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Sugarcane Expansion: Land Use Changes and Social Impacts in the São Paulo State, Brazil
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Energy Technology, Energy and Climate Studies, ECS.
2012 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

There is a strong concern about the environmental and social impacts ­­­of land use changes caused by sugarcane expansion. This research aims to assess the land use changes caused by sugarcane expansion in the State of São Paulo in the last five years, as well as predicting land use changes in the coming years. In addition, this research evaluates the social impacts of sugarcane expansion. The assessment of land use changes was made through GIS analysis. First, the changes during the last five years were evaluated. Based on this information, the land use changes for the coming years were estimated. The social impacts of sugarcane expansion were evaluated by studying the correlation between Human Development Index (HDI) and the sugarcane expansion. The results confirm that sugarcane crop expanded about 1.85 million hectares between 2003 and 2008. About 62% of this expansion replaced areas used for agricultural crop in 2003, and about 34% replaced areas used for pasture in 2003. Three scenarios were created in order to estimate sugarcane expansion in the coming years. In the first scenario, sugarcane would expand about 0.9 million hectares in three years; in the second scenario, 1.1 million hectares in four years; and in the third scenario, 1.4 million hectares in six years. In each scenario, about 70% of the expansion would take place in areas used for agricultural crops in 2003, and 40% in areas used for pasture in 2003. The sugarcane expansion caused a significant and positive impact on the income dimension of HDI for regions with a very low level of development. For regions of medium and high level of development, the HDI impact was not significant. In addition, a slightly negative impact on the longevity dimension of HDI was observed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 52 p.
EES Examensarbete / Master Thesis
Keyword [en]
Sugarcane expansion, LUC modeling, HDI, Social Impacts
National Category
Environmental Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-91115OAI: diva2:508268
Subject / course
Energy and Climate Studies
Educational program
Degree of Master
2009-12-16, Chalmers University, Energy and Environment, Gothenburg, Sweden, 19:52 (English)
Agriculture, Veterinary Medicine, Forestry
Available from: 2012-05-21 Created: 2012-03-07 Last updated: 2012-05-21Bibliographically approved

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