WorldWideScience

Sample records for mediterranean-type ecosystems natural

  1. Cistus ladanifer (Cistaceae): a natural resource in Mediterranean-type ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frazão, David F; Raimundo, Joana R; Domingues, Joana L; Quintela-Sabarís, Celestino; Gonçalves, José C; Delgado, Fernanda

    2018-02-01

    Cistus ladanifer has a well-defined taxonomic identity. 2,2,6-trimethylcyclohexanone may be an authenticity and taxonomic marker. Its traits and applications make it a possible economic resource fitted for Mediterranean areas. Cistus ladanifer is a dominant shrub species endemic to the western Mediterranean region. Due to its dominant nature and its potential ecological, aromatic or pharmacological applications, C. ladanifer has been the object of numerous studies. In this review current knowledge on different aspects of this species is summarized, from its taxonomy to its chemical characterisation or its competitive traits. There are no doubts about the taxonomic entity of C. ladanifer, although the recognition of infraspecific taxa deserves more attention. Given that the fragrant exudate of C. ladanifer holds a very specific composition, one species specific carotenoid, 2,2,6-trimethylcyclohexanone, derivative is proposed as an authenticity marker for uses of C. ladanifer in pharmacological or aromatic industries. Evidence is also gathered on the extreme adaptation of C. ladanifer to stressful conditions in the Mediterranean region, such as the ability to survive in low hydric and high solar exposition conditions, presistence in poor and contaminated soils, and growth inhibition of several other plants through the release of allelochemicals. Thus, the finding of potential applications for this plant may contribute to enhance the economic dimension of derelict lands, such as mine tailings or poor agricultural Mediterranean areas.

  2. Mediterranean-type ecosystems: the influence of biodiversity on their functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, George W.; Richardson, David M.; Keeley, Jon E.; Hobbs, Richard J.; Mooney, H.A.; Cushman, J.H.; Medina, E.; Sala, O.E.; Schulze, E.-D.

    1996-01-01

    Ecosystems in the Mediterranean-climate regions of the world have served as a unit for comparative ecological studies for over two decades. The cohesiveness of research in this set of widely distributed regions rests on the similarity of the climates where they occur, and the identifiable convergence in elements of their vegetation structure (Di Castri and Mooney 1973). In this chapter we review functional aspects of what have come to be known as Mediterranean-type ecosystems (METs) in the context of a concerned global interest in the sustainability of the human environment and its dependence on biological diversity. The approach we adopt here is to look for evidence that this biodiversity, for which some MTEs are renowned (Cowling, 1992; Hobbs, 1992), has an influence on processes which are important both for the maintenance of natural systems, and for providing "ecosystem services" with human utility. Almost a century ago, Schimper (1903) recognized the biological similarities between five widely separated regions characterized by Mediterranean-type climates, and much comparative work has been done on that basis since. These regions comprise the Mediterranean basin itself, a major portion of California, central Chile, the southwestern and southern extremities of South Africa, and parts of southwestern and southern Australia (Figure 7.1). The first attention paid to MTEs in terms of quantitative ecological research arose out of the International Biological Programme (IBP) of the 1960s and 1970s. Those efforts focused on comparisons between the Chilean and Californian systems (Mooney 1977), and dealt with parallel models of ecosystem processes, especially water flux (Fuentes et al 1995). Because of the already perceived similarities between vegetation in these and the other three regions, the project was soon extended to include all five regions. The first broad comparative overview was published as an anthology which considered the origins and the convergent

  3. Heterogeneity of soil surface ammonium concentration and other characteristics, related to plant specific variability in a Mediterranean-type ecosystem

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cruz, Cristina; Bio, Ana M.F.; Jullioti, Aldo; Tavares, Alice; Dias, Teresa; Martins-Loucao, Maria Amelia

    2008-01-01

    Heterogeneity and dynamics of eight soil surface characteristics essential for plants-ammonium and nitrate concentrations, water content, temperature, pH, organic matter, nitrification and ammonification rates-were studied in a Mediterranean-type ecosystem on four occasions over a year. Soil properties varied seasonally and were influenced by plant species. Nitrate and ammonium were present in the soil at similar concentrations throughout the year. The positive correlation between them at the time of greatest plant development indicates that ammonium is a readily available nitrogen source in Mediterranean-type ecosystems. The results presented here suggest that plant cover significantly affects soil surface characteristics. - In Mediterranean-type ecosystems ammonium is present in the soil throughout the year and its concentration is dependent on plant cover

  4. Final Technical Report: Response of Mediterranean-Type Ecosystems to Elevated Atmospheric CO2 and Associated Climate Change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oechel, Walter C

    2002-08-15

    This research incorporated an integrated hierarchical approach in space, time, and levels of biological/ecological organization to help understand and predict ecosystem response to elevated CO{sub 2} and concomitant environmental change. The research utilized a number of different approaches, and collaboration of both PER and non-PER investigators to arrive at a comprehensive, integrative understanding. Central to the work were the CO{sub 2}-controlled, ambient Lit, Temperature controlled (CO{sub 2}LT) null-balance chambers originally developed in the arctic tundra, which were re-engineered for the chaparral with treatment CO{sub 2} concentrations of from 250 to 750 ppm CO{sub 2} in 100 ppm increments, replicated twice to allow for a regression analysis. Each chamber was 2 meters on a side and 2 meters tall, which were installed over an individual shrub reprouting after a fire. This manipulation allowed study of the response of native chaparral to varying levels of CO{sub 2}, while regenerating from an experimental burn. Results from these highly-controlled manipulations were compared against Free Air CO{sub 2} Enrichment (FACE) manipulations, in an area adjacent to the CO{sub 2}LT null balance greenhouses. These relatively short-term results (5-7 years) were compared to long-term results from Mediterranean-type ecosystems (MTEs) surrounding natural CO{sub 2} springs in northern Italy, near Laiatico, Italy. The springs lack the controlled experimental rigor of our CO{sub 2}LT and FACE manipulation, but provide invaluable validation of our long-term predictions.

  5. Nitrogen deposition effects on Mediterranean-type ecosystems: An ecological assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    R. Ochoa-Hueso; E.B. Allen; C. Branquinho; C. Cruz; T. Dias; Mark Fenn; E. Manrique; M.E. Pérez-Corona; L.J. Sheppard; W.D. Stock

    2011-01-01

    We review the ecological consequences of N deposition on the five Mediterranean regions of the world. Seasonality of precipitation and fires regulate the N cycle in these water-limited ecosystems, where dry N deposition dominates. Nitrogen accumulation in soils and on plant surfaces results in peaks of availability with the first winter rains. Decoupling between N...

  6. The shrubland as soil and water conservation agent in mediterranean-type ecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cerda, A.; Gimenez-Morera, A.; Jordan, A.; Pereira, P.; Novara, A.; Keesstra, S.D.; Mataix Solera, J.; Ruiz-Sinoga, J.A.

    2015-01-01

    John Thornes found that shrubland was a key factor in the control of soil erosion on Mediterranean hillsides. His research inspired many scientists to investigate the impact of shrubland changes and management in semi-arid ecosystems. An example of Professor Thornes’ scientific influence is the

  7. Nitrogen deposition effects on Mediterranean-type ecosystems: An ecological assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ochoa-Hueso, Raul, E-mail: raul.ochoa@ccma.csic.es [Department of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Centro de Ciencias Medioambientales, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas, C/Serrano 115 Dpdo., 28006 Madrid (Spain); Allen, Edith B. [Department of Botany and Plant Sciences and Center for Conservation Biology, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States); Branquinho, Cristina; Cruz, Cristina; Dias, Teresa [Universidade de Lisboa, Faculdade de Ciencias, Centro de Biologia Ambiental, Campo Grande, Bloco C4, 1749-016 Lisboa (Portugal); Fenn, Mark E. [US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station, 4955 Canyon Crest Drive, Riverside, CA 92507 (United States); Manrique, Esteban [Department of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Centro de Ciencias Medioambientales, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas, C/Serrano 115 Dpdo., 28006 Madrid (Spain); Perez-Corona, M. Esther [Department of Ecology, Faculty of Biology, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, C/Jose Antonio Novais 2, 28040 Madrid (Spain); Sheppard, Lucy J. [Centre of Ecology and Hydrology, Bush Estate, Penicuik EH26 0QB (United Kingdom); Stock, William D. [Centre for Ecosystem Management, School of Natural Sciences, Edith Cowan University, 100 Joondalup Drive, Joondalup, Perth, WA 6027 (Australia)

    2011-10-15

    We review the ecological consequences of N deposition on the five Mediterranean regions of the world. Seasonality of precipitation and fires regulate the N cycle in these water-limited ecosystems, where dry N deposition dominates. Nitrogen accumulation in soils and on plant surfaces results in peaks of availability with the first winter rains. Decoupling between N flushes and plant demand promotes losses via leaching and gas emissions. Differences in P availability may control the response to N inputs and susceptibility to exotic plant invasion. Invasive grasses accumulate as fuel during the dry season, altering fire regimes. California and the Mediterranean Basin are the most threatened by N deposition; however, there is limited evidence for N deposition impacts outside of California. Consequently, more research is needed to determine critical loads for each region and vegetation type based on the most sensitive elements, such as changes in lichen species composition and N cycling. - Highlights: > N deposition impacts are understudied in Mediterranean ecosystems out of California. > Dry N deposition is dominant and N flushes are common after rainless periods. > Water availability and P fertility regulate ecosystem responses to N deposition. > Research is needed to determine critical loads for each region and vegetation type. - Nitrogen deposition threatens the Mediterranean regions of the world.

  8. Nitrogen deposition effects on Mediterranean-type ecosystems: An ecological assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ochoa-Hueso, Raul; Allen, Edith B.; Branquinho, Cristina; Cruz, Cristina; Dias, Teresa; Fenn, Mark E.; Manrique, Esteban; Perez-Corona, M. Esther; Sheppard, Lucy J.; Stock, William D.

    2011-01-01

    We review the ecological consequences of N deposition on the five Mediterranean regions of the world. Seasonality of precipitation and fires regulate the N cycle in these water-limited ecosystems, where dry N deposition dominates. Nitrogen accumulation in soils and on plant surfaces results in peaks of availability with the first winter rains. Decoupling between N flushes and plant demand promotes losses via leaching and gas emissions. Differences in P availability may control the response to N inputs and susceptibility to exotic plant invasion. Invasive grasses accumulate as fuel during the dry season, altering fire regimes. California and the Mediterranean Basin are the most threatened by N deposition; however, there is limited evidence for N deposition impacts outside of California. Consequently, more research is needed to determine critical loads for each region and vegetation type based on the most sensitive elements, such as changes in lichen species composition and N cycling. - Highlights: → N deposition impacts are understudied in Mediterranean ecosystems out of California. → Dry N deposition is dominant and N flushes are common after rainless periods. → Water availability and P fertility regulate ecosystem responses to N deposition. → Research is needed to determine critical loads for each region and vegetation type. - Nitrogen deposition threatens the Mediterranean regions of the world.

  9. Soil erosion and degradation in Mediterranean Type Ecosystems. The Soil Erosion and Degradation Research Group (SEDER) approach and findings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerdà, Artemi; Keesstra, Saskia; Pulido, Manuel; Jordán, Antonio; Novara, Agata; Giménez-Morera, Antonio; Borja, Manuel Esteban Lucas; Francisco Martínez-Murillo, Juan; Rodrigo-Comino, Jesús; Pereira, Paulo; Nadal-Romero, Estela; Taguas, Tani; Úbeda, Xavier; Brevik, Eric C.; Tarolli, Paolo; Bagarello, Vicenzo; Parras Alcantara, Luis; Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Oliva, Marc; di Prima, Simone

    2017-04-01

    .1016/j.earscirev.2014.07.005 Bodí, M. B., Martin, D. A., Balfour, V. N., Santín, C., Doerr, S. H., Pereira, P., . . . Mataix-Solera, J. (2014). Wildland fire ash: Production, composition and eco-hydro-geomorphic effects. Earth-Science Reviews, 130, 103-127. doi:10.1016/j.earscirev.2013.12.007 Cerdà, A., González-Pelayo, O., Giménez-Morera, A., Jordán, A., Pereira, P., Novara, A., . . . Ritsema, C. J. (2016). Use of barley straw residues to avoid high erosion and runoff rates on persimmon plantations in eastern spain under low frequency-high magnitude simulated rainfall events. Soil Research, 54(2), 154-165. doi:10.1071/SR15092 Cerdà, A., Lavee, H., Romero-Díaz, A., Hooke, J., & Montanarella, L. (2010). Preface: Soil erosion and degradation in mediterranean type ecosystems. Land Degradation and Development, 21(2), 71-74. doi:10.1002/ldr.968 Dlapa, P., Bodí, M. B., Mataix-Solera, J., Cerdà, A., & Doerr, S. H. (2015). Organic matter and wettability characteristics of wildfire ash from mediterranean conifer forests. Catena, 135, 369-376. doi:10.1016/j.catena.2014.06.018 Keesstra, S., Pereira, P., Novara, A., Brevik, E. C., Azorin-Molina, C., Parras-Alcántara, L., . . . Cerdà, A. (2016). Effects of soil management techniques on soil water erosion in apricot orchards. Science of the Total Environment, 551-552, 357-366. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.01.182 Lucas-Borja, M. E., Hedo, J., Cerdá, A., Candel-Pérez, D., & Viñegla, B. (2016). Unravelling the importance of forest age stand and forest structure driving microbiological soil properties, enzymatic activities and soil nutrients content in mediterranean spanish black pine(pinus nigra ar. ssp. salzmannii) forest. Science of the Total Environment, 562, 145-154. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.03.160 Novara, A., Cerdà, A., Carmelo, D., Giuseppe, L. P., Antonino, S., & Luciano, G. (2015). Effectiveness of carbon isotopic signature for estimating soil erosion and deposition rates in sicilian vineyards. Soil and

  10. Modeling the eco-hydrologic response of a Mediterranean type ecosystem to the combined impacts of projected climate change and altered fire frequencies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tague, Christina; Seaby, Lauren Paige; Hope, Allen

    2009-01-01

    Global Climate Models (GCMs) project moderate warming along with increases in atmospheric CO2 for California Mediterranean type ecosystems (MTEs). In water-limited ecosystems, vegetation acts as an important control on streamflow and responds to soil moisture availability. Fires are also key...... disturbances in semiarid environments, and few studies have explored the potential interactions among changes in climate, vegetation dynamics, hydrology, elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations and fire. We model ecosystem productivity, evapotranspiration, and summer streamflow under a range of temperature...... climate scenarios, biomass in chaparral-dominated systems is likely to increase, leading to reductions in summer streamflow. However, within the range of GCM predictions, there are some scenarios in which vegetation may decrease, leading to higher summer streamflows. Changes due to increases in fire...

  11. Estimation and diversity of phylloplane mycobiota on selected plants in a Mediterranean-type ecosystem in Portugal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inácio, J; Pereira, P; de Carvalho, M; Fonseca, A; Amaral-Collaço, M T; Spencer-Martins, I

    2002-11-01

    Mediterranean ecosystems have not been consistently investigated as natural habitats for microbes in general, and fungi in particular. Here we present the results of a survey of epiphytic mycobiota (filamentous fungi and yeasts) on the phylloplane of selected plants in the Arrábida Natural Park, an ecosystem of Mediterranean characteristics in Portugal, using conventional culture-dependent isolation methods. Leaves from the species Acer monspessulanum and Quercus faginea (deciduous trees) and Cistus albidus, Pistacia lentiscus, and Osyris quadripartita (evergreen shrubs) were collected twice a year for two consecutive years, at two distinct locations of Serra da Arrábida: the more humid northern slope and the drier southern slope. A total of 1029 strains of filamentous fungi and 540 strains of yeasts were isolated, which represented at least 36 and 46 distinct species, respectively. Total counts were higher on the plants from the northern slope and there was a general increase from spring to autumn, notably on the deciduous trees for the yeasts. Plant species that had higher numbers of leaf colonists (A. monspessulanum, C. albidus, and Q. faginea) also yielded a wider range of species. Among the filamentous fungi there was a predominance of species of ascomycetous affinity, whereas basidiomycetous species dominated among yeast isolates. Some of the taxa recovered were common to other phylloplane studies (e.g., ubiquitous molds and yeasts such as Cladosporium spp. and Cryptococcus spp., respectively), but less common species were also found, some of which appeared to represent undescribed taxa. Interestingly, a few species seemed to be associated with a particular plant, notably in the case of the evergreen shrub C. albidus. However, for a considerable number of fungi and yeasts the same taxon was recovered throughout the year from more than one plant and at both sites, suggesting that such species might be genuine phylloplane inhabitants (or at least of aerial

  12. Plant hydraulic responses to long-term dry season nitrogen deposition alter drought tolerance in a Mediterranean-type ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pivovaroff, Alexandria L; Santiago, Louis S; Vourlitis, George L; Grantz, David A; Allen, Michael F

    2016-07-01

    Anthropogenic nitrogen (N) deposition represents a significant N input for many terrestrial ecosystems. N deposition can affect plants on scales ranging from photosynthesis to community composition, yet few studies have investigated how changes in N availability affect plant water relations. We tested the effects of N addition on plant water relations, hydraulic traits, functional traits, gas exchange, and leaf chemistry in a semi-arid ecosystem in Southern California using long-term experimental plots fertilized with N for over a decade. The dominant species were Artemisia california and Salvia mellifera at Santa Margarita Ecological Reserve and Adenostoma fasciculatum and Ceanothus greggii at Sky Oaks Field Station. All species, except Ceanothus, showed increased leaf N concentration, decreased foliar carbon to N ratio, and increased foliar N isotopic composition with fertilization, indicating that added N was taken up by study species, yet each species had a differing physiological response to long-term N addition. Dry season predawn water potentials were less negative with N addition for all species except Adenostoma, but there were no differences in midday water potentials, or wet season water potentials. Artemisia was particularly responsive, as N addition increased stem hydraulic conductivity, stomatal conductance, and leaf carbon isotopic composition, and decreased wood density. The alteration of water relations and drought resistance parameters with N addition in Artemisia, as well as Adenostoma, Ceanothus, and Salvia, indicate that N deposition can affect the ability of native Southern California shrubs to respond to drought.

  13. Defining Ecosystem Assets for Natural Capital Accounting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hein, Lars; Bagstad, Ken; Edens, Bram; Obst, Carl; de Jong, Rixt; Lesschen, Jan Peter

    2016-01-01

    In natural capital accounting, ecosystems are assets that provide ecosystem services to people. Assets can be measured using both physical and monetary units. In the international System of Environmental-Economic Accounting, ecosystem assets are generally valued on the basis of the net present value of the expected flow of ecosystem services. In this paper we argue that several additional conceptualisations of ecosystem assets are needed to understand ecosystems as assets, in support of ecosystem assessments, ecosystem accounting and ecosystem management. In particular, we define ecosystems' capacity and capability to supply ecosystem services, as well as the potential supply of ecosystem services. Capacity relates to sustainable use levels of multiple ecosystem services, capability involves prioritising the use of one ecosystem service over a basket of services, and potential supply considers the ability of ecosystems to generate services regardless of demand for these services. We ground our definitions in the ecosystem services and accounting literature, and illustrate and compare the concepts of flow, capacity, capability, and potential supply with a range of conceptual and real-world examples drawn from case studies in Europe and North America. Our paper contributes to the development of measurement frameworks for natural capital to support environmental accounting and other assessment frameworks.

  14. Defining ecosystem assets for natural capital accounting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hein, Lars; Bagstad, Kenneth J.; Edens, Bram; Obst, Carl; de Jong, Rixt; Lesschen, Jan Peter

    2016-01-01

    In natural capital accounting, ecosystems are assets that provide ecosystem services to people. Assets can be measured using both physical and monetary units. In the international System of Environmental-Economic Accounting, ecosystem assets are generally valued on the basis of the net present value of the expected flow of ecosystem services. In this paper we argue that several additional conceptualisations of ecosystem assets are needed to understand ecosystems as assets, in support of ecosystem assessments, ecosystem accounting and ecosystem management. In particular, we define ecosystems’ capacity and capability to supply ecosystem services, as well as the potential supply of ecosystem services. Capacity relates to sustainable use levels of multiple ecosystem services, capability involves prioritising the use of one ecosystem service over a basket of services, and potential supply considers the ability of ecosystems to generate services regardless of demand for these services. We ground our definitions in the ecosystem services and accounting literature, and illustrate and compare the concepts of flow, capacity, capability, and potential supply with a range of conceptual and real-world examples drawn from case studies in Europe and North America. Our paper contributes to the development of measurement frameworks for natural capital to support environmental accounting and other assessment frameworks.

  15. Defining Ecosystem Assets for Natural Capital Accounting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hein, Lars; Bagstad, Ken; Edens, Bram; Obst, Carl; de Jong, Rixt; Lesschen, Jan Peter

    2016-01-01

    In natural capital accounting, ecosystems are assets that provide ecosystem services to people. Assets can be measured using both physical and monetary units. In the international System of Environmental-Economic Accounting, ecosystem assets are generally valued on the basis of the net present value of the expected flow of ecosystem services. In this paper we argue that several additional conceptualisations of ecosystem assets are needed to understand ecosystems as assets, in support of ecosystem assessments, ecosystem accounting and ecosystem management. In particular, we define ecosystems’ capacity and capability to supply ecosystem services, as well as the potential supply of ecosystem services. Capacity relates to sustainable use levels of multiple ecosystem services, capability involves prioritising the use of one ecosystem service over a basket of services, and potential supply considers the ability of ecosystems to generate services regardless of demand for these services. We ground our definitions in the ecosystem services and accounting literature, and illustrate and compare the concepts of flow, capacity, capability, and potential supply with a range of conceptual and real-world examples drawn from case studies in Europe and North America. Our paper contributes to the development of measurement frameworks for natural capital to support environmental accounting and other assessment frameworks. PMID:27828969

  16. Defining ecosystem assets for natural capital accounting

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hein, Lars; Bagstad, Ken; Edens, Bram; Obst, Carl; Jong, de Rixt; Lesschen, Jan Peter

    2016-01-01

    In natural capital accounting, ecosystems are assets that provide ecosystem services to people. Assets can be measured using both physical and monetary units. In the international System of Environmental-Economic Accounting, ecosystem assets are generally valued on the basis of the net present

  17. The use of straw to reduce the soil and water losses in agriculture and forest ecosystems in the Mediterranean Type-Ecosystem. The Soil Erosion and Degradation Research Group contribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerda, Artemi; Burguet, Maria; Keesstra, Saskia; Borja, Manuel Esteban Lucas; Hedo, Javier; Brevik, Eric; Pereira, Paulo; Novara, Agata; Jordan, Antonio; Prosdocimi, Massimo; Taguas, Encarnacion

    2016-04-01

    using paired plots under natural and simulated rainfall at the Soil Erosion Stations of Montesa, El Teularet and Celler del Roure. Rainfall simulation experiments with very small (0.25 m2), small (1 m2) and medium (20 m2) plots were carried out in scrublands and recently fire-affected land, and on vineyards and orchards. The plots under natural rainfall conditions ranged from 1 to 300 m2. The results show a positive influence of the straw mulch to reduce the soil and water losses, although is more efficient to control the sediment delivery due to the reduction of the raindrop impact. Reduction in one order of magnitude is usual after the immediate application of the straw on vineyards (Prosdocimi et al., 2016) and apricots (Keesstra et al., under review) and in persimmon plantations (Cerdà et al., in press). The above-mentioned results show the positive effect of the straw mulch found by other researchers with other types of mulches such as rock fragments (Cerdà, 2001; Jordán et al., 2009; Jordan and Martínez-Zavala, 2008; Martínez-Zavala and Jordán, 2008, Zavala et al., 2010). There is a need to develop new and advanced research on the effects of the straw cover and other mulches such as litter on the recently forest fire affected soils, and pruned chipped branches and other organic amendments on agriculture land (Yazdanpanah et al., 2016). This new reseach challenge should give information about the soil and water losses, but also about the organic matter recovery, the soil water retention, and the biological, chemical and physical soil properties changes. . Acknowledgements The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n° 603498 (RECARE project). References Berendse, F., van Ruijven, J., Jongejans, E., Keesstra, S. 2015. Loss of plant species diversity reduces soil erosion resistance. Ecosystems, 18 (5), 881-888. DOI: 10.1007/s10021-015-9869-6 Biswas H

  18. Global climate change and California's natural ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Botkin, D.B.; Nisbet, R.A.; Woodhouse, C.; Ferren, W.; Bicknell, S.; Bentley, B.

    1991-01-01

    If projections of global climate models are correct, the natural ecosystems of California might undergo major changes during the next century. Such changes might include large economic losses in timber, fisheries, and recreation; major changes in our national and state parks and forests and in our nature preserves and conservation areas; increase in extinction of endangered species; loss of large areas of existing habitats; and development of new habitats whose location and areal extent can only be surmised. Many areas currently set aside for the conservation of specific ecosystems might no longer be suitable to them. Yet, in spite of the potential seriousness of these problems, which could dwarf all other environmental changes, California is at present in a poor situation to project what the effects of global change on its natural ecosystems might be

  19. Ecosystem Services: Benefits Supplied to Human Societies by Natural Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    The module provides a link to an article that is part of a series of articles in Issues in Ecology. This article discusses the many services an ecosystem provides in order to sustain and fulfill human needs.

  20. Our natural capital: Ecosystem service delivery

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Dziba, L

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available new technologies in Earth observation that target relevant ecosystem attributes for monitoring ecosystem service changes, tools for spatial development planning in multifunctional landscapes such as ecological infrastructure mapping for disaster...

  1. Remote sensing the vulnerability of vegetation in natural terrestrial ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alistair M. S. Smith; Crystal A. Kolden; Wade T. Tinkham; Alan F. Talhelm; John D. Marshall; Andrew T. Hudak; Luigi Boschetti; Michael J. Falkowski; Jonathan A. Greenberg; John W. Anderson; Andrew Kliskey; Lilian Alessa; Robert F. Keefe; James R. Gosz

    2014-01-01

    Climate change is altering the species composition, structure, and function of vegetation in natural terrestrial ecosystems. These changes can also impact the essential ecosystem goods and services derived from these ecosystems. Following disturbances, remote-sensing datasets have been used to monitor the disturbance and describe antecedent conditions as a means of...

  2. Carbon sequestration and natural longleaf pine ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ram Thapa; Dean Gjerstad; John Kush; Bruce Zutter

    2010-01-01

    The Southeastern United States was once dominated by a longleaf pine ecosystem which ranged from Virginia to Texas and covered approximately 22 to 36 million ha. The unique fire tolerant species provided the necessary habitat for numerous plant and animal species. Different seasons of prescribed fire have various results on the ecosystem and the carbon which is stored...

  3. Carbon sequestration and natural longleaf pine ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ralph S. Meldahl; John S. Kush

    2006-01-01

    A fire-maintained longleaf pine (Pinus palustris Mill.) ecosystem may offer the best option for carbon (C) sequestration among the southern pines. Longleaf is the longest living of the southern pines, and products from longleaf pine will sequester C longer than most since they are likely to be solid wood products such as structural lumber and poles....

  4. Ecosystem service markets 101: supply and demand for nature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhonda Mazza; Jeff Kline; Trista Patterson

    2012-01-01

    Establishing markets for ecosystem services—the benefits that nature provides, such as clean air, water, and wildlife habitat—has gained traction in some circles as a way to finance the conservation of these public goods. Market influences on supply and demand work in tandem to encourage ecosystem protection. Jeff Kline and Trista Patterson, scientists with the...

  5. Mainstreaming Natural Capital into Decisions: Integrated Valuation of Ecosystem Services

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arnas Palaima

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of the article is to review current paradigms in ecosystem services valuation, existing gaps and current trends in addressing those gaps. Natural capital, often defined as the stock of natural ecosystems that yields a flow of valuable ecosystem goods or services into the future, is often undervalued or not valued at all by governments, business and society, which leads to environmental degradation and loss of biodiversity. One of the major reasons of such undervaluation is the lack of practical, realistic quantitative methods/models that would establish ecosystem services value and its change due to human development. A promising, recently developed ecosystem services modeling system is InVEST: “Integrated Valuation of Ecosystem Services and Trade-Offs.” InVEST is a set of Geographic Information Systems (GIS models that predict the provision and value of ecosystem services and habitat provision given land use/land cover maps and related biophysical, economic, and institutional data for the study region. InVEST, if further developed and applied in a systematic way, could facilitate mainstreaming the natural capital into decisions at all levels and provide a strong foundation for local natural resources managers to improve and optimize their environmental management strategies.

  6. Topographically mediated controls on aboveground biomass across a mediterranean-type landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahlin, K.; Asner, G. P.; Field, C. B.

    2009-12-01

    Aboveground biomass accumulation is a useful metric for evaluating habitat restoration and ecosystem services projects, in addition to being a robust measure of carbon sequestration. However, at the landscape scale non-anthropogenic controls on biomass accumulation are poorly understood. In this study we combined field measurements, high resolution data from the NASA JPL Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS), and the Carnegie Airborne Observatory (CAO) airborne light detection and ranging (lidar) system to create a comprehensive map of aboveground biomass across a patchy mediterranean-type landscape (Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve, Stanford, CA). Candidate explanatory variables (e.g. slope, elevation, incident solar radiation) were developed using a geologic map and a digital elevation model derived from the lidar data. Finally, candidate variables were tested, and a model was produced to predict aboveground biomass from environmental data. Though many of the explanatory variables have only indirect effects on plant growth, the model permits inferences to be made about the relative importance of light, water, temperature, and edaphic characteristics on carbon accumulation in mediterranean-type systems.

  7. Quantitative criteria for estimation of natural and artificial ecosystems functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pechurkin, N. S.

    Using biotic turnover of substances in trophic chains, natural and artificial ecosystems are similar in functioning, but different in structure. It is necessary to have quantitative criteria to evaluate the efficiency of artificial ecosystems (AES). These criteria are dependent on the specific objectives for which the AES are designed. For example, if AES is considered for use in space, important criteria are efficiency in use of mass, power, volume (size) and human labor and reliability. Another task involves the determination of quantitative criteria for the functioning of natural ecosystems. To solve the problem, it is fruitful to use a hierarchical approach suitable for both individual links and the ecosystem as a whole. Energy flux criteria (principles) were developed to estimate the functional activities of biosystems at the population, community and ecosystem levels. A major feature of ecosystems as a whole is their biotic turnover of matter the rate of which is restricted by the lack of limiting substances. Obviously, the most generalized criterion is to take into account the energy flux used by the biosystem and the quantity of limiting substance included in its turnover. The use of energy flux by ecosystem, EUSED - is determined from the photoassimilation of CO 2 by plants (per time unit). It can be approximately estimated as the net primary production of photosynthesis (NPP). So, the ratio of CO 2 photoassimilation rate (sometimes, measured as NPP) to the total mass of limiting substrate can serve as a main universal criterion (MUC). This MUC characterizes the specific cycling rate of limiting chemical elements in the system and effectiveness of every ecosystem including the global Biosphere. Comparative analysis and elaboration of quantitative criteria for estimation of natural and artificial ecosystems activities is of high importance both for theoretical considerations and for real applications.

  8. Is the Chilean Diet a Mediterranean-type Diet?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JAIME ROZOWSKI

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Food intake in Chile has changed markedly in the last decades, showing an increase in fat consumption and presently a small fruit and vegetables intake. A parallel is made between the Chilean and Mediterranean diet (mainly the one from Spain, Italy, and Greece, both currently and from 50 years ago. The main differences and similarities are based on food availability. Although Chilean diet seems to be approaching the traditional Mediterranean diet of the 60's, there is concern about changes that are moving away from Chilean traditional diet and towards a western one. A new food pyramid for Chile is proposed based on the traditional Mediterranean-type diet

  9. Predicting richness effects on ecosystem function in natural communities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dangles, Olivier; Crespo-Pérez, Verónica; Andino, Patricio

    2011-01-01

    revealed that richness and identity effects on decomposition rates were lost with increasing shredder community complexity. Our approach of combining experimental and empirical data with modeling in species-poor ecosystems may serve as an impetus for new B-EF studies. If theory can explain B-EF in low....... Despite the increased complexity of experimental and theoretical studies on the biodiversity-ecosystem functioning (B-EF) relationship, a major challenge is to demonstrate whether the observed importance of biodiversity in controlled experimental systems also persists in nature. Due...... to their structural simplicity and their low levels of human impacts, extreme species-poor ecosystems may provide new insights into B-EF relationships in natural systems. We address this issue using shredder invertebrate communities and organic matter decomposition rates in 24 high-altitude (3200-3900 m) Neotropical...

  10. The importance of bees in natural and agricultural ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul Rhoades

    2013-01-01

    As the world’s most important group of pollinators, bees are a crucial part of agricultural production and natural ecosystem function. Bees and the pollination they provide are relevant to the nursery industry because of their role in the performance of seed increase plots as well as the importance of pollination in supporting persistent plant communities in restored...

