Sustainability. 13, pp. 8.
Autores/as: Ibán Vázquez González; María do Mar Pérez Fra; Ana Isabel García Arias; Bernardo Valdês Paços; EdelmiroLópez Iglesias.
Humans have traditionally sought provisioning services from rural areas, but society is becoming increasingly aware of other services that rural areas provide to human beings, agroecosystem services. At the same time, however, certain dysservices can be identified. The analysis of agroecosystem services and dysservices is a key point to consider in decision-making processes and provides a tool for acting on sustainability. Notwithstanding, few approaches to the dairy sector exist with this focus, and they often do not incorporate the vision of the actors from the entire value chain. The aim of the present paper is to identify agroecosystem services and dysservices deriving from the dairy farming in Galicia (Spain), as perceived by actors linked to this sector. The methodology followed a bottom-up approach (Focus Group) and identified 19 agroecosystem services (S) and 9 dysservices (D) grouped into four main categories: provisioning (6S/0D), environmental quality (5S/5D), rural vitality (6S/2D), and cultural heritage and quality of life (2S/1D). The results show strong awareness of services and dysservices, in particular as regards rural vitality (mainly related to employment and income generation) and environmental services (dyservices linked to intensive systems). We have, however, detected a significant gap in awareness of certain classical environmental services (carbon sequestration of pastures). Finally, one of the innovative findings is the identification of rural vitality services and dysservices, including the social role that farming plays in consolidating the population in rural areas, and in preserving local traditions and culture.