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Abstract

The Atlantic Forest suffered five centuries of continuous deforestation related to successive economic cycles, and is now reduced to 11.7 % of its original cover. The Atlantic Forest Restoration Pact was launched in 2009 and aims to restore 15 million hectares until 2050. Natural regeneration can play an important role in meeting this target, however little attention has been paid to this process and there is a gap in the knowledge about its driving factors at the landscape scale. We mapped forest cover of an Atlantic Forest municipality in Southeastern Brazil, in five timeslots between years 1978 and 2014, and used the weights of evidence method for modeling its spatial dynamics, in order to understand where natural regeneration is occurring and which are the main factors related to this phenomenon. In 36 years, forest cover increased 3,020 hectares (15.3 %), related to the decreasing of both rural population (R2 = 0.9794, p = 0.0013) and cropland cover (R2 = 0.8679, p = 0.0212). Landscape metrics shows the increment of number of fragments and structural connectivity among them. The main spatial variables influencing forest cover dynamics were topographic position, slope, solar radiation, soil type and distance to forest, urban areas and roads. Secondary forests provide ecosystem services that can turn into economic benefits, and natural regeneration can reduce restoration costs to the municipality. The cost of active restoration of the same area would have meant a total expense of U$ 15.1 million (U$ 419 k/year). We show here that spontaneous regeneration must be accounted for and incorporated into the spatial planning of Atlantic Forest restoration.
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... Although these values may be estimated for virtually any type of matrix, we established scenarios of forest regeneration only for pastures because BAF regeneration is more likely to occur in these areas (Latawiec et al., 2015). Pastures are more likely to be abandoned than other types of land use, allowing BAF and other tropical forests to regenerate (Rezende et al., 2015). Pasture map used in our analysis was developed by the Processing and Geoprocessing Lab (LAPIG; https://www.lapig.iesa.ufg.br/lapig/; ...
... Not all pastures that we identified as suitable to be converted into forests are unproductive and, thus, will not be destined for this purpose. Furthermore, although seed dispersal is one of the most important factors to promote forest regeneration, some other aspects may limit natural regeneration such as topography (Rezende et al., 2015;Silva et al., 2017), the past intensity of land use, and the amount of soil nutrient available (Crouzeilles et al., 2016;Mendes et al., 2019; but see Rozendaal et al., 2019). Socioeconomic factors such as the size of rural villages and the possibilities of farm credit might also influence how prone are landowners to convert their lands into crops, what might affect forest regeneration (Silva et al., 2017). ...
... Overall, most tropical forests have high potential for natural regeneration (Wright, 2010), which is also the case for the Atlantic Forest . There are evidences showing that even tropical regions where past land use intensity were high and forest cover low (~10%), the area of naturally regenerated forests was substantial (Baptista & Rudel, 2006;Brancalion et al., 2016;Crouzeilles et al., 2019;Lira et al., 2012;Mendes et al., 2019;Rezende et al., 2015). Moreover, the amount of degraded area is also large in other tropical regions (Lamb et al., 2005). ...
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Aim Evaluate how large‐scale forest regeneration based on a low‐cost restoration method may mitigate the effects of habitat loss and fragmentation associated to future climate changes on the distribution of birds and arboreal mammals in a tropical biodiversity hotspot; find areas with different current and future potential species richness and assess how passive restoration can reduce the risk of species extinction. Location Brazilian Atlantic Forest (BAF). Methods We built a forest regeneration scenario via a model of seed dispersal based on the potential movement of frugivorous fauna and projected the potential distribution of 356 bird species and 21 arboreal mammals based on Species Distribution Models (SDM) which employed 79,462 occurrence records and four algorithms for different climate and landscape scenarios. SDM were based on climate and landscape predictors separately and the results were combined into maps of species richness. Finally, we assessed the species’ risk of extinction based on the species–area relationship. Results Without considering the effects of climate change, the potential distribution area for each species increases on average by 72.5% (SD = 8%) in the scenario of potential regeneration. Climate change decreases the area of potential occurrence of 252 species, which may suffer a mean reduction of 74.4% (SD = 9.3%) in their current potential distribution areas. BAF regions with the largest amounts of forest had the greatest potential richness of species. In future climate scenario, 3.4% of species may become extinct, but we show that large‐scale regeneration may prevent these extinctions. Main conclusions Despite the possible negative impacts of climate change on the distribution of 67% of the studied species, which would increase the risk of species extinction, our analysis indicated that promoting large‐scale BAF restoration based on natural regeneration may prevent biodiversity loss.
... No entanto, o estímulo à regeneração natural como estratégia de restauração terá maior ou menor chance de aplicação e sucesso de acordo com o ecossistema em questão. No Brasil, os poucos estudos disponíveis foram em sua grande maioria conduzidos em ambientes florestais, como a Amazônia (Neeff et al., 2006), a Mata Atlântica (Rezende et al., 2015) e até florestas secas (Vieira e Scariot, 2006). Aliás, Overbeck et al. (2015) propuseram que muitas das práticas e políticas de sucesso em conservação e sustentabilidade no Brasil estão concentradas em florestas. ...