  11. Microbial ecology and nematode control in natural ecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Costa, S.R.; Van der Putten, W.H.; Kerry, B.R.

    2011-01-01

    Plant-parasitic nematodes have traditionally been studied in agricultural systems, where they can be pests of importance on a wide range of crops. Nevertheless, nematode ecology in natural ecosystems is receiving increasing interest because of the role of nematodes in soil food webs, nutrient

  12. Natural resilience: healthy ecosystems as climate shock insurance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Phillips, Joanna [Royal Society for the Protection of the Birds (United Kingdom); Heath, Melanie [Birdlife International (United Kingdom); Reid, Hannah

    2009-12-15

    Resilience to climate change has many roots. A healthy, biodiverse environment is increasingly recognised as key to resilience, particularly in poor communities directly dependent on natural resources. Knowledge about ways of coping with climate variability is also essential - and for many of the poor who live in climate-vulnerable regions, already an area of expertise. A look at the National Adaptation Programmes of Action of the Least Developed Countries shows that many of these nations recognize and prioritise the role that biodiversity, ecosystems and natural habitats play in adaptation. It is now up to policymakers to follow suit.

  13. Carbon fluxes in a young, naturally regenerating jack pine ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Euskirchen, EugéNie S.; Pregitzer, Kurt S.; Chen, Jiquan

    2006-01-01

    Within the FLUXNET network of tower stations for performing long-term measurements of CO2 exchange between forest ecosystems and the atmosphere, most research has focused on mature forests that are strong carbon sinks. Nevertheless, it is just as valuable to quantify fluxes from recently disturbed forests so that we can recognize and predict the impact of disturbance on carbon fluxes. We measured carbon fluxes and microclimatic variables within a naturally regenerating, young (12-14 years of age) jack pine ecosystem in northern Michigan. During the months June to October of 2001-2003, this ecosystem exhibited a low net uptake of approximately 17.8-18.3 g C m-2 5 months-1. Soil respiration was independently measured and then modeled on the basis of soil temperature and soil moisture. Model estimates of soil respiration were 627, 583, and 681 g C m-2 5 months-1 from June to October in 2001, 2002, and 2003, respectively. Net ecosystem exchange (NEE) and soil respiration were inversely correlated in midsummer (r = -0.6, p = 0.001) during the period of lowest NEE (greatest uptake) and highest soil respiration rates. In the spring, NEE and soil respiration were positively correlated (r = 0.4, p = 0.01). During the fall, when soil temperatures remained fairly steady and air temperatures fluctuated, this coefficient between NEE and soil respiration declined to an average -0.25 (p = 0.2). Our results indicate that 12-14 years following disturbance this ecosystem displays a small net uptake during the June to October months but respiratory losses during the snow season (mid-October to April) could possibly counterbalance this carbon gain.

  14. Biological factors of natural and artificial ecosystems stable (unstable) functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pechurkin, Nikolai S.

    The problem of sustainable development of humanity on Earth and the problem of supporting human life in space have the same scientific and methodological bases. The key to solve both problems is a long term maintenance of balanced material cycle. As a whole, natural or artificial ecosystems are to be more closed than open, but their elements (links of systems) are to be substantially open in interactions with each other. Prolonged stable interactions of different links have to have unique joint results - closed material cycling or biotic turnover. It is necessary to include, at least, three types of main links into any system to support real material cycling: producers, consumers, reducers. Producer links are now under studies in many laboratories. It is evident that the higher productivity of link, the lower link stability. Especially, it concerns with parasite impact to plants. As usual, artificial ecosystems are more simple (incomplete) than natural ecosystems, sometimes, they have not enough links for prolonged stable functioning. For example, life support system for space flight can be incomplete in consumer link, having only some crew persons, instead of interacting populations of consumers. As for reducer link, it is necessary to "organize" a special coordinated work of microbial biocenoses to fulfill proper cycling. Possible evolution of links, their self development is a matter of special attention for the maintenance of prolonged stable functioning. It's the most danger for systems with populations of quickly reproducing, so-called, R - strategists, according to symbols of logistic equation. From another side, quick reproduction of R - strategists is able to increase artificial ecosystems and their links functioning. After some damages of system, R - strategist's link can be quickly "self repaired" up to level of normal functioning. Some experimental data of this kind and mathematical models are to be discussed in the paper. This work is supported by

  15. Ecological issues related to N deposition to natural ecosystems: research needs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mary Beth Adams

    2003-01-01

    There has and continues to be concern about the effects of elevated nitrogen (N) deposition on natural ecosystems. In this paper, research on natural ecosystems, including wetlands, heathlands, grasslands, steppe, naturally regenerated forests and deserts, is evaluated to determine what is known about nitrogen cycling in these ecosystems, the effects of elevated...

  16. NATURAL ATTENUATION FOR ECOSYSTEM RESTORATION IN NY/NJ HARBOR

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Van der Lelie, D.; Reid-Green, J. D.; Stern, E. A.

    2003-12-31

    We have investigated the feasibility of using natural attenuation methods for ecosystem restoration in New York/New Jersey Harbor. Measurements were made of the most probable number of sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) in native sediments and in samples, which had been supplemented with an appropriate electron donor and electron acceptor. The results showed that the activity of the endogenous microbial population in the native sediment was high enough to make possible adequate chemical transformation rates. The bioavailability of the zinc in the sediments was measured using the BIOMET biosensor technique. The bioavailability of the zinc was effectively eliminated following the microbial activities. We concluded that natural attenuation could be used effectively in treating sediments from Newark Bay and surrounding waters and that the resultant materials could likely be used in environmental restoration projects of the type proposed for construction in South Kearny, NJ.

  17. Isotopic identification of nitrogen hotspots across natural terrestrial ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Bai

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Nitrogen (N influences local biological processes, ecosystem productivity, the composition of the atmospheric-climate system, and the human endeavour as a whole. Here we use natural variations in N isotopes, coupled with two models, to trace global pathways of N loss from the land to the water and atmosphere. We show that denitrification accounts for approximately 35 % of total N losses from the natural soil, with NO, N2O, and N2 fluxes equal to 15.7 ± 4.7 Tg N yr−1, 10.2 ± 3.0 Tg N yr−1, and 21.0 ± 6.1 Tg N yr−1, respectively. Our analysis points to tropical regions as the major "hotspot" of nitrogen export from the terrestrial biosphere, accounting for 71 % of global N losses from the natural land surface. The poorly studied Congo Basin is further identified as one of the major natural sources of atmospheric N2O. Extra-tropical areas, by contrast, lose a greater fraction of N via leaching pathways (~77 % of total N losses than do tropical biomes, likely contributing to N limitations of CO2 uptake at higher latitudes. Our results provide an independent constraint on global models of the N cycle among different regions of the unfertilized biosphere.

  18. Environmental effects of radionuclides - observations on natural ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Copplestone, D.; Toal, M.E.; Johnson, M.S.; Jackson, D.; Jones, S.R.

    2000-01-01

    To better quantify risk to non-human species from exposure to environmental radioactivity, understanding of the behaviour of radionuclides in the biosphere needs to be increased. This study outlines current thinking on ecological risk assessment (ERA) methodology and applies the indicator species or critical groups approach to biota inhabiting a semi-natural coniferous woodland contaminated with the radionuclides 137 Cs, 238 Pu, 239+240 Pu and 241 Am. The majority of these radionuclides originate from routine aerial emissions from the nuclear fuel reprocessing plant at BNFL, Sellafield, Cumbria, UK. Radionuclide activity concentrations have been determined in biota from the woodland and estimates of absorbed dose rates (mGy d -1 ) have been calculated using the dosimetric models outlined. Dose rates to the key indicator species, Oniscus asellus, Carabus violaceous and Apodemus sylvaticus (detritivorous invertebrate, predatory invertebrate and the granivorous wood mouse) have been determined at 3.0x10 -3 mGy d -1 , 2.2x10 -3 mGy d -1 and 1.0x10 -3 mGy d -1 respectively. The values are at least three orders of magnitude lower than the 1 mGy d -1 level below which no observable effects on populations in a terrestrial ecosystem are thought to occur. Limitations of this approach are discussed. (author)

  19. Environmental effects of radionuclides--observations on natural ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Copplestone, D; Toal, M E; Johnson, M S; Jackson, D; Jones, S R

    2000-03-01

    To better quantify risk to non-human species from exposure to environmental radioactivity, understanding of the behaviour of radionuclides in the biosphere needs to be increased. This study outlines current thinking on ecological risk assessment (ERA) methodology and applies the indicator species or critical groups approach to biota inhabiting a semi-natural coniferous woodland contaminated with the radionuclides 137Cs, 238Pu, 239+240Pu and 241Am. The majority of these radionuclides originate from routine aerial emissions from the nuclear fuel reprocessing plant at BNFL, Sellafield, Cumbria, UK. Radionuclide activity concentrations have been determined in biota from the woodland and estimates of absorbed dose rates (mGy d(-1)) have been calculated using the dosimetric models outlined. Dose rates to the key indicator species, Oniscus asellus, Carabus violaceous and Apodemus sylvaticus (detritivorous invertebrate, predatory invertebrate and the granivorous wood mouse) have been determined at 3.0 x 10(-3) mGy d(-1), 2.2 x 10(-3) mGy d(-1) and 1.0 x 10(-3) mGy d(-1) respectively. The values are at least three orders of magnitude lower than the 1 mGy d(-1) level below which no observable effects on populations in a terrestrial ecosystem are thought to occur. Limitations of this approach are discussed.

  20. Environmental effects of radionuclides - observations on natural ecosystems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Copplestone, D. [Industrial Ecology Research Centre, School of Biological Sciences, University of Liverpool, Liverpool L69 3BX (United Kingdom). E-mail: copplest at liv.ac.uk; Toal, M.E.; Johnson, M.S. [Industrial Ecology Research Centre, School of Biological Sciences, University of Liverpool, Liverpool L69 3BX (United Kingdom); Jackson, D.; Jones, S.R. [Westlakes Scientific Consulting, Princess Royal Building, Westlakes Science and Technology Park, Moor Row, Cumbria CA24 3LN (United Kingdom)

    2000-03-01

    To better quantify risk to non-human species from exposure to environmental radioactivity, understanding of the behaviour of radionuclides in the biosphere needs to be increased. This study outlines current thinking on ecological risk assessment (ERA) methodology and applies the indicator species or critical groups approach to biota inhabiting a semi-natural coniferous woodland contaminated with the radionuclides {sup 137}Cs, {sup 238}Pu, {sup 239+240}Pu and {sup 241}Am. The majority of these radionuclides originate from routine aerial emissions from the nuclear fuel reprocessing plant at BNFL, Sellafield, Cumbria, UK. Radionuclide activity concentrations have been determined in biota from the woodland and estimates of absorbed dose rates (mGy d{sup -1}) have been calculated using the dosimetric models outlined. Dose rates to the key indicator species, Oniscus asellus, Carabus violaceous and Apodemus sylvaticus (detritivorous invertebrate, predatory invertebrate and the granivorous wood mouse) have been determined at 3.0x10{sup -3} mGy d{sup -1}, 2.2x10{sup -3} mGy d{sup -1} and 1.0x10{sup -3} mGy d{sup -1} respectively. The values are at least three orders of magnitude lower than the 1 mGy d{sup -1} level below which no observable effects on populations in a terrestrial ecosystem are thought to occur. Limitations of this approach are discussed. (author)

  1. Consumers control diversity and functioning of a natural marine ecosystem.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew H Altieri

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Our understanding of the functional consequences of changes in biodiversity has been hampered by several limitations of previous work, including limited attention to trophic interactions, a focus on species richness rather than evenness, and the use of artificially assembled communities. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In this study, we manipulated the density of an herbivorous snail in natural tide pools and allowed seaweed communities to assemble in an ecologically relevant and non-random manner. Seaweed species evenness and biomass-specific primary productivity (mg O(2 h(-1 g(-1 were higher in tide pools with snails because snails preferentially consumed an otherwise dominant seaweed species that can reduce biomass-specific productivity rates of algal assemblages. Although snails reduced overall seaweed biomass in tide pools, they did not affect gross primary productivity at the scale of tide pools (mg O(2 h(-1 pool(-1 or mg O(2 h(-1 m(-2 because of the enhanced biomass-specific productivity associated with grazer-mediated increases in algal evenness. SIGNIFICANCE: Our results suggest that increased attention to trophic interactions, diversity measures other than richness, and particularly the effects of consumers on evenness and primary productivity, will improve our understanding of the relationship between diversity and ecosystem functioning and allow more effective links between experimental results and real-world changes in biodiversity.

  2. Natural and human impacts on ecosystem services in Guanzhong - Tianshui economic region of China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jing; Zhou, Z X

    2016-04-01

    Due to the accelerated growth of society, the gaps between the capacity of ecosystems to provide services and human needs are steadily widening. Natural, semi-natural, or managed ecosystems had been able to provide ecosystem services to meet the needs of social development. Four agricultural ecosystem services (net primary production (NPP), carbon sequestration and oxygen production (CSOP), water interception, soil conservation and agriculture production) were quantified in Guanzhong-Tianshui economic region. Estimates of ecosystem services were obtained from the analysis of satellite imagery and the use of well-known models. Based on the ecological services in Guanzhong-Tianshui economic region, this study mainly analysed the driving mechanism of the changes from the two aspects of natural drivers and human drivers. Natural drivers (climate, soil, elevation, land cover) had incentive to the ecological services. Human activity was quantified by an integrated human activity index (HAI) based on population density, farmland ratio, and the influence of road networks and residential areas. We found relationships between ecosystem services, human activities and many natural factors, however these varied according to the service studied. Human activities were mostly negatively related to each ecosystem services, while population and residential land ware positively related to agricultural production. Land use change had made a contribution to ecosystem services. Based on the selected ecosystem services and HAI, we provided sustainable ecosystem management suggestions.

  3. Fire-mediated disruptive selection can explain the reseeder-resprouter dichotomy in Mediterranean-type vegetation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altwegg, Res; De Klerk, Helen M; Midgley, Guy F

    2015-02-01

    Crown fire is a key selective pressure in Mediterranean-type plant communities. Adaptive responses to fire regimes involve trade-offs between investment for persistence (fire survival and resprouting) and reproduction (fire mortality, fast growth to reproductive maturity, and reseeding) as investments that enhance adult survival lower growth and reproductive rates. Southern hemisphere Mediterranean-type ecosystems are dominated by species with either endogenous regeneration from adult resprouting or fire-triggered seedling recruitment. Specifically, on nutrient-poor soils, these are either resprouting or reseeding life histories, with few intermediate forms, despite the fact that the transition between strategies is evolutionarily labile. How did this strong dichotomy evolve? We address this question by developing a stochastic demographic model to assess determinants of relative fitness of reseeders, resprouters and hypothetical intermediate forms. The model was parameterised using published demographic data from South African protea species and run over various relevant fire regime parameters facets. At intermediate fire return intervals, trade-offs between investment in growth versus fire resilience can cause fitness to peak at either of the extremes of the reseeder-resprouter continuum, especially when assuming realistic non-linear shapes for these trade-offs. Under these circumstances, the fitness landscape exhibits a saddle which could lead to disruptive selection. The fitness gradient between the peaks was shallow, which may explain why this life-history trait is phylogenetically labile. Resprouters had maximum fitness at shorter fire-return intervals than reseeders. The model suggests that a strong dichotomy in fire survival strategy depends on a non-linear trade-off between growth and fire persistence traits.

  4. Coastal Plain Soil Fertility Degradation And Natural Forest Ecosystem Regeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casagrande, J. C.; Sato, C. A.; Reis-Duarte, R. M.; Soares, M. R.; Galvão Bueno, M. S.

    2009-04-01

    The sand coastal plain vegetation (Restinga Forest) has been described as an ecosystem associated with the Atlantic Forest, constituted of mosaics, which occur in areas of great ecological diversity, particularly the features of the soil which mostly influence the forest, therefore assigned as edaphic community. The Restinga forest is one of the most fragile, showing low resilience to human damage This work was carried out in several points (14) of Restinga Forest (six low - trees from 3 to 10 m high - and eight high forest - trees from 10 to 15 m high) in the litoral coast of the state of São Paulo. Each sample was made of 15 subsamples of each area collected in each depth (one in 0 - 5, 5 - 10, 10 - 15, 15 - 20, and another in 0 - 20, 20 - 40, 40 and 60 cm). Soil characteristics analyzed were pH, P, Na, K, Ca, Mg, S, H + Al, Al, B, Cu, Fe, Mn, Zn contents and base saturation, cation exchange capacity and aluminum saturation. The vegetation physiognomies of Restinga forest (low and high) were associated with soil results and with the history of human occupation. The soils are sandy (2 to 4% of clay), resulting in a low capacity of nutrient retention. Soil fertility analysis to low and high Restinga forest were similar and showed very low contents of phosphorous, calcium and magnesium in all areas investigated. The base saturation was low due to low amounts of Na, K, Ca and Mg. Base saturation presents low level in all cases, less than 10, indicating low nutritional reserve in the soil. The aluminum saturation values varied from 58 to 69%. The level of calcium and magnesium were low in the subsurface soil layer mainly, associate with high aluminum saturation, representing an limiting factor for the root system development in depth. If soil fertility parameters do not show any significant difference between low and high Restinga physiognomy, what make distinction is the recuperation time. In the areas of high Forest can be note a too long time of recuperation

  5. Protected Areas legislation and the conservation of the Colombian Orinoco Basin natural ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Aldana

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Colombia has shown a strong commitment to the achievement of the CBD´s biodiversity target, by promoting the conservation of at least 10% of its natural ecosystems. Protected Area categories in Colombia are undergoing a standardization process that should enhance the country´s capacity to protect its natural ecosystems. In this study we use a spatial analysis to examine how the legislation and the civil society´s initiatives help in the conservation of natural ecosystems in the Colombian Orinoco Basin. We found that differentiation in use restriction legislation limits the conservation potential of some Protected Area categories. The only fully Protected Areas in Colombia are the Natural National Parks System Areas, which protect only 10% of the area of natural ecosystems and less than 50% of the natural ecosystems in the Colombian Orinoco Basin. Indigenous Reserves help significantly in the conservation of the natural ecosystems in the Colombian Orinoco Basin, but are not a Protected Area category, making it difficult for indigenous groups to aid in the accomplishment of conservation goals in Colombia.A small percentage of ecosystems of the Colombian Orinoco Basin fall outside of any Protected Area or Indigenous Reserve and urgent actions may be needed to protect them. Future similar studies should use current and updated information on Protected Areas and take into account changes in land cover, for a better understanding of the role of different categories of Protected Areas in the achievement of conservation objectives in Colombia.

  6. Effects of Climate and Ecosystem Disturbances on Biogeochemical Cycling in a Semi-Natural Terrestrial Ecosystem

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beier, Claus; Schmidt, Inger Kappel; Kristensen, Hanne Lakkenborg

    2004-01-01

    The effects of increased temperature and potential ecosystem disturbances on biogeochemical cycling were investigated by manipulation of temperature in a mixed Calluna/grass heathland in Denmark. A reflective curtain covered the vegetation during the night to reduce the heat loss of IR radiation from the ecosystem to the atmosphere. This 'night time warming' was done for 3 years and warmed the air and soil by 1.1 deg. C. Warming was combined with ecosystem disturbances, including infestation by Calluna heather beetles (Lochmaea suturalis Thompson) causing complete defoliation of Calluna leaves during the summer 2000, and subsequent harvesting of all aboveground biomass during the autumn. Small increases in mineralisation rates were induced by warming and resulted in increased leaching of nitrogen from the organic soil layer. The increased nitrogen leaching from the organic soil layer was re-immobilised in the mineral soil layer as warming stimulated plant growth and thereby increased nitrogen immobilisation. Contradictory to the generally moderate effects of warming, the heather beetle infestation had very strong effects on mineralisation rates and the plant community. The grasses completely out-competed the Calluna plants which had not re-established two years after the infestation, probably due to combined effects of increased nutrient availability and the defoliation of Calluna. On the short term, ecosystem disturbances may have very strong effects on internal ecosystem processes and plant community structure compared to the more long-term effects of climate change

  7. Soil respiration in different agricultural and natural ecosystems in an arid region.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liming Lai

    Full Text Available The variation of different ecosystems on the terrestrial carbon balance is predicted to be large. We investigated a typical arid region with widespread saline/alkaline soils, and evaluated soil respiration of different agricultural and natural ecosystems. Soil respiration for five ecosystems together with soil temperature, soil moisture, soil pH, soil electric conductivity and soil organic carbon content were investigated in the field. Comparing with the natural ecosystems, the mean seasonal soil respiration rates of the agricultural ecosystems were 96%-386% higher and agricultural ecosystems exhibited lower CO(2 absorption by the saline/alkaline soil. Soil temperature and moisture together explained 48%, 86%, 84%, 54% and 54% of the seasonal variations of soil respiration in the five ecosystems, respectively. There was a significant negative relationship between soil respiration and soil electrical conductivity, but a weak correlation between soil respiration and soil pH or soil organic carbon content. Our results showed that soil CO(2 emissions were significantly different among different agricultural and natural ecosystems, although we caution that this was an observational, not manipulative, study. Temperature at the soil surface and electric conductivity were the main driving factors of soil respiration across the five ecosystems. Care should be taken when converting native vegetation into cropland from the point of view of greenhouse gas emissions.

  8. Abundances of 13C and 15N in natural ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ogawa, Nanako; Kohzu, Ayato; Wada, Eitaro; Koba, Keisuke.

    1997-01-01

    Recent progress in studies on the stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen was reviewed as follows. Isotope effect: Delta value; Isotope exchange equilibrium; for this, the exchange between atmospheric CO 2 and ocean water HCO 3 - was described; Kinetic isotope effect, the steady state model in photosynthesis was described; Branched reaction, branched reaction in metabolism causes the change in isotope distribution. Isotope distribution in the ecosystem, the biological system which is an important component consisting of terrestrial systems. Characteristics of the isotope distribution useful for analysis of ecosystem and examples for such analytical studies were described. Special distribution: Primary producer; Food chain; Lake ecosystem; Isotope effect in terrestrial ecosystems. Chronological distribution: Analyses of environmental changes in the long term; Ecology of the near-past. Change of abundance in the degradation systems. Studies on the change particularly occurring in the soil were described: Change of abundance in degradation of organic materials; Yielded carbon dioxide and inorganic nitrogen; Greenhouse effect-gas generated from the degradation systems. (K.H.). 87 refs

  9. Net nitrogen mineralization in natural ecosystems across the conterminous US

    Science.gov (United States)

    LeeAnna Y. Chapman; Steven G. McNulty; Ge Sun; Yang Zhang

    2013-01-01

    Nitrogen is the primary nutrient limiting ecosystem productivity over most of the US. Although soil nitrogen content is important, knowledge about its spatial extent at the continental scale is limited. The objective of this study was to estimate net nitrogen mineralization for the conterminous US (CONUS) using an empirical modeling approach by scaling up site level...

  10. How natural capital delivers ecosystem services: A typology derived from a systematic review

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Smith, Andrew C

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available attributes and 11 abiotic factors) affect the delivery of 13 ecosystem services. We develop a simple typology based on the observation that five main attribute groups influence the capacity of natural capital to provide ecosystem services, related to: A...

  11. Natural communities of the central Appalachian red spruce ecosystem and their conservation significance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elizabeth A. Byers

    2010-01-01

    Natural communities within the red spruce ecosystem of the central Appalachians are characterized by exceptionally high biodiversity and conservation value. This ecosystem stretches in a southwest - northeast trending band for 250 km along the high elevations of the Allegheny Mountains, from Greenbrier County, WV to Garrett County, MD.

  12. Contrasting biogeographic and diversification patterns in two Mediterranean-type ecosystems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sven Buerki

    Full Text Available The five Mediterranean regions of the world comprise almost 50,000 plant species (ca 20% of the known vascular plants despite accounting for less than 5% of the world's land surface. The ecology and evolutionary history of two of these regions, the Cape Floristic Region and the Mediterranean Basin, have been extensively investigated, but there have been few studies aimed at understanding the historical relationships between them. Here, we examine the biogeographic and diversification processes that shaped the evolution of plant diversity in the Cape and the Mediterranean Basin using a large plastid data set for the geophyte family Hyacinthaceae (comprising ca. 25% of the total diversity of the group, a group found mainly throughout Africa and Eurasia. Hyacinthaceae is a predominant group in the Cape and the Mediterranean Basin both in terms of number of species and their morphological and ecological variability. Using state-of-the-art methods in biogeography and diversification, we found that the Old World members of the family originated in sub-Saharan Africa at the Paleocene-Eocene boundary and that the two Mediterranean regions both have high diversification rates, but contrasting biogeographic histories. While the Cape diversity has been greatly influenced by its relationship with sub-Saharan Africa throughout the history of the family, the Mediterranean Basin had no connection with the latter after the onset of the Mediterranean climate in the region and the aridification of the Sahara. The Mediterranean Basin subsequently contributed significantly to the diversity of neighbouring areas, especially Northern Europe and the Middle East, whereas the Cape can be seen as a biogeographical cul-de-sac, with only a few dispersals toward sub-Saharan Africa. The understanding of the evolutionary history of these two important repositories of biodiversity would benefit from the application of the framework developed here to other groups of plants present in the two regions.

  13. Natural enemies govern ecosystem resilience in the face of extreme droughts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Qiang; Silliman, Brian R; Liu, Zezheng; Cui, Baoshan

    2017-02-01

    Severe droughts are on the rise in many regions. But thus far, attempts to predict when drought will cause a major regime shift or when ecosystems are resilient, often using plant drought tolerance models, have been frustrated. Here, we show that pressure from natural enemies regulates an ecosystem's resilience to severe droughts. Field experiments revealed that in protected salt marshes experiencing a severe drought, plant-eating grazers eliminated drought-stressed vegetation that could otherwise survive and recover from the climate extreme, transforming once lush marshes into persistent salt barrens. These results provide an explicit experimental demonstration for the obligatory role of natural enemies across the initiation, expansion and recovery stages of a natural ecosystem's collapse. Our study highlights that natural enemies can hasten an ecosystem's resilience to drought to much lower levels than currently predicted, calling for integration into climate change predictions and conservation strategies. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  14. law, the laws of nature and ecosystem energy services

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Office 2004 Test Drive User

    See UNEP TEEB Mainstreaming the Economics of Nature 34. TEEB is hosted by the. United Nations Environment Programme and supported by the European Commission, the. German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, the UK government's Department for the Environment, ...

  15. Natural capital and ecosystem services informing decisions: From promise to practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerry, Anne D.; Polasky, Stephen; Lubchenco, Jane; Chaplin-Kramer, Rebecca; Daily, Gretchen C.; Griffin, Robert; Ruckelshaus, Mary; Bateman, Ian J.; Duraiappah, Anantha; Elmqvist, Thomas; Feldman, Marcus W.; Folke, Carl; Hoekstra, Jon; Kareiva, Peter M.; Keeler, Bonnie L.; Li, Shuzhuo; McKenzie, Emily; Ouyang, Zhiyun; Reyers, Belinda; Ricketts, Taylor H.; Rockström, Johan; Tallis, Heather; Vira, Bhaskar

    2015-01-01

    The central challenge of the 21st century is to develop economic, social, and governance systems capable of ending poverty and achieving sustainable levels of population and consumption while securing the life-support systems underpinning current and future human well-being. Essential to meeting this challenge is the incorporation of natural capital and the ecosystem services it provides into decision-making. We explore progress and crucial gaps at this frontier, reflecting upon the 10 y since the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. We focus on three key dimensions of progress and ongoing challenges: raising awareness of the interdependence of ecosystems and human well-being, advancing the fundamental interdisciplinary science of ecosystem services, and implementing this science in decisions to restore natural capital and use it sustainably. Awareness of human dependence on nature is at an all-time high, the science of ecosystem services is rapidly advancing, and talk of natural capital is now common from governments to corporate boardrooms. However, successful implementation is still in early stages. We explore why ecosystem service information has yet to fundamentally change decision-making and suggest a path forward that emphasizes: (i) developing solid evidence linking decisions to impacts on natural capital and ecosystem services, and then to human well-being; (ii) working closely with leaders in government, business, and civil society to develop the knowledge, tools, and practices necessary to integrate natural capital and ecosystem services into everyday decision-making; and (iii) reforming institutions to change policy and practices to better align private short-term goals with societal long-term goals. PMID:26082539

  16. Natural capital and ecosystem services informing decisions: From promise to practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerry, Anne D; Polasky, Stephen; Lubchenco, Jane; Chaplin-Kramer, Rebecca; Daily, Gretchen C; Griffin, Robert; Ruckelshaus, Mary; Bateman, Ian J; Duraiappah, Anantha; Elmqvist, Thomas; Feldman, Marcus W; Folke, Carl; Hoekstra, Jon; Kareiva, Peter M; Keeler, Bonnie L; Li, Shuzhuo; McKenzie, Emily; Ouyang, Zhiyun; Reyers, Belinda; Ricketts, Taylor H; Rockström, Johan; Tallis, Heather; Vira, Bhaskar

    2015-06-16

    The central challenge of the 21st century is to develop economic, social, and governance systems capable of ending poverty and achieving sustainable levels of population and consumption while securing the life-support systems underpinning current and future human well-being. Essential to meeting this challenge is the incorporation of natural capital and the ecosystem services it provides into decision-making. We explore progress and crucial gaps at this frontier, reflecting upon the 10 y since the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. We focus on three key dimensions of progress and ongoing challenges: raising awareness of the interdependence of ecosystems and human well-being, advancing the fundamental interdisciplinary science of ecosystem services, and implementing this science in decisions to restore natural capital and use it sustainably. Awareness of human dependence on nature is at an all-time high, the science of ecosystem services is rapidly advancing, and talk of natural capital is now common from governments to corporate boardrooms. However, successful implementation is still in early stages. We explore why ecosystem service information has yet to fundamentally change decision-making and suggest a path forward that emphasizes: (i) developing solid evidence linking decisions to impacts on natural capital and ecosystem services, and then to human well-being; (ii) working closely with leaders in government, business, and civil society to develop the knowledge, tools, and practices necessary to integrate natural capital and ecosystem services into everyday decision-making; and (iii) reforming institutions to change policy and practices to better align private short-term goals with societal long-term goals.

  17. Global Trends in Exposure to Light Pollution in Natural Terrestrial Ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan Bennie

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The rapid growth in electric light usage across the globe has led to increasing presence of artificial light in natural and semi-natural ecosystems at night. This occurs both due to direct illumination and skyglow - scattered light in the atmosphere. There is increasing concern about the effects of artificial light on biological processes, biodiversity and the functioning of ecosystems. We combine intercalibrated Defense Meteorological Satellite Program’s Operational Linescan System (DMSP/OLS images of stable night-time lights for the period 1992 to 2012 with a remotely sensed landcover product (GLC2000 to assess recent changes in exposure to artificial light at night in 43 global ecosystem types. We find that Mediterranean-climate ecosystems have experienced the greatest increases in exposure, followed by temperate ecosystems. Boreal, Arctic and montane systems experienced the lowest increases. In tropical and subtropical regions, the greatest increases are in mangroves and subtropical needleleaf and mixed forests, and in arid regions increases are mainly in forest and agricultural areas. The global ecosystems experiencing the greatest increase in exposure to artificial light are already localized and fragmented, and often of particular conservation importance due to high levels of diversity, endemism and rarity. Night time remote sensing can play a key role in identifying the extent to which natural ecosystems are exposed to light pollution.

  18. Nature as capital: Advancing and incorporating ecosystem services in United States federal policies and programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaefer, Mark; Goldman, Erica; Bartuska, Ann M; Sutton-Grier, Ariana; Lubchenco, Jane

    2015-06-16

    The concept of nature as capital is gaining visibility in policies and practices in both the public and private sectors. This change is due to an improved ability to assess and value ecosystem services, as well as to a growing recognition of the potential of an ecosystem services approach to make tradeoffs in decision making more transparent, inform efficient use of resources, enhance resilience and sustainability, and avoid unintended negative consequences of policy actions. Globally, governments, financial institutions, and corporations have begun to incorporate natural capital accounting in their policies and practices. In the United States, universities, nongovernmental organizations, and federal agencies are actively collaborating to develop and apply ecosystem services concepts to further national environmental and economic objectives. Numerous federal agencies have begun incorporating these concepts into land use planning, water resources management, and preparations for, and responses to, climate change. Going forward, well-defined policy direction will be necessary to institutionalize ecosystem services approaches in federal agencies, as well as to guide intersector and interdisciplinary collaborative research and development efforts. In addition, a new generation of decision support tools are needed to further the practical application of ecosystem services principles in policymaking and commercial activities. Improved performance metrics are needed, as are mechanisms to monitor the status of ecosystem services and assess the environmental and economic impacts of policies and programs. A greater national and international financial commitment to advancing ecosystem services and natural capital accounting would likely have broad, long-term economic and environmental benefits.

