveriegn Rights Convention designed to promote conservation Had fairly wide reaching implications Focus of most recent Convention has been genetically modified organisms
Wildlife Conservation Trade-off U.S. farms accounted for 41% of land in lower 48 states in 1997 The amount of wildlife on this land is immeasurable and very diverse What is the worth of protecting species?
Trade-off US Agriculture is one of the most competitive markets in US economy Typically operate at or near economic margin This severely limits farmers or ranchers to adopt programs or policies that support wildlife but means of limiting output
Distribution of Cost and Benefits Benefits are derived public goods Includes existence value, bequest value and option value Also can be common property resources, meaning they are available to anyone willing to incur the direct costs Ex. Fee hunting,
Cost Implications of Biology Wild species require four basic services: food, water, cover and interspersion Where agriculture diminishes any one of these four, then the species will be hurt Policies that do not provide for the biological needs of target species are unlikely to accomplish their objectives Any associated restrictions imposed on farm activities risk needless increase in production costs
Cost Implications, Con’t Policy must recognize that some programs are detrimental instead of beneficial Supporting a single species or group of species by protecting one specific kind of habitat can actually harm other habitats and hurt a more diverse population of wildlife.
Objectives of Wildlife Resource Conservation Policy “To balance between economics of production activities, the distribution of legal property rights, the biological needs of desired species and habitats, and social preferences regarding wildlife conservation” Minimize impacts of agricultural production on wild species and habitats Minimize impacts on agricultural producers of wildlife conservation programs Protect threatened and endangered species Improve water quality and reduce soil erosion Protect open space
Current Programs Long-run land retirement –WRP and CRP –Over 415,000 contracts in 2000
Current Programs Conservation Compliance –Provision of Farm Act –“by failing to adhere to conservation compliance restrictions, farmers risk losing the benefits of imcome support, reduced production risk, and reduced marketing risk provided by the commodity program.
Current Programs Cost Sharing –USDA encourages implementation of habitat improvements by providing financial assistance –Include vegetative cover, restoring wetland and riparian zones and installing structure that benefit habitat
Current Programs Technical Assistance –Effective where there are changes farmers can make in their production practices or land management decisions that favor wildlife and that are neutral with respect to their impact on net farm income
Global Warming & Agriculture Possible benefits: –Enhanced CO 2 assimilation –Longer growing seasons –Increased precipitation Possible costs: –More frequent & severe droughts with heat stress –Faster growth, shorter growing periods, shortened lifecycle –Sea-level rise; increased flooding & salinization Consequences Vol. 1, No. 2, Summer 1995, US Global Change Research Information Office.