Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies

Land Management (48 found)

New science offers insights into the wisdom of Tibetan nomads

The world has long attributed Tibetan wisdom to the Buddhist monks and their teachings, but largely ignored the wisdom of the nomads. Recently, scientists have proven that traditional grazing practiced by these nomads are crucial for Tibetan rangelands, promoting plant diversity and nectar production.

Wastewater in Delhi: Not all viewpoints are equal

In Delhi, scientists, municipal workers, and people living in unauthorized settlements have vastly different understandings of the city’s wastewater challenges. Using an urban political ecology lens, a new case study links problems of wastewater with the way legitimacy is awarded to competing systems of knowledge in the city. 

Global health community is needed to help fight climate change

A team of medical professionals and scientists says that experts from different disciplines need to work together in order to prevent, diminish, or adjust to the negative consequences of climate change. 

Green versus gray infrastructure: The economics of flood adaptation in Fiji

Despite their relative obscurity, green infrastructure that incorporates natural processes offers significant economic advantages over conventional gray infrastructure, as demonstrated by a recent study of flood adaptation options in Fiji.

Protected, but how well? Evaluating management effectiveness of protected areas

Managing protected areas is a challenge. While creating new areas for protection is the first step, the pace of biodiversity conservation will be determined by specific management actions. A new study reveals which ones.

Can an invasive species actually help lemurs in Madagascar?

Tropical forests are being lost due to timber harvest and cultivation, and ecosystems are being threatened by the spread of exotic and invasive species that outcompetes native ones. A recent study shows how an exotic plant species can be beneficial in connecting forest fragments, which promotes healthy wildlife populations.

As climate changes, butterflies find refuge in protected areas

As species shift out of their historic habitats in response to climate change, the role of protected areas is in question. Can the current global system of stationary bubbles of biodiversity protection help fauna on the move?

Does your Colombian coffee endanger species?

What coffee did you choose this morning? A new study shows that shade coffee can help endangered monkeys conservation in the Colombian forests.

Coffee plantations provide refuge for small mammals

Agriculture and preserving habitat are constantly at odds. A new study assesses how farming can benefit farmers and small mammal species, and help preserve habitat.

The power of neighborhood-scale actions – and urban agriculture – in New Orleans

New research reveals the political potential of neighborhood greening in the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans, shedding light on the long-term benefits of community-led urban agriculture.

Virtual water flows and trade: The complex relationship between agriculture and water

What can a snapshot of virtual water flows tell us about the agricultural sector? Where is it vulnerable? How does it compare to global virtual water trade?

Using innovation to ‘green’ national accounting

A recent study explores how to value and map ecosystem services in a way that can be consistent with national accounts. 

Does climate change really have negative impacts on agricultural production?

Economic research certainly back up the notion that climate change is reducing agricultural production in parts of the world. But what if we take into account farmers’ adaptation strategies?

Land-use history influences rates of tropical forest regeneration

Differences in land use history may significantly alter the speed and ability of tropical forests to regenerate, which may have substantial implications for carbon budgets.

Fungi can improve agricultural efficiency and sustainability

A recent study shows that soil microorganisms can improve the production of major crops like corn and wheat, while also reducing the environmental impact of excess fertilizers.

Land tenure and agricultural efficiency: The limits of the land rental market

A new study finds that formal ownership of land fails to produce an efficient rental market, highlighting the limitations of this land reform strategy to increase land access in order to reduce farmland expansion into more vulnerable areas.

Small talk: Addressing challenges to modern day land conservation

Successful land conservation efforts require transparency and collaboration between all individuals involved, a recent analysis found. The first step is for stakeholders to engage in conversation.

Are virtual water calculations helpful in informing regional water policy?

In water scarce regions, the concept of “virtual water” may help communities make tough decisions regarding competing water uses.

Land degradation in war and conflict regions

What happens to land under years of war and conflict? Satellite data and integrated modelling are helping to predict land degradation in war-torn regions of northern Lebanon.

With efficacy of property rights, function can be more important than form

New research on land tenure in China’s agrarian provinces highlights the importance of evaluating property rights in context, dismissing the typical attributes used to compare insecure or communal versus secure or private systems. The study suggests that understanding the social credibility of land ownership structures is central to appreciating how well specific structures function in a given location.

Produce or preserve? Examining the biofuel vs. reforestation debate

Ultimately, the factors that dictate the carbon footprints of producing biofuels versus reforesting degraded land are highly nuanced and vary from case to case

Mapping agricultural water contamination risk in California’s Central Valley

Groundwater contamination from agricultural sources threatens drinking water quality in California’s San Joaquin Valley. Application of a geospatial tool may help farmers, researchers, and regulators identify farmland contributing to the problem.

Can private land conservation efforts adapt to climate change?