  19. Value Assessment of Ecosystem Services in Nature Reserves in Ningxia, China: A Response to Ecological Restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yan; Gao, Jixi; Wang, Jinsheng; Qiu, Jie

    2014-01-01

    Changes in land use can cause significant changes in the ecosystem structure and process variation of ecosystem services. This study presents a detailed spatial, quantitative assessment of the variation in the value of ecosystem services based on land use change in national nature reserves of the Ningxia autonomous region in China. We used areas of land use types calculated from the remote sensing data and the adjusted value coefficients to assess the value of ecosystem services for the years 2000, 2005, and 2010, analyzing the fluctuations in the valuation of ecosystem services in response to land use change. With increases in the areas of forest land and water bodies, the value of ecosystem services increased from 182.3×107 to 223.8×107 US$ during 2000–2010. Grassland and forest land accounted for 90% of this increase. The values of all ecosystem services increased during this period, especially the value of ecosystem services for biodiversity protection and soil formation and protection. Ecological restoration in the reserves had a positive effect on the value of ecosystem services during 2000–2010. PMID:24586571

  20. Nature vs. Nurture: the Making of the Montado Ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paulo Miguel Pereira

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available The southern Iberian Peninsula is dominated by a savannah-like ecosystem, the montado, which is a typically Mediterranean cultural adaptation to generally poor productive areas. Montados are exploited for three main uses: forestry, agriculture, and extensive grazing, in proportions that vary according to local conditions (more or less productive land and historical circumstances. Because these ecosystems occur over a large geographic area (they occupy some 6 million ha, biodiversity would be expected to vary among montados. However, differences in management practices may also influence species distribution. In this paper, we investigate differences in plant and bird species diversity among 60 montados distributed all across southern Portugal. The environmental variables studied included geographical coordinates, climatological data, soil type, and altitude. We also investigated agro-economic variables that could describe human activities at each site: animal husbandry (breeds, stock density, grazing rotation, etc., agriculture (fallow rotation frequency, use of fertilizers, etc., and forestry (cork harvesting, thinning, etc.. Finally, land-use type and metrics were assessed from rectified aerial photographs. Species richness among these two groups was not correlated, sites with high or low numbers of plant species not necessarily having high or low numbers of bird species. However, both plant and bird communities exhibited a similar pattern of species composition and turnover. This pattern was ecologically based, rather than a result of biological similarities between groups: direct gradient analyses and variance partitioning revealed strong correlations between species distribution and spatial gradients, namely longitude and latitude. In trying to distinguish anthropogenic from biophysical processes, we found that both were equally important as drivers of montado biodiversity. Plants and birds exhibited a similar ecological pattern, although

  1. Natural areas as a basis for assessing ecosystem vulnerability to climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margaret H. Massie; Todd M. Wilson; Anita T. Morzillo; Emilie B. Henderson

    2016-01-01

    There are more than 580 natural areas in Oregon and Washington managed by 20 federal, state, local, and private agencies and organizations. This natural areas network is unparalleled in its representation of the diverse ecosystems found in the Pacific Northwest, and could prove useful for monitoring long-term ecological responses to climate change. Our objectives were...

  2. Opportunities and challenges for private sector entrepreneurship and investment in biodiversity, ecosystem services and nature conservation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lambooy, T.E.; Levashova, Y.

    2011-01-01

    Private companies and investors can profit from the enhancement of nature in general and from specific investments allocated to improve biodiversity and ecosystem services (BES). The question is: What is the incentive, from a private sector point of view, to invest in nature, and what are the

  3. Incorporating effects of natural disturbances in managed ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    John T. Rotenberry; Robert J. Cooper; Joseph M. Wunderle; Kimberley G. Smith

    1993-01-01

    We briefly review the effects of climate (particularly drought and hurricanes), insect outbreaks, and fire on populations of migrant birds. An important feature of all of these natural disturbances is that they occur over a variety of spatial and temporal scales, thus precluding any simple generalization of their effects or of methods for mitigating those effects. We...

  4. Conditions of natural regeneration of Norway spruce ecosystems in the Krkonose Mountains

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Cudlín, Pavel; Goldbold, L D.; Bonifacio, E.; Egli, S.; Fritz, W H.; Gonthier, P.; Chmelíková, Ewa; Kowalik, P.; Martinotti, M G.; Moravec, Ivo; Nicolotti, G.; Varese, C.; Peter, M.; Zanini, E.

    2003-01-01

    Roč. 22, Suppl. 1 (2003), s. 66-79 ISSN 1335-342X. [Long Term Air Pollution Effect on Forest Ecosystems (International Meeting for Specialists in Air Pollution Effects on Forest Ecosystems)/20./. Zvolen, 30.08.2002-01.09.2002] R&D Projects: GA MŠk OK 355 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6087904 Keywords : forest decline * acid precipitation * natural regeneration Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.100, year: 2003

  5. Toda relationship with nature as an indication of ecosystem health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarun Chhabra

    2007-01-01

    A relationship with nature begins at birth when the neonate is a silent participant at the elaborate rites. A number of specified plant species are used during this ceremony and a highlight is the holding of an ‘umbrella’ of Mahonia leschenaultiana over the mother and the newborn—to protect them from the destructive influence of a star called keihhtt. In fact, the baby...

  6. Natural and anthropogenic hydrocarbons in the White sea ecosystem

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nemirovskaya, I.; Shevchenko, V.; Bogunov, A.

    2006-01-01

    An investigation of aliphatic hydrocarbons (AHC) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) concentrations in the White Sea was presented. The study was conducted to determine natural and anthropogenic hydrocarbon (HC) concentrations in order to aid in future zoning plans. Hydrocarbons were extracted from samples of aerosols, ice, water, particulate matter, phyto- and zooplankton, and bottom sediments. Results of the study suggested that HC concentrations in aerosols above the White Sea were lower than in marine aerosols above the southeastern Atlantic and lower than Alkane concentrations in aerosols in the Mediterranean Sea. A study of PAH behaviour in Northern Dvina estuaries showed that the submicron fractions contained light polyarenes. Particulate matter collected in sedimentation traps was enriched in phenanthrene, fluoranthene, and pyrene. Aliphatic HC enrichment was due to the presence of phytoplankton and other microorganisms. Between 54 per cent and 85 per cent of initial organic matter was consumed during diagenesis in the bottom sediments, indicating a high rate of HC transformation. It was suggested that the majority of oil HC transported with river water is precipitated. Fluoranthene was the dominant PAH in the study, and was assumed to be caused by natural transformation of PAH composition during distant atmospheric transport. Pyrogenic contamination of the bottom sediments was attributed to an aluminium plant. It was concluded that the detection of significant amounts of HC is not direct evidence of their anthropogenic origins. 31 refs., 3 tabs., 7 figs

  7. ECOSYSTEM APPROACH FOR EVALUATING DEGRADATION PROCESSES AND NATURE PROTECTION IN INNER ASIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chultem Dugarjav

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available he paper presents results of eco-biological assessment of Inner Asian ecosystems using the example of Mongolia as a case study. The comprehensive environmental analysis of changes in Mongolia’s environment included approaches based on three principles: (1 formal, (2 administrative division, and (3 landscape-ecological. We analyzed ecosystems that have undergone at last three levels of alterations (moderate, heavy, and very heavy due to anthropogenic factors. Based on our analysis of degradation processes that result in heavy and very heavy anthropogenic alteration of the natural environment, we isolated 5 groups of hazardous degradation processes: (1 rangeland overgrowth with shrubs, (2 deforestation of forest-steppe ecosystems, (3 desertification of ecosystems on light soils, (4 depletion of ecosystems of hydromorphic landscapes, and (5 narcotization of agrocenoses in modified ecosystems. The comprehensive assessment of adverse changes of natural habitats has enabled a revision of the state policy for the organization of the optimum network of wildlife reserves for conservation of floristic and faunistic diversity.

  8. Climate-dependence of ecosystem services in a nature reserve in northern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Jiaohui; Song, Huali; Zhang, Yiran; Li, Yanran; Liu, Jian

    2018-01-01

    Evaluation of ecosystem services has become a hotspot in terms of research focus, but uncertainties over appropriate methods remain. Evaluation can be based on the unit price of services (services value method) or the unit price of the area (area value method). The former takes meteorological factors into account, while the latter does not. This study uses Kunyu Mountain Nature Reserve as a study site at which to test the effects of climate on the ecosystem services. Measured data and remote sensing imagery processed in a geographic information system were combined to evaluate gas regulation and soil conservation, and the influence of meteorological factors on ecosystem services. Results were used to analyze the appropriateness of the area value method. Our results show that the value of ecosystem services is significantly affected by meteorological factors, especially precipitation. Use of the area value method (which ignores the impacts of meteorological factors) could considerably impede the accuracy of ecosystem services evaluation. Results were also compared with the valuation obtained using the modified equivalent value factor (MEVF) method, which is a modified area value method that considers changes in meteorological conditions. We found that MEVF still underestimates the value of ecosystem services, although it can reflect to some extent the annual variation in meteorological factors. Our findings contribute to increasing the accuracy of evaluation of ecosystem services.

  9. Effect of fast-food Mediterranean-type diet on human plasma oxidation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aronis, Pantelis; Antonopoulou, Smaragdi; Karantonis, Haralabos C; Phenekos, Costas; Tsoukatos, Demokritos C

    2007-09-01

    Oxidation of lipoproteins, particularly of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), is of prime importance in the initiation and progression of atherosclerosis. The Mediterranean diet has been associated with an unexpectedly low rate of cardiovascular events. Type 2 diabetic patients are at high risk of developing atherosclerosis. Functional alterations in the endothelium, which lead to atherosclerosis, are stimulated by oxidized lipoproteins, particularly oxidized LDL. The present study investigated the effect of Greek quick casual Mediterranean-type diet (fast food Mediterranean-type diet) consumption on the resistance to oxidation in plasma from type 2 diabetic patients and healthy human subjects. Lipids from fast food Mediterranean-type foodstuffs were extracted and tested in vitro for their ability to inhibit copper (Cu2+)-induced LDL oxidation. Foodstuffs that exerted the most potent in vitro antioxidative activity were chosen for the diet of study groups. Eighteen type 2 diabetic patients (group A) and 10 healthy subjects (group B) were fed a 4-week diet contained the chosen foodstuffs, while 17 type 2 diabetic patients (group C) were kept on their regular diet that they were following before the study. Type 2 diabetic patients were treated with sulfonylureas or metformin and were under good glycemic control (hemoglobin A1C type 2 diabetic patients (groups A and C) and healthy human subjects (group B), as this was detected at a time before the oxidation products become detectable, namely, lag time. After the 4-week period on the chosen diet the lag time in groups A and B significantly increased, while it was not changed in group C. In type 2 diabetic patients lag time was increased from 57.3 +/- 13.3 minutes (mean +/- SD) to 103.8 +/- 21.8 minutes (mean +/- SD) (P Fast food Mediterranean foodstuffs exerted antioxidant activities both in vitro and in vivo after consumption in type 2 diabetic patients and healthy human subjects. Therefore consumption of a fast food

  10. LAW, THE LAWS OF NATURE AND ECOSYSTEM ENERGY SERVICES: A CASE OF WILFUL BLINDNESS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DR Hodas

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Ecosystems services include the collection, concentration, and storage of solar energy as fossil fuels (e.g., coal, petroleum, and natural gas. These concentrated forms of energy were produced by ancient ecosystem services. However, our legal and economic systems fail to recognise the value of the ecosystem service subsidies embedded in fossil fuels. This ecosystem services price subsidy causes overuse and waste of fossil fuels in the free market: fossil fuels are consumed more quickly than they can be replaced by ecosystem services and in far larger quantities than they would be if the price of fossil fuels included the cost of solar energy collection, concentration and manufacturing of raw fossil fuels. Moreover, burning fossil fuels produces enormous environmental, human health and welfare costs and damage. Virtually no legal literature on ecosystem services, sustainable development, or sustainable energy, considers fossil fuels in this context. Without understanding stored energy as an ecosystem service, we cannot reasonably expect to manage our fossil fuel energy resources sustainably. International and domestic energy law and policy systems generally ignore this feature of fossil fuel energy, a blind spot that explains why reducing greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels is fundamentally a political challenge. This paper will use new understandings emerging from the field of complex systems to critique existing legal decision-making models that do not adequately account for energy ecosystem services in policy design, resource allocation and project approvals. The paper proposes a new "least-social-cost" decision-making legal structure that includes ecosystem energy services.

  11. Assessing atmospheric nitrogen deposition to natural and semi-natural ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hertel, Ole; Geels, Camilla; Frohn, Lise Marie

    2013-01-01

    Local agricultural emissions contribute significantly to the atmospheric reactive nitrogen loads of Danish terrestrial ecosystems. In the vicinity of the sources this may be up to 6-8 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1) depending on location and ecosystem type. This contribution arises from dry deposition of gas...... and ammonium (reaction products of nitrogen oxides and ammonia), but also dry deposition of other reactive nitrogen compounds (mainly nitrogen oxides in the form of gas phase nitric acid and nitrogen dioxide). In Denmark's environmental management of the sensitive terrestrial ecosystems modelling tools...... phase ammonia derived from local livestock production. Long-range transport, however, often constitutes the largest contribution to the overall atmospheric terrestrial reactive nitrogen loadings in Denmark. This is often in the range 10-15 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1) and consists mainly of aerosol phase nitrate...

  12. State of the art review on climate change impacts on natural ecosystems and adaptation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heijmans, M.M.P.D.; Berendse, F.

    2009-01-01

    Climate change has become unavoidable and the Netherlands has started to adapt the water systems and coastal defense to reduce vulnerability to the effects of climate change. These strategies to make the Netherlands climate-proof will also have its impact on nature and ecosystem functioning, in

  13. Application of remote sensing and Geographic Information Systems to ecosystem-based urban natural resource management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiaohui Zhang; George Ball; Eve Halper

    2000-01-01

    This paper presents an integrated system to support urban natural resource management. With the application of remote sensing (RS) and geographic information systems (GIS), the paper emphasizes the methodology of integrating information technology and a scientific basis to support ecosystem-based management. First, a systematic integration framework is developed and...

  14. The superior effect of nature based solutions in land management for enhancing ecosystem services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keesstra, Saskia; Keesstra, Saskia; Nunes, Joao P.; Novara, Agata; Finger, David; Avelar, David; Kalantari, Zahra; Cerdà, Artemi

    2018-01-01

    The rehabilitation and restoration of land is a key strategy to recover services -goods and resources- ecosystems offer to the humankind. This paper reviews key examples to understand the superior effect of nature based solutions to enhance the sustainabilit y of catchment systems by promoting

  15. Potential increases in natural disturbance rates could offset forest management impacts on ecosystem carbon stocks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    John B. Bradford; Nicholas R. Jensen; Grant M. Domke; Anthony W. D' Amato

    2013-01-01

    Forested ecosystems contain the majority of the world’s terrestrial carbon, and forest management has implications for regional and global carbon cycling. Carbon stored in forests changes with stand age and is affected by natural disturbance and timber harvesting. We examined how harvesting and disturbance interact to influence forest carbon stocks over the Superior...

  16. [Comparative analysis of natural uranium mobility and concentration process in ecosystems of the Pechora river basin].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rachkova, N G; Shuktomova, I I

    2013-01-01

    Natural uranium mobility and its concentration process in water ecosystems of the Pechora river basin situated in the areas with the uranium increased concentration in rocks and in the zone around radioactive waste repository were compared. The study investigated the influence of the environmental factors on the uranium distribution in water reservoirs. In the studied ecosystems, Fe-bearing compounds are major sorbents of uranium during the migration and concentration process. Nitrate-ions increase the uranium mobility in the ecosystems. The influence of sulfate, phosphate and carbonate complexation on the uranium distribution between water and bottom sediments wasn't pronounced in the ecosystems with high natural radioactivity, but significant for the radioactively contaminated water reservoirs. Uranium geochemical mobility is higher in contaminated water ecosystems. The uranium content in the water from this area substantially exceeds the background value for the region and toxicity limits for hydrophytes. Comparison of the current and earlier received data shows that the uranium concentration in the water has decreased, its specific activity in sediments has enhanced. The level of the uranium concentration in dry hygrophyte biomass has not changed.

  17. Mediterranean-type diets and inflammatory markers in patients with coronary heart disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayr, Hannah L; Tierney, Audrey C; Thomas, Colleen J; Ruiz-Canela, Miguel; Radcliffe, Jessica; Itsiopoulos, Catherine

    2018-02-01

    The health benefits of a Mediterranean diet are thought to be mediated via its anti-inflammatory effects; however, the anti-inflammatory effect of this diet is unclear in patients who have already developed coronary heart disease (CHD). This systematic review and meta-analysis assessed the effect of Mediterranean-type diets on cytokines and adipokines in patients with CHD. An electronic search of the literature was conducted up to October 2016 using PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, and Cochrane Library. Eleven of the 435 articles identified met eligibility criteria. Four observational studies reported significant inverse associations between Mediterranean-type diet scores and inflammatory cytokines. Five clinical trials (4 in non-Mediterranean countries) demonstrated nonsignificant reductions, and 2 trials conducted in Spain demonstrated significant reductions in C-reactive protein with a Mediterranean-type diet. Random effects meta-analysis of 4 controlled trials detected a nonsignificant difference in final mean value of C-reactive protein with Mediterranean-type diet vs low-fat diet. Despite promising findings from observational studies, this review demonstrated mostly nonsignificant effects of Mediterranean-type diet interventions on inflammatory cytokines and no effect in comparison to low-fat diets in controlled trials conducted primarily in Mediterranean populations. Therefore, randomized controlled trials of a traditional Mediterranean diet in non-Mediterranean populations and with multiple inflammatory biomarkers are needed in the high-risk CHD patient group. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. EnviroAtlas - Biological nitrogen fixation in natural/semi-natural ecosystems by 12-digit HUC for the Conterminous United States, 2006

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — This EnviroAtlas dataset contains data on the mean biological nitrogen fixation in natural/semi-natural ecosystems per 12-digit Hydrologic Unit (HUC) in 2006....

  19. Climate change and geothermal ecosystems: natural laboratories, sentinel systems, and future refugia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Gorman, Eoin J; Benstead, Jonathan P; Cross, Wyatt F; Friberg, Nikolai; Hood, James M; Johnson, Philip W; Sigurdsson, Bjarni D; Woodward, Guy

    2014-11-01

    Understanding and predicting how global warming affects the structure and functioning of natural ecosystems is a key challenge of the 21st century. Isolated laboratory and field experiments testing global change hypotheses have been criticized for being too small-scale and overly simplistic, whereas surveys are inferential and often confound temperature with other drivers. Research that utilizes natural thermal gradients offers a more promising approach and geothermal ecosystems in particular, which span a range of temperatures within a single biogeographic area, allow us to take the laboratory into nature rather than vice versa. By isolating temperature from other drivers, its ecological effects can be quantified without any loss of realism, and transient and equilibrial responses can be measured in the same system across scales that are not feasible using other empirical methods. Embedding manipulative experiments within geothermal gradients is an especially powerful approach, informing us to what extent small-scale experiments can predict the future behaviour of real ecosystems. Geothermal areas also act as sentinel systems by tracking responses of ecological networks to warming and helping to maintain ecosystem functioning in a changing landscape by providing sources of organisms that are preadapted to different climatic conditions. Here, we highlight the emerging use of geothermal systems in climate change research, identify novel research avenues, and assess their roles for catalysing our understanding of ecological and evolutionary responses to global warming. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. REGULARITIES OF QUANTITATIVE DISTRIBUTION FOR FE(III-REDUCING BACTERIA IN NATURAL ECOSYSTEMS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Govorukha V. M.

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the work was quantitative determination of Fe(III-reducing bacteria in natural ecosystems of the Antarctic, the Arctic, the Dead and the Black Sea, middle latitude (Ukraine, Abkhazia and the equatorial zone (Ecuador. It was used the method of quantitative determination of microorganisms by McCready and the colorimetric method for determination of Fe(II compounds . Results. The systemic study of the number of Fe(III-reducing bacteria of both hemispheres in the ecosystems of six geographic regions was carried out for the first time. High number of Fe(III-reducing bacteria in natural ecosystems was experimentally shown. The number of Fe(III-reducing bacteria ranged from 1.1•102 to 2.8•107 cells/g of absolutely dry sample. Conclusions. The presented data showed that Fe(III-reducing bacteria are an integral part of natural ecosystems and can significantly affect the biogeochemical cycles of iron and carbon compounds transformation.

  1. Contribution of Cultural Ecosystem Services to Natural Capital in the coastal area of Civitavecchia (Latium, Italy)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcelli, Marco; Madonia, Alice; Tofani, Anna; Molino, Chiara; Manfredi Frattarelli, Francesco

    2017-04-01

    Natural Capital evaluation is emerging as a fundamental tool to support the management of natural resources. Indeed, the achievement of the compatibility among their multiple uses, often in conflict in coastal areas, is a priority to avoid the increasing undesirable effects which threat both ecosystems and human health and well-being. It represents the scientific basis for actions needed to enhance the conservation and sustainable use of those systems and their contribution to human well-being. Furthermore the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (called by Kofi Annan in 2000), assessed the consequences of ecosystem change for human well-being, and in particular, the analysis method has been centered on the linkages between "ecosystem services" and human well-being. This "Ecosystem Approach" allows to evaluate the consequences of ecosystems changes on human well-being through the assessment of the Ecosystem Services (ES), which are defined as "the benefits that people obtain from ecosystems". These include provisioning services (food, water, timber, etc.), regulating services (climate, floods, disease, etc.); cultural services (recreational, aesthetic and spiritual benefits) and supporting services (soil formation, photosynthesis, nutrient cycling, etc.) Also the reference guidelines for European Environmental Policy (Marine Strategy Framework Directive 2008/56 / EC - MSFD; Maritime Spatial Planning Directive 2014/89 / EC - MSP) are based on the principle of the Ecosystem Approach to define the monitoring criteria of marine and maritime space management ecosystems. The assessment of ES provided by Natural Capital cannot overlook the integration of ecological data with economic and socio-cultural ones, since they are considered as the direct and indirect contributions to human well-being provided by ecosystems. Cultural Ecosystem Services (CES), often omitted in the cost-benefit impact studies, has been receiving increasing interest from the scientific community in order

  2. Variability of Ecosystem State in Rivers Containing Natural Dams: A Chemical Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Z. A.

    2015-12-01

    Flooding, and the resulting economic damage to roads and property, is associated with natural dams such as beaver dams or log jams. For this reason, humans often remove natural dams; however, river reaches with natural dams provide very different ecosystem services in comparison with free-flowing river reaches. Therefore, the goal of this project is to assess the differences in ecosystem state between these different river reach types in the northeastern United States. We focused on differences in basic chemistry (e.g., dissolved oxygen, pH, temperature, and organic carbon) to assess the impact of natural dams on river ecosystem state. Study sites include rivers in the White Mountains and southeastern New Hampshire at locations with beaver dams, beaver ponds, beaver meadows, log jams, and free-flowing reaches. Dissolved oxygen, ORP, pH, temperature, and conductivity were measured in the field with a YSI Professional Plus meter. Water samples were collected for subsequent laboratory analysis of total organic carbon with a Shimadzu TOC-L. Preliminary results show that the chemistry of river water varies with feature type. Most significantly, dissolved oxygen concentrations are highest in free-flowing reaches and lowest in beaver ponds. Although beaver ponds are often associated with lower pH, due the increased concentration of organic acids, some beaver ponds can increase pH when compared to free-flowing reaches on the same river. Early results also show that water chemistry returns quickly to the chemistry typical of the free-flowing river reaches after being altered by a natural dam. Overall, natural dams create a river system that has more heterogeneity, and therefore has opportunities to provide more ecosystem functions, than a purely free-flowing river; this can increase the number of supported instream and riparian species. By increasing the understanding of how natural dams affect the chemistry of river water, river engineers can improve their decisions on how

  3. Trade-off analysis of ecosystem service provision in nature networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vogdrup-Schmidt, Mathias; Strange, Niels; Olsen, Søren Bøye

    2017-01-01

    We propose a spatial multi-criteria decision analysis approach as a value-focused decision support tool for evaluating land use change decisions affecting multiple ecosystem services. In an empirical case study concerned with creating a robust and interconnected network of natural areas in a Danish...... municipality, we first conduct a biophysical and economic baseline mapping of ecosystem services. We then construct a spatially explicit multi-criteria decision analysis model which is utilized to identify candidate areas for inclusion in the network. We define a base scenario for future land use in the area......, where all criteria have equal weight, and assess the outcome in terms of welfare economic benefits of ecosystem services and opportunity cost of reducing forest and agricultural production. As weights in multi-criteria analysis is innately a subjective task, we conduct a sensitivity analysis using four...

  4. Evaluating early-warning indicators of critical transitions in natural aquatic ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gsell, Alena Sonia; Scharfenberger, Ulrike; Ozkundakci, Deniz; Walters, Annika W.; Hansson, Lars-Anders; Janssen, Annette B. G.; Noges, Peeter; Reid, Philip; Schindler, Daniel; van Donk, Ellen; Dakos, Vasilis; Adrian, Rita

    2016-01-01

    Ecosystems can show sudden and persistent changes in state despite only incremental changes in drivers. Such critical transitions are difficult to predict, because the state of the system often shows little change before the transition. Early-warning indicators (EWIs) are hypothesized to signal the loss of system resilience and have been shown to precede critical transitions in theoretical models, paleo-climate time series, and in laboratory as well as whole lake experiments. The generalizability of EWIs for detecting critical transitions in empirical time series of natural aquatic ecosystems remains largely untested, however. Here we assessed four commonly used EWIs on long-term datasets of five freshwater ecosystems that have experienced sudden, persistent transitions and for which the relevant ecological mechanisms and drivers are well understood. These case studies were categorized by three mechanisms that can generate critical transitions between alternative states: competition, trophic cascade, and intraguild predation. Although EWIs could be detected in most of the case studies, agreement among the four indicators was low. In some cases, EWIs were detected considerably ahead of the transition. Nonetheless, our results show that at present, EWIs do not provide reliable and consistent signals of impending critical transitions despite using some of the best routinely monitored freshwater ecosystems. Our analysis strongly suggests that a priori knowledge of the underlying mechanisms driving ecosystem transitions is necessary to identify relevant state variables for successfully monitoring EWIs.

  5. Ecosystem changes in the Neva Estuary (Baltic Sea): natural dynamics or response to anthropogenic impacts?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golubkov, Sergey; Alimov, Alexander

    2010-01-01

    The Neva Estuary situated in the eastern Gulf of Finland is one of the largest estuaries of the Baltic Sea with a large conurbation, St. Petersburg, situated on its coast. Eutrophication, alien species and large-scale digging and dumping of bottom sediment are the most prominent anthropogenic impacts on its ecosystem. However, many ecosystem responses, which are traditionally attribute to these impacts, are related to natural dynamics of the ecosystem. Fluctuations in discharge of the Neva River, intrusions of bottom hypoxic waters from the western part of the Gulf of Finland, higher summer temperatures and a shorter period of ice cover are climatic mediated factors inducing adverse changes in its ecosystem from the 1980s onwards. The main ecosystem responses to these factors are 2-3-fold increase of trophic status, deterioration of native zoobenthic communities and establishment of alien species, as well as the many fold decrease of fish catch and the population of ringed seal in the region. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Impacts of Nitrogen and Phosphorus: From Genomes to Natural Ecosystems and Agriculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maïté S. Guignard

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Nitrogen (N and/or phosphorus (P availability can limit growth of primary producers across most of the world's aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. These constraints are commonly overcome in agriculture by applying fertilizers to improve yields. However, excessive anthropogenic N and P inputs impact natural environments and have far-reaching ecological and evolutionary consequences, from individual species up to entire ecosystems. The extent to which global N and P cycles have been perturbed over the past century can be seen as a global fertilization experiment with significant redistribution of nutrients across different ecosystems. Here we explore the effects of N and P availability on stoichiometry and genomic traits of organisms, which, in turn, can influence: (i plant and animal abundances; (ii trophic interactions and population dynamics; and (iii ecosystem dynamics and productivity of agricultural crops. We articulate research priorities for a deeper understanding of how bioavailable N and P move through the environment and exert their ultimate impacts on biodiversity and ecosystem services.

  7. Illustrating the Interaction of Nature and People in Ecosystem Services: The Case of Terroir in Wine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholas, K. A.

    2014-12-01

    The ecosystem services (ES) approach is increasingly used in research and policy, with the Common International Framework on Ecosystem Services (CICES) "cascade" gaining traction as a framework for conceptualizing the production of ecosystem services by the natural environment, and then people consuming these services and obtaining benefits depending on their values. However, uptake of the ES concept on the ground by ecosystem managers, and understanding by everyday citizens, is still limited. One barrier is the challenge of providing tangible, examples of everyday benefits and values that people can readily connect with the biophysical structures and functions that underlie their provision. Winegrowing offers one promising case to illustrate the linkages all along the chain of production and consumption of ecosystem services. The sensitive winegrape has long been known for its properties of terroir, where the taste of wine reflects the environmental conditions of the place where it is grown, a feature valued by consumers. Here the CICES framework is illustrated with the case of winegrowing, demonstrating that the current linear model of natural production and human consumption of ES needs to be modified for this case because people influence each of the five stages by shaping and responding to their environment, producing a two-way interaction between people and the environment throughout. For example, while natural drivers such as climate and soils are key to the provision of the service of winegrape yields, landowners modify the biophysical environment through site selection and growers modify plant ecophysiological function through farming practices such as pruning and irrigation in order to influence the final service. Similarly, winemakers' expertise is needed to transform the service of winegrape yields into the product of wine that can be enjoyed and valued by consumers, whose preferences shape wine styles as well. This case illustrates how incorporating

  8. Impact of urbanization on natural ecosystem service values: a comparative study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zang, Shuying; Wu, Changshan; Liu, Hang; Na, Xiaodong

    2011-08-01

    With rapid population growth and rural to-urban migration in many Chinese cities, a large amount of natural lands have been converted to urban and agricultural lands recently. During this process of land conversion, economic development and quality of life improvement are considered as major goals, and their influences on ecological systems have often been neglected. The degradation of natural ecological systems due to land use change, however, has become severe,and may require immediate attentions from urban planners and local governments. Taking HaDaQi industrial corridor, Heilongjiang Province, China,as a case study area, this paper examined the trend of land use changes during 1990–2005, and quantified their influences on natural eco system service values. In particular, this study applied two major valuation methods, and examined whether different valuation methods generate significantly different results. Analysis of results suggests that human dominated land uses (e.g., urban and agriculture)have expanded rapidly at the cost of natural lands (e.g., wetlands and forest). Due to these land use changes, the total ecosystem service value decreased 29% (2.26% annually) from 1990 to 2005 when the first method was applied, and this rate is estimated to be 15.7% (1.13% annually)with the second approach. Moreover, the annual rate of ecosystem service value decline during 2000–2005 is about four times higher than that in 1990–2000 with both methods, suggesting much more severe ecosystem degradation during 2000–2005.

  9. Radiocesium in semi-natural ecosystems in Soer-Varanger, North-Norway

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eikelmann, I.M.; Floe, L.; Larsen, E.

    1995-01-01

    The content of radionuclides in the semi-natural ecosystem in Soer-Varanger are mainly fallout from nuclear weapon tests in the fifties and sixties at Novija Zemlja. Favourable natural conditions have encouraged use of semi-natural ecosystems for household, and reindeer herding is still economical important in the area. Samples of reindeer meat, lichen, mushrooms and moose were taken from the area of current interest. The mean radiocesium concentration in reindeer meat was 325 Bq/kg. There is seasonal variations in radiocesium concentration in reindeer, with up to five times higher values in winter than summer. The high intake of lichen in winter is obviously the reason for this increase. Lichens have a high ability to absorb radionuclides directly from precipitation. Radiocesium concentration in lichen samples varied between 210 Bq/kg and 570 Bq/kg. It is concluded that radiocesium from bomb fallout is still existing in some foodstuff produced in semi-natural ecosystem i Soer-Varanger. Lichen-reindeer-man is the important foodchain for the radioactivity. 6 refs., 4 figs

  10. Economic value of ecological information in ecosystem-based natural resource management depends on exploitation history.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Essington, Timothy E; Sanchirico, James N; Baskett, Marissa L

    2018-02-13

    Ecosystem approaches to natural resource management are seen as a way to provide better outcomes for ecosystems and for people, yet the nature and strength of interactions among ecosystem components is usually unknown. Here we characterize the economic benefits of ecological knowledge through a simple model of fisheries that target a predator (piscivore) and its prey. We solve for the management (harvest) trajectory that maximizes net present value (NPV) for different ecological interactions and initial conditions that represent different levels of exploitation history. Optimal management trajectories generally approached similar harvest levels, but the pathways toward those levels varied considerably by ecological scenario. Application of the wrong harvest trajectory, which would happen if one type of ecological interaction were assumed but in fact another were occurring, generally led to only modest reductions in NPV. However, the risks were not equal across fleets: risks of incurring large losses of NPV and missing management targets were much higher in the fishery targeting piscivores, especially when piscivores were heavily depleted. Our findings suggest that the ecosystem approach might provide the greatest benefits when used to identify system states where management performs poorly with imperfect knowledge of system linkages so that management strategies can be adopted to avoid those states. Copyright © 2018 the Author(s). Published by PNAS.

