American Journal of Rural Development
ISSN (Print): 2333-4762 ISSN (Online): 2333-4770 Website: http://www.sciepub.com/journal/ajrd Editor-in-chief: Chi-Ming Lai
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American Journal of Rural Development. 2016, 4(2), 49-58
DOI: 10.12691/ajrd-4-2-3
Open AccessArticle

Territorial Management, Environmental Degradation and Resilience in Rural Areas of the Argentinian Temperate Arid Diagonal

Julia Inés Gabella1, and Friedrich M. Zimmermann2

1Departmento de Geografía y Turismo, Universidad Nacional del Sur, Bahía Blanca, Argentina

2Department of Geography and Regional Science and RCE Graz-Styria, University of Graz, Graz, Austria

Pub. Date: July 22, 2016

Cite this paper:
Julia Inés Gabella and Friedrich M. Zimmermann. Territorial Management, Environmental Degradation and Resilience in Rural Areas of the Argentinian Temperate Arid Diagonal. American Journal of Rural Development. 2016; 4(2):49-58. doi: 10.12691/ajrd-4-2-3

Abstract

Rural areas located in the South of Buenos Aires province represent a clear example of an extra marginal Pampean area with evidence of environmental degradation. The area is located in the Argentinean Temperate Arid Diagonal and presents a semi-arid to arid climate with high variability, mostly regarding precipitation regimes. Throughout the twentieth century and up to the present, these lands were incorporated into the new logics of globalized agricultural production leading to the deforestation of the native forest and the development of unsustainable agriculture with methods and techniques which are highly aggressive towards the environment. In addition to these practices, the absence of public policies aiming at territorial planning even enforced the environmental degradation of the area. Degradation in these areas involves three aspects of the same reality: Firstly, the natural aspect, which refers to changes in soil characteristics causing desertification and loss of biodiversity. Then, the economical aspect with an increasing indebtedness of the farmers and consequently rural impoverishment. Finally, the social aspect that manifests itself in the degradation associated with land abandonment, rural exodus and the loss of cultural values and traditions. The goal of this article is to develop a concept, based upon three models, constituting the framework for a stepwise development towards sustainability and resilience: (1) a conceptual model explaining different land management processes in which shaped these rural areas, (2) a process model covering the relationship between (land use/management) processes and environmental degradation and (3) a future model, proposing alternatives for rural land management, related to the concept of rural resilience.

Keywords:
rural areas temperate arid diagonal environmental degradation territorial management rural resilience

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