Abstract: Sustainability in agricultural landscapes means that the use and management of ecological potential does not reduce its capacity to meet society’s future environmental, social and economic needs. Using this description of sustainability, Australian agricultural systems are far from sustainable at present. Removal of vast areas of native vegetation and the introduction of inappropriate agricultural systems have resulted in extensive loss of native biota, loss of productive agricultural land and decline in rural society. These degrading trends will continue to worsen unless Australian society intervenes on a broad scale. For example, to stop water tables from rising with attendant salination of soil, it has been estimated that over 30 billion perennial trees and shrubs will need to be planted. How does a society generate the will and ability to tackle environmental problems at this scale when its community and institutional boundaries do not reflect ecological reality? This paper discusses these issues and concludes with a 10-point plan to guide development of an approach to sustainable landscapes.
Saunders, D., Briggs, S., 2002, Nature grows in straight lines – or does she? What are the consequences of the mismatches between human-imposed linear boundaries and ecosystem boundaries? An Australian example, Volume:61, Journal Article, viewed 30 November 2023, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=4090.