  11. Culture, Nature, and the Valuation of Ecosystem Services in Northern Namibia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Schnegg

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Defining culture as shared knowledge, values, and practices, we introduce an anthropological concept of culture to the ecosystem-service debate. In doing so, we shift the focus from an analysis of culture as a residual category including recreational and aesthetic experiences to an analysis of processes that underlie the valuation of nature in general. The empirical analysis draws on ethnographic fieldwork conducted along the Okavango River in northern Namibia to demonstrate which landscape units local populations value for which service(s. Results show that subjects perceive many places as providing multiple services and that most of their valuations of ecosystem services are culturally shared. We attribute this finding to common experiences and modes of activities within the cultural groups, and to the public nature of the valuation process.

  12. Remote sensing techniques for conservation and management of natural vegetation ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parada, N. D. J. (Principal Investigator); Verdesio, J. J.; Dossantos, J. R.

    1981-01-01

    The importance of using remote sensing techniques, in the visible and near-infrared ranges, for mapping, inventory, conservation and management of natural ecosystems is discussed. Some examples realized in Brazil or other countries are given to evaluate the products from orbital platform (MSS and RBV imagery of LANDSAT) and aerial level (photography) for ecosystems study. The maximum quantitative and qualitative information which can be obtained from each sensor, at different level, are discussed. Based on the developed experiments it is concluded that the remote sensing technique is a useful tool in mapping vegetation units, estimating biomass, forecasting and evaluation of fire damage, disease detection, deforestation mapping and change detection in land-use. In addition, remote sensing techniques can be used in controling implantation and planning natural/artificial regeneration.

  13. Soil Carbon-Fixation Rates and Associated Bacterial Diversity and Abundance in Three Natural Ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynn, Tin Mar; Ge, Tida; Yuan, Hongzhao; Wei, Xiaomeng; Wu, Xiaohong; Xiao, Keqing; Kumaresan, Deepak; Yu, San San; Wu, Jinshui; Whiteley, Andrew S

    2017-04-01

    CO 2 assimilation by autotrophic microbes is an important process in soil carbon cycling, and our understanding of the community composition of autotrophs in natural soils and their role in carbon sequestration of these soils is still limited. Here, we investigated the autotrophic C incorporation in soils from three natural ecosystems, i.e., wetland (WL), grassland (GR), and forest (FO) based on the incorporation of labeled C into the microbial biomass. Microbial assimilation of 14 C ( 14 C-MBC) differed among the soils from three ecosystems, accounting for 14.2-20.2% of 14 C-labeled soil organic carbon ( 14 C-SOC). We observed a positive correlation between the cbbL (ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase (RubisCO) large-subunit gene) abundance, 14 C-SOC level, and 14 C-MBC concentration confirming the role of autotrophic bacteria in soil carbon sequestration. Distinct cbbL-bearing bacterial communities were present in each soil type; form IA and form IC RubisCO-bearing bacteria were most abundant in WL, followed by GR soils, with sequences from FO soils exclusively derived from the form IC clade. Phylogenetically, the diversity of CO 2 -fixing autotrophs and CO oxidizers differed significantly with soil type, whereas cbbL-bearing bacterial communities were similar when assessed using coxL. We demonstrate that local edaphic factors such as pH and salinity affect the C-fixation rate as well as cbbL and coxL gene abundance and diversity. Such insights into the effect of soil type on the autotrophic bacterial capacity and subsequent carbon cycling of natural ecosystems will provide information to enhance the sustainable management of these important natural ecosystems.

  14. Anthropogenic and natural influence on disease prevalence at the humanlivestockwildlife interface in the Serengeti ecosystem, Tanzania

    OpenAIRE

    Fyumagwa, Robert Dominikus

    2012-01-01

    Anthropogenic activities in ecosystems interfere with natural processes and cause habitat fragmentation and loss. Habitat fragmentation and loss restrict wildlife movement between populations consequently reducing the gene flow and genetic diversity. Increased human encroachment on wildlife habitat compromises immunity and disturbs host-pathogen relationships resulting in disease outbreaks in naïve populations. Tick-borne and infectious diseases are considered a major threat to the health of ...

  15. Natural disturbance impacts on ecosystem services and biodiversity in temperate and boreal forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thom, Dominik; Seidl, Rupert

    2016-08-01

    In many parts of the world forest disturbance regimes have intensified recently, and future climatic changes are expected to amplify this development further in the coming decades. These changes are increasingly challenging the main objectives of forest ecosystem management, which are to provide ecosystem services sustainably to society and maintain the biological diversity of forests. Yet a comprehensive understanding of how disturbances affect these primary goals of ecosystem management is still lacking. We conducted a global literature review on the impact of three of the most important disturbance agents (fire, wind, and bark beetles) on 13 different ecosystem services and three indicators of biodiversity in forests of the boreal, cool- and warm-temperate biomes. Our objectives were to (i) synthesize the effect of natural disturbances on a wide range of possible objectives of forest management, and (ii) investigate standardized effect sizes of disturbance for selected indicators via a quantitative meta-analysis. We screened a total of 1958 disturbance studies published between 1981 and 2013, and reviewed 478 in detail. We first investigated the overall effect of disturbances on individual ecosystem services and indicators of biodiversity by means of independence tests, and subsequently examined the effect size of disturbances on indicators of carbon storage and biodiversity by means of regression analysis. Additionally, we investigated the effect of commonly used approaches of disturbance management, i.e. salvage logging and prescribed burning. We found that disturbance impacts on ecosystem services are generally negative, an effect that was supported for all categories of ecosystem services, i.e. supporting, provisioning, regulating, and cultural services (P biodiversity, i.e. species richness, habitat quality and diversity indices, on the other hand were found to be influenced positively by disturbance (P biodiversity. A detailed investigation of disturbance

  16. Ecosystem Services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecosystem goods and services are the many life-sustaining benefits we receive from nature and contribute to environmental and human health and well-being. Ecosystem-focused research will develop methods to measure ecosystem goods and services.

  17. Life around the North Water ecosystem: Natural and social drivers of change over a millennium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hastrup, Kirsten; Andersen, Astrid Oberborbeck; Grønnow, Bjarne; Heide-Jørgensen, Mads Peter

    2018-04-01

    The formation of the North Water in Smith Sound about 4500 years ago, as evidenced by the establishment of bird colonies and human presence, also initiated a long-term anthropogenic agent as part of this High Arctic ecosystem. Different epochs have influenced the human occupation in the area: immigration pulses from Canada and Alaska, trade with meteorite iron throughout the Arctic, introduction of new technologies by whalers and explorers, exploitation of resources by foreigners, political sequestration, export of fox and seal skins and later narwhal products, and recently fishing. Physical drivers in terms of weather and climate affecting the northern hemisphere also impact accessibility and productivity of the ecosystem, with cascading effects on social drivers, again acting back on the natural ecologies. Despite its apparent isolation, the ecosystem had and still has wide ranging spatial ramifications that extend beyond the High Arctic, and include human activity. The challenge is to determine what is internal and what is external to an ecosystem.

  18. Assessment of the Ecosystem Services Capacity in Natural Protected Areas for Biodiversity Conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ronchi, Silvia; Salata, Stefano

    2017-10-01

    Recently, in Italy, a legislative proposal has been set to reform the role and the functions of natural protected areas promoting their aggregation (or the abolition) pursuing a better efficiency for their administration and economic saving. The system of natural protected areas is composed of different conservation levels: there are the Natural parks, established in the ‘80 by national or regional institution for the safeguard of natural elements, the Natura 2000 -Habitat 92/43/CEE promoted by European Union, with conservation measures for maintaining or restoring habitats and species of Communitarian interest, and the local parks of supra-municipal interest (namely PLIS) created by single municipalities or their aggregation aimed at limiting the soil sealing process. The hierarchical level of protection has determined differences in the management of the areas which leads to various approaches and strategies for biodiversity conservation and integrity. In order to assess strengths and weaknesses of the legislative initiative, the new management framework should be designed, considering the ecosystem characteristics of each natural protected area to define the future opportunities and critics, rather than, in the extreme case, remove the level of protection due to the absence of valuable ecosystem conditions. The paper provides an operative support to better apply the legislative proposal investigating the dynamics that affect all protected areas using the land take process as a major threat to biodiversity conservation in natural zones. The land take process is explored using the Land Use Change analysis (LUCa) as a possible way to determine the impact and the environmental effects of land transitions. LUCa is also useful to determine the loss of protected zones capacity to support Ecosystem Services. Finally, the assessment of the Ecosystem Services Capacity (ESC) index expresses the ability of each LULC to provide ES and, in particular, the Ecological

  19. The behaviour of Ailanthus altissima weed and its effects on natural ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fotiadis, G; Kyriazopoulos, A P; Fraggakis, I

    2011-11-01

    Ailanthus altissima is an invasive species for the native flora of Greece and it could pose a serious threat to the biodiversity and the functioning of ecosystems. The purpose of this study was to investigate the spreading of Ailanthus altissima in urban and non urban areas of North and Central Greece and also to evaluate the effects of its spreading on species composition and floristic diversity in natural ecosystems. The spreading of Ailanthus altissima in urban areas is very intense, mainly in abandoned places (35.29%). It is commonly found in non urban areas of Greece, especially in hedgerows of arable lands (36%) and adjacent wetlands (17%). It is less common in forests (4%), shrublands (11%) and grasslands (9%). The spread of Ailanthus altissima in urban and natural ecosystems is relatively recent. Although it has been recorded at altitudes of up to 640 m, it usually appears at low altitudes of up to 200 m. Floristic diversity was found to be higher in the stands that it dominated (H' = 1.574, H' = 1.890) in comparison to stands that were dominated by Quercuspubescens (H' = 1.468) or Q. coccifera (H' = 1.716). This may be contributed to the fact that in those stands synanthropic species, which are usually found in regions of intense human activity, were present together with typical forest vegetation species.

  20. The superior effect of nature based solutions in land management for enhancing ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keesstra, Saskia; Nunes, Joao; Novara, Agata; Finger, David; Avelar, David; Kalantari, Zahra; Cerdà, Artemi

    2018-01-01

    The rehabilitation and restoration of land is a key strategy to recover services -goods and resources- ecosystems offer to the humankind. This paper reviews key examples to understand the superior effect of nature based solutions to enhance the sustainability of catchment systems by promoting desirable soil and landscape functions. The use of concepts such as connectivity and the theory of system thinking framework allowed to review coastal and river management as a guide to evaluate other strategies to achieve sustainability. In land management NBSs are not mainstream management. Through a set of case studies: organic farming in Spain; rewilding in Slovenia; land restoration in Iceland, sediment trapping in Ethiopia and wetland construction in Sweden, we show the potential of Nature based solutions (NBSs) as a cost-effective long term solution for hydrological risks and land degradation. NBSs can be divided into two main groups of strategies: soil solutions and landscape solutions. Soil solutions aim to enhance the soil health and soil functions through which local eco-system services will be maintained or restored. Landscape solutions mainly focus on the concept of connectivity. Making the landscape less connected, facilitating less rainfall to be transformed into runoff and therefore reducing flood risk, increasing soil moisture and reducing droughts and soil erosion we can achieve the sustainability. The enhanced eco-system services directly feed into the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Towards integrated assessment of natural pest control as part of a set of ecosystem services: the Landscape IMAGES approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rossing, W.A.H.; Groot, J.C.J.

    2012-01-01

    Natural pest control is an ecosystem service that appears to be affected by ecosystem characteristics at spatial scales from field to landscape. Changes in land use and land management at the field level to enhance pest control depend on a small number of decision makers. In contrast, changes at the

  2. Multi-stressor impacts on fungal diversity and ecosystem functions in streams: natural vs. anthropogenic stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tolkkinen, M; Mykrä, H; Annala, M; Markkola, A M; Vuori, K M; Muotka, T

    2015-03-01

    Biological assemblages are often subjected to multiple stressors emerging from both anthropogenic activities and naturally stressful conditions, and species' responses to simultaneous stressors may differ from those predicted based on the individual effects of each stressor alone. We studied the influence of land-use disturbance (forest drainage) on fungal decomposer assemblages and leaf decomposition rates in naturally harsh (low pH caused by black-shale dominated geology) vs. circumneutral streams. We used pyrosequencing to determine fungal richness and assemblage structure. Decomposition rates did not differ between circumneutral and naturally acidic reference sites. However, the effect of forest drainage on microbial decomposition was more pronounced in the naturally acidic streams than in circumneutral streams. Single-effect responses of fungal assemblages were mainly related to geology. Community similarity was significantly higher in the naturally acidic disturbed sites than in corresponding reference sites, suggesting that land-use disturbance simplifies fungal assemblages in naturally stressful conditions. Naturally acidic streams supported distinct fungal assemblages with many OTUs (operational taxonomic unit) unique to these streams. Our results indicate that fungal assemblages in streams are sensitive to both structural and functional impairment in response to multiple stressors. Anthropogenic degradation of naturally acidic streams may decrease regional fungal diversity and impair ecosystem functions, and these globally occurring environments therefore deserve special attention in conservation planning.

  3. The natural sediment regime in rivers: broadening the foundation for ecosystem management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wohl, Ellen E.; Bledsoe, Brian P.; Jacobson, Robert B.; Poff, N. LeRoy; Rathburn, Sara L.; Walters, David M.; Wilcox, Andrew C.

    2015-01-01

    Water and sediment inputs are fundamental drivers of river ecosystems, but river management tends to emphasize flow regime at the expense of sediment regime. In an effort to frame a more inclusive paradigm for river management, we discuss sediment inputs, transport, and storage within river systems; interactions among water, sediment, and valley context; and the need to broaden the natural flow regime concept. Explicitly incorporating sediment is challenging, because sediment is supplied, transported, and stored by nonlinear and episodic processes operating at different temporal and spatial scales than water and because sediment regimes have been highly altered by humans. Nevertheless, managing for a desired balance between sediment supply and transport capacity is not only tractable, given current geomorphic process knowledge, but also essential because of the importance of sediment regimes to aquatic and riparian ecosystems, the physical template of which depends on sediment-driven river structure and function.

  4. Transfer of radionuclides by terrestrial food products from semi-natural ecosystems to humans

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Howard, B.J.

    1996-01-01

    The potential radiological significance of radionuclide transfer to humans via foodstuffs derived from semi-natural ecosystems has become apparent since the Chernobyl accident. Foodchain models developed before this time usually did not take such transfers into account. The processes leading to contamination of food in these environments are complex and current understanding of the transfer mechanisms is incomplete. For these reasons the approach adopted in Chapter 3 is to represent, by means of aggregated parameters, the empirical relationships between ground deposits and concentration in the food product. 107 refs, 2 figs, 9 tabs

  5. Modeling techniques for predicting long-term consequences of the effects of radiation on natural aquatic populations and ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Van Winkle, W.

    1977-01-01

    Appropriate modeling techniques already exist for investigating some long-term consequences of the effects of radiation on natural aquatic populations and ecosystems, even if to date these techniques have not been used for this purpose. At the low levels of irradiation estimated to occur in natural aquatic systems, effects are difficult to detect at even the individual level much less the population or ecosystem level where the subtle effects of radiation are likely to be completely overshadowed by the effects of other environmental factors and stresses and the natural variability of the system. The claim that population and ecosystem models can be accurate and reliable predictive tools in assessing any stress has been oversold. Nonetheless, the use of these tools can be useful for learning more about the effects of radioactive releases on aquatic populations and ecosystems

  6. Nitrogen leaching from natural ecosystems under global change: a modelling study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braakhekke, Maarten C.; Rebel, Karin T.; Dekker, Stefan C.; Smith, Benjamin; Beusen, Arthur H. W.; Wassen, Martin J.

    2017-12-01

    To study global nitrogen (N) leaching from natural ecosystems under changing N deposition, climate, and atmospheric CO2, we performed a factorial model experiment for the period 1901-2006 with the N-enabled global terrestrial ecosystem model LPJ-GUESS (Lund-Potsdam-Jena General Ecosystem Simulator). In eight global simulations, we used either the true transient time series of N deposition, climate, and atmospheric CO2 as input or kept combinations of these drivers constant at initial values. The results show that N deposition is globally the strongest driver of simulated N leaching, individually causing an increase of 88 % by 1997-2006 relative to pre-industrial conditions. Climate change led globally to a 31 % increase in N leaching, but the size and direction of change varied among global regions: leaching generally increased in regions with high soil organic carbon storage and high initial N status, and decreased in regions with a positive trend in vegetation productivity or decreasing precipitation. Rising atmospheric CO2 generally caused decreased N leaching (33 % globally), with strongest effects in regions with high productivity and N availability. All drivers combined resulted in a rise of N leaching by 73 % with strongest increases in Europe, eastern North America and South-East Asia, where N deposition rates are highest. Decreases in N leaching were predicted for the Amazon and northern India. We further found that N loss by fire regionally is a large term in the N budget, associated with lower N leaching, particularly in semi-arid biomes. Predicted global N leaching from natural lands rose from 13.6 Tg N yr-1 in 1901-1911 to 18.5 Tg N yr-1 in 1997-2006, accounting for reductions of natural land cover. Ecosystem N status (quantified as the reduction of vegetation productivity due to N limitation) shows a similar positive temporal trend but large spatial variability. Interestingly, this variability is more strongly related to vegetation type than N input

  7. Lognormal distribution of natural radionuclides in freshwater ecosystems and coal-ash repositories

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Drndarski, N.; Lavi, N.

    1997-01-01

    This study summarizes and analyses data for natural radionuclides, 40 K, 226 Ra and 'Th, measured by gamma spectrometry in water samples, sediments and coal-ash samples collected from regional freshwater ecosystems and near-by coal-ash repositories during the last decade, 1986-1996, respectively. The frequency plots of natural radionuclide data, for which the hypothesis of the regional scale log normality was accepted, exhibited single population groups with exception of 226 Ra and 232 Th data for waters. Thus the presence of break points in the frequency distribution plots indicated that 226 Ra and 232 Th data for waters do not come from a single statistical population. Thereafter the hypothesis of log normality was accepted for the separate population groups of 226 Ra and '-32 Th in waters. (authors)

  8. Water consumption of agriculture and natural ecosystems at the Amu Darya in Lebap Province, Turkmenistan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thevs, Niels; Ovezmuradov, Kurban

    2013-04-01

    The Amu Darya is the main water source for whole Turkmenistan, but also for the regions Khorezm and Karakalpakistan in Uzbekistan. Due to the arid climate in the Amu Darya river basin, agriculture depends on irrigation with river water being the major source of water. Also the natural ecosystems depend on river water. Until end of the 1970s, the Amu Darya flew into the Aral Sea and, together with the Syr Darya, sustained its water level. From the 1960s until today the area under irrigation has been strongly enlarged. During Soviet Union times, mainly cotton was planted on the newly reclaimed land. After independence, new land was reclaimed, in order to grow wheat. In the course of this land reclamation, the downstream section of the Amu Darya, i.e. in Karakalpakistan faces severe water shortage. Today, the Amu Darya only occasionally reaches the previous shore line of the Aral Sea. Against this background, it is necessary that water consumption along the Amu Darya is limited and water is used efficiently, in order to ensure water supply for downstream water users. The province Lebap in Turkmenistan is located at the middle reaches of the Amu Darya. Thus, it is an example of an administrative unit, which consumes water from the Amu Darya and which should release a sufficient amount of water downstream. Furthermore, Lebap harbours one of the last near-natural riparian forests of Central Asia, i.e. the Amu Darya State Reserve, which also is a water consumer. Therefore, we estimate the water consumption of agriculture (cotton, wheat, rice, and house gardens) and the natural ecosystems within Lebap Province. Water consumption refers to the actual evapo-transpiration. We use Landsat ETM and TM satellite images, in order to produce maps of the actual evapo-transpiration. Afterwards, a land cover map is laid over the ETa maps, in order to retrieve the ETa of the different crops and natural ecosystems. These results are compared with the water norms and quotas given for

  9. Influence of forest management systems on natural resource use and provision of ecosystem services in Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strauch, Ayron M; Rurai, Masegeri T; Almedom, Astier M

    2016-09-15

    Social, religious and economic facets of rural livelihoods in Sub-Saharan Africa are heavily dependent on natural resources, but improper resource management, drought, and social instability frequently lead to their unsustainable exploitation. In rural Tanzania, natural resources are often governed locally by informal systems of traditional resource management (TRM), defined as cultural practices developed within the context of social and religious institutions over hundreds of years. However, following independence from colonial rule, centralized governments began to exercise jurisdictional control over natural resources. Following decades of mismanagement that resulted in lost ecosystem services, communities demanded change. To improve resource protection and participation in management among stakeholders, the Tanzanian government began to decentralize management programs in the early 2000s. We investigated these two differing management approaches (traditional and decentralized government) in Sonjo communities, to examine local perceptions of resource governance, management influences on forest use, and their consequences for forest and water resources. While 97% of households understood the regulations governing traditionally-managed forests, this was true for only 39% of households for government-managed forests, leading to differences in forest use. Traditional management practices resulted in improved forest condition and surface water quality. This research provides an essential case study demonstrating the importance of TRM in shaping decision frameworks for natural resource planning and management. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Experimental and numerical analysis of coastal protection provided by natural ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maza, M.; Lara, J. L.; Losada, I. J.; Nepf, H. M.

    2016-12-01

    The risk of flooding and erosion is increasing for many coastal areas owing to global and regional changes in climate conditions together with increasing exposure and vulnerability. After hurricane Katrina (2005) and Sandy (2012) and the tsunami in Indonesia (2004), coastal managers have become interested in low environmental impact alternatives, or nature-based solutions, to protect the coast. Although capacity for coastal ecosystems to damp flow energy has been widely recognized, they have not been firmly considered in the portfolio of coastal protection options. This is mainly due to the complexity of flow-vegetation interaction and of quantifying the value of coastal protection provided by these ecosystems. This complex problem involves different temporal and spatial scales and disciplines, such as engineering, ecology and economics. This work aims to make a step forward in better understanding the physics involved in flow-vegetation interaction leading to new formulations and parameterizations to address some unsolved questions in literature: the representation of plants and field properties; the influence of wave parameters on the relevant processes; the role of the combined effect of waves and currents and the effect of extreme events on vegetation elements. The three main coastal vegetated ecosystems (seagrasses, saltmarshes and mangroves) are studied with an experimental and numerical approach. Experimental analysis is carried out using mimics and real vegetation, considering different flow and vegetation parameters and characterizing flow energy attenuation for the different scenarios. Numerical simulations are performed using 2-D and 3-D Navier-Stokes models in which the effect of vegetation is implemented and validated. These models are used to extend experimental results by simulating different vegetation distributions and analyzing variables such as high-spatial-resolution free surface and velocity data and forces exerted on vegetation elements.

  11. Accounting for natural resources and environmental sustainability: linking ecosystem services to human well-being.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordan, Stephen J; Hayes, Sharon E; Yoskowitz, David; Smith, Lisa M; Summers, J Kevin; Russell, Marc; Benson, William H

    2010-03-01

    One of society's greatest challenges is to sustain natural resources while promoting economic growth and quality of life. In the face of this challenge, society must measure the effectiveness of programs established to safeguard the environment. The impetus for demonstrating positive results from government-sponsored research and regulation in the United States comes from Congress (General Accountability Office; GAO) and the Executive Branch (Office of Management and Budget; OMB). The message is: regulatory and research programs must demonstrate outcomes that justify their costs. Although the concept is simple, it is a complex problem to demonstrate that environmental research, policies, and regulations cause measurable changes in environmental quality. Even where changes in environmental quality can be tracked reliably, the connections between government actions and environmental outcomes seldom are direct or straightforward. In this article, we describe emerging efforts (with emphasis on the role of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; EPA) to frame and measure environmental outcomes in terms of ecosystem services and values-societally and ecologically meaningful metrics for gauging how well we manage environmental resources. As examples of accounting for outcomes and values, we present a novel, low-cost method for determining relative values of multiple ecosystem services, and describe emerging research on indicators of human well-being.

  12. Deriving Vegetation Dynamics of Natural Terrestrial Ecosystems from MODIS NDVI/EVI Data over Turkey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evrendilek, Fatih; Gulbeyaz, Onder

    2008-09-01

    The 16-day composite MODIS vegetation indices (VIs) at 500-m resolution for the period between 2000 to 2007 were seasonally averaged on the basis of the estimated distribution of 16 potential natural terrestrial ecosystems (NTEs) across Turkey. Graphical and statistical analyses of the time-series VIs for the NTEs spatially disaggregated in terms of biogeoclimate zones and land cover types included descriptive statistics, correlations, discrete Fourier transform (DFT), time-series decomposition, and simple linear regression (SLR) models. Our spatio-temporal analyses revealed that both MODIS VIs, on average, depicted similar seasonal variations for the NTEs, with the NDVI values having higher mean and SD values. The seasonal VIs were most correlated in decreasing order for: barren/sparsely vegetated land > grassland > shrubland/woodland > forest; (sub)nival > warm temperate > alpine > cool temperate > boreal = Mediterranean; and summer > spring > autumn > winter. Most pronounced differences between the MODIS VI responses over Turkey occurred in boreal and Mediterranean climate zones and forests, and in winter (the senescence phase of the growing season). Our results showed the potential of the time-series MODIS VI datasets in the estimation and monitoring of seasonal and interannual ecosystem dynamics over Turkey that needs to be further improved and refined through systematic and extensive field measurements and validations across various biomes.

  13. The greenhouse gas balance of Italy. An insight on managed and natural terrestrial ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Valentini, Riccardo; Miglietta, Franco

    2015-01-01

    Comprehensively addresses the full greenhouse gases budget of the Italian landscape. Presents the results of the national project CARBOITALY. Provides new data and analyses in the framework of climate policies. The book addresses in a comprehensive way the full greenhouse gases budget of the Italian landscape, focusing on land use and terrestrial ecosystems. In recent years there has been a growing interest in the role of terrestrial ecosystems with regard to the carbon cycle and only recently a regional approach has been considered for its specificity in terms of new methodologies for observations and models and its relevance for national policies on mitigation and adaptation to climate changes. In terms of methods this book describes the role of flux networks and data-driven models, airborne regional measurements of fluxes and specific sectoral approaches related to important components of the human and natural landscapes. There is also a growing need on the part of institutions, agencies and policy stakeholders for new data and analyses enabling them to improve their national inventories of greenhouse gases and their compliance with the UNFCCC process. In this respect the data presented is a basis for a full carbon accounting and available to relevant stakeholders for improvements and/or verification of national inventories. The wealth of research information is the result of a national project, CARBOITALY, which involved 15 Italian institutions and several researchers to provide new data and analyses in the framework of climate policies.

  14. Effects of ionizing radiation upon natural populations and ecosystems. Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McCormick, J.F.

    1976-01-01

    Accomplishments throughout a 10-year period summarized include: a study of the effects of radiation from a γ source on the ecology of the El Verde rain forest in Puerto Rico, with emphasis on the role of secondary succession in the recovery of forest ecosystems following irradiation; the effects of light and temperature on gaseous exchange in trees using 14 CO 2 as a tracer in Palcourea; the nature of the sensitivity of pine trees to ionizing radiation and the possible synergistic effects of elevated ozone levels on radiosensitivity; the combined effects of radioactive and thermal effluents on plant communities of a swamp hardwood forest; and the development of a new conceptual approach to the evaluation of environmental quality, with emphasis on ecological perspectives in land use planning

  15. Bottlenecks in the transmission of antibiotic resistance from natural ecosystems to human bacterial pathogens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose L Martinez

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available It is generally accepted that resistance genes acquired by human pathogens trough horizontal gene transfer have been originated in environmental, non pathogenic bacteria. As the consequence, there exists an increasing concern on the role that natural, non-clinical ecosystems, may play on the evolution of resistance. Recent studies have shown that the variability of determinants that can provide antibiotic resistance upon their expression in a heterologous host is much larger than what is actually found in human pathogens. Along the review, the role that different processes as founder effect, ecological connectivity, fitness costs or second-order selection may have on the establishment of a specific resistance determinant in the population of bacterial pathogens is analysed.

  16. Phytoseiidae (Acari: Mesostigmata) from natural ecosystems in the State of São Paulo, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Moraes, Gilberto José; Barbosa, Marina Ferraz De Camargo; De Castro, Tatiane Marie Martins Gomes

    2013-01-01

    This work describes the results of a study of the phytoseiid mites collected from plants in two natural ecosystems in the State of São Paulo, Brazil-Cerrado and Atlantic Forest. In this study, 40 phytoseiid species are reported. Measurements of different structures are given for species for which measurements for the respective São Paulo populations were not previously provided. This study also includes the description of two new genera, Breviseius g. n. and Serraseius g. n., and ten new species, Amblydromalus macroatrium n. sp., Amblyseius atlanticus n. sp., Breviseius sennae n. sp., Cocoseius paucisetis n. sp., Proprioseiospsis pariquerassuensis n. sp., Serraseius caicara n. sp., Typhlodromalus ingae n. sp., Typhlodromalus feresisimilis n. sp., Typhlodromips corniformis n. sp. and Typhlodromips robustisetus n. sp.

  17. Making Nature Valuable, Not Profitable: Are Payments for Ecosystem Services Suitable for Degrowth?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Muniz

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The growth economy imposes multiple crises on humanity and the natural world. To challenge this economic growth imperative, the degrowth movement emerges as a dissident response. Although within an economic growth perspective, payments for ecosystem services (PES have also been proposed to attenuate the negative impacts of capitalism, as a redistributive mechanism that is claimed to deliver equitable conservation and sustainability. Degrowth has notably similar concerns, although it is inclined to argue against PES traditional ideologies and practices, which lead conservation to perceive nature within economic growth and market ideologies, diminishing the relationship between humans and nature. In spite of that, PES are becoming a strong trend in environmental governance. This paper attempts to examine whether PES are, and how they could be suitable for degrowth, through the lens of its main sources. In order to integrate PES and degrowth, it could require a PES reconceptualization. Although we assert that PES are not the most appropriate instrument for conservation, we argue that maybe PES could contribute to degrowth as a transition instrument toward fostering better practices. However, it is important to elucidate how they can be used and under which circumstances they could be appropriate.

  18. Understanding ecosystem services adoption by natural resource managers and research ecologists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engel, Daniel; Evans, Mary; Low, Bobbi S.; Schaeffer, Jeff

    2017-01-01

    The ecosystem services (ES) paradigm has gained much traction as a natural resource management approach due to its comprehensive nature and ability to provide quantitative tools to improve decision-making. However, it is still uncertain whether and how practitioners have adopted the ES paradigm into their work and how this aligns with resource management information needs. To address this, we surveyed natural resource managers within the Great Lakes region about their use of ES information in decision-making. We complemented our manager survey with in-depth interviews of a related population—research ecologists at the U.S. Geological Survey Great Lakes Science Center. In this study, managers and ecologists almost unanimously agreed that ES were appropriate to consider in resource management. We also found high congruence between managers and ecologists in the ES considered most relevant to their work, with provision of habitat, recreation and tourism, biological control, and primary production being the ES ranked highly by both groups. However, a disconnect arose when research ecologists deemed the information they provide regarding ES as adequate for management needs, but managers disagreed. Furthermore, managers reported that they would use economic information about ES if they had access to that information. We believe this data deficiency could represent a gap in scientific coverage by ecologists, but it may also simply reflect an underrepresentation of ecological economists who can translate ecological knowledge of ES providers into economic information that many managers desired.

