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Exchange of innovative experiences for a sustainable development in mountain areas

Year of publication 2008
Author(s) Marie Guitton
Co-authors Cécile Levret, Rachel Delefortrie
Place of publication Brussels
Number of pages 97
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Page(s) 97
Publication type Other
Pastoralism is a traditional activity of extensive animal breeding, practiced in particular in the mountain regions. This form of breeding allows the development of territories with low agronomic value (difficult to access or not mechanisable), and thus to maintain an economic activity in these zones. Pastoralism also has the advantage of maintaining open landscapes, thus playing a role in the development of tourism and biodiversity, as well as the prevention of natural disasters. However, the continuation of pastoral activity is threatened by various difficulties: difficulties related to the economic context, difficulties in finding sufficient land to maintain the herds, difficulties in effectively and consistently organising the pastureland of the herds in the context of the seasonal use of the land with strong environmental issues and the pressure exerted by other users of the pastureland.
The aim of this document is to show some examples and propose some solutions already used in several European countries concerning three topics related to pastoral activities: namely, the land pressure in the valleys, the management of mountain pastures and the support extended by public authorities. Far from having drawn up an exhaustive list, what is presented is really a selection of case studies on the three subjects.