“The continuous, accelerating decline in biodiversity is of particular concern as biodiversity provides the fabric of life with a range of ecosystems services which are crucial for human well-being”. “Main direct drivers of biodiversity loss, in order of their importance, are land use change, overexploitation (through intensive agriculture, forestry and fishing practices), climate change, pollution and invasive species” . 2020 will be the year of biodiversity with the UN aiming to develop a post-2020 framework.
Livestock is often blamed for its contribution to biodiversity losses but the reality is more complex. The effects of livestock on biodiversity are variable across farming systems and livestock production can also make a positive contribution to biodiversity objectives and preservation of habitats. Very often, research initiatives on soil fertility do not include animal farming. Still, livestock is a reservoir of solutions to increase soil C-sequestration, biological fertility, organic matter, etc. In some cases, it generates in negative impacts as emission of reactive N and dissemination of medicine residues or antimicrobial resistance.
ATF would like to explore the different pathways, needs in cooperation and R&I to support an animal production able to contribute to ecosystems remediation, whatever in soils and on biodiversity.
2 events were organised in 2020-2021 to discuss this topic:
- the 8th ATF-EAAP special session (01 December 2020, remote meeting)
- the 10th ATF seminar (21 April 2021, remote meeting)
Both events aim to contribute to:
- Engage a dialogue with various stakeholders;
- Address how research and innovation can support the livestock sector;
- Provide input to European research and innovation agendas and to public policies to secure Europe’s role as a leading global provider of safe and healthy animal-derived products;
- Support knowledge development and innovation;
- Foster ownership by farmers and industries.