  19. Modelling Regional Climate Change Effects On Potential Natural Ecosystems in Sweden

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koca, D.; Smith, B.; Sykes, M.T. [Centre for GeoBiosphere Science, Department of Physical Geography and Ecosystems Analysis, Lund University, Soelvegatan 12, S-223 62 Lund (Sweden)

    2006-10-15

    This study aims to demonstrate the potential of a process-based regional ecosystem model, LPJ-GUESS, driven by climate scenarios generated by a regional climate model system (RCM) to generate predictions useful for assessing effects of climatic and CO2 change on the key ecosystem services of carbon uptake and storage. Scenarios compatible with the A2 and B2 greenhouse gas emission scenarios of the Special Report on Emission Scenarios (SRES) and with boundary conditions from two general circulation models (GCMs) - HadAM3H and ECHAM4/OPYC3 - were used in simulations to explore changes in tree species distributions, vegetation structure, productivity and ecosystem carbon stocks for the late 21st Century, thus accommodating a proportion of the GCM-based and emissions-based uncertainty in future climate development. The simulations represented in this study were of the potential natural vegetation ignoring direct anthropogenic effects. Results suggest that shifts in climatic zones may lead to changes in species distribution and community composition among seven major tree species of natural Swedish forests. All four climate scenarios were associated with an extension of the boreal forest treeline with respect to altitude and latitude. In the boreal and boreo-nemoral zones, the dominance of Norway spruce and to a lesser extent Scots pine was reduced in favour of deciduous broadleaved tree species. The model also predicted substantial increases in vegetation net primary productivity (NPP), especially in central Sweden. Expansion of forest cover and increased local biomass enhanced the net carbon sink over central and northern Sweden, despite increased carbon release through decomposition processes in the soil. In southern Sweden, reduced growing season soil moisture levels counterbalanced the positive effects of a longer growing season and increased carbon supply on NPP, with the result that many areas were converted from a sink to a source of carbon by the late 21st

  20. When did a Mediterranean-type climate originate in southwestern Australia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamont, Byron B.; He, Tianhua

    2017-09-01

    Knowing the environments under which biota have evolved is essential for understanding the functional traits that they possess. Here, we ask when a Mediterranean-type climate (MTC) originated in Western Australia that might help to explain some of its special plant adaptations to summer drought and heat, mild wet winters and intense summer fires. Periodic drought and fire can be traced back to the Cretaceous in southwestern Australia (SWA) but its seasonality is unknown. Previous estimates of the origin of the MTC in SWA have varied from 30 to 3 million years ago (Ma). An early proposal was that it originated in northwestern Australia 30 Ma and migrated south to its present location for which we find independent support. We collated 47 cases of what is currently known about the time of origin of adaptive responses to summer drought and heat, wet winters and periodic intense fire among flowering plants in SWA. About 15% arose in the 40-30-million-year (My) period, 32% in the 30-20-My period and 47% in the 20-10-My period, suggesting that a MTC may have been widespread in SWA by the mid-Miocene, but there may have been local appearances (proto-MTC) up to 20 My earlier. Uncertainties remain about the location of lineages at various times, the fitness benefits of apparent adaptive traits and their confinement to a MTC, and the significance of the origin versus the onset of diversification of traits. The current dearth of C4 grasses in SWA is consistent with other indications of the absence of a prior history of a summer-dominant rainfall, suggesting that the current MTC arose from a uniform-rainfall climate. Other lines of evidence that might refine these findings include the chemical composition of, and application of geochronometers to, laterites, carbonates and corals that have been used with success elsewhere. We conclude by noting that there may have been a mixture of climates for much of the time, indicated by the persistence of a few rainforest species up to 3

  1. Law, the Laws of Nature and Ecosystem Energy Services: A Case of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    However, our legal and economic systems fail to recognise the value of the ecosystem service subsidies embedded in fossil fuels. This ecosystem services price subsidy causes overuse and waste of fossil fuels in the free market: fossil fuels are consumed more quickly than they can be replaced by ecosystem services and ...

  2. Investigating and Modeling Ecosystem Response to an Experimental and a Natural Ice Storm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fakhraei, H.; Driscoll, C. T.; Rustad, L.; Campbell, J. L.; Groffman, P.; Fahey, T.; Likens, G.; Swaminathan, R.

    2017-12-01

    Our understanding of ecosystem response to the extreme events is generally limited to rare observations from the natural historical events. However, investigating extreme events under controlled conditions can improve our understanding of these natural phenomena. A novel field experiment was conducted in a northern hardwood forest at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest in New Hampshire in the northeastern United States to quantify the influence of ice storms on the ecological processes. During subfreezing conditions in the winters of 2016 and 2017, water from a nearby stream was pumped and sprayed on the canopy of eight experimental plots to accrete ice to a targeted thickness on the canopy. The experiment was conducted at three levels of icing thickness (0.25, 0.5, 0.75 in.) in 2016 comparable to the naturally occurring 1998 ice storm and a second 0.5 in. treatment 2017 which were compared with reference plots. The most notable response of the icing treatments was a marked increase in fine and course litter fall which increased exponentially with increases in the icing thickness. Post-treatment openings in the canopy caused short-term increases in soil temperature in the ice-treatment plots compared to the reference plots. No response from the ice storm treatments were detected for soil moisture, net N mineralization, net nitrification, or denitrification after both natural and experimental ice storm. In contrast to the marked increase in the stream water nitrate after the natural occurring 1998 ice storm, we have not observed any significant change in soil solution N concentrations in the experimental ice storm treatments. Inconsistency in the response between the natural and experimental ice storm is likely due to differences in geophysical characteristics of the study sites including slope and lateral uptake of nutrient by the trees outside the experimental plots. In order to evaluate the long-term impacts of ice storms on northern hardwood forests, we used

  3. Future changes in the supply of goods and services from natural ecosystems: prospects for the European north

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roland Jansson

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Humans depend on services provided by ecosystems, and how services are affected by climate change is increasingly studied. Few studies, however, address changes likely to affect services from seminatural ecosystems. We analyzed ecosystem goods and services in natural and seminatural systems, specifically how they are expected to change as a result of projected climate change during the 21st century. We selected terrestrial and freshwater systems in northernmost Europe, where climate is anticipated to change more than the global average, and identified likely changes in ecosystem services and their societal consequences. We did this by assembling experts from ecology, social science, and cultural geography in workshops, and we also performed a literature review. Results show that most ecosystem services are affected by multiple factors, often acting in opposite directions. Out of 14 services considered, 8 are expected to increase or remain relatively unchanged in supply, and 6 are expected to decrease. Although we do not predict collapse or disappearance of any of the investigated services, the effects of climate change in conjunction with potential economical and societal changes may exceed the adaptive capacity of societies. This may result in societal reorganization and changes in ways that ecosystems are used. Significant uncertainties and knowledge gaps in the forecast make specific conclusions about societal responses to safeguard human well-being questionable. Adapting to changes in ecosystem services will therefore require consideration of uncertainties and complexities in both social and ecological responses. The scenarios presented here provide a framework for future studies exploring such issues.

  4. Modelling of plant-soil carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus cycling in semi-natural terrestrial ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, Jessica; Quinton, John; Rowe, Ed; Tipping, Ed

    2013-04-01

    In recent centuries pools and fluxes of C, N and P in natural and semi-natural UK ecosystems have been transformed by atmospheric pollution leading to: acidification; eutrophication of surface waters; loss of biodiversity; and increased greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, climate change now threatens to perturb these systems further. Understanding in this field is vital in determining the consequences of artificial nutrient enrichment and land use and climate change, and mitigating against their effects. The N14CP model has been recently developed to assess the temporal responses of soil C, N and P pools to nutrient enrichment in semi-natural ecosystems, and explore the connections between these nutrients. It is a dynamic, mechanistic model, driven by: climate; CO2, N (fixation and pollutant deposition), and P (weathering and atmospheric deposition) inputs; and plant cover type. It explicitly links C, N, and P in both plants and soils, using plant element stoichiometry as the primary constraint. Net primary production, and plant/soil element pools, are calculated over time, and output fluxes of dissolved organic and inorganic, and gaseous, forms of C, N, and P produced. Radiocarbon data are used to constrain Soil Organic Matter (SOM) turnover. The SOM is represented as three pools, undergoing first-order decomposition reactions with turn-over rates ranging from 2 to 1000 years. The N14CP modelling methodology is discussed and its calibration and verification using observations from 200 northern European sites presented. Whilst the primary period of interest with respect to nutrient enrichment is from the industrial revolution onwards, plant-soil C, N and P are simulated at these sites for a period spanning from the start of the Holocene (to provide a spin-up period) to the present day. Clearly, during this time span land cover and usage will have changed at these sites, and histories of these changes are used as an input to the model. The influence of these land

  5. Urban Environment and Nature. A Methodological Proposal for Spaces’ Reconnection in an Ecosystem Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonia Prestamburgo

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Our main objective is to highlight the profound disconnect between natural and anthropic elements within urban areas, with particular reference to the morpho-functional dimensions of the urban and territorial pattern. Heterogeneity in the elements underpinning relations in urban environments, absent governing principles, predisposes to conditions of widespread dysfunction and inefficiency in the modalities of anthropic utilization of the various contexts. As a result, the functions inherent to ecological and natural networks tend to be undermined, negatively impacting the environment. To this end, this paper proposes the adoption of ecoducts, on the one hand as a means to support planning and a measure aimed at reactivating the complex functions typical of urban environments and, on the other hand, as a two-way correlation between anthropic and ecological interactions at the territorial scale. Finally, the analysis of an Italian case study will highlight the potential of such instruments in terms of creating an integrated eco-systemic service, capable of significantly contributing to long-term improvement in the quality of life of urban systems.

  6. [Evaluation of ecosystem service values of the forests of Shennongjia Nature Reserve].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yong-Jie; Wang, Shi-Chang; Peng, Hao; Li, Zhen-Qing

    2014-05-01

    As an ecological protected area for rare animals and plants in a subtropical forest zone, Shennongjia National Reserve plays an important role in the study of biodiversity in China. By using the market value, shade-price and opportunity-cost methods, the forest ecosystem service values of Shennongjia National Nature Reserve were evaluated, including forest production, recreation and culture, water conservation, soil conservation, gas regulation, environment purification, nutrient circulation and biodiversity conservation. The total value of the Shennongjia Nature Reserve was approximately 204.33 x 10(8) yuan RMB x a(-1). The values of the different functions were in order of biodiversity conservation (68.5%) > soil conservation (12.7%) > recreation and culture (4.9%) > gas regulation (4.8%) > forest production (4.2%) > water conservation (3.9%) > environment purification (0.7%) > nutrient circulation (0.3%). The values with respect to utility were in sequence of unused value (68.5%) > indirect value in use (22.4% ) > direct value in use (9.1%).

  7. On incorporating fire into our thinking about natural ecosystems: A response to Saha and Howe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keeley, Jon E.; Bond, William J.

    2001-01-01

    Ecologists long have had a fascination with fire impacts, although they have been slow to incorporate this ecological factor into serious thinking about the structure of communities and evolution of species (Bond and van Wilgen 1996).  The remarks by Saha and Howe (2001, in this issue) illustrate some of the problems ecologists have in trying to apply fire to their thinking about natural ecosystems.  Fire is commonly perceived qualitatively in terms of presence or absence, and the variation in frequency and intensity, as well as other components of the fire regime (e.g., fig. 1), is ignored.  Often not considered is the fact that plant life histories are fine-tuned to particular fire regims, and in this regard, landscapes present a range of selective peaks and valleys, both figuratively and literally.  Because landscape patterns affect the propagation of natural fires, it is imperative that the degree of human disturbance be considered (e.g. Marsh [1864] 1965; Gadgil and Guhu 1993) and the limitations of basing evolutionary arguments on anthropogenically derived landscapes be recognized (e.g., Janzen and Martin 1982).

  8. Fort Collins Science Center Ecosystem Dynamics branch--interdisciplinary research for addressing complex natural resource issues across landscapes and time

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Zachary H.; Melcher, Cynthia P.; Wilson, Juliette T.

    2013-01-01

    The Ecosystem Dynamics Branch of the Fort Collins Science Center offers an interdisciplinary team of talented and creative scientists with expertise in biology, botany, ecology, geology, biogeochemistry, physical sciences, geographic information systems, and remote-sensing, for tackling complex questions about natural resources. As demand for natural resources increases, the issues facing natural resource managers, planners, policy makers, industry, and private landowners are increasing in spatial and temporal scope, often involving entire regions, multiple jurisdictions, and long timeframes. Needs for addressing these issues include (1) a better understanding of biotic and abiotic ecosystem components and their complex interactions; (2) the ability to easily monitor, assess, and visualize the spatially complex movements of animals, plants, water, and elements across highly variable landscapes; and (3) the techniques for accurately predicting both immediate and long-term responses of system components to natural and human-caused change. The overall objectives of our research are to provide the knowledge, tools, and techniques needed by the U.S. Department of the Interior, state agencies, and other stakeholders in their endeavors to meet the demand for natural resources while conserving biodiversity and ecosystem services. Ecosystem Dynamics scientists use field and laboratory research, data assimilation, and ecological modeling to understand ecosystem patterns, trends, and mechanistic processes. This information is used to predict the outcomes of changes imposed on species, habitats, landscapes, and climate across spatiotemporal scales. The products we develop include conceptual models to illustrate system structure and processes; regional baseline and integrated assessments; predictive spatial and mathematical models; literature syntheses; and frameworks or protocols for improved ecosystem monitoring, adaptive management, and program evaluation. The descriptions

  9. Natural capital and ecosystem services for sustainable livelihoods in Costa Vicentina, Portugal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula Antunes

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The OpenNESS project, funded by EC FP7, aims to translate the concepts of Natural Capital (NC and Ecosystem Services (ES into operational frameworks that provide tested, practical and tailored solutions for integrating ES into land, water and urban management and decision-making, while promoting local stakeholders well-being. Central to the project is a multi-scale case study approach, designed to ground concepts and theories on real world observations and analysis. This paper presents one of the project case studies, located in the Portuguese southwest coast – Costa Vicentina. This case study is focused on the use of NC and ES concepts to design instruments for sustainable management of living resources (algae, shellfish and fish and to promote a sustainable nature-based tourism. The research aims to (1 identify the linkages between marine natural capital stocks (e.g. bottom algae, shellfish populations,... with ES provision; (2 explore the perceptions and importance of ES to local stakeholders’ wellbeing and their economic value; and (3 evaluate the use of ES in land-use planning and conservation, and the potential of different policy instruments and governance arrangements to ensure the delivery of ES and to promote local stakeholders well-being. The combination of methods such as ES mapping, monetary and non-monetary valuation of ES, and system dynamics modelling, will ultimately be used to inform and support decision makers and policy instruments design. The research is rooted on a participatory process involving the main stakeholder groups, thus fostering dialogue and social learning.

  10. Joint Slovak-Ukraine-Germany Beech Ecosystems as the World Natural Heritage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vološčuk Ivan

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The European beech Fagus sylvatica L. ssp. sylvatica L. is exclusively found in Europe. The beech survived the ice age in small refuges in the south and south-east Europe and went on to colonise large parts of the continent. The post-ice age colonisation of the landscape by the beech took place parallel to the settlement of land by humans and the formation of a more complex society. For centuries much of the Carpathian mountain forests remained untouched (Fig. 1. Virgin forests constitute a natural heritage of global significance. In 2007, 10 protected areas with the Primeval Beech Forests of Carpathians (Slovakia, Ukraine were added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List. On 25 June 2011, the UNESCO World Heritage Committee added five of Germany’s beech forest protected areas to the World Heritage List. This extended the transboundary world natural heritage site ‘Primeval Beech Forest of the Carpathians’, located in the Slovak Republic and Ukraine, to include a German forest protected areas, and renamed it ‘Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Ancient Beech Forests of Germany’. This paper is aimed at the presentation of the outstanding universal value of the ecological processes in the Joint World Heritage Sites, short description of protected areas and principles of their integrated management plan. This paper also deals with problems in management plan realisation in practice. Ultimate goal is to achieve that management and socio-economic sustainable development practices are in harmony with primary objectives of World Heritage Site protection, biodiversity conservation, ecosystem and landscape stability, rational use of natural resources, ecotourism development and with potential of the landscape in largest possible extend.

  11. The Importance of Ecology-Based Nature Education Project in Terms of Nature Integration and Understanding the Human-Ecosystem Relationship

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meydan, Ali

    2011-01-01

    The aim of this project is to define the importance of 12-day ecology-based education training upon integration with nature and understanding the human-ecosystem relationship. In accordance with this purpose, there has been collected some survey data interviewing with the participants of "Lake Beysehir National Park and Ecology-based Nature…

  12. Modeling aesthetics to support an ecosystem services approach for natural resource management decision making.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Booth, Pieter N; Law, Sheryl A; Ma, Jane; Buonagurio, John; Boyd, James; Turnley, Jessica

    2017-09-01

    This paper reviews literature on aesthetics and describes the development of vista and landscape aesthetics models. Spatially explicit variables were chosen to represent physical characteristics of natural landscapes that are important to aesthetic preferences. A vista aesthetics model evaluates the aesthetics of natural landscapes viewed from distances of more than 1000 m, and a landscape aesthetics model evaluates the aesthetic value of wetlands and forests within 1000 m from the viewer. Each of the model variables is quantified using spatially explicit metrics on a pixel-specific basis within EcoAIM™, a geographic information system (GIS)-based ecosystem services (ES) decision analysis support tool. Pixel values are "binned" into ranked categories, and weights are assigned to select variables to represent stakeholder preferences. The final aesthetic score is the weighted sum of all variables and is assigned ranked values from 1 to 10. Ranked aesthetic values are displayed on maps by patch type and integrated within EcoAIM. The response of the aesthetic scoring in the models was tested by comparing current conditions in a discrete area of the facility with a Development scenario in the same area. The Development scenario consisted of two 6-story buildings and a trail replacing natural areas. The results of the vista aesthetic model indicate that the viewshed area variable had the greatest effect on the aesthetics overall score. Results from the landscape aesthetics model indicate a 10% increase in overall aesthetics value, attributed to the increase in landscape diversity. The models are sensitive to the weights assigned to certain variables by the user, and these weights should be set to reflect regional landscape characteristics as well as stakeholder preferences. This demonstration project shows that natural landscape aesthetics can be evaluated as part of a nonmonetary assessment of ES, and a scenario-building exercise provides end users with a tradeoff

  13. Integration of Field Studies and Undergraduate Research into an Interdisciplinary Course: Natural History of Tropical Carbonate Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eves, Robert L.; Davis, Larry E.; Brown, D. Gordon; Lamberts, William L.

    2007-01-01

    According to Carl Sagan (1987), "Science is a way of thinking much more than it is a body of knowledge." Field studies and undergraduate research provide students with the best opportunities for "thinking" about science, while at the same time acquiring a body of knowledge. Natural History of Tropical Carbonate Ecosystems is a…

  14. Relation between methanogenic archaea and methane production potential in selected natural wetland ecosystems across China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Y. Liu

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Methane (CH4 emissions from natural wetland ecosystems exhibit large spatial variability at regional, national, and global levels related to temperature, water table, plant type and methanogenic archaea etc. To understand the underlying factors that induce spatial differences in CH4 emissions, and the relationship between the population of methanogenic archaea and CH4 production potential in natural wetlands around China, we measured the CH4 production potential and the abundance of methanogenic archaea in vertical soil profiles sampled from the Poyang wetland in the subtropical zone, the Hongze wetland in the warm temperate zone, the Sanjiang marsh in the cold temperate zone, and the Ruoergai peatland in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau in the alpine climate zone. The top soil layer had the highest population of methanogens (1.07–8.29 × 109 cells g−1 soil in all wetlands except the Ruoergai peatland and exhibited the maximum CH4 production potential measured at the mean in situ summer temperature. There is a significant logarithmic correlation between the abundance of methanogenic archaea and the soil organic carbon (R2 = 0.72, P < 0.001, n = 13 and between the abundance of methanogenic archaea and the total nitrogen concentrations (R2 = 0.76, P < 0.001, n = 13 in wetland soils. This indicates that the amount of soil organic carbon may affect the population of methanogens in wetland ecosystems. While the CH4 production potential is not significantly related to methanogen population (R2 = 0.01, P > 0.05, n = 13, it is related to the dissolved organic carbon concentration (R2 = 0.31, P = 0.05, n = 13. This suggests that the methanogen population might be not an effective index for predicting the CH4 production in wetland

  15. Experimental and theoretical study of microalgal competition in laboratory and natural ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pisman, T. I.; Somova, L. A.

    An important aspect of studying mixed cultures of microalgae is the artificial ecosystems containing algal culture as a regeneration link and a source of vegetable substances. The peculiarities of studying the stability of microalgae mixed cultures in the laboratory and natural environment have been considered in the work. The role of factors most essentially affecting the species structure of phytoplankton community (temperature factor, light intensity, pH environments, elements of mineral nutrition, algal metabolites, predation and fluctuation of environmental conditions) has been displayed. As a result of experimental and theoretical modelling of the microalgae Chlorella vulgaris and Scenedesmus quadricauda competition under limitation on nitrogen, the impossibility of their co-existence has been revealed. Under these conditions Chl. vulgaris turned out to be less competitive than Sc. quadricauda. The influence of the ratio of biogenic elements concentration in the environment, which should be recognized as an independent regulatory factor limiting growth of populations in the community and, thus affecting its structure, has been analyzed.

  16. Bioindication in natural-like aquatic ecosystems: endocrine disruptors in outdoor microcosms. Status-report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schramm, K.W.; Severin, G.F.

    2002-07-01

    Over the past few decades scientists have shown that the hormone system of a wide range of organisms can be affected by numerous environmental chemicals. Society strongly demands studies about the fate and effects of such endocrine disruptors on the aquatic environment. It has been scientifically accepted that risk assessment studies done in aquatic microcosms can be used to extrapolate the potential impact of the tested compound on natural ecosystems. Realistic exposure situations were simulated and screening methods as well as analytical methods with high accuracy were applied on water and sediment. For the comprehensive risk assessment as many trophic levels as possible have to be investigated. Changes in the population dynamics and the community structure serve as ecotoxicological endpoints. Modelling the concentrations of the chemicals in the different aquatic compartments complements and confirms the analytical diagnostics. A directed design of the analytical procedures according to amount of sample and limits of determination becomes possible. Bridging acute and chronic time scales in effect diagnostics the 'area under the curve' - approach has been followed in combination with multivariate statistics. Haber's rule have been applied to the results about complex effect- and exposure-conditions. In some cases the interpretation of results becomes more easy and clear by this approach. (orig.)

  17. Effluent Mixing Modeling for Liquefied Natural Gas Outfalls in a Coastal Ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mustafa Samad

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Liquid Natural Gas (LNG processing facilities typically are located on ocean shores for easy transport of LNG by marine vessels. These plants use large quantities of water for various process streams. The combined wastewater effluents from the LNG plants are discharged to the coastal and marine environments typically through submarine outfalls. Proper disposal of effluents from an LNG plant is essential to retain local and regional environmental values and to ensure regulatory and permit compliance for industrial effluents. Typical outfall designs involve multi-port diffuser systems where the design forms a part of the overall environmental impact assessment for the plant. The design approach needs to ensure that both near-field plume dispersion and far-field effluent circulation meets the specified mixing zone criteria. This paper describes typical wastewater process streams from an LNG plant and presents a diffuser system design case study (for an undisclosed project location in a meso-tidal coast to meet the effluent mixing zone criteria. The outfall is located in a coastal and marine ecosystem where the large tidal range and persistent surface wind govern conditions for the diffuser design. Physical environmental attributes and permit compliance criteria are discussed in a generic format. The paper describes the design approach, conceptualization of numerical model schemes for near- and far-field effluent mixing zones, and the selected diffuser design.

  18. Valuing Supporting Soil Ecosystem Services in Agriculture: A Natural Capital Approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brady, M.V.; Hedlund, K.; Cong, R.G.; Hemerik, L.; Hotes, S.; Machado, S.; Mattson, L.; Schulz, E.; Thomsen, I.K.

    2015-01-01

    Soil biodiversity through its delivery of ecosystem functions and attendant supporting ecosystem services—benefits soil organisms generate for farmers—underpins agricultural production. Yet lack of practical methods to value the long-term effects of current farming practices results, inevitably, in

  19. Proceedings of the fourth meeting of the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) Working Party S07.02.09: Phytophthoras in forests and natural ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    E.M. Goheen; S.J. Frankel

    2009-01-01

    The fourth meeting of the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) Working Party S07.02.09, Phytophthoras in Forests and Natural Ecosystems provided a forum for current research on Phytophthora species worldwide. Seventy-eight submissions describing papers and posters on recent developments in Phytophthora diseases of trees and natural ecosystems in...

  20. A Collaborative Approach for Scoping Ecosystem Services with Stakeholders: The Case of Arrábida Natural Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopes, Rita; Videira, Nuno

    2016-08-01

    This paper presents an innovative approach for conducting collaborative scoping processes aiming to elicit multiple values of ecosystem services. The proposed methodology rests on three steps combining different participatory tools that promote a comprehensive examination of the perceptions hold by relevant stakeholder groups. The first step consists of an institutional and stakeholder analysis developed in the study area. The second includes a participatory workshop, where a sequence of scoping exercises is conducted with the active collaboration of the invited stakeholders. The final step aims to validate scoping results and develop dependency networks between organizations and the identified ecosystem services. The approach was tested in the Arrábida Natural Park, a marine and coastal protected area in Portugal. Invited participants were able to identify an extensive list of ecosystem services in the natural area, establish linkages between those services and human wellbeing, identify drivers of change and perform a preliminary screening of the associated ecological, social, and economic values. The case study evaluation provided positive feedback on the usefulness of the approach, which advances the existing set of methods for participatory identification of ecosystem services and sets the scene for involvement of stakeholder groups in assessment and management processes.

  1. Microbial Communities in the Vertical Atmosphere: Effects of Urbanization and the Natural Environment in Four North American Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Docherty, K. M.; Lemmer, K. M.; Domingue, K. D.; Spring, A.; Kerber, T. V.; Mooney, M. M.

    2017-12-01

    Airborne transport of microbial communities is a key component of the global ecosystem because it serves as a mechanism for dispersing microbial life between all surface habitats on the planet. However, most of our understanding of airborne microbial distribution is derived from samples collected near the ground. Little is understood about how the vertical layers of the air may act as a habitat filter or how local terrestrial ecosystems contribute to a vast airborne microbial seedbank. Specifically, urbanization may fundamentally alter the terrestrial sources of airborne microbial biodiversity. To address this question, we conducted airborne sampling at minimally disturbed natural sites and paired urban sites in 4 different North American ecosystems: shortgrass steppe, desert scrub, eastern deciduous forest, and northern mesic forest. All natural area sites were co-located with NEON/Ameriflux tower sites collecting atmospheric data. We developed an airborne sampling platform that uses tethered helikites at 3 replicate locations within each ecosystem to launch remote-controlled sampler payloads. We designed sampler payloads to collect airborne bacteria and fungi from 150, 30 and 2 m above the ground. Payload requirements included: ability to be disinfected and remain contaminant-free during transport, remote open/close functionality, payload weight under 6 lbs and automated collection of weather data. After sampling for 6 hours at each location, we extracted DNA collected by the samplers. We also extracted DNA from soil and plant samples collected from each location, and characterized ground vegetation. We conducted bacterial 16S amplicon-based sequencing using Mi-Seq and sequence analysis using QIIME. We used ArcGIS to determine percent land use coverage. Our results demonstrate that terrestrial ecosystem type is the most important factor contributing to differences in airborne bacterial community composition, and that communities differed by ecosystem. The

  2. Environmental water requirements of groundwater dependent ecosystems: conflict between nature and man

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witczak, S.; Kania, J.; Rozanski, K.; Wachniew, P.; Zurek, A.; Dulinski, M.

    2012-04-01

    The presented study was aimed at investigating possible interactions between the porous sandy aquifer intensively exploited for drinking water purposes and the groundwater dependent ecosystem (GDE) consisting of a valuable forest stand. The investigated aquifer (Bogucice Sands) and the associated GDE (Niepolomice Forest) are located in the south of Poland. The aquifer covers the area of ca. 200 km2 and belongs to the category of medium groundwater basins in Poland. The Niepolomice Forest is a lowland forest covering around 110 km2. This relic of once vast forests is protected as a Natura 2000 Special Protection Area "Puszcza Niepolomicka" (PLB120002) that supports bird populations of European importance. Additionally, a fen in the western part of the Niepolomice Forest comprises a separate Natura 2000 area "Torfowisko Wielkie Bloto" (PLH120080), a significant habitat of endangered butterfly species associated with wet meadows. The Niepolomice Forest contains also several nature reserves and the European bison breeding centre and has an important recreational value as the largest forest complex in the vicinity of Krakow. Due to spatially variable lithologies and groundwater levels, the Niepolomice Forest is a mosaic of various forest and non-forest habitats, including wetlands, marsh forests, humid forests and fresh forests. Dependence of the Niepolomice Forest stands on groundwater is enhanced by low available water capacity and low capillary rise of soils in the area. Groundwater conditions in the Niepolomice Forest, including Wielkie Bloto fen have been affected by meliorations carried out mostly in the period 1900-1930 and after the Second World War and by forest management. Due to artesian conditions in the area and relatively thin clay layer separating Tertiary aquifer layers from shallow Quaternary aquifer, the upward leaching of deeper groundwater may contribute in a significant way to the water balance of the investigated GDE. In September 2009 a cluster of

  3. Nickel-resistant bacteria from anthropogenically nickel-polluted and naturally nickel-percolated ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoppel, R; Schlegel, H G

    1995-06-01

    DNA fragments harboring the nickel resistance determinants from bacteria isolated from anthropogenically polluted ecosystems in Europe and Zaire were compared with those harboring the nickel resistance determinants from bacteria isolated from naturally nickel-percolated soils from New Caledonia by DNA-DNA hybridization. The biotinylated DNA probes were derived from the previously described Alcaligenes eutrophus CH34, Alcaligenes xylosoxidans 31A, Alcaligenes denitrificans 4a-2, and Klebsiella oxytoca CCUG 15788 and four new nickel resistance-determining fragments cloned from strains isolated from soils under nickel-hyperaccumulating trees. Nine probes were hybridized with endonuclease-cleaved plasmid and total DNA samples from 56 nickel-resistant strains. Some of the New Caledonian strains were tentatively identified as Acinetobacter, Pseudomonas mendocina, Comamonas, Hafnia alvei, Burkholderia, Arthrobacter aurescens, and Arthrobacter ramosus strains. The DNA of most strains showed homologies to one or several of the following nickel resistance determinants: the cnr and ncc operons of the strains A. eutrophus CH34 and A. xylosoxidans 31A, respectively, the nre operon of strain 31A, and the nickel resistance determinants of K. oxytoca. On the basis of their hybridization reactions the nickel resistance determinants of the strains could be assigned to four groups: (i) cnr/ncc type, (ii) cnr/ncc/nre type, (iii) K. oxytoca type, and (iv) others. The majority of the strains were assigned to the known groups. Among the strains from Belgium and Zaire, exclusively the cnr/ncc and the cnr/ncc/nre types were found. Among the New Caledonian strains all four types were represented. Homologies to the nre operon were found only in combination with the cnr/ncc operon. The homologies to the cnr/ncc operon were the most abundant and were detected alone or together with homologies to the nre operon. Only the DNA of the strains isolated from soil in Scotland and the United States

  4. Characterization of a Bacillus thuringiensis strain collection isolated from diverse Costa Rican natural ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Glen Arrieta

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Costa Rican natural ecosystems are among the most diverse in the world. For this reason, we isolated strains of the entomopathogenic bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt to determine their diversity, distribution and abundance. A total of 146 Bt strains were obtained from environmental samples collected from diverse natural ecosystems and life zones of Costa Rica. We recovered Bt strains from 71%, 63%, 61% and 54% of soil samples, fresh leaves, other substrates and leaf litter respectively. Bt was isolated in 65%of the samples collected in the humid tropical forest in national parks (Braulio Carrillo, Gandoca Manzanillo, Sierpe, Hitoy Cerere, and Cahuita, and in 59% of the samples collected in the dry tropical forest (Parque Nacional Marino las Baulas, Palo Verde and Santa Rosa. In the very humid tropical forest (Tortuguero Bt was isolated in 75% of the samples and in the very humid tropical forest transition perhumid (Cararait was found in 69% of the samples. The strains exhibit a diverse number, size and morphology of parasporal inclusion bodies: irregular (47%,oval (20%, bipyramidal (3%, bipyramidal and cubic (1%, bipyramidal, oval and irregular (5% and bipyramidal, oval and cubic crystals (2%. Strains isolated from Braulio Carrillo, Tortuguero and Cahuita, presented predominantly irregular crystals. On the other hand, more than 60% of the isolates from Térraba-Sierpe and Hitoy-Cerere had medium oval crystals. Strains from Gandoca-Manzanillo, Palo Verde and Carara presented mainly combinations of oval and irregular crystals. Nevertheless, the greatest diversity in crystal morphology was observed in those from Santa Rosa, Llanos del Río Medio Queso and Parque Marino las Baulas. Protein analyses of the crystal-spore preparations showed ä -endotoxin with diverse electrophoretic patterns, with molecular weights in the range of 20 to 160 kDa. Fifty six percent of the strains amplified with the cry2 primer, 54% with vip3, 20% with cry1, 9% with

  5. Climate change adaptation and mitigation options a guide for natural resource managers in southern forest ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    James M. Vose; Kier D. Klepzig

    2014-01-01

    The rapid pace of climate change and its direct and indirect effects on forest ecosystems present a pressing need for better scientific understanding and the development of new science-management partnerships. Understanding the effects of stressors and disturbances (including climatic variability), and developing and testing science-based management options to deal...

