PTD LIFE - Dynamic rotational grazing : environmental performance of grassland systems: Demonstration of an innovative technology

LIFE13 ENV/FR/001315

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Contact details:

Project Manager: Anne PORCHET
Tel: +33 6 09 33 98 52
Fax: +33 5 49 95 08 78
Email: aporchet@caveb.net

Project description:


Grassland ecosystems, including the soil and hedges, hold an important part of Europe’s biodiversity. They offer ideal conditions for a vast array of species and habitats and are especially important for birds and invertebrates, providing vital breeding grounds.

Grasslands are also the source of a wide range of public goods and services, ranging from meat and dairy products to recreational and tourism opportunities. In addition, they act as carbon sinks, and are therefore a vital asset in the effort to reduce levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

Except for very limited areas of special natural grassland types, most European grasslands are maintained through grazing or cutting. However, changes in agricultural practices and land-use pressures mean that grasslands are disappearing at an alarming rate and are nowadays among Europe’s most threatened ecosystems.


The PTD LIFE project aims to validate an innovative technology to improve the environmental performance of grassland systems and ensure their sustainability. Specifically, the project plans to develop and test an agro-environmental method called "dynamic rotational grazing" (DRG), and demonstrate its beneficial technological, ecological and economic impacts.

This new method will be based on the study of sustainable agro-environmental systems. It will be tested on the farms of 120 cattle breeders, in partnership with local actors and specialised providers. Specific actions to be implemented include the preservation of hedgerows, the improvement of good breeding practices, and the selection of the most appropriate grass species.

Scientific field measurements will be used to assess the effects of DRG practices on the environmental and economic sustainability of livestock farming. These will cover aerobic biodiversity in soils, fertiliser use, carbon capture, greenhouse gas emissions and farming profitability. The establishment of a network of producers will allow for the implementation of a dissemination policy at European level.

Expected results:

  • Implementation of DRG by 120 livestock breeders, improving the sustainability of their business in the face of climate change;
  • Increased environmental resilience on at least 50 of the 120 farms applying DRG;
  • Elimination of the use of nitrogen fertilisers, reducing nitrogen leakage on soils and nitrate contents into ground waters;
  • Improved aerobic diversity, contributing to humification and mineralisation in grassland soils;
  • Improved carbon capture in permanent grassland soils;
  • A 46% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from farming activities;
  • Reduced production costs for livestock farmers.



Environmental issues addressed:


Habitats - Grasslands
Industry-Production - Agriculture - Forestry
Land-use & Planning - Soil and landscape protection
Risk management - Pollutants reduction


fertiliser‚  agricultural method‚  environmental impact of agriculture‚  eutrophication‚  grassland ecosystem‚  biodiversity‚  pollution prevention

Natura 2000 sites

Not applicable



Coordinator CAVEB
Type of organisation SME Small and medium sized enterprise
Description CAVEB is an agricultural cooperative of 814 livestock producers - cattle, sheep and goat breeding - located in the French department of Deux Sèvres. The organisation’s main objective is to support sustainable rural development.
Partners FRCIVAM PC(Fédération Régionale des Centres d'Initiatives pour Valoriser l'Agriculture et le Milieu Rural du Poitou Charentes), France CIRAD(Centre de Coopération International en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement), France UMR6553UR1(CNRS EcoBio Rennes 1), France INRA(Institut National de Recherche Agronomique), France SMAEG(Syndicat Mixte d'Action pour l'Expansion de la Gâtine), France AGROBIO PC(AGROBIO Poitou Charentes), France


Project reference LIFE13 ENV/FR/001315
Duration 01-JUN-2014 to 01-JUN -2019
Total budget 2,729,751.00 €
EU contribution 1,364,875.00 €
Project location Île,de,France(France) Champagne-Ardennes(France) Picardie(France) Haute-Normandie(France) Centre(France) Basse-Normandie(France) Bourgogne(France) Nord-Pas-De-Calais(France) Lorraine(France) Alsace(France) Franche-Comté(France) Pays de la Loire(France) Bretagne(France) Poitou-Charentes(France) Aquitaine(France) Midi-Pyrénées(France) Limousin(France) Rhône-Alpes(France) Auvergne(France) Languedoc-Roussillon(France) Provence-Alpes-Côte d' Azur(France) Corse(France) Guadeloupe(France) Martinique(France) Guyane(France) Réunion(France)


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Project description   Environmental issues   Beneficiaries   Administrative data   Read more   Print   PDF version