Location: Range Management ResearchTitle: Earth stewardship on rangelands: Coping with ecological, economic, and political marginality Author
Submitted to: Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/4/2013
Publication Date: 9/1/2013
Publication URL: http://handle.nal.usda.gov/10113/57939
Citation: Sayer, N., Mcallister, R., Bestelmeyer, B.T., Moritz, M., Turner, M. 2013. Earth stewardship on rangelands: Coping with ecological, economic, and political marginality. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment. 11(7):348-354. Interpretive Summary: We identify ecological, economic, and political factors that are causing rangeland change globally and that should be the focus of efforts to promote rangeland sustainability. The synthetic framework we produce can be used to understand how rangeland Earth Stewardship can be achieved in the face of socio-economic marginality of peoples occupying rangelands, globalization and climate change.
Technical Abstract: Rangelands encompass 30-40 percent of Earth's land surface and support 1-2 billion people. Their predominant use is extensive livestock production by pastoralists and ranchers. But rangelands are characterized by ecological, economic, and political marginality, and higher-value, more intensive land uses impinge on rangelands around the world. Earth Stewardship in rangelands must address both livestock management and the broader dynamics of marginality that promote land-use changes, fragmentation, and degradation. We identify ecological, economic, and political gradients on which human-rangeland systems can be arrayed, encompassing issues of variability, adaptation to disturbance, commercialization, land use change, land tenure security and effective governance, and we illustrate their interactions and effects in sites around the world. The result is a synthetic framework to understand how rangeland Earth Stewardship can be achieved in the face of marginality, globalization and climate change.