  6. Plant Species Diversity Mediates Ecosystem Stability of Natural Dune Grasslands in Response to Drought

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rooijen, van Nils M.; Keersmaecker, de Wanda; Ozinga, Wim A.; Coppin, Pol; Hennekens, Stephan M.; Schaminée, Joop H.J.; Somers, Ben; Honnay, Olivier

    2015-01-01

    How plant species diversity can mediate the temporal stability of ecosystem functioning during periods of environmental stress is still a pressing question in ecology, certainly in the context of predicted increasing frequencies and intensities of climate extremes, such as drought. The vast

  7. Embedding ecosystem services in coastal planning leads to better outcomes for people and nature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arkema, Katie K; Verutes, Gregory M; Wood, Spencer A; Clarke-Samuels, Chantalle; Rosado, Samir; Canto, Maritza; Rosenthal, Amy; Ruckelshaus, Mary; Guannel, Gregory; Toft, Jodie; Faries, Joe; Silver, Jessica M; Griffin, Robert; Guerry, Anne D

    2015-06-16

    Recent calls for ocean planning envision informed management of social and ecological systems to sustain delivery of ecosystem services to people. However, until now, no coastal and marine planning process has applied an ecosystem-services framework to understand how human activities affect the flow of benefits, to create scenarios, and to design a management plan. We developed models that quantify services provided by corals, mangroves, and seagrasses. We used these models within an extensive engagement process to design a national spatial plan for Belize's coastal zone. Through iteration of modeling and stakeholder engagement, we developed a preferred plan, currently under formal consideration by the Belizean government. Our results suggest that the preferred plan will lead to greater returns from coastal protection and tourism than outcomes from scenarios oriented toward achieving either conservation or development goals. The plan will also reduce impacts to coastal habitat and increase revenues from lobster fishing relative to current management. By accounting for spatial variation in the impacts of coastal and ocean activities on benefits that ecosystems provide to people, our models allowed stakeholders and policymakers to refine zones of human use. The final version of the preferred plan improved expected coastal protection by >25% and more than doubled the revenue from fishing, compared with earlier versions based on stakeholder preferences alone. Including outcomes in terms of ecosystem-service supply and value allowed for explicit consideration of multiple benefits from oceans and coasts that typically are evaluated separately in management decisions.

  8. Evolving Ecosystems in Education: The Nature and Implications of Private Supplementary Tutoring in Hong Kong

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bray, Mark; Kobakhidze, Magda Nutsa

    2015-01-01

    An established literature draws on ecological concepts to analyze interrelationships within education structures and processes, and the impact of shifting balances. Private supplementary tutoring--relatively new in ecosystems of education around the world--is creating significant changes in relationships, particularly as they concern teachers'…

  9. Integrative approaches to investigating human-natural systems: the Baltimore ecosystem study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mary L. Cadenasso; Steward T.A. Pickett; Morgan J. Grove; Morgan J. Grove

    2006-01-01

    This paper presents an overview of the research approaches used to study metropolitan Baltimore (Maryland, USA) as an ecological system. The urban ecosystem is a complex of biophysical, social, and built components, and is studied by an interdisciplinary teamof biological, social, and physical scientists, and urban designers. Ecology ?of? themetropolis is addressed...

  10. Naturalization of host-dependent microbes after introduction into terrestrial ecosystems [Chapter 5

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geral I. McDonald; Paul J. Zambino; Ned B. Klopfenstein

    2005-01-01

    Introduction of plant pathogens, insects, parasites, and predators into terrestrial and marine ecosystems is second only to habitat loss among major threats to biodiversity (Torchin et. al. 2002), and the frequency of introductions continues to increase (Flather et al. 1998, Torchin et al. 2002, Wilcove et al. 1998). Despite their detrimental impacts, introductions can...

  11. Soil ecology and ecosystem services of dairy and semi-natural grasslands on peat

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Deru, Joachim G.C.; Bloem, Jaap; Goede, de Ron; Keidel, Harm; Kloen, Henk; Rutgers, Michiel; Akker, van den Jan; Brussaard, Lijbert; Eekeren, van Nick

    2017-01-01

    Peat wetlands are of major importance for ecosystem services such as carbon storage, water regulation and maintenance of biodiversity. However, peat drainage for farming leads to CO2 emission, soil subsidence and biodiversity losses. In the peat areas in the Netherlands, solutions are

  12. Investigation of the factors influencing radiocesium concentrations of fish inhabiting natural aquatic ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jinks, S.M.

    1975-01-01

    Distributions of radioactive and stable cesium were determined in water, sediment, and biota from eight different aquatic ecosystems between 1971 and 1973. The ecosystems included four lakes, fresh and brackish water regions of the Hudson River estuary, and two coastal marine sites. In the Hudson River estuary, the distribution of radiocesium between suspended and dissolved phases in water was found to be a function of salinity. Mean rates of deposition of suspended radiocesium into bottom sediment are calculated from the temporal changes in concentrations of the media, and observed depth distributions in sediment are semi-quantitatively described. Desorption by salt water is identified as the major mechanism for transport of radiocesium from bottom sediment in the lower estuary, and half-times for removal by this mechanism are estimated to be 1.5 to 2.0 years. Suspended-dissolved distributions of radiocesium in water, and depth distributions in sediment are also presented for lake and marine systems. Accumulation of radiocesium by fish is examined in relation to radiocesium distributions in water, sediment, and other biota, and to the chemical characteristics of each ecosystem. Radiocesium dissolved in water was the primary source to the fish in all ecosystems. Sediment inventories of 137 Cs constituted a secondary source which provided as much as 50 percent of the radiocesium in benthic feeding fish in the Hudson River. Dietary intake of 137 Cs is shown to be inversely related to the potassium concentration in the ambient water, and results in an inverse proportionality between the concentration factor in fish and the potassium concentrations in the different freshwater and estuarine ecosystems

  13. Towards Integrating Soil Quality Monitoring Targets as Measures of Soil Natural Capital Stocks with the Provision of Ecosystem Services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, M. D.; Mackay, A. D.; Dominati, E.; Hill, R. B.

    2012-04-01

    This paper presents the process used to review soil quality monitoring in New Zealand to better align indicators and indicator target ranges with critical values of change in soil function. Since its inception in New Zealand 15 year ago, soil quality monitoring has become an important state of the environment reporting tool for Regional Councils. This tool assists councils to track the condition of soils resources, assess the impact of different land management practices, and provide timely warning of emerging issues to allow early intervention and avoid irreversible loss of natural capital stocks. Critical to the effectiveness of soil quality monitoring is setting relevant, validated thresholds or target ranges. Provisional Target Ranges were set in 2003 using expert knowledge available and data on production responses. Little information was available at that time for setting targets for soil natural capital stocks other than those for food production. The intention was to revise these provisional ranges as further information became available and extend target ranges to cover the regulating and cultural services provided by soils. A recently developed ecosystems service framework was used to explore the feasibility of linking soil natural capital stocks measured by the current suite of soil quality indicators to the provision of ecosystem services by soils. Importantly the new approach builds on and utilises the time series data sets collected by current suite of soil quality indicators, adding value to the current effort, and has the potential to set targets ranges based on the economic and environmental outcomes required for a given farm, catchment or region. It is now timely to develop a further group of environmental indicators for measuring specific soil issues. As with the soil quality indicators, these environmental indicators would be aligned with the provision of ecosystem services. The toolbox envisaged is a set of indicators for specific soil issues

  14. A Global-Scale Estimate of Ecosystem Services from Urban Agriculture: Understanding Incentives for Natural Capital in Cities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clinton, N.; Stuhlmacher, M.; Miles, A.; Uludere, N.; Wagner, M.; Georgescu, M.; Herwig, C.; Gong, P.

    2017-12-01

    Despite substantial interest in urban agriculture, little is known about the aggregate benefits conferred by natural capital for growing food in cities. Here we perform a scenario-based analysis to quantify ecosystem services from adoption of urban agriculture at varying intensity. To drive the scenarios, we created global-scale estimates of vacant land, rooftop and building surface area, at one kilometer resolution, from remotely sensed and modeled geospatial data. We used national scale agricultural reports, climate and other geospatial data at global scale to estimate agricultural production and economic returns, storm-water avoidance, energy savings from avoided heating and cooling costs, and ecosystem services provided by nitrogen sequestration, pollination and biocontrol of pests. The results indicate that vacant lands, followed by rooftops, represent the largest opportunities for natural capital put to agricultural use in urban areas. Ecosystem services from putting such spaces to productive use are dominated by agricultural returns, but energy savings conferred by insulative characteristics of growth substrate also provide economic incentives. Storm water avoidance was estimated to be substantial, but no economic value was estimated. Relatively low economic returns were estimated from the other ecosystem services examined. In aggregate, approximately $10-100 billion in economic incentives, before costs, were estimated. The results showed that relatively developed, high-income countries stand the most to gain from urban agricultural adoption due to the unique combination of climate, crop mixture and crop prices. While the results indicate that urban agriculture is not a panacea for urban food security issues, there is potential to simultaneously ameliorate multiple issues around food, energy and water in urbanized areas.

  15. Improved understanding of drought controls on seasonal variation in Mediterranean forest canopy CO2 and water fluxes through combined in situ measurements and ecosystem modelling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Sabate

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Water stress is a defining characteristic of Mediterranean ecosystems, and is likely to become more severe in the coming decades. Simulation models are key tools for making predictions, but our current understanding of how soil moisture controls ecosystem functioning is not sufficient to adequately constrain parameterisations. Canopy-scale flux data from four forest ecosystems with Mediterranean-type climates were used in order to analyse the physiological controls on carbon and water flues through the year. Significant non-stomatal limitations on photosynthesis were detected, along with lesser changes in the conductance-assimilation relationship. New model parameterisations were derived and implemented in two contrasting modelling approaches. The effectiveness of two models, one a dynamic global vegetation model ("ORCHIDEE", and the other a forest growth model particularly developed for Mediterranean simulations ("GOTILWA+", was assessed and modelled canopy responses to seasonal changes in soil moisture were analysed in comparison with in situ flux measurements. In contrast to commonly held assumptions, we find that changing the ratio of conductance to assimilation under natural, seasonally-developing, soil moisture stress is not sufficient to reproduce forest canopy CO2 and water fluxes. However, accurate predictions of both CO2 and water fluxes under all soil moisture levels encountered in the field are obtained if photosynthetic capacity is assumed to vary with soil moisture. This new parameterisation has important consequences for simulated responses of carbon and water fluxes to seasonal soil moisture stress, and should greatly improve our ability to anticipate future impacts of climate changes on the functioning of ecosystems in Mediterranean-type climates.

  16. Changes in Nature's Balance Sheet: Model-based Estimates of Future Worldwide Ecosystem Services

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph Alcamo

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Four quantitative scenarios are presented that describe changes in worldwide ecosystem services up to 2050-2100. A set of soft-linked global models of human demography, economic development, climate, and biospheric processes are used to quantify these scenarios. The global demand for ecosystem services substantially increases up to 2050: cereal consumption by a factor of 1.5 to 1.7, fish consumption (up to the 2020s by a factor of 1.3 to 1.4, water withdrawals by a factor of 1.3 to 2.0, and biofuel production by a factor of 5.1 to 11.3. The ranges for these estimates reflect differences between the socio-economic assumptions of the scenarios. In all simulations, Sub-Saharan Africa continues to lag behind other parts of the world. Although the demand side of these scenarios presents an overall optimistic view of the future, the supply side is less optimistic: the risk of higher soil erosion (especially in Sub-Saharan Africa and lower water availability (especially in the Middle East could slow down an increase in food production. Meanwhile, increasing wastewater discharges during the same period, especially in Latin America (factor of 2 to 4 and Sub-Saharan Africa (factor of 3.6 to 5.6 could interfere with the delivery of freshwater services. Marine fisheries (despite the growth of aquaculture may not have the ecological capacity to provide for the increased global demand for fish. Our simulations also show an intensification of present tradeoffs between ecosystem services, e.g., expansion of agricultural land (between 2000 and 2050 may be one of the main causes of a 10%-20% loss of total current grassland and forest land and the ecosystem services associated with this land (e.g., genetic resources, wood production, habitat for terrestrial biota and fauna. The scenarios also show that certain hot-spot regions may experience especially rapid changes in ecosystem services: the central part of Africa, southern Asia, and the Middle East. In general

  17. A study on distribution of natural radionuclide polonium-210 in a pond ecosystem

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shahul Hameed, P.; Shaheed, K.; Somasundaram, S.S.N.

    1997-01-01

    This paper presents the results of an investigation on the distribution of 210 Po in Mutharasanallur pond ecosystem. It has been demonstrated that 210 Po is non-uniformly distributed within the ecosystem. The results of the study show a dissolved 210 Po concentration in pond water of 1.4mBql -1 . The sediment sample recorded a 210 Po activity of 59.9 Bqkg -1 . The aquatic organism showed differential accumulation of the radionuclide with enhanced bioaccumulation in soft tissues and muscle. The 210 Po activity in the biota fell within the range of 1.2-53.3 Bqkg -1 (wet weight). The bivalve mussel, Lamellidens marginalis was identified to accumulate higher concentration of 210 Po in soft tissues, suggesting that these organisms could serve as a bio-monitor of 210 Po radionuclide in a freshwater system. The concentration factors of 210 Po for the biotic components ranged from ∼ 10 2 - ∼ 10 4 . Analyses of the results indicate that prawn and fish represent an important source of supply of 210 Po to humans via dietary intake. Results of 210 Po activity in the abiotic and biotic components of the pond ecosystem were higher when compared with those of Cauvery river system, the primary water source of the pond. (author)

  18. Persistent natural acidification drives major distribution shifts in marine benthic ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linares, C.; Vidal, M.; Canals, M.; Kersting, D. K.; Amblas, D.; Aspillaga, E.; Cebrián, E.; Delgado-Huertas, A.; Díaz, D.; Garrabou, J.; Hereu, B.; Navarro, L.; Teixidó, N.; Ballesteros, E.

    2015-01-01

    Ocean acidification is receiving increasing attention because of its potential to affect marine ecosystems. Rare CO2 vents offer a unique opportunity to investigate the response of benthic ecosystems to acidification. However, the benthic habitats investigated so far are mainly found at very shallow water (less than or equal to 5 m depth) and therefore are not representative of the broad range of continental shelf habitats. Here, we show that a decrease from pH 8.1 to 7.9 observed in a CO2 vent system at 40 m depth leads to a dramatic shift in highly diverse and structurally complex habitats. Forests of the kelp Laminaria rodriguezii usually found at larger depths (greater than 65 m) replace the otherwise dominant habitats (i.e. coralligenous outcrops and rhodolith beds), which are mainly characterized by calcifying organisms. Only the aragonite-calcifying algae are able to survive in acidified waters, while high-magnesium-calcite organisms are almost completely absent. Although a long-term survey of the venting area would be necessary to fully understand the effects of the variability of pH and other carbonate parameters over the structure and functioning of the investigated mesophotic habitats, our results suggest that in addition of significant changes at species level, moderate ocean acidification may entail major shifts in the distribution and dominance of key benthic ecosystems at regional scale, which could have broad ecological and socio-economic implications. PMID:26511045

  19. Airborne heavy metals over Europe: emissions, long-range transport and deposition fluxes to natural ecosystems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Petersen, G. [GKSS-Forschungszentrum Geesthacht GmbH (Germany). Inst. fuer Hydrophysik

    1999-07-01

    This paper presents a brief review of the processes by which airborne heavy metals are transported from the main emission areas in Europe and become subject to deposition and absorption into terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems with subsequent transport and transformation within the biotic and abiotic media that comprise these ecosystems. Results from numerical simulation models capable of simulating long-range transport of heavy metals over Europe together with measurement data of heavy metal concentrations in air and precipitation and the corresponding dry and wet deposition fluxes are reported. European wide inventories of anthropogenic heavy metal emissions based on location and capacity of their dominating source categories such as fossil fuel burning in power plants, industrial and residential combustion, waste incineration and road traffic are briefly described. Emission reduction scenarios with respect to introduction of lead free gasoline are outlined. The critical gaps of knowledge on heavy metals in the atmosphere are identified focusing on uncertainties associated with emission fluxes in Eastern Europe and the scarcity of measurement data in that area. Future research is needed to estimate the effects of emission reductions on deposition fluxes of heavy metals to sensitive ecosystems such as forested areas in Europe is recommended. Special emphasis is placed on mercury, lead and cadmium which have been defined within the European convention on long-range transboundary air pollution of the United Nations-Economic Commission Europe (UN-ECE) to be the priority heavy metals of concern. (orig.)

  20. Water Consumption of Agriculture and Natural Ecosystems along the Ili River in China and Kazakhstan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Niels Thevs

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The Ili River is a transboundary river shared by China, upstream, and Kazakhstan, downstream. The Ili is the main water supplier to Lake Balkhash, the largest lake in Central Asia after desiccation of the Aral Sea. Agreements over water allocation have not been concluded between China and Kazakhstan. This paper investigated water consumption of agriculture and riparian ecosystems in the Ili river basin, to provide information for further debate on water allocation, through the Simplified Surface Energy Balance Index (S-SEBI approach using Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS satellite images. The overall water consumption in the Ili river basin was 14.3 km3/a in 2000, 17.2 km3/a in 2005, and 15 km3/a in 2014. In 2000, China and Kazakhstan consumed 38% and 62% of the water, respectively. By 2014, the relative share of China’s water consumption increased to 43%. In China, 80% of the water consumption is due to agriculture. High runoff during the past 10 years enabled increasing water consumption in China and sufficient water supply to agriculture and riparian ecosystems in Kazakhstan. When runoff of the Ili River decreases, as expected for most rivers in Central Asia, then irrigation efficiency has to be further increased in China, and irrigation systems in Kazakhstan have to be restored and modernized in order to reduce water consumption and protect Lake Balkhash and the riparian ecosystems.

  1. Marcellus and mercury: Assessing potential impacts of unconventional natural gas extraction on aquatic ecosystems in northwestern Pennsylvania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, Christopher J; Weimer, Alexander B; Marks, Nicole K; Perow, Elliott S; Oster, Jacob M; Brubaker, Kristen M; Trexler, Ryan V; Solomon, Caroline M; Lamendella, Regina

    2015-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a persistent element in the environment that has the ability to bioaccumulate and biomagnify up the food chain with potentially harmful effects on ecosystems and human health. Twenty-four streams remotely located in forested watersheds in northwestern PA containing naturally reproducing Salvelinus fontinalis (brook trout), were targeted to gain a better understanding of how Marcellus shale natural gas exploration may be impacting water quality, aquatic biodiversity, and Hg bioaccumulation in aquatic ecosystems. During the summer of 2012, stream water, stream bed sediments, aquatic mosses, macroinvertebrates, crayfish, brook trout, and microbial samples were collected. All streams either had experienced hydraulic fracturing (fracked, n = 14) or not yet experienced hydraulic fracturing (non-fracked, n = 10) within their watersheds at the time of sampling. Analysis of watershed characteristics (GIS) for fracked vs non-fracked sites showed no significant differences (P > 0.05), justifying comparisons between groups. Results showed significantly higher dissolved total mercury (FTHg) in stream water (P = 0.007), lower pH (P = 0.033), and higher dissolved organic matter (P = 0.001) at fracked sites. Total mercury (THg) concentrations in crayfish (P = 0.01), macroinvertebrates (P = 0.089), and predatory macroinvertebrates (P = 0.039) were observed to be higher for fracked sites. A number of positive correlations between amount of well pads within a watershed and THg in crayfish (r = 0.76, P macroinvertebrates (r = 0.71, P water microbial communities within the Deltaproteobacteria also shared a positive correlation with FTHg and to the number of well pads, while stream pH (r = -0.71, P macroinvertebrate taxa richness (r = -0.60, P = 0.01) were negatively correlated with the number of well pads within a watershed. Further investigation is needed to better elucidate relationships and pathways of observed differences in stream water chemistry, biodiversity, and

  2. Characterization of the natural enemy community attacking cotton aphid in the Bt cotton ecosystem in Northern China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ali, Abid; Desneux, Nicolas; Lu, Yanhui; Liu, Bing; Wu, Kongming

    2016-01-01

    Planting Bt cotton in China since 1997 has led to important changes in the natural enemy communities occurring in cotton, however their specific effect on suppressing the cotton aphids (being notorious in conventional cotton ecosystem) has not been fully documented yet. We observed strong evidence for top-down control of the aphid population, e.g. the control efficiency of natural enemies on cotton aphid increased significantly in open field cages compared to exclusion cages, accounted for 60.2, 87.2 and 76.7% in 2011, 2012 and 2013 season, respectively. The cotton aphid populations peaked in early June to late July (early and middle growth stages) in open field cotton survey from 2011 to 2013. The population densities of cotton aphids and natural enemies were highest on middle growth stage while lowest densities were recorded on late stage for aphids and on early plant stage for natural enemies. Aphid parasitoids (Trioxys spp., Aphidius gifuensis), coccinellids and spiders were key natural enemies of cotton aphid. Briefly, natural enemies can suppress aphid population increase from early to middle plant growth stages by providing biocontrol services in Chinese Bt cotton. PMID:27075171

  3. Characterization of the natural enemy community attacking cotton aphid in the Bt cotton ecosystem in Northern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ali, Abid; Desneux, Nicolas; Lu, Yanhui; Liu, Bing; Wu, Kongming

    2016-04-14

    Planting Bt cotton in China since 1997 has led to important changes in the natural enemy communities occurring in cotton, however their specific effect on suppressing the cotton aphids (being notorious in conventional cotton ecosystem) has not been fully documented yet. We observed strong evidence for top-down control of the aphid population, e.g. the control efficiency of natural enemies on cotton aphid increased significantly in open field cages compared to exclusion cages, accounted for 60.2, 87.2 and 76.7% in 2011, 2012 and 2013 season, respectively. The cotton aphid populations peaked in early June to late July (early and middle growth stages) in open field cotton survey from 2011 to 2013. The population densities of cotton aphids and natural enemies were highest on middle growth stage while lowest densities were recorded on late stage for aphids and on early plant stage for natural enemies. Aphid parasitoids (Trioxys spp., Aphidius gifuensis), coccinellids and spiders were key natural enemies of cotton aphid. Briefly, natural enemies can suppress aphid population increase from early to middle plant growth stages by providing biocontrol services in Chinese Bt cotton.

  4. Nature of radioactive contamination of components of ecosystems of streamflows from tunnels of Degelen massif

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Panitskiy, A.V.; Lukashenko, S.N.

    2015-01-01

    The paper provides data on environmental contamination due to radionuclides' migration with water. As a result of investigations there was obtained data on character of contamination of soil cover, surface water and underflow from tunnels of Degelen massif. Character of radionuclides' spatial distribution in environment was also shown. Mobility ranges of radionuclides' vertical and horizontal movements have been established in soils both across and along the stream flow. There was also shown a possibility to forecast radionuclides' concentration in soil by specific activity of these radionuclides in water. Different concentrations of radionuclides in associated components of the ecosystem (surface waters – ground waters – soils) have shown disequilibrium of their condition in this system. Generalization of investigation results for tunnel water streams' with water inflows, chosen as investigation objects in this work, allows to forecast radionuclides' behavior in meadow soils and other ecosystems of water streams from tunnels of Degelen test site. Based on analysis of curves, describing radionuclides' behavior in horizontal direction, we can forecast, that at this stage 137 Cs and 239+240 Pu would not be distributed more than 1.5 km from the access to the daylight surface, 90 Sr – not more than 2 km. - Highlights: • Contamination of soil cover, surface water and groundwater from tunnels of Degelen nuclear test area. • Radionuclides in associated components of the ecosystem showed disequilibrium. • Forecast that 137 Cs and 239+240 Pu will not be distributed more than 1.5 km from tunnel exits. • Forecast that 90 Sr will not be distributed more than 2 km

  5. The organic nature and atmosphere-climate dependency of nitrogen loss from forest watershed ecosystems

    OpenAIRE

    Brookshire, E. N. J.

    2006-01-01

    In this dissertation I describe how coupled internal cycling and external forcing from the atmosphere and climate can regulate the dynamics of nitrogen (N) loss from forest watersheds. I address three major gaps in our understanding of the global N cycle: 1) the role of dissolved organic N (DON) in internal N cycling in low-N ecosystems; 2) The influence of atmospheric pollution on DON production and loss from forests; and 3) the inherent climate sensitivity of forest N cycling and loss. In...

  6. Mediterranean-type diet and brain structural change from 73 to 76 years in a Scottish cohort.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luciano, Michelle; Corley, Janie; Cox, Simon R; Valdés Hernández, Maria C; Craig, Leone C A; Dickie, David Alexander; Karama, Sherif; McNeill, Geraldine M; Bastin, Mark E; Wardlaw, Joanna M; Deary, Ian J

    2017-01-31

    To assess the association between Mediterranean-type diet (MeDi) and change in brain MRI volumetric measures and mean cortical thickness across a 3-year period in older age (73-76 years). We focused on 2 longitudinal brain volumes (total and gray matter; n = 401 and 398, respectively) plus a longitudinal measurement of cortical thickness (n = 323), for which the previous cross-sectional evidence of an association with the MeDi was strongest. Adherence to the MeDi was calculated from data gathered from a food frequency questionnaire at age 70, 3 years prior to the baseline imaging data collection. In regression models adjusting for relevant demographic and physical health indicators, we found that lower adherence to the MeDi was associated with greater 3-year reduction in total brain volume (explaining 0.5% of variance, p the size of the largest covariate effect (i.e., age). Cross-sectional associations between MeDi and baseline MRI measures in 562 participants were not significant. Targeted analyses of meat and fish consumption did not replicate previous associations with total brain volume or total gray matter volume. Lower adherence to the MeDi in an older Scottish cohort is predictive of total brain atrophy over a 3-year interval. Fish and meat consumption does not drive this change, suggesting that other components of the MeDi or, possibly, all of its components in combination are responsible for the association. © 2017 American Academy of Neurology.

  7. The Mar Menor lagoon (SE Spain): A singular natural ecosystem threatened by human activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conesa, Héctor M; Jiménez-Cárceles, Francisco J

    2007-07-01

    The Mar Menor lagoon is one of the most important ecological singularities in the Mediterranean area. At the same time, it is an area where many economic and industrial activities meet. The sum of the impacts of mining, agriculture and urban development in the surroundings to the lagoon during the last decades has affected its ecosystem. In this paper, we have reviewed the studies done by researchers over two decades regarding the impacts of human activities in the lagoon, reporting data of contamination levels and the effects generated in the ecosystem of the lagoon. The discharge of enriched nutrient waters seems to be the most important input in the lagoon. Changes to more friendly agricultural techniques in the surrounding areas are therefore necessary. After our review, we can conclude that it is necessary to have higher efforts from the public administrations and stricter environmental regulations in order to preserve, on one hand, the important ecological values of the lagoon, and on other hand, public health.

  8. Understanding the nature of methane emission from rice ecosystems as basis of mitigation strategies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Buendia, L.V.; Neue, H.U.; Wassmann, R. [International Rice Research Institute, Laguna (Philippines)] [and others

    1996-12-31

    Methane is considered as an important Greenhouse gas and rice fields are one of the major atmospheric methane sources. The paper aims to develop sampling strategies and formulate mitigation options based on diel (day and night) and seasonal pattern of methane emission. The study was conducted in 4 countries to measure methane flux using an automatic closed chamber system. A 24-hour bihourly methane emissions were continuously obtained during the whole growing season. Daily and seasonal pattern of methane fluxes from different rice ecosystems were evaluated. Diel pattern of methane emission from irrigated rice fields, in all sites, displayed similar pattern from planting to flowering. Fluxes at 0600, 1200, and 1800 h were important components of the total diel flux. A proposed sampling frequency to accurately estimate methane emission within the growing season was designed based on the magnitude of daily flux variation. Total methane emission from different ecosystems follow the order: deepwater rice > irrigated rice > rainfed rice. Application of pig manure increased total emission by 10 times of that without manure. Green manure application increased emission by 49% of that applied only with inorganic fertilizer. Removal of floodwater at 10 DAP and 35 DAP, within a period of 4 days, inhibited production and emission of methane. The level of variation in daily methane emission and seasonal emission pattern provides useful information for accurate determination of methane fluxes. Characterization of seasonal emission pattern as to ecologies, fertilizer amendments, and water management gives an idea of where to focus mitigation strategies for sustainable rice production.

  9. Fire Process Research Natural Areas: Managing research and restoration of dynamic ecosystem processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timothy Ingalsbee

    2001-01-01

    Since 1992 a collaborative group of fire scientists, forest conservationists, and Federal resource specialists have been developing proposals for a Research Natural Area (RNA) in the Warner Creek Fire area on the Willamette National Forest in Oregon. Inspired by these proposals, the Oregon Natural Heritage Plan created the new category of "Fire Process RNAs"...

  10. Biomass yielding potential of naturally regenerated Prosopis juliflora tree stands at three varied ecosystems in southern districts of Tamil Nadu, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saraswathi, K; Chandrasekaran, S

    2016-05-01

    Fuel energy demand is of great concern in recent times due to the depletion of fossil fuel resources. Biomass serves as widely available primary renewable energy source. Hence, a study was performed to assess the above-ground biomass yielding capability of fuel wood tree Prosopis juliflora in three varied ecosystems viz., coastal, fallow land and riparian ecosystems in southern districts of Tamil Nadu. The results showed that the biomass production potential and above-ground net primary productivity of P. juliflora depend on the age of the tree stands and the nature of ecosystem. A higher biomass yield was observed for P. juliflora trees with 5 to 10 years old when compared to less than 5 years of their age. Among the three ecosystems, the maximum biomass production was recorded in riparian ecosystem. The stands with less than 5-year-old P. juliflora trees gave 1.40 t/ha, and 5- to 10-year-old tree stands produced 27.69 t/ha in riparian ecosystem. Above-ground net primary productivity of both the age groups was high in fallow land ecosystem. In riparian ecosystem, the wood showed high density and low sulphur content than the other two ecosystems. Hence, P. juliflora biomass can serve as an environmentally and economically feasible fuel as well as their utilization proffers an effective means to control its invasiveness.

  11. Sustaining Economic Exploitation of Complex Ecosystems in Computational Models of Coupled Human-Natural Networks

    OpenAIRE

    Martinez, Neo D.; Tonin, Perrine; Bauer, Barbara; Rael, Rosalyn C.; Singh, Rahul; Yoon, Sangyuk; Yoon, Ilmi; Dunne, Jennifer A.

    2012-01-01

    Understanding ecological complexity has stymied scientists for decades. Recent elucidation of the famously coined "devious strategies for stability in enduring natural systems" has opened up a new field of computational analyses of complex ecological networks where the nonlinear dynamics of many interacting species can be more realistically mod-eled and understood. Here, we describe the first extension of this field to include coupled human-natural systems. This extension elucidates new strat...

  12. GIS Fuzzy Expert System for the assessment of ecosystems vulnerability to fire in managing Mediterranean natural protected areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semeraro, Teodoro; Mastroleo, Giovanni; Aretano, Roberta; Facchinetti, Gisella; Zurlini, Giovanni; Petrosillo, Irene

    2016-03-01

    A significant threat to the natural and cultural heritage of Mediterranean natural protected areas (NPAs) is related to uncontrolled fires that can cause potential damages related to the loss or a reduction of ecosystems. The assessment and mapping of the vulnerability to fire can be useful to reduce landscape damages and to establish priority areas where it is necessary to plan measures to reduce the fire vulnerability. To this aim, a methodology based on an interactive computer-based system has been proposed in order to support NPA's management authority for the identification of vulnerable hotspots to fire through the selection of suitable indicators that allow discriminating different levels of sensitivity (e.g. Habitat relevance, Fragmentation, Fire behavior, Ecosystem Services, Vegetation recovery after fire) and stresses (agriculture, tourism, urbanization). In particular, a multi-criteria analysis based on Fuzzy Expert System (FES) integrated in a GIS environment has been developed in order to identify and map potential "hotspots" of fire vulnerability, where fire protection measures can be undertaken in advance. In order to test the effectiveness of this approach, this approach has been applied to the NPA of Torre Guaceto (Apulia Region, southern Italy). The most fire vulnerable areas are the patch of century-old forest characterized by high sensitivity and stress, and the wetlands and century-old olive groves due to their high sensitivity. The GIS fuzzy expert system provides evidence of its potential usefulness for the effective management of natural protected areas and can help conservation managers to plan and intervene in order to mitigate the fire vulnerability in accordance with conservation goals. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Transfer of natural and anthropogenic radionuclides to ants, bryophytes and lichen in a semi-natural ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dragović, Snezana; Howard, Brenda J; Caborn, Jane A; Barnett, Catherine L; Mihailović, Nevena

    2010-07-01

    Few data are available to quantify the transfer of both natural and anthropogenic radionuclides to detritivorous invertebrates to facilitate estimation of the internal dose to such biota in models used to assess radiation exposure. To enhance the available data, activity concentrations of (137)Cs, (40)K, (90)Sr, (239 + 240)Pu, (241)Am, (235)U and (238)U were measured in ants (Formicidae) and corresponding undisturbed soil collected from the Zlatibor mountain in Serbia and ant/soil concentration ratios (CR) calculated. The (241)Am concentration ratios for ants were fourfold higher than those calculated for ants in a previous study whereas they are similar to the more numerous data previously reported for a range of detritivorous invertebrates in other studies. CR values for (137)Cs in ants were similar to the few other reported values and slightly lower than those for a range of detritivorous invertebrates. Those for (239 + 240)Pu were slightly higher than those for ants in two other studies but they were close to upper limit of a range of data reported for detritivorous invertebrates. All the CR values will be included in a future revision of the ERICA Tool database and will particularly improve the information available for uranium.