Conservation easements aimed at protecting privately owned land from development are self-limiting in the face of climate change. The time has come for land conservation organizations to reframe strategies that not only stand the test of time, but also a changing climate.

Global study tells us how human land-use affects species and why

Across the world, animals are consistently imperiled by human land-use, but the magnitude of impact varies between species based on their innate features.

Improving modern agriculture through ‘intercropping’

Integrating traditional practices with modern mechanized agriculture is one way of improving yields and reducing the environmental impact associated with agriculture in developed nations, but policy incentives will likely be required to encourage a meaningful shift in the industry.

A tale of two rivers: Comparing water management strategies at the Jordan and Colorado rivers

Although exhibited in different ways, similar forces drive water management decisions in Israel and in Arizona. Understanding these motivating factors is crucial when developing successful and effective water management approaches.

New performance indicator
helps inform corporate water decisions

In a recent study, researchers developed an approach to help companies make more informed water decisions based on which suppliers use more or less water throughout the supply chain.

Quantifying the primary causes of the urban heat island effect

Regional differences in the impacts of the urban heat island effect across the US are largely explained by variations in efficiency of heat convection to lower atmosphere and strongly influenced by humidity patterns rather than evapotranspiration.

Measuring ecosystem services at multiple scales

Can different methods of measuring ecosystem services for a region provide coherent, complementary results?

Wind, oil, and gas—categorizing the ecological footprint of energy sprawl

Spatial analysis can be utilized as a decision-support tool to make sure energy development occurs in the least ecologically sensitive areas.

Forest regrowth as a counterbalance to climate variability

A resurgence of forest cover in the North Carolina Piedmont has a significant effect on stream discharge and drought timing. 

Remote sensing reveals the rapid spread of gold mines in the Amazon

Researchers use cutting-edge technologies to track rapidly expanding gold mining operations in the Peruvian Amazon.

Sea rises and high rises: A model approach

Integrating sea level rise projections with cost-benefit analysis can provide guidance in assessing the trade-offs between coastal development and conservation objectives. 

Ecology drones: New methods for capturing low-cost tropical forest conservation data

Attaching the cameras to aerial drones allows conservation researchers to observe everything from illegal logging activity to elephant migrations.

Property tax incentives benefit forest connectivity

Forest property tax incentives are effective tools for ensuring landscape connectivity, yet what type of program forest owners participate in differs by type of forest and owners. Policymakers can use this information to tailor programs and policies to increase forest conservation programs.

Does river restoration help reptiles and amphibians?

Scientists examine how riparian restoration projects influence amphibian and reptile species and suggest several methods that natural resource managers can use to improve river rehabilitation projects.

Bioenergy and Biochar – Two concepts brought together for sustainable land use?

Increasing carbon storage in soils through biochar and producing bioenergy from perennial plants can be a powerful means to mitigate climate change. Understanding soil microbial processes is crucial to achieve improved soil fertility, biodiversity, and carbon sequestration.

Remote Sensing Closing in On Wildfire Prediction

Researchers are exploring the potential of using remote sensing of Live Fuel Moisture Content as a landscape level fire predictor.

Are wolves and road construction compatible?

Wolf movement is negatively affected by road construction, but more due to human activity than the presence of human infrastructure and machinery.

Assessing tools for formalizing property rights

Offering property licenses to “squatter communities” may not make property rights more secure as investment and property markets fail to take newly registered property licenses seriously

Orchids flourish with assisted migration

Assisted migration is hotly debated as an aid for species adapting to climate change, but new research reveals survival success for orchids.

Can forests earn more money than oil palm plantations?

Sustainable forest management that aims at Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+) includes payments to landowners and can provide economic benefits over alternative land uses such as oil palm plantations. If certain key factors are resolved, REDD+ can simultaneously achieve economic and social success while bringing ecological benefits and contributing to climate change mitigation.

Using Land Use Policy and Zoning to protect environmentally sensitive areas from informal settlements

Scientists examine how zoning and land use policy can protect environmentally sensitive areas at the fringe of the cities from damage by shantytowns. Political and social factors can often cause these policies to fail.

Local solutions for local problems

In the search for effective adaptations to climate change, governments and international organizations may have little need to cast their nets far from home.

Climate warming doesn’t guarantee that tree lines will rise

It is often assumed that global warming will make mountain trees climb uphill. A new long-view study shows that this is not always the case, meaning that managers must take heed when planning the future of their forests.

Property tax changes may not motivate private landowners to conserve

Many conservationists and land planners look to property tax policy to encourage private landowners to keep their land undeveloped. While property tax can hold back the conversion of rural land to some extent, its impact is limited.

Improving participatory planning meetings: learning from the people involved

In the summer of 1993, over 12,000 people flocked to the otherwise remote Clayoquot Sound to protest the logging of old growth forest on Meares Island, British Columbia. This precipitated changes in the public participation process that are still evolving twenty years later.