Globalization, Migration, and Latin American Ecosystems

Investigador responsable: Mitchell Aide, Ricardo Grau
Fuente de Financiamiento: National Science Foundation


In Latin America, globalization and human migration are changing the distribution of agricultural lands and natural areas. By 2050 the population of Latin America is expected to increase to approximately 750 million. The combined effect of a growing population and increasing per capita food consumption are increasing the demand for food production. On the other hand, rural-urban migration has reduced the rural population in South America and the rural population of Central America and Caribbean are projected to begin declining in 2015. These processes are expected to have two major consequences for the ecosystems in Latin America:

  1. rural-urban migration should result in the abandonment of marginal agricultural and grazing lands in areas with steep slopes, poor soils, or very low rainfall, leading to ecological transition.
  2. food production will expand into flat lowland areas. These dynamics need to be better understood, and incorporated into conservation policy and strategy.

Contacto: Ricardo Grau   chilograu@gmail.com