  14. Laurel Wilt in Natural and Agricultural Ecosystems: Understanding the Drivers and Scales of Complex Pathosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Randy C. Ploetz

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Laurel wilt kills members of the Lauraceae plant family in the southeastern United States. It is caused by Raffaelea lauricola T.C. Harr., Fraedrich and Aghayeva, a nutritional fungal symbiont of an invasive Asian ambrosia beetle, Xyleborus glabratus Eichhoff, which was detected in Port Wentworth, Georgia, in 2002. The beetle is the primary vector of R. lauricola in forests along the southeastern coastal plain of the United States, but other ambrosia beetle species that obtained the pathogen after the initial introduction may play a role in the avocado (Persea americana Miller pathosystem. Susceptible taxa are naïve (new-encounter hosts that originated outside Asia. In the southeastern United States, over 300 million trees of redbay (P. borbonia (L. Spreng. have been lost, and other North American endemics, non-Asian ornamentals and avocado—an important crop that originated in MesoAmerica—are also affected. However, there are no reports of laurel wilt on the significant number of lauraceous endemics that occur in the Asian homeland of R. lauricola and X. glabratus; coevolved resistance to the disease in the region has been hypothesized. The rapid spread of laurel wilt in the United States is due to an efficient vector, X. glabratus, and the movement of wood infested with the insect and pathogen. These factors, the absence of fully resistant genotypes, and the paucity of effective control measures severely constrain the disease’s management in forest ecosystems and avocado production areas.

  15. Short-term effects of Mediterranean-type diet intervention on soluble cellular adhesion molecules in subjects with abdominal obesity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rallidis, Loukianos S; Kolomvotsou, Anastasia; Lekakis, John; Farajian, Paul; Vamvakou, Georgia; Dagres, Nikolaos; Zolindaki, Maria; Efstathiou, Stamatis; Anastasiou-Nana, Maria; Zampelas, Antonis

    2017-02-01

    Abdominal obesity (AO) is associated with increased risk for cardiovascular disease and with increased production of adhesion molecules. The present work examined the effect of a Mediterranean-style diet on soluble cellular adhesion molecules in individuals with AO. Ninety subjects with AO without cardiovascular disease or diabetes mellitus were randomly allocated to the intervention or control group and were instructed to follow a Mediterranean-style diet for two months. Intervention group followed a specific relevant food plan with close dietetic supervision and provision of basic foods. Soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (sICAM-1), soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (sVCAM-1), sP and sE-selectin, C-reactive protein (CRP) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) were measured. Subjects in the intervention group increased their intake of total fat, monounsaturated fatty acids, dietary fiber, vitamin C, and alcohol compared to controls, while decreased their intake of saturated fat. Although there was a significant decrease in CRP, sP-selectin and in sE-selectin in the intervention group, and an increase in sVCAM-1 in the control group, between-group analysis showed no statistically significant differences. There were also no significant changes in sICAM-1, and IL-6 levels after intervention. Mediterranean-type diet for two months combined with close dietetic supervision showed a beneficial tendency towards the down-regulation of some markers of vascular inflammation, although the comparison between groups after the intervention did not reach statistical significance. A longer period of dietary intervention may be required to further support these changes. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  16. A Mediterranean-type diet is associated with better metabolic profile in urban Polish adults: Results from the HAPIEE study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grosso, Giuseppe; Stepaniak, Urszula; Micek, Agnieszka; Topor-Mądry, Roman; Stefler, Denes; Szafraniec, Krystyna; Bobak, Martin; Pająk, Andrzej

    2015-01-01

    Objective The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationship between adherence to a Mediterranean-type diet and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in the Polish arm of the Health, Alcohol and Psychosocial factors In Eastern Europe (HAPIEE) cohort study. Materials/methods A cross-sectional survey including 8821 adults was conducted in Krakow, Poland. Food intake was evaluated through a validated food frequency questionnaire and adherence to the dietary pattern was assessed using a score specifically developed for non-Mediterranean countries (MedTypeDiet score). Linear and logistic regression models were performed to estimate beta and odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs), respectively. Results Significant associations between the MedTypeDiet score and waist circumference (β = − 0.307 ± 0.239 cm), systolic blood pressure (β = − 0.440 ± 0.428 mmHg), and triglycerides (β = − 0.021 ± 0.016 mmol/L) were observed. After multivariable adjustment, individuals in the highest quartile of the score were less likely to have MetS, central obesity, high triglycerides, and hypertension. Increase of one standard deviation of the score was associated with 7% less odds of having MetS (OR 0.93, 95% CI: 0.88, 0.97). When analyzing the relation of single components of the MedTypeDiet score, wine, dairy products, and the total unsaturated:saturated fatty acids ratio were associated with MetS. Conclusions Adherence to a Mediterranean-like diet may decrease the risk of MetS also among non-Mediterranean populations. PMID:25752843

  17. Impact of rainfall interception on hydrologic partitioning and soil erosion in natural and managed seasonally dry ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moura, A. E.; Montenegro, S. M.; Silva, B. B.; Bartlett, M. S.; Porporato, A. M.; Antonino, A. C.

    2013-12-01

    Quantifying the effects of land use change and rainfall variability in seasonal, dry ecosystems is crucial to sustainable management of soil and water resources. In particular, changes in rainfall interception effects on hydrologic partitioning and soil erosion due to land use change are among the least known processes, despite their importance for water resource managements, in terms of water availability for ecosystem and society and water quality and erosion problems. In this work we quantify the interception losses in different types of vegetation (coffee, lemon and vegetation of natural forest) found in the Tapacurá basin in the Pernambuco state of NE Brazil, coupling field experiments and analytical models. The interception losses were measured with rain gauges installed in three types of vegetation along with stemflow collectors. Close to the coffee plantation, a meteorological station was also installed for measurement of the necessary variables for the model calibrations. As expected, the results show that rainfall events of smaller magnitude proportionally have larger relative interception losses, with larger differences in the wet season. The model results also allow us to quantify the nonlinear behavior of the interception process, at the same time providing a valuable tool to estimate the interception loss due to changes in vegetation and rainfall regime and thus to improve water resource management in seasonally dry tropics .

  18. Evaluating the potential of nitrogen fixing of plants in the forest ecosystem by using natural 15N abundance method

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yao Yunyin; Chen Ming; Ma Changlin; Wang Zhidong; Hou Jingqing; Zhang Lihong; Luo Yongyun

    1991-02-01

    The potential of nitrogen fixing of plants was evaluated by using the variation of nitrogen isotope component in leaves and stems of plants and in soil. It gives a feasible method to investigate the nitrogen fixing potential of wild plants from atmosphere in the forest ecosystem. Plant samples and soil were collected from Natural Protecting Area of Xiaowutai Mountain in Hebei Province. The contents of N and 15 N in the legumes and other plants was obviously different from the value in soil. The δ 15 N value in leaves and stems of non-legumes plants was obviously different from the value in soil. The δ 15 N value of legumes was close to the value in the atmosphere (0 per mille). In the estimating of %Ndfa of nitrogen fixing plants in the forest ecosystem, the selection of non-nitrogen-fixing plants as reference is discussed. The chinese pine and a few non-legumes may have the potential of nitrogen fixing, because the δ 15 N value is close to the δ 15 N value in the atmosphere

  19. Natural hazards in a changing world: a case for ecosystem-based management.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeanne L Nel

    Full Text Available Communities worldwide are increasingly affected by natural hazards such as floods, droughts, wildfires and storm-waves. However, the causes of these increases remain underexplored, often attributed to climate changes or changes in the patterns of human exposure. This paper aims to quantify the effect of climate change, as well as land cover change, on a suite of natural hazards. Changes to four natural hazards (floods, droughts, wildfires and storm-waves were investigated through scenario-based models using land cover and climate change drivers as inputs. Findings showed that human-induced land cover changes are likely to increase natural hazards, in some cases quite substantially. Of the drivers explored, the uncontrolled spread of invasive alien trees was estimated to halve the monthly flows experienced during extremely dry periods, and also to double fire intensities. Changes to plantation forestry management shifted the 1:100 year flood event to a 1:80 year return period in the most extreme scenario. Severe 1:100 year storm-waves were estimated to occur on an annual basis with only modest human-induced coastal hardening, predominantly from removal of coastal foredunes and infrastructure development. This study suggests that through appropriate land use management (e.g. clearing invasive alien trees, re-vegetating clear-felled forests, and restoring coastal foredunes, it would be possible to reduce the impacts of natural hazards to a large degree. It also highlights the value of intact and well-managed landscapes and their role in reducing the probabilities and impacts of extreme climate events.

  20. Effects of ionizing radiation upon natural populations and ecosystems. Final report. [Ecological perspectives in land use planning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McCormick, J.F.

    1976-01-01

    Accomplishments throughout a 10-year period summarized include: a study of the effects of radiation from a ..gamma.. source on the ecology of the El Verde rain forest in Puerto Rico, with emphasis on the role of secondary succession in the recovery of forest ecosystems following irradiation; the effects of light and temperature on gaseous exchange in trees using /sup 14/CO/sub 2/ as a tracer in Palcourea; the nature of the sensitivity of pine trees to ionizing radiation and the possible synergistic effects of elevated ozone levels on radiosensitivity; the combined effects of radioactive and thermal effluents on plant communities of a swamp hardwood forest; and the development of a new conceptual approach to the evaluation of environmental quality, with emphasis on ecological perspectives in land use planning. (CH)

  1. SAFRR tsunami scenario: Impacts on California ecosystems, species, marine natural resources, and fisheries: Chapter G in The SAFRR (Science Application for Risk Reduction) Tsunami Scenario

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brosnan, Deborah; Wein, Anne; Wilson, Rick; Ross, Stephanie L.; Jones, Lucile

    2014-01-01

    We evaluate the effects of the SAFRR Tsunami Scenario on California’s ecosystems, species, natural resources, and fisheries. We discuss mitigation and preparedness approaches that can be useful in Tsunami planning. The chapter provides an introduction to the role of ecosystems and natural resources in tsunami events (Section 1). A separate section focuses on specific impacts of the SAFRR Tsunami Scenario on California’s ecosystems and endangered species (Section 2). A section on commercial fisheries and the fishing fleet (Section 3) documents the plausible effects on California’s commercial fishery resources, fishing fleets, and communities. Sections 2 and 3 each include practical preparedness options for communities and suggestions on information needs or research.Our evaluation indicates that many low-lying coastal habitats, including beaches, marshes and sloughs, rivers and waterways connected to the sea, as well as nearshore submarine habitats will be damaged by the SAFRR Tsunami Scenario. Beach erosion and complex or high volumes of tsunami-generated debris would pose major challenges for ecological communities. Several endangered species and protected areas are at risk. Commercial fisheries and fishing fleets will be affected directly by the tsunami and indirectly by dependencies on infrastructure that is damaged. There is evidence that in some areas intact ecosystems, notably sand dunes, will act as natural defenses against the tsunami waves. However, ecosystems do not provide blanket protection against tsunami surge. The consequences of ecological and natural resource damage are estimated in the millions of dollars. These costs are driven partly by the loss of ecosystem services, as well as cumulative and follow-on impacts where, for example, increased erosion during the tsunami can in turn lead to subsequent damage and loss to coastal properties. Recovery of ecosystems, natural resources and fisheries is likely to be lengthy and expensive

  2. MalariaSphere: A greenhouse-enclosed simulation of a natural Anopheles gambiae (Diptera: Culicidae) ecosystem in western Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knols, Bart GJ; Njiru, Basilio N; Mathenge, Evan M; Mukabana, Wolfgang R; Beier, John C; Killeen, Gerry F

    2002-01-01

    Background The development and implementation of innovative vector control strategies for malaria control in Africa requires in-depth ecological studies in contained semi-field environments. This particularly applies to the development and release of genetically-engineered vectors that are refractory to Plasmodium infection. Here we describe a modified greenhouse, designed to simulate a natural Anopheles gambiae Giles ecosystem, and the first successful trials to complete the life-cycle of this mosquito vector therein. Methods We constructed a local house, planted crops and created breeding sites to simulate the natural ecosystem of this vector in a screen-walled greenhouse, exposed to ambient climate conditions, in western Kenya. Using three different starting points for release (blood-fed females, virgin females and males, or eggs), we allowed subsequent stages of the life-cycle to proceed under close observation until one cycle was completed. Results Completion of the life-cycle was observed in all three trials, indicating that the major life-history behaviours (mating, sugar feeding, oviposition and host seeking) occurred successfully. Conclusion The system described can be used to study the behavioural ecology of laboratory-reared and wild mosquitoes, and lends itself to contained studies on the stability of transgenes, fitness effects and phenotypic characteristics of genetically-engineered disease vectors. The extension of this approach, to enable continuous maintenance of successive and overlapping insect generations, should be prioritised. Semi-field systems represent a promising means to significantly enhance our understanding of the behavioural and evolutionary ecology of African malaria vectors and our ability to develop and evaluate innovative control strategies. With regard to genetically-modified mosquitoes, development of such systems is an essential prerequisite to full field releases. PMID:12537599

  3. MalariaSphere: A greenhouse-enclosed simulation of a natural Anopheles gambiae (Diptera: Culicidae ecosystem in western Kenya

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mukabana Wolfgang R

    2002-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The development and implementation of innovative vector control strategies for malaria control in Africa requires in-depth ecological studies in contained semi-field environments. This particularly applies to the development and release of genetically-engineered vectors that are refractory to Plasmodium infection. Here we describe a modified greenhouse, designed to simulate a natural Anopheles gambiae Giles ecosystem, and the first successful trials to complete the life-cycle of this mosquito vector therein. Methods We constructed a local house, planted crops and created breeding sites to simulate the natural ecosystem of this vector in a screen-walled greenhouse, exposed to ambient climate conditions, in western Kenya. Using three different starting points for release (blood-fed females, virgin females and males, or eggs, we allowed subsequent stages of the life-cycle to proceed under close observation until one cycle was completed. Results Completion of the life-cycle was observed in all three trials, indicating that the major life-history behaviours (mating, sugar feeding, oviposition and host seeking occurred successfully. Conclusion The system described can be used to study the behavioural ecology of laboratory-reared and wild mosquitoes, and lends itself to contained studies on the stability of transgenes, fitness effects and phenotypic characteristics of genetically-engineered disease vectors. The extension of this approach, to enable continuous maintenance of successive and overlapping insect generations, should be prioritised. Semi-field systems represent a promising means to significantly enhance our understanding of the behavioural and evolutionary ecology of African malaria vectors and our ability to develop and evaluate innovative control strategies. With regard to genetically-modified mosquitoes, development of such systems is an essential prerequisite to full field releases.

  4. Preservation of natural aquatic ecosystems by application of bottom coal ash based bioreactor for in situ treatment of anthropogenic effluents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anker, Y.; Nisnevitch, M.; Tal, M.; Cahan, R.; Michael, E.

    2012-12-01

    One consequence of global climate change is recharge decrease at sub tropical and Mediterranean regions to both the surface and the ground fresh water resources. As a general rule, when water source quantity is reduced, the level of salination, as well as chemical and biological pollutants, tends to increase. The situation is more severe whenever the drainage basin is (a) heavily populated from urban, industrial and agricultural areas, (b) has wide areas of thin or non soil cover and (c) has a karstic structure and morphology. These latter conditions are typical to many regions around the Middle East; whereas pollution hazard to Mid Eastern streams is greater than to those in more humid regions owing to their relative small size and poor dilution capacity. The consequence of this ongoing and increasing anthropogenic pollution is endangerment of natural aquatic habitats and due to decrease in fresh water supply availability also to human sustainability. The ecological impact may involve transition of ephemeral (Wadi) streams into intermittent ones with the accompanied biodiversity change or extinction once the pollution is extreme. The impact on indigenous human communities might be as severe owing to drinking water quality decrease and the consequent decrease id quantity as well as damage to dryland farming. In setting of operations applied to the Yarkon Taninim watershed (central Israel) management, a pilot biofilter facility for sustainable preservation and rehabilitation of natural fluvial ecosystems was tested. This biofilter is planned to operate through low impact concept assimilating natural treatment processes occurring during runoff recharge through a porous flow media. The facility is constructed out of several grain sizes of bottom coal ash aggregate, which was found to be a better microbial mats growing stratum, compared to common natural aggregates such as tuff and lime pebbles (and also has an EPA directive for wastewater treatment). The biofilter is

  5. Modern parameters of caesium-137 root uptake in natural and agricultural grass ecosystems of contaminated post-Chernobyl landscape, Russia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiana Paramonova

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The estimation of modern parameters of 137Cs root uptake was conducted in natural meadow and agricultural ecosystems of post-Chernobyl landscapes of Tula region. The agrosystems with main crops of field rotation (barley, potatoes, rape, maize occupying watersheds and slopes with arable chernozems are contaminated at a level 460-670 Bq/kg (4.7-6.0 Ci/km2; natural meadow ecosystems occupying lower parts of slopes and floodplains are contaminated at a level 620-710 Bq/kg (5.8-7.6 Ci/km2. In the arable soils 137Cs uniformly distributed to a depth of Ap horizon (20-30 cm of thickness, while in meadow soils 70-80% of the radionuclide is concentrated within the top Ad horizon (9-13 cm of thickness. These topsoil layer accords with rhizosphere zone, where >80-90% of plant roots are concentrated, and from which 137Cs is mostly consumed by vegetation. Total amount of 137Cs root uptake depends on the level of soil radioactive contamination (correlation coefficient 0.61. So 137Cs activity in meadow vegetation (103-160 Bq/kg is generally more than one in agricultural vegetation (9-92 Bq/kg. The values of 137Cs transfer factor in the studied ecosystems vary from 0.01 (rape to 0.20 (wet meadow, that confirms the discrimination of the radionuclide’s root uptake. The larger are the volume of roots and their absorbing surface, the higher are the values of transfer factor from soil to plant (correlation coefficients 0.71 and 0.64 respectively. 137Cs translocation from roots to shoots is also determined by biological features of plants. At the same level of soil contamination above-ground parts of meadow herbs accumulate more 137Cs than Gramineae species, and in agrosystems above-ground parts of weeds concentrate more 137Cs than cultivated cereals. Thus, the level of soil radioactive pollution and biological features of plants are determinants in the process of 137Cs root uptake and translocation and should be considered in land use policy.

  6. Determination of natural and artificial radionuclides in 3 earner ecosystems (Alcocebre; Vinaroz and Vandellos)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Navarro, E.; Roldan, C.; Sanchez, E.

    1998-01-01

    The knowledge of the environmental radioactivity level represents one of the main objectives at the moment for the environmental investigation. To check the existence of possible polluting sources and their impact in the population is of high-priority interest. We have intended to check the existence or not of radioactive pollutants in bio-indicators (algae, limpets and mussels) of the marine environment of three towns located in the Mediterranean coast: Alcocebre and Vinaroz in the county of Castellon and Vandellos in the county of Tarragona where a nuclear group is located for electric power production. The specific activity measurement carried out during the biennium 1996-97 of the natural gamma emitters ''228 Ac (''232Th series), ''226Ra (''238U series), ''235U, ''40K and ''7Be, and of the artificial radionuclides ''60Co, and ''137 Cs, it corroborates the character bio-accumulator of these organisms. Natural and artificial radionuclides have been detected in quantities without radiological significance. (Author) 3 Refs

  7. Soil depth profiles and radiological assessment of natural radionuclides in forest ecosystem

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Manigandan, P.K. [Al Musanna College of Technology, Muscat (Oman); Chandar Shekar, B. [Bharathiar Univ., Coimbatore (India). Kongunadu Arts and Science College

    2017-08-01

    We measured the distribution of three naturally occurring radionuclides, {sup 238}U, {sup 232}Th, and {sup 40}K, in soil samples collected from a rainforest in the Western Ghats of India. For each surface sample, we calculated average activity concentration, outdoor terrestrial γ dose rate, annual effective dose equivalent (AEDE), and radiation hazard index. The activity concentrations of surface samples were randomly distributed over space, but differed slightly with different soil depths. The concentration of {sup 232}Th and the average terrestrial γ dose rates were slightly higher than the world averages, so slightly high γ radiation appears to be a general characteristic of the Western Ghats. However, all radiological hazard indices were within the limits proposed by the International Commission on Radiological Protection. The results reported here indicate that, except for {sup 232}Th, the naturally occurring radionuclides in the forest soils of the Western Ghats were within the ranges specified by United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation for undisturbed virgin soils.

  8. Assessing the natural and anthropogenic charges of radioactivity in complex ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    El-Daoushy, F.

    2010-01-01

    Large-scale and long-term assessment of nuclear disasters depends on transport and chemistry processes. Chernobyl dominated by tropospheric and local surface water processes. Assessment strategies for the Nile Basin , and other African rivers, would be different. European surface water are primarily forced by atmospheric and local catchment interactions. Surface water are multi-scale systems with local, regional & global interactions. Natural and artificial radioactivity were assessed in European inland waters. Scales and interactions were detailed using Lake-catchment systems. Surface water interactions in the Nile Basin has much more large scale dynamics as compared by the European ones. The spatio-temporal scales of this complex river system are much more comprehensive due to its complex boundaries and intensive coupling with climate and environment. Lakes and rivers are space-time indicators of atmospheric and land-based human activities

  9. The importance of physico-chemical parameters on the speciation of natural radionuclides in riverine ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Narayana, Y.; Rajashekara, K.M.

    2010-01-01

    External gamma radiation levels were measured in the catchment areas of the Sharavathi River and the dose rates in air were found to be in the range 26.0-61.0 nGy h -1 . Soil and sediment samples of the riverine environment were analysed for natural radionuclides such as 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K using a NaI(Tl) gamma spectrometer. The activity concentration of 210 Pb and 210 Po in soil and sediment samples was determined by radiochemical separation techniques. Evaluation of the activity concentration of radionuclides with grain size revealed an increase in the activity of 226 Ra, 232 Th and 40 K towards fine grain size. The activity concentrations for all isotopes in all samples were not significantly correlated with pH. However, the activity of 210 Po and 210 Pb in sediment showed a moderate positive correlation with organic matter content and a good correlation with clay content of sediment.

  10. Short-term trends in vegetation cover of Danish semi-natural ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Timmermann, Allan; Damgaard, Christian; Strandberg, Morten Tune

    be vulnerable to compositional changes due to e.g. surrounding land-use and atmospheric nitrogen deposition. The preliminary results from this study, are dichotomous in that it seems some factors as for example soil moisture and woody species encroachment are being managed in a way that opposites expectations...... species with similar traits to respond similarly to systematic shifts in habitat conditions and disturbance. Consequently, contrasting traits of winner and loser species could be a powerful tool in identifying mechanisms that might be driving community changes. In this study, we use a large dataset...... of vegetation surveys from 207 semi-natural non-forested sites in Denmark, identifying temporal short-term changes in vegetation cover, notably identifying those species that are winners and losers. A further goal is to identify environmental drivers of contemporary vegetation change in Danish semi...

  11. Symbiotic nitrogen fixation in an arid ecosystem measured by sup 15 N natural abundance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Johnson, G.V. (Univ. of New Mexico, Albuquerque (USA))

    1990-05-01

    Plants dependent on nitrogen fixation have an {sup 15}N abundance similar to the atmosphere, while non-nitrogen fixing plants usually are enriched in {sup 15}N and are similar to soil nitrogen values. The natural abundance of {sup 15}N in leaf tissues and soils was determined to evaluate symbiotic nitrogen fixation by several legumes and actinorhizal species in the Sevilleta Long-term Ecological Research area in central New Mexico. Comparison of {delta}{sup 15}N values for the legume Prosopis glandulosa (mesquite) to adjacent Atriplex canascens (fourwing saltbush) indicated that P. glandulosa obtained 66% of its nitrogen by fixation. The legume Hoffmanseggia jamesii was found to be utilizing soil nitrogen. The {delta}{sup 15}N values for the actinorhizal plants, Elaeagnus angustifolia and Cercocarpus montanus, while below values for soil nitrogen, did not differ from associated non-fixing plants.

  12. How Do “Renewable Products” Impact Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services – The Example of Natural Rubber in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc Cotter

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper aims to present the implications brought by the expansion of “renewable products” plantation systems in the tropics with cultivation of rubber (Hevea brasiliensis as a main focus. Throughout South East Asia, natural forest is being replaced by rubber or oil palm (Elaeis guineensis plantations, with severe consequences for the local flora and fauna. Main aspects of this review are: i The provision of an overview over renewable resources in general and rubber in particular, with eco-physiological and agronomical information concerning rubber cultivation. ii The effect of rubber plantations on biodiversity and species composition under different rubber farming approaches. In addition we debate the possible influences of such large scale land cover transformations on ecosystem services. iii The conversion of natural forests into rubber plantations releases considerable amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. We estimated these values for different land cover types in southern China and assessed the carbon sequestration potential of local rubber plantations.

  13. The lagoon at Caroline/Millennium atoll, Republic of Kiribati: natural history of a nearly pristine ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barott, Katie L; Caselle, Jennifer E; Dinsdale, Elizabeth A; Friedlander, Alan M; Maragos, James E; Obura, David; Rohwer, Forest L; Sandin, Stuart A; Smith, Jennifer E; Zgliczynski, Brian

    2010-06-03

    A series of surveys were carried out to characterize the physical and biological parameters of the Millennium Atoll lagoon during a research expedition in April of 2009. Millennium is a remote coral atoll in the Central Pacific belonging to the Republic of Kiribati, and a member of the Southern Line Islands chain. The atoll is among the few remaining coral reef ecosystems that are relatively pristine. The lagoon is highly enclosed, and was characterized by reticulate patch and line reefs throughout the center of the lagoon as well as perimeter reefs around the rim of the atoll. The depth reached a maximum of 33.3 m in the central region of the lagoon, and averaged between 8.8 and 13.7 m in most of the pools. The deepest areas were found to harbor large platforms of Favia matthaii, which presumably provided a base upon which the dominant corals (Acropora spp.) grew to form the reticulate reef structure. The benthic algal communities consisted mainly of crustose coralline algae (CCA), microfilamentous turf algae and isolated patches of Halimeda spp. and Caulerpa spp. Fish species richness in the lagoon was half of that observed on the adjacent fore reef. The lagoon is likely an important nursery habitat for a number of important fisheries species including the blacktip reef shark and Napoleon wrasse, which are heavily exploited elsewhere around the world but were common in the lagoon at Millennium. The lagoon also supports an abundance of giant clams (Tridacna maxima). Millennium lagoon provides an excellent reference of a relatively undisturbed coral atoll. As with most coral reefs around the world, the lagoon communities of Millennium may be threatened by climate change and associated warming, acidification and sea level rise, as well as sporadic local resource exploitation which is difficult to monitor and enforce because of the atoll's remote location. While the remote nature of Millennium has allowed it to remain one of the few nearly pristine coral reef

  14. Natural Length Scales of Ecological Systems: Applications at Community and Ecosystem Levels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Craig R. Johnson

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available The characteristic, or natural, length scales of a spatially dynamic ecological landscape are the spatial scales at which the deterministic trends in the dynamic are most sharply in focus. Given recent development of techniques to determine the characteristic length scales (CLSs of real ecological systems, I explore the potential for using CLSs to address three important and vexing issues in applied ecology, viz. (i determining the optimum scales to monitor ecological systems, (ii interpreting change in ecological communities, and (iii ascertaining connectivity between species in complex ecologies. In summarizing the concept of characteristic length scales as system-level scaling thresholds, I emphasize that the primary CLS is, by definition, the optimum scale at which to monitor a system if the objective is to observe its deterministic dynamics at a system level. Using several different spatially explicit individual-based models, I then explore predictions of the underlying theory of CLSs in the context of interpreting change and ascertaining connectivity among species in ecological systems. Analysis of these models support predictions that systems with strongly fluctuating community structure, but an otherwise stable long-term dynamic defined by a stationary attractor, indicate an invariant length scale irrespective of community structure at the time of analysis, and irrespective of the species analyzed. In contrast, if changes in the underlying dynamic are forcibly induced, the shift in dynamics is reflected by a change in the primary length scale. Thus, consideration of the magnitude of the CLS through time enables distinguishing between circumstances where there are temporal changes in community structure but not in the long-term dynamic, from that where changes in community structure reflect some kind of fundamental shift in dynamics. In this context, CLSs emerge as a diagnostic tool to identify phase shifts to alternative stable states

  15. Peeking at ecosystem stability: making use of a natural disturbance experiment to analyze resistance and resilience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruelheide, Helge; Luginbühl, Ute

    2009-05-01

    To determine which factors contribute most to the stability of species composition in a beech forest after profound disturbance, we made use of a natural experiment caused by a severe windthrow that occurred at a permanent monitoring site in an old beech forest in Lower Saxony (Germany). The floristic composition was recorded for the succeeding five years after the disturbance and used to derive measures of resistance and resilience for plots as well as for individual species. Due to the existence of previously established randomly distributed permanent plots, we had precise information of the pre-disturbance state, including initial cover of the herb layer, species richness, and species composition. Variables describing the floristic change, resistance, and resilience were derived from correspondence analysis allowing for partitioning the effects of variation among plots from those of temporal change. We asked to which degree these variables could be predicted by pre-disturbance state and disturbance intensity. We found that both the pre-disturbance state and the disturbance intensity were good predictors for floristic change and resistance, while they failed to predict resilience. Among the descriptors of the pre-disturbance state the initial cover of the herb layer turned out to be a useful predictor, which is explained by a high vegetation cover buffering against losses and preventing establishment of newcomers. In contrast, species number neither showed a relationship to floristic change nor to resistance. Putative positive effects of species number on stability according to the insurance hypothesis might have been counterbalanced by a disruption of niche complementarity in species-rich communities. Among the descriptors of disturbance intensity, the loss in canopy cover and the change in photosynthetically active radiation after the storm were equally good predictors for the change in floristic composition and resistance. The analysis of the responses of

  16. Virological evaluation of avian influenza virus persistence in natural and anthropic ecosystems of Western Siberia (Novosibirsk Region, summer 2012.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria A De Marco

    Full Text Available Wild aquatic birds, reservoir of low-pathogenicity (LP avian influenza viruses (AIVs, congregate in huge numbers in Western Siberia wetlands, where major intra- and inter-continental bird flyways overlap. In 2005 and 2006, highly pathogenic (HP AIV H5N1 epizootics affected wild and domestic birds in the Novosibirsk Region. In 2012, we evaluated AIV persistence in Siberian natural and anthropic ecosystems.In Novosibirsk Region, 166 wild birds ecologically linked to aquatic environments and 152 domestic waterfowl were examined for AIV isolation in embryonating chicken eggs. Biological samples were obtained by integrating the conventional cloacal swab collection with the harvesting of samples from birds' plumage. Haemagglutinating allantoic fluids were further characterized by serological and molecular methods. In August-September 2012, 17 AIVs, including three H3N8, eight H4N6, two H4N?, one H2N?, one H?N2, and two unsubtyped LPAIVs, were isolated from 15 wild ducks. Whereas comparable proportions of wild Anseriformes (n.118 tested virus isolation (VI-positive from cloaca and feathers (5.9% vs 8.5% were detected, the overall prevalence of virus isolation, obtained from both sampling methods, was 2.4 times higher than that calculated on results from cloacal swab examination only (14.4% vs 5.9%. Unlike previously described in this area, the H4N6 antigenic subtype was found to be the prevalent one in 2012. Both cloacal and feather samples collected from domestic waterfowl tested VI-negative.We found lack of evidence for the H5N1 HPAIV circulation, explainable by the poor environmental fitness of HPAIVs in natural ecosystems. Our LPAIV isolation data emphasise the importance of Siberia wetlands in influenza A virus ecology, providing evidence of changes in circulation dynamics of HN antigenic subtypes harboured in wild bird reservoirs. Further studies of isolates, based on bioinformatic approaches to virus molecular evolution and phylogenesis, will be

  17. Effects of 3-month Mediterranean-type diet on postprandial TAG and apolipoprotein B48 in the Medi-RIVAGE cohort

    OpenAIRE

    Defoort, Catherine; Vincent-Baudry, Stéphanie; Lairon, Denis

    2011-01-01

    Objective: To determine the postprandial lipaemia response before and after intervention with healthy diets in the Medi-RIVAGE cohort of subjects with moderate risk factors of CVD. Design: One hundred and thirty-five adults (fifty-two men and eighty-three women) followed either a Mediterranean-type (MED) diet or a low-fat American Heart Association-type diet in a parallel design for 3 months. At entry and after 3 months, lipids, glucose and insulin were measured in the fasting samples; TAG an...

