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Prellezo R.,Tecnalia | Andersen J.L.,Institute of Food and Resource Economics | Andersen B.S.,Technical University of Denmark | Buisman E.,LEI Wageningen UR | And 5 more authors.
Marine Policy

The lessons learned from a review of thirteen existing European bio-economic models used in the evaluation of EU policies are presented. How these models compare and differ in terms of their biological and economic components, the integration between the components, which indicators are selected and how they are used, are described and analysed. The article concludes that the multitude of construction differences reflects the necessity of adapting the modelling approach to answer different questions. Since real life questions in fisheries are so diverse, answering them requires a diversity of models. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Halberg N.,International Center for Research in Organic Food Systems | Hermansen J.E.,University of Aarhus | Kristensen I.S.,University of Aarhus | Eriksen J.,University of Aarhus | And 2 more authors.
Agronomy for Sustainable Development

Organic rules for grazing and access to outdoor areas in pig production may be met in different ways, which express compromises between considerations for animal welfare, feed self-reliance and negative environmental impact such as greenhouse gas emissions and nitrate pollution. This article compares the environmental impact of the main organic pig systems in Denmark. Normally, sows are kept in huts on grassland and finishing pigs are raised in stables with access to an outdoor run. One alternative practice is also rearing the fattening pigs on grassland all year round. The third method investigated was a one-unit pen system mainly consisting of a deep litter area under a climate tent and with restricted access to a grazing area. Using life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology, the emissions of greenhouse gases of the free range system were estimated to be 3.3 kg CO2-equivalents kg-1 live weight pig, which was significantly higher than the indoor fattening system and the tent system, yielding 2.9 and 2.8 kg CO2-eq. kg-1 pig, respectively. This was 7-22% higher compared with Danish conventional pig production but, due to the integration of grass-clover in the organic crop rotations these had an estimated net soil carbon sequestration. When carbon sequestration was included in the LCA then the organic systems had lower greenhouse gas emissions compared with conventional pig production. Eutrophication in nitrate equivalents per kg pig was 21-65% higher in the organic pig systems and acidification was 35-45% higher per kg organic pig compared with the conventional system. We conclude that, even though the free range system theoretically has agro-ecological advantages over the indoor fattening system and the tent system due to a larger grass-clover area, this potential is difficult to implement in practice due to problems with leaching on sandy soil. Only if forage can contribute to a larger proportion of the pigfeed uptake may the free range system be economically and environmentally competitive. Improvement of nitrogen cycling and efficiency is the most important factor for reducing the overall environmental load from organic pig meat. Presently, a system with pig fattening in stables and concrete-covered outdoor runs seems to be the best solution from an environmental point of view. © 2010 INRA, EDP Sciences. Source

Christensen T.,Institute of Food and Resource Economics | Lawrence A.,Roslin Institute | Lund M.,Institute of Food and Resource Economics | Stott A.,Kings College | Sandoe P.,Institute of Food and Resource Economics
Animal Welfare

To-date, the dominant approach to improving farm animal welfare has consisted of a combination of voluntary improvements undertaken by farmers and the tightening of legal requirements. However, history suggests that there is a limit to the improvements capable of being secured by this approach. In this paper, it is argued that economic principles can and should have an important role when new, market-driven and other approaches are set up to improve farm animal welfare. The paper focuses on two ways in which economic principles can improve analyses of animal welfare. The first is by helping to define priorities as to which aspects of animal welfare should be promoted. Here, economic approaches can be used to capture and synthesise the perspectives of all the stakeholders, including the animals, in a transparent and systematic way. The second way is by helping to ensure that incentives are set up in the right way. Where the benefits and costs of improving animal welfare are initially distributed unevenly across stakeholders so that a socially desirable situation will not develop automatically, or be implemented, suitable economic principles may help to create incentives which correct this situation. Thus, if society is to achieve its goal of improving animal welfare, scholars from different disciplines should collaborate in identifying animal needs, assessing stakeholder preferences, making priorities transparent and providing incentives that make solutions realistically attainable. © 2012 Universities Federation for Animal Welfare. Source

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