Eurasian Steppes. Ecological Problems and Livelihoods in a Changing World

  • Marinus J.A. Werger
  • Marja A. van Staalduinen

Part of the Plant and Vegetation book series (PAVE, volume 6)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvi
  2. Steppe Regions

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. E. I. Rachkovskaya, T. M. Bragina
      Pages 103-148
    3. Harald Kürschner, Gerald Parolly
      Pages 149-171
    4. Iryna Korotchenko, Mykyta Peregrym
      Pages 173-196
    5. Zs. Molnár, M. Biró, S. Bartha, G. Fekete
      Pages 209-252
    6. Daniela Dúbravková, Mária Hajnalová
      Pages 253-271
    7. Helios Sainz Ollero, Marja A. van Staalduinen
      Pages 273-286
  3. Degradation

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 287-287
    2. S. N. Bazha, P. D. Gunin, E. V. Danzhalova, Yu. I. Drobyshev, A. V. Prishcepa
      Pages 289-319
    3. Valery M. Neronov, Anna A. Lushchekina, Tatiana Yu. Karimova, Nadezhda Yu. Arylova
      Pages 335-356
    4. Piet Wit, Namkhai Bandi, Inge Bouman, Marja A. van Staalduinen
      Pages 357-368
  4. Climate Change

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 369-369
    2. Vadim E. Kirilyuk, Viktor A. Obyazov, Tatyana E. Tkachuk, Olga K. Kirilyuk
      Pages 397-424
    3. Irina B. Vorobyeva
      Pages 425-443
    4. Natsagdorj Sharkhuu, Anarmaa Sharkhuu
      Pages 445-472
  5. Livelihoods

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 473-473
    2. Xiaoyong Cui, Ke Guo, Yanbin Hao, Zuozhong Chen
      Pages 475-490
    3. S. V. Levykin, A. A. Chibilyov, G. V. Kazachkov
      Pages 491-505
    4. Stephan Baas, Savina Tessitore, Tessa Jelley
      Pages 507-546
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 561-565

About this book


Steppes form one of the largest biomes on earth. Ecological changes came slowly, and nomadic pastoralism long predominated in the steppes. As from the mid-18th century the rate of change increased, and drastic changes in steppe ecology, land use and livelihoods in the steppe came with the emergence, and again with the collapse, of communist states. Excessive ploughing and vast influx of people led to a strong decline in nomadic pastoralism in the Soviet Union and China and resulted in severely degraded steppe ecosystems. After the collapse of the Soviet Union huge tracts of ploughed land became fallow and steppe ecosystems regenerated. In Mongolia nomadic pastoralism persisted, but steppes degraded because of strong increases in livestock loads. Presently, new, restorative land management schemes are developed and applied. On top of all these changes in steppe land use come the effects of climate change, which are strong in the northern zone of the steppe region.

This book reviews the ecology of steppe ecosystems in the entire Eurasian area, discusses the effects of climatic changes and land use policies that are playing important roles in these steppes, and shows how the livelihoods of people in the steppe zone are affected. It provides, in English, an extensive and up-to-date overview of steppe status and steppe problems in all of Eurasia, based on the experience of many specialists, and it integrates extensive data sources that so far were only available in a spectrum of locally used languages.


Agriculture & pastoralism Changing livelihoods Climate change Ecology Steppes

Editors and affiliations

  • Marinus J.A. Werger
    • 1
  • Marja A. van Staalduinen
    • 2
  1. 1., Ecology & BiodiversityUtrecht UniversityUtrechtNetherlands
  2. 2., Ecology & BiodiversityUtrecht UniversityUtrechtNetherlands

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