The anthropocene in northwestern Argentina: use of the territory, new ecosystems, environmental services, global forcing and regional governance.

In northwestern Argentina, we will study the association of functioning of new ecosystems with
land-use change and territory cover, providing tools for territory planning and governance in a
context of global change.

1. We will update the patterns of expansion in agriculture and cattle ranching and changes
in the structure of the Chaco forest. These patterns will then be coupled with models of
species distribution and biomass. We will evaluate ecosystem services such as pollination
and plague control in soy plantations in relation to landscape configuration, and the
trends in agriculture sustainability in relation to hydrology. We will generate models of
territory optimization in a future scenario dependent on global forcings .
2. We will analyze the dynamics of forests and plant-animal interactions of the Yungas at
different altitudinal levels, in a context of decrease in intensity of agriculture and cattle
ranching, invasion of exotic species, climate change and changes in fire regime.
3. We will model the geographic patterns of biodiversity and carbon in vegetation,
wetlands, as well as High Andean and Puna agroecosystems. We will combine future-
scenario models with monitoring of permanent vegetation plots.
4. We will develop a system of environmental monitoring in cities and in the urban-rural
interphase, combining data acquisition with automated climate and contaminant sensors.
5. Socio-ecological and territorial changes in northwestern Argentina (NOA) in the context
of trends in demography and territory use and cover in Latin America. We will integrate
the results of objectives 1 through 4, and will generate spatio-temporal models of socio-
ecological units in the NOA region.
6. We will promote the co-desing of territorial research based on

(i) publicly accessible environmental databases;
ii) advanced courses to facilitate the analysis of those data applied to regional priorities;
(iii) workshops with decision-makers


Participants: All members of IER
Contact: H. Ricardo Grau.