The Redesign of Sustainable Agricultural Crop Ecosystems by Increasing Natural Ecosystem Services Provided by Insects
ARC-Small Grains, Bethlehem, South Africa
Abstract: Agriculture is the cornerstone of the South African economy and farmers must ensure that they produce enough to keep up with the needs of our growing population, within the limits of nature’s increasingly constrained and over-used resources. To meet this challenge successfully we need to change our food production systems to more sustainable systems. Natural ecosystems are resilient and able to survive extreme climatic changes because of the diversity in these systems. Conventional agriculture has decreased biodiversity on many different levels including plant genetic resources, insects, and soil organisms. Agrobiodiversity should be considered as the basis for redesigning sustainable agroecosystems by mimicking natural ecosystems, with insects providing ecosystem services. A deeper understanding of the mechanisms driving the relationships between crop diversity, beneficial insects, and pests or diseases will be needed in order to make cropping system diversification an effective and reliable tool. In terrestrial ecosystems, insects play key ecological roles and provide ecosystem services in diverse ecological processes. In order to redesign an ecosystem, we need to determine the different components in the system, their functions in the particular ecosystem, and the interaction between these components that is needed to benefit the ecosystem as a whole. We can then use this knowledge to create models for agricultural crop ecosystems that will be resilient enough to survive the challenges of a constantly changing environment.
Keywords: Sustainability, crop ecosystems, resilience, agrobiodiversity, insects, ecosystem services.
Pages: 365 – 381 | Full PDF Paper
H.F. Randriantseheno, Raoelina Andriambololona, R.J.L. Zafimanjato, T.H. Randriamora
Institut National des Sciences et Techniques Nucléaires (INSTN-Madagascar), Antananarivo, Madagascar.
In Madagascar, Nuclear applications can provide significant benefits in various fields of medicine, agriculture, industry, research or other. However, some of these applications generate radioactive waste that must be managed well to avoid potential risks to people and the environment.
On the legislative and regulatory framework, Madagascar has already a law on radioactive waste management (Law ° 97-041) and implementing regulations. These regulations will shortly be complemented by prescriptions and guides. If necessary, they will be updated to be consistent with GSR Part 3.
In Madagascar, several disused radioactive sources were surveyed. Many of these sources have been characterized, packed, dismantled and returned to their country of origin. However, storage of these sources poses a big security problem because the national center for radioactive waste management and storage is not yet in place, even if this option is part of the priority countries. For now, the radioactive waste is stored in each user’s storage rooms.
Temporary solutions have therefore been taken in particular:
– The dismantling of devices containing sealed sources of the service (Case of brachytherapy machine)
– Conditioning of radium sources (56 sources of Ra-226 needles),
– Repatriation of sources of high activity (2 Sources of Cobat-60 used in radiotherapy) (SHARS)
After the various missions carried out by the IAEA experts, partner countries and the local counterpart of the projects. The interim storage of these sources in a dedicated container in a secure location was chosen option.
Keywords: Disused sources in Madagascar.
Pages: 382 – 386 | Full PDF Paper
G. Nabakhataini, V. Gedevanishvili
Agency of Nuclear and Radiation Safety of Georgian Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources Protection.
Abstract: Georgia is small country situated on the territory of south Caucuses. The country gained difficult heritage for radioactive waste management after ruining of Soviet Union. The country had only one closed “Radon” type disposal and no other facilities to handle with radioactive waste. No administrative system was also established. At the same time Georgia had great problems with s.c. orphan radioactive sources. More than 300 of them were found and recovered. Operation of nuclear research reactor was stopped and decommissioning activity needed to start. All these factors has stipulated establishing and fast developing of radioactive waste management national system including construction of new facilities, upgrade the old one and establish necessary administrative system.
Pages: 387 – 393 | Full PDF Paper