... By understanding these factors, it is possible to identify the regions which have the highest potential for regeneration and therefore require less human intervention in the restoration process. A modelling recently carried out in the municipality of Trajano de Moraes (RJ) identified an increase of 15.3% in forest cover over 36 years, solely due to natural regeneration, mainly associated with features of relief, soil types and distance of the source fragments (Rezende et al., 2015) (Figure 1). Recovery of the same area by direct planting would have cost the municipality approximately US$ 15 million, which could be used for the restoration of areas with low natural regeneration potential. ...
... Natural regeneration as a restoration strategy will have a greater or lesser chance of success depending on the ecosystem in question. In Brazil, the few studies available have mostly been carried out in forest environments such as the Amazon (Neeff et al., 2006), the Atlantic Rain Forest (Rezende et al., 2015) and even dry forests (Vieira and Scariot, 2006). Incidentally, Overbeck et al. (2015) pointed out that many of the practices and successful policies on conservation and sustainability in Brazil are focused on forests. ...
... In this way, the demand for water, energy and food in this biome is high. The intensive use of their land for agriculture, urbanization and industrialization has led to high rates of deforestation, which resulted in the loss of many ecological functions, especially those related to the supply of FWE (Joly, Metzger & Tabarelli, 2014;Rezende et al., 2015). ...
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Food, water, and energy (FWE) are interacting systems, crucial to not only human survival but also for the socio-economic development, particularly in urban areas, which import most of the natural resources to carry out their daily activities. Inadequate management of FWE systems that are affected by policy choices may lead to negative trade-offs. In this chapter, we evaluate the results of the research project IFWEN - “Understanding Innovative Initiatives for Governing Food, Water and Energy Nexus in Cities" (a global research project financed by FAPESP with support of the Belmont Forum and JPI Urban Europe). We focus on initiatives in Brazil and present in more details the case of urban agriculture in Florianópolis. We start with an analysis of the interactions between Green and Blue Infrastructure (GBI) and FWE systems and how the international literature has studied the benefits of GBI provided to the urban FWEN. Then, we examine the innovations in GBI in international literature focusing on Brazil, and present the case of Florianópolis, where Urban Agriculture (UA) was integrated into a city-wide system of composting organic waste. Finally, we conclude with reflections on how these initiatives have affected the FWEN and environmental policies in the city.
... In this way, the demand for water, energy and food in this biome is high. The intensive use of their land for agriculture, urbanization and industrialization has led to high rates of deforestation, which resulted in the loss of many ecological functions, especially those related to the supply of FWE (Joly, Metzger & Tabarelli, 2014;Rezende et al., 2015). ...
... In this way, the demand for water, energy and food in this biome is high. The intensive use of their land for agriculture, urbanization and industrialization has led to high rates of deforestation, which resulted in the loss of many ecological functions, especially those related to the supply of FWE (Joly, Metzger & Tabarelli, 2014;Rezende et al., 2015). ...
Book
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Understanding and managing the complex interaction between water, energy and food is considered to be one of the major challenges of the 21st century. As global projections indicate that the demand for these resources will increase significantly in the next decades under the pressure of population growth, urbanization, economic development, climate change, diversifying diets and lifestyles, cultural changes and technological transformation, developing sustainable solutions that guarantee resource security became paramount (Hoff, 2011). In this book, we aim to gather academic researchers that bring empirical and theoretical elements to critically reflect on how the concept of the nexus is being incorporated into research in Brazil, and whether and how the nexus is making any contribution to enhance knowledge in different scientific fields. Their contributions also shed light on what are the main societal problems in the Brazilian context that the nexus is helping to better understand and find possible sustainable solutions.
... In this way, the demand for water, energy and food in this biome is high. The intensive use of their land for agriculture, urbanization and industrialization has led to high rates of deforestation, which resulted in the loss of many ecological functions, especially those related to the supply of FWE (Joly, Metzger & Tabarelli, 2014;Rezende et al., 2015). ...
... The AF is an ideal region for studying the persistence of second-growth forests. Numerous reports of increases in forest cover in the AF at both continental , Nanni et al 2019, Schwartz et al 2020, regional (Crouzeilles et al 2020, Piffer et al 2021, Rosa et al 2021 and local scale studies (Rezende et al 2015, Bicudo da Silva et al 2017, Costa et al 2017, Molin et al 2017, mostly the result of natural forest regeneration (i.e. second growth), offer hope for the biome's conservation but also call for a better understanding of how long and under which conditions these new forests persist. ...
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... For many studies, remoteness has been considered a main driver of NF associated with farmland abandonment [19,30,33,114,115,117]. In our research, the main drivers were the distance to urban settlements, in general, and to provincial capitals, in particular. ...
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