Sustainability of agroforestry in New Zealand : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Philosophy in Regional Planning at Massey University

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Massey University
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The aim of this thesis is to assess the concept of sustainability and apply it in a practical sense to New Zealand agroforestry. Sustainable management of natural resources is fast becoming recognised as necessary for the long term survival of our species. The agricultural communities prominence as the major user and steward of New Zealand's natural resources requires change in the values placed on these resources by farmers, and the incorporation of the principle of sustainable management at the farm level. The concept of sustainability is broken into three component parts; economic, environmental and social sustainability. Each of these components is broken again into specific measurable principles. Through literature research and a case study, the principles are applied to agroforestry, and a conclusion reached. It is found that given good management practices and normal business risks, agroforestry had the potential to maintain the natural capital stock and remain relatively profitable. Agroforestry is also found to have the potential to maintain the life support systems and biodiversity of the environment. Finally agroforestry is found to positively impact on rural societies, and provide the necessities of life and is relatively robust to political change. This thesis concluded that agroforestry as practiced in New Zealand is a profitable enterprise which improves the environment and increases the viability of many rural communities.
Agroforestry, New Zealand, Economic aspects