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.
|Title of host publication||Development of sustainable livestock systems on grasslands in north-western China|
|Subtitle of host publication||Proceedings of a workshop held at the combined International Grassland Congress and International Rangeland Conference, Hohhot, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, China, 28 June 2008|
|Editors||D.R. Kemp, D.L. Michalk|
|Place of Publication||Canberra, ACT|
|Publisher||Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR)|
|Number of pages||14|
|Publication status||Published - 2011|
|Event||XXI International Grassland Congress and VIII International Rangeland Congress - Hohhot, China, Hohhot, China|
Duration: 28 Jun 2008 → 28 Jun 2008
|Conference||XXI International Grassland Congress and VIII International Rangeland Congress|
|Period||28/06/08 → 28/06/08|
Kemp, D., Brown, C., Han, G., Michalk, D., Nan, Z., Wu, J., & Xu, Z. (2011). Chinese grasslands: Problems, dilemmas, and finding solutions. In D. R. Kemp, & D. L. Michalk (Eds.), Development of sustainable livestock systems on grasslands in north-western China: Proceedings of a workshop held at the combined International Grassland Congress and International Rangeland Conference, Hohhot, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, China, 28 June 2008 (pp. 12-25). Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR).