Chinese grasslands: Problems, dilemmas, and finding solutions

David Kemp, Colin Brown, Guodong Han, David Michalk, Zhibiao Nan, Jianping Wu, Zhu Xu

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paperpeer-review

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China's 400 million hectares of grasslands are its most extensive natural resource and have supported livestock production for millennia. During the past century, however, increasing pressures have resulted in a considerable rise in human and livestock populations that has limited household incomes and resulted in 90% of the grasslands being classified as degraded to some degree. Government policies have sought to reverse these adverse trends. This paper introduces projects designed to both improve household incomes and provide the opportunities for grassland rehabilitation. This work included analyses of policy development and its implementation from national to local levels, and of new environmental concerns to reduce greenhouse gas production from grazing livestock. The methodology employed was to survey the current farm structures and productivity, then use a systems approach and a series of computer models to analyse the current status of livestock production and investigate options for improvement. Officials at various levels of government and industry were surveyed to understand the policy and institutional settings that affect grassland utilisation. In developing strategies for farm and income improvement, emphasis was placed on the initial changes that could achieve real benefits, taking into account herder/farmer attitudes to livestock and land management. Initial work to test project ideas on farm has begun.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDevelopment of sustainable livestock systems on grasslands in north-western China
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of a workshop held at the combined International Grassland Congress and International Rangeland Conference, Hohhot, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, China, 28 June 2008
EditorsD.R. Kemp, D.L. Michalk
Place of PublicationCanberra, ACT
PublisherAustralian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR)
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781921615456
Publication statusPublished - 2011
EventXXI International Grassland Congress and VIII International Rangeland Congress - Hohhot, China, Hohhot, China
Duration: 28 Jun 200828 Jun 2008


ConferenceXXI International Grassland Congress and VIII International Rangeland Congress


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