  18. Community-level response of coastal microbial biofilms to ocean acidification in a natural carbon dioxide vent ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lidbury, Ian; Johnson, Vivienne; Hall-Spencer, Jason M; Munn, Colin B; Cunliffe, Michael

    2012-05-01

    The impacts of ocean acidification on coastal biofilms are poorly understood. Carbon dioxide vent areas provide an opportunity to make predictions about the impacts of ocean acidification. We compared biofilms that colonised glass slides in areas exposed to ambient and elevated levels of pCO(2) along a coastal pH gradient, with biofilms grown at ambient and reduced light levels. Biofilm production was highest under ambient light levels, but under both light regimes biofilm production was enhanced in seawater with high pCO(2). Uronic acids are a component of biofilms and increased significantly with high pCO(2). Bacteria and Eukarya denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis profile analysis showed clear differences in the structures of ambient and reduced light biofilm communities, and biofilms grown at high pCO(2) compared with ambient conditions. This study characterises biofilm response to natural seabed CO(2) seeps and provides a baseline understanding of how coastal ecosystems may respond to increased pCO(2) levels. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Understanding human impacts to tropical coastal ecosystems through integrated hillslope erosion measurements, optical coastal waters characterization, watershed modeling, marine ecosystem assessments, and natural resource valuations in two constrasting watersheds in Puerto Rico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz-Zayas, J.; Melendez, J.; Barreto, M.; Santiago, L.; Torres-Perez, J. L.; Ramos-Scharron, C. E.; Figueroa, Y.; Setegn, S. G.; Guild, L. S.; Armstrong, R.

    2017-12-01

    Coastal ecosystems are an asset to many tropical island economies. In Puerto Rico, however, many invaluable coastal ecosystems are at risk due to multiple social and natural environmental stressors. To quantify the role of anthropogenic versus natural stressors, an integrated multidisciplinary approach was applied in two contrasting watersheds in Puerto Rico. The Rio Loco (RL) watershed in Southeastern Puerto Rico is hydrologically modified with interbasin water transfers, hydroelectric generation, and with water extraction for irrigation and water supply. Intensive agricultural production dominates both the lower and upper portions of the basin. In contrast, the Rio Grande de Manatí (RGM) shows a natural flow regime with minor flow regulation and limited agriculture. The Surface Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) was applied to each watershed to assess the effects of land use changes on water and sediment fluxes to coastal areas. From 1977 to 2016, forest areas increased in both watersheds due to the abandonment of farms in the mountains. However, in upper and lower RL, agricultural lands have remained active. Coffee plantations in the upper watershed contribute with high sediment loads, particularly in unpaved service roads. We hypothesize that water fluxes will be higher in the larger RGM than in RL. However, suspended sediment fluxes will be higher in the agriculturally active RL basin. A willingness-to-pay approach was applied to assess how residents from each watershed value water and coastal ecosystems revealing a general higher natural resources valuation in the RGM than in RL. Coastal ecosystems at each site revealed structural differences in benthic coral communities due to local currents influenced largely by coastal morphology. The optical properties of coastal waters are also being determined and linked to fluvial sediment fluxes. Stakeholder meetings are being held in each watershed to promote transfer of scientific insights into a sustainable coastal and

  20. Coral reefs - Specialized ecosystems

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Wafar, M.V.M.

    This paper discusses briefly some aspects that characterize and differentiate coral reef ecosystems from other tropical marine ecosystems. A brief account on the resources that are extractable from coral reefs, their susceptibility to natural...

  1. The importance of conserving biodiversity outside of protected areas in mediterranean ecosystems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robin L Cox

    Full Text Available Mediterranean-type ecosystems constitute one of the rarest terrestrial biomes and yet they are extraordinarily biodiverse. Home to over 250 million people, the five regions where these ecosystems are found have climate and coastal conditions that make them highly desirable human habitats. The current conservation landscape does not reflect the mediterranean biome's rarity and its importance for plant endemism. Habitat conversion will clearly outpace expansion of formal protected-area networks, and conservationists must augment this traditional strategy with new approaches to sustain the mediterranean biota. Using regional scale datasets, we determine the area of land in each of the five regions that is protected, converted (e.g., to urban or industrial, impacted (e.g., intensive, cultivated agriculture, or lands that we consider to have conservation potential. The latter are natural and semi-natural lands that are unprotected (e.g., private range lands but sustain numerous native species and associated habitats. Chile has the greatest proportion of its land (75% in this category and California-Mexico the least (48%. To illustrate the potential for achieving mediterranean biodiversity conservation on these lands, we use species-area curves generated from ecoregion scale data on native plant species richness and vertebrate species richness. For example, if biodiversity could be sustained on even 25% of existing unprotected, natural and semi-natural lands, we estimate that the habitat of more than 6,000 species could be represented. This analysis suggests that if unprotected natural and semi-natural lands are managed in a manner that allows for persistence of native species, we can realize significant additional biodiversity gains. Lasting biodiversity protection at the scale needed requires unprecedented collaboration among stakeholders to promote conservation both inside and outside of traditional protected areas, including on lands where people

  2. Transfer factor of caesium-137 in natural and agricultural grass ecosystems in the area of Plavsk radioactive spot, Russia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Paramonova, Tatiana A.; Machaeva, Ekaterina N. [Radioecology and Ecotoxicology Department of Soil Science Faculty, Lomonosov Moscow State University, 119234 Moscow (Russian Federation); Belyaev, Vladimir R. [Laboratory of soil erosion and fluvial processes of Geography Faculty, Lomonosov Moscow State University, 119234 Moscow (Russian Federation)

    2014-07-01

    Root uptake and translocation of ¹³⁷Cs from soil to plant is the key for estimation of general ecological situation and land use on radioactive contaminated territories. There are numerous researches concerning the relationship between the level of the radionuclide presence in soils and its accumulation in vegetation that usually describes as transfer factor (TF) for ¹³⁷Cs (the ratio of the specific ¹³⁷Cs activity in the plant tissue and the soil). But in most cases only edible organs or above-ground parts of plants are taken into account in evaluating TF. It is reasonable from the standpoint of practical use, but does not provide accurate information in the study of ¹³⁷Cs biogeochemical cycle features. The study of the ¹³⁷Cs root uptake from the radioactive contaminated chernozem soil and its distribution between above-ground and below-ground fractions of grass vegetation was conducted in the natural conditions on the territory of Plavsk radioactive spot (Tula region, Russia)~25 years after Chernobyl accident. The main crops of field rotation in this landscape (wheat, barley, potatoes, rape, maize) which occupy watersheds and slopes with arable chernozems contaminated at a level 460-670 Bq/kg (170-220 kBq/m²) and natural grassland ecosystems which occupy lower parts of slopes and flood plains with dry and wet meadows contaminated at a level 620-710 Bq/kg (210-250 kBq/m²) were examined. Total accumulation of ¹³⁷Cs in vegetation strongly depends on the level of soil radioactive contamination (correlation coefficient 0.87). So specific ¹³⁷Cs activity in vegetation of meadows (103-160 Bq/kg) in general more than one in agricultural crops (9-92 Bq/kg). Other reason may be the predominance of perennial herbs in natural meadows whereas agricultural systems contain annual crops. The values of ¹³⁷Cs TF in the studied ecosystems vary within a relatively narrow range: from 0.01 (rape) to 0.20 (wet meadow), that confirms the discrimination of

  3. Rapid, storm-induced changes in the natural abundance of sup 15 N in a planktonic ecosystem, Chesapeake Bay, USA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Montoya, J.P.; McCarthy, J.J. (Harvard Univ., Cambridge, MA (United States)); Horrigan, S.G. (State Univ. of New York, Stony Brook (United States))

    1991-12-01

    Samples of dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN), particulate nitrogen (PN), and two species of zooplankton were collected during two north-south transects of the Chesapeake Bay in the autumn of 1984 (27-28 September and 3-5 October). During the first transect, the natural abundance of {sup 15}N ({delta} {sup 15}N) in the major dissolved and planktonic pools of nitrogen suggested that the {delta}{sup 15}N of PN was largely determined by isotopic fractionation during uptake of NH{sub 4}{sup +} by phytoplankton. Averaged over the transect as a whole, the {delta}{sup 15}N of the herbivorous calanoid copepod Acartia tonsa was 4.1% higher than that of the PN, while the {delta}{sup 15}N of the carnivorous ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi was 6.4% higher than that of the PN. In the interval between the two transects, storm-induced mixing of the water column resulted in the injection of NH{sub 4}{sup +} into the surface layer of the bay. In combination with ancillary physical, chemical, and biological data, these changes in {delta}{sup 15}N provided estimates of the isotopic fractionation factor for NH{sub 4}{sup +} uptake by phytoplankton ({alpha} = 1.0065-1.0080) as well as the turnover time of nitrogen in Acartia tonsa (6.0-9.6 days). Despite the changes in {delta}{sup 15}N observed during this cruise, the relative distribution of {sup 15}N between trophic levels was preserved: during the second transect, the difference in {delta}{sup 15}N between Acartia tonsa and PN was 3.6%, and the difference in {delta}{sup 15}N between Mnemiopsis leidyi and PN was 7.3%. These results demonstrate that the natural abundance of {sup 15}N can change dramatically on a time scale of days, and that time-series studies of the natural abundance of {sup 15}N can be a useful complement to studies using tracer additions of {sup 15}N to document nitrogen transformations in planktonic ecosystems.

  4. Vegetation index-based crop coefficients to estimate evapotranspiration by remote sensing in agricultural and natural ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glenn, E.P.; Neale, C. M. U.; Hunsaker, D.J.; Nagler, P.L.

    2011-01-01

    Crop coefficients were developed to determine crop water needs based on the evapotranspiration (ET) of a reference crop under a given set of meteorological conditions. Starting in the 1980s, crop coefficients developed through lysimeter studies or set by expert opinion began to be supplemented by remotely sensed vegetation indices (VI) that measured the actual status of the crop on a field-by-field basis. VIs measure the density of green foliage based on the reflectance of visible and near infrared (NIR) light from the canopy, and are highly correlated with plant physiological processes that depend on light absorption by a canopy such as ET and photosynthesis. Reflectance-based crop coefficients have now been developed for numerous individual crops, including corn, wheat, alfalfa, cotton, potato, sugar beet, vegetables, grapes and orchard crops. Other research has shown that VIs can be used to predict ET over fields of mixed crops, allowing them to be used to monitor ET over entire irrigation districts. VI-based crop coefficients can help reduce agricultural water use by matching irrigation rates to the actual water needs of a crop as it grows instead of to a modeled crop growing under optimal conditions. Recently, the concept has been applied to natural ecosystems at the local, regional and continental scales of measurement, using time-series satellite data from the MODIS sensors on the Terra satellite. VIs or other visible-NIR band algorithms are combined with meteorological data to predict ET in numerous biome types, from deserts, to arctic tundra, to tropical rainforests. These methods often closely match ET measured on the ground at the global FluxNet array of eddy covariance moisture and carbon flux towers. The primary advantage of VI methods for estimating ET is that transpiration is closely related to radiation absorbed by the plant canopy, which is closely related to VIs. The primary disadvantage is that they cannot capture stress effects or soil

  5. The impact of dissolved organic carbon on the spatial variability of methanogenic archaea communities in natural wetland ecosystems across China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Deyan; Ding, Weixin; Jia, Zhongjun; Cai, Zucong

    2012-10-01

    Significant spatial variation in CH(4) emissions is a well-established feature of natural wetland ecosystems. To understand the key factors affecting CH(4) production, the variation in community structure of methanogenic archaea, in relation to substrate and external environmental influences, was investigated in selected wetlands across China, using denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis. Case study areas were the subtropical Poyang wetland, the warm-temperate Hongze wetland, the cold-temperate Sanjiang marshes, and the alpine Ruoergai peatland on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. The topsoil layer in the Hongze wetland exhibited the highest population of methanogens; the lowest was found in the Poyang wetland. Maximum CH(4) production occurred in the topsoil layer of the Sanjiang Carex lasiocarpa marsh, the minimum was observed in the Ruoergai peatland. CH(4) production potential was significantly correlated with the dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentration but not with the abundance or diversity indices of methanogenic archaea. Phylogenetic analysis and DOC concentration indicated a shift in the dominant methanogen from the hydrogenotrophic Methanobacteriales in DOC-rich wetlands to Methanosarcinaceae with a low affinity in wetlands with relatively high DOC and then to the acetotrophic methanogen Methanosaetaceae with a high affinity in wetlands with low DOC, or with high DOC but rich sulfate-reducing bacteria. Therefore, it is proposed that the dominant methanogen type in wetlands is primarily influenced by available DOC concentration. In turn, the variation in CH(4) production potential in the wetlands of eastern China is attributable to differences in the DOC content and the dominant type of methanogen present.

  6. Do we have to choose between feeding the human population and conserving nature? Modelling the global dependence of people on ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cazalis, Victor; Loreau, Michel; Henderson, Kirsten

    2018-04-13

    The ability of the human population to continue growing depends strongly on the ecosystem services provided by nature. Nature, however, is becoming more and more degraded as the number of individuals increases, which could potentially threaten the future well-being of the human population. We use a dynamic model to conceptualise links between the global proportion of natural habitats and human demography, through four categories of ecosystem services (provisioning, regulating, cultural recreational and informational) to investigate the common future of nature and humanity in terms of size and well-being. Our model shows that there is generally a trade-off between the quality of life and human population size and identifies four short-term scenarios, corresponding to three long-term steady states of the model. First, human population could experience declines if nature becomes too degraded and regulating services diminish; second the majority of the population could be in a famine state, where the population continues to grow with minimal food provision. Between these scenarios, a desirable future scenario emerges from the model. It occurs if humans convert enough land to feed all the population, while maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem services. Finally, we find a fourth scenario, which combines famine and a decline in the population because of an overexploitation of land leading to a decrease in food production. Human demography is embedded in natural dynamics; the two factors should be considered together if we are to identify a desirable future for both nature and humans. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Efficiency of natural self-purification of ecosystems vs. countermeasures applied at the East-Ural Radioactive Trace (EURT)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molchanova, I.; Pozolotina, V.; Mikhailovskaya, L.; Antonova, E.

    2012-04-01

    As a result of the radiation accident in 1957 at the Production Association "Mayak" (Russia, the Urals) a fast area (23000 km^2), later named the East-Ural radioactive trace, was contaminated. Accidental emission presented by the long-living radionuclides was found to be dominated by Sr-90. In 1967 the EURT area was subjected to a secondary contamination resulting from radioactive sediments transport by wind from "Mayak" technological reservoir, Karachay Lake. Currently, the stock of Sr-90, Cs-137 and Pu-239,240 in the EURT's soil cover consist of 640•10^12 Bq. This study is aimed to compare an efficiency of the countermeasures adopted at the EURT and natural processes responsible for self-purification of contaminated ecosystems. With concern to the principle of ranging the contaminated areas two zones were established: impact and buffer ones. The impact zone is situated near the accident epicenter, i.e. within 2-30 km from of the Trace central axis. After accident this zone was removed from agricultural utilization. The buffer zone has permanent anthropogenic pressure. The native, undisturbed during the reclamation operations, flow adjacent of landscape sites were chosen within the impact and buffer zones. They included of a watershed area and bank area of the lakes. The impact zone demonstrated the lowest concentration of the radionuclides around the frequently flooded lake shore. Absence of anthropogenic pressure, the high density of the plant cover and deficit of the soil moisture in summer time are the main reasons for decreasing the intensity of the water runoff from watershed. As a result the self-purification processes are dominated around the shoreline soils. The buffer zone is characterized by an opposite regularity appeared in increasing of the Sr-90 content in the soils of the lake shore. In this case, the intensive agricultural utilization of the flat watersheds leads to increase of erosion and degradation processes and, as consequently, to the

  8. Rapid assessment of ecosystem services provided by two mineral extraction sites restored for nature conservation in an agricultural landscape in eastern England.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blaen, Phillip J; Jia, Li; Peh, Kelvin S-H; Field, Rob H; Balmford, Andrew; MacDonald, Michael A; Bradbury, Richard B

    2015-01-01

    Despite growing recognition that mineral sites restored for nature conservation can enhance local biodiversity, the wider societal benefits provided by this type of restoration relative to alternative options are not well understood. This study addresses this research gap by quantifying differences in ecosystem services provision under two common mineral site after-uses: nature conservation and agriculture. Using a combination of site-specific primary field data, benefits transfer and modelling, we show that for our sites restoration for nature conservation provides a more diverse array of ecosystem services than would be delivered under an agricultural restoration scenario. We also explore the effects of addressing different conservation targets, which we find alter the provision of ecosystem services on a service-specific basis. Highly species-focused intervention areas are associated with increased carbon storage and livestock grazing provision, whereas non-intervention areas are important for carbon sequestration, fishing, recreation and flood risk mitigation. The results of this study highlight the wider societal importance of restored mineral sites and may help conservation managers and planners to develop future restoration strategies that provide benefits for both biodiversity and human well-being.

  9. Influence of land use on bacterial and archaeal diversity and community structures in three natural ecosystems and one agricultural soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynn, Tin Mar; Liu, Qiong; Hu, Yajun; Yuan, Hongzhao; Wu, Xiaohong; Khai, Aye Aye; Wu, Jinshui; Ge, Tida

    2017-07-01

    Studying shifts in microbial communities under different land use can help in determining the impact of land use on microbial diversity. In this study, we analyzed four different land-use types to determine their bacterial and archaeal diversity and abundance. Three natural ecosystems, that is, wetland (WL), grassland (GL), and forest (FR) soils, and one agricultural soil, that is, tea plantation (TP) soil, were investigated to determine how land use shapes bacterial and archaeal diversity. For this purpose, molecular analyses, such as quantitative polymerase chain reaction (Q-PCR), 16S rRNA gene sequencing, and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP), were used. Soil physicochemical properties were determined, and statistical analyses were performed to identify the key factors affecting microbial diversity in these soils. Phylogenetic affiliations determined using the Ribosomal Database Project (RDP) database and T-RFLP revealed that the soils had differing bacterial diversity. WL soil was rich in only Proteobacteria, whereas GR soil was rich in Proteobacteria, followed by Actinobacteria. FR soil had higher abundance of Chloroflexi species than these soils. TP soil was rich in Actinobacteria, followed by Chloroflexi, Acidobacteria, Proteobacteria, and Firmicutes. The archaeal diversity of GL and FR soils was similar in that most of their sequences were closely related to Nitrososphaerales (Thaumarchaeota phylum). In contrast, WL soil, followed by TP soil, had greater archaeal diversity than other soils. Eight different archaeal classes were found in WL soil, and Pacearchaeota class was the richest one. The abundance of bacterial and archaeal 16S rRNA gene copies in WL and GL soils was significantly higher than that in FR and TP soils. Redundancy analysis showed that bacterial diversity was influenced by abiotic factors, e.g., total organic carbon and pH, whereas total nitrogen, pH, and cation exchange capacity (CEC) significantly affected

  10. Chronic N enrichment and drought alter plant cover and community composition in a Mediterranean-type semi-arid shrubland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vourlitis, George L

    2017-05-01

    Anthropogenic nitrogen (N) deposition has caused a decline in native plant species and an increase in exotic plant species in many terrestrial ecosystems; however, vegetation change depends on the rate and/or duration of N input, individual species responses, interactions with other resources, and ecosystem properties such as species richness and canopy cover, soil texture, pH, and/or disturbance regime. Native shrub and exotic forb responses to N enrichment were evaluated over a 13-year field experiment in a mature coastal sage scrub (CSS) shrubland of southern California to test the hypothesis that dry-season N input will cause a decline in native shrubs and an increase in exotic annuals. Nitrogen enrichment caused the dominant native shrubs, Artemisia californica and Salvia mellifera, to respond differently, with A. californica initially increasing with N input but declining thereafter and S. mellifera declining consistently over the 13-year-period. Both species exhibited higher canopy dieback during drought conditions, especially in N plots. Brassica nigra, an exotic annual, invaded N plots significantly more than control plots, but only after 10 years of N addition and a prolonged drought, which increased native shrub canopy dieback. These results indicate a possible synergism between N enrichment and drought on native shrub and exotic forb abundance, which would have important implications for plant diversity in semi-arid shrublands of southwest US that are anticipated to experience an increase in anthropogenic N enrichment and the frequency and duration of drought.

  11. Payment schemes for hydrological ecosystem services as a political instrument for the sustainable management of natural resources and poverty reduction – a case study from Belén, Nicaragua

    OpenAIRE

    Hack, J.

    2010-01-01

    The importance of intact ecosystems for human-wellbeing as well as the dependence on functions and services they provide is undoubted. But still neither the costs of ecosystem degradation nor the benefits from ecosystem functions and services appear on socio-economic balance sheets when development takes place. Consequently overuse of natural resources is socio-economically promoted by conventional resource management policies and external effects (externalities), equally po...

  12. Biodiversity and ecosystem processes: lessons from nature to improve management of planted forests for REDD-plus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ian D. Thompson; Kimiko Okabe; John A. Parrotta; David I. Forrester; Eckehard Brockerhoff; Hervé Jactel; Hisatomo. Taki

    2014-01-01

    Planted forests are increasingly contributing wood products and other ecosystem services at a global scale. These forests will be even more important as carbon markets develop and REDD-plus forest programs (forests used specifically to reduce atmospheric emissions of CO2 through deforestation and forest degradation) become common. Restoring degraded and deforested...

  13. Untangling human development and natural gradients: implications of underlying correlation structure for linking landscapes and riverine ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yasmin Lucero; E. Ashley Steel; Kelly M. Burnett; Kelly. Christiansen

    2011-01-01

    Increasingly, ecologists seek to identify and quantify relationships between landscape gradients and aquatic ecosystems. Considerable statistical challenges emerge in this effort, some of which are attributable to multicollinearity between human development and landscape gradients. In this paper, we measure the covariation between human development—such as agriculture...

  14. Body condition, diet and ecosystem function of red deer (Cervus elaphus) in a fenced nature reserve

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fløjgaard, Camilla; De Barba, Marta; Taberlet, Pierre

    2017-01-01

    body condition had different diets, i.e., the fecal samples of red deer in poorer body condition contained significantly more Ericaceae sequences than red deer in good body condition. This may imply that certain functions of red deer in ecosystems, such as regeneration of heather by grazing, may depend...

  15. An ecohydrological sketch of climate change impacts on water and natural ecosystems for the Netherlands: bridging the gap between science and society

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witte, J. P. M.; Runhaar, J.; van Ek, R.; van der Hoek, D. C. J.; Bartholomeus, R. P.; Batelaan, O.; van Bodegom, P. M.; Wassen, M. J.; van der Zee, S. E. A. T. M.

    2012-11-01

    For policy making and spatial planning, information is needed about the impacts of climate change on natural ecosystems. To provide this information, commonly hydrological and ecological models are used. We give arguments for our assessment that modelling only is insufficient for determining the impacts of climate changes on natural ecosystems at regional scales. Instead, we proposed a combination of hydrological simulations, a literature review and process-knowledge on climate-hydrology-vegetation interactions, to compile a sketch map that indicates climate change effects on a number of ecosystems in the Netherlands. Soon after a first version of our sketch map was published by a Dutch professional journal, copies appeared in policy documents, and also in a commercial and popular atlas of the Netherlands. Moreover, the map led to a question in the Dutch parliament about the sustainability of bog reserves under the future climate. Apparently, there was an urgent need for the information provided by the map. The map shows that climate change will presumably have the largest influence on ecosystems in the Netherlands that depend on precipitation as the major water source, like heathlands, dry grasslands, rain-fed moorland pools and raised bogs. Also highly susceptible are fens in reserves surrounded by deeply drained polders, because such fens depend on the inlet of surface water, of which quality is likely to deteriorate upon climate change. While the map is indicative for directions of change, in view of the uncertainties of our study, no conclusions should be drawn that may have far-reaching consequences, such as giving up certain nature targets that might no longer be feasible in the future climate. Instead, we advise to anticipate the potential threats from climate change by taking a number of adaptation measures that enhance the robustness of nature reserves. To improve climate change projections on hydrology and ecosystems, future research should especially

  16. Evaluation of the natural attenuation capacity of urban residential soils with ecosystem-service performance index (EPX) and entropy-weight methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Tian; Wang, Meie; Su, Chao; Chen, Weiping

    2018-03-17

    Soils provide the service of attenuating and detoxifying pollutants. Such ability, natural attenuation capacity (NAC), is one of the most important ecosystem services for urban soils. We improved the ecosystem-service performance index (EPX) model by integrating with entropy weight determination method to evaluate the NAC of residential soils in Beijing. Eleven parameters related to the soil process of pollutants fate and transport were selected and 115 residential soil samples were collected. The results showed that bulk density, microbial functional diversity and soil organic matter had high weights in the NAC evaluation. Urban socio-economic indicators of residential communities such as construction age, population density and property & management fee could be employed in kinetic fittings of NAC. It could be concluded urbanization had significant impacts on NAC in residential soils. The improved method revealed reasonable and practical results, and it could be served as a potential measure for application to other quantitative assessment. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Evaluation of CH4 and N2O Budget of Natural Ecosystems and Croplands in Asia with a Process-based Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, A.

    2017-12-01

    Terrestrial ecosystems are important sink of carbon dioxide (CO2) but significant sources of other greenhouse gases such as methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O). To resolve the role of terrestrial biosphere in the climate system, we need to quantify total greenhouse gas budget with an adequate accuracy. In addition to top-down evaluation on the basis of atmospheric measurements, model-based approach is required for integration and up-scaling of filed data and for prediction under changing environment and different management practices. Since the early 2000s, we have developed a process-based model of terrestrial biogeochemical cycles focusing on atmosphere-ecosystem exchange of trace gases: Vegetation Integrated SImulator for Trace gases (VISIT). The model includes simple and comprehensive schemes of carbon and nitrogen cycles in terrestrial ecosystems, allowing us to capture dynamic nature of greenhouse gas budget. Beginning from natural ecosystems such as temperate and tropical forests, the models is now applicable to croplands by including agricultural practices such as planting, harvest, and fertilizer input. Global simulation results have been published from several papers, but model validation and benchmarking using up-to-date observations are remained for works. The model is now applied to several practical issues such as evaluation of N2O emission from bio-fuel croplands, which are expected to accomplish the mitigation target of the Paris Agreement. We also show several topics about basic model development such as revised CH4 emission affected by dynamic water-table and refined N2O emission from nitrification.

  18. Natural resource management in a protected area of the Indian Himalayas: a modeling approach for anthropogenic interactions on ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nautiyal, Sunil; Kaechele, Harald

    2009-06-01

    The concept of ecosystem conservation as a broad theme came into existence during the 1970s under the Man and Biosphere Programme (MAB) of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The Indian Government followed this approach and chose the method to segregate the landscape for conservation of the ecosystem as well as for the development of the local economy and its people. We have examined the effect of this policy and concurrently developed a theoretical modeling approach to understand how human behavior is changing under shifting political, socioeconomic and environmental conditions. A specific focus has been on how the landscape is changing in the mountains of the Indian Himalayan region where about 10% of the total geographical area is converted into protected landscape for conservation of biodiversity. For local people living in the Himalayan mountains in India, agriculture is the main land use activity and is strongly linked to the forests in providing sustainability. There are several branches in the rural ecosystems where the local people's economy was centered. These include agriculture, animal husbandry, medicinal and aromatic plants cultivation, forest resource collection, tourism and other occupations. The greatest proportion of the population was engaged in the agriculture sector, whose contribution is high in the rural economy (61%); followed by animal husbandry (19%), forest resource collection for economic gain (18%), and medicinal and aromatic plants cultivation (1.5%). However, three decades ago the animal husbandry branch of the rural ecosystem was contributing the maximum share towards rural household income (40%) followed by tourism (35.2%), and lastly agriculture (14%). The desire of farmers to secure the optimum output from agricultural land use has resulted in an increase for resource collection from the forests. The people's perception (n = 1,648) regarding overall changes occurring in the region was

  19. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: MA Ecosystems

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: MA Ecosystems provides data and information on the extent and classification of ecosystems circa 2000, including coastal,...

  20. Indirect effects of conservation policies on the coupled human-natural ecosystem of the upper Gulf of California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morzaria-Luna, Hem Nalini; Ainsworth, Cameron H; Kaplan, Isaac C; Levin, Phillip S; Fulton, Elizabeth A

    2013-01-01

    High bycatch of non-target species and species of conservation concern often drives the implementation of fisheries policies. However, species- or fishery-specific policies may lead to indirect consequences, positive or negative, for other species or fisheries. We use an Atlantis ecosystem model of the Northern Gulf of California to evaluate the effects of fisheries policies directed at reducing bycatch of vaquita (Phocoena sinus) on other species of conservation concern, priority target species, and metrics of ecosystem function and structure. Vaquita, a Critically Endangered porpoise endemic to the Upper Gulf of California, are frequently entangled by finfish gillnets and shrimp driftnets. We tested five fishery management scenarios, projected over 30 years (2008 to 2038), directed at vaquita conservation. The scenarios consider progressively larger spatial restrictions for finfish gillnets and shrimp driftnets. The most restrictive scenario resulted in the highest biomass of species of conservation concern; the scenario without any conservation measures in place resulted in the lowest. Vaquita experienced the largest population increase of any functional group; their biomass increased 2.7 times relative to initial (2008) levels under the most restrictive spatial closure scenario. Bycatch of sea lions, sea turtles, and totoaba decreased > 80% in shrimp driftnets and at least 20% in finfish gillnet fleets under spatial management. We found indirect effects on species and ecosystem function and structure as a result of vaquita management actions. Biomass and catch of forage fish declined, which could affect lower-trophic level fisheries, while other species such as skates, rays, and sharks increased in both biomass and catch. When comparing across performance metrics, we found that scenarios that increased ecosystem function and structure resulted in lower economic performance indicators, underscoring the need for management actions that consider ecological and

  1. Indirect effects of conservation policies on the coupled human-natural ecosystem of the upper Gulf of California.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hem Nalini Morzaria-Luna

    Full Text Available High bycatch of non-target species and species of conservation concern often drives the implementation of fisheries policies. However, species- or fishery-specific policies may lead to indirect consequences, positive or negative, for other species or fisheries. We use an Atlantis ecosystem model of the Northern Gulf of California to evaluate the effects of fisheries policies directed at reducing bycatch of vaquita (Phocoena sinus on other species of conservation concern, priority target species, and metrics of ecosystem function and structure. Vaquita, a Critically Endangered porpoise endemic to the Upper Gulf of California, are frequently entangled by finfish gillnets and shrimp driftnets. We tested five fishery management scenarios, projected over 30 years (2008 to 2038, directed at vaquita conservation. The scenarios consider progressively larger spatial restrictions for finfish gillnets and shrimp driftnets. The most restrictive scenario resulted in the highest biomass of species of conservation concern; the scenario without any conservation measures in place resulted in the lowest. Vaquita experienced the largest population increase of any functional group; their biomass increased 2.7 times relative to initial (2008 levels under the most restrictive spatial closure scenario. Bycatch of sea lions, sea turtles, and totoaba decreased > 80% in shrimp driftnets and at least 20% in finfish gillnet fleets under spatial management. We found indirect effects on species and ecosystem function and structure as a result of vaquita management actions. Biomass and catch of forage fish declined, which could affect lower-trophic level fisheries, while other species such as skates, rays, and sharks increased in both biomass and catch. When comparing across performance metrics, we found that scenarios that increased ecosystem function and structure resulted in lower economic performance indicators, underscoring the need for management actions that consider

  2. Indirect Effects of Conservation Policies on the Coupled Human-Natural Ecosystem of the Upper Gulf of California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morzaria-Luna, Hem Nalini; Ainsworth, Cameron H.; Kaplan, Isaac C.; Levin, Phillip S.; Fulton, Elizabeth A.

    2013-01-01

    High bycatch of non-target species and species of conservation concern often drives the implementation of fisheries policies. However, species- or fishery-specific policies may lead to indirect consequences, positive or negative, for other species or fisheries. We use an Atlantis ecosystem model of the Northern Gulf of California to evaluate the effects of fisheries policies directed at reducing bycatch of vaquita (Phocoena sinus) on other species of conservation concern, priority target species, and metrics of ecosystem function and structure. Vaquita, a Critically Endangered porpoise endemic to the Upper Gulf of California, are frequently entangled by finfish gillnets and shrimp driftnets. We tested five fishery management scenarios, projected over 30 years (2008 to 2038), directed at vaquita conservation. The scenarios consider progressively larger spatial restrictions for finfish gillnets and shrimp driftnets. The most restrictive scenario resulted in the highest biomass of species of conservation concern; the scenario without any conservation measures in place resulted in the lowest. Vaquita experienced the largest population increase of any functional group; their biomass increased 2.7 times relative to initial (2008) levels under the most restrictive spatial closure scenario. Bycatch of sea lions, sea turtles, and totoaba decreased > 80% in shrimp driftnets and at least 20% in finfish gillnet fleets under spatial management. We found indirect effects on species and ecosystem function and structure as a result of vaquita management actions. Biomass and catch of forage fish declined, which could affect lower-trophic level fisheries, while other species such as skates, rays, and sharks increased in both biomass and catch. When comparing across performance metrics, we found that scenarios that increased ecosystem function and structure resulted in lower economic performance indicators, underscoring the need for management actions that consider ecological and

  3. Forest ecosystem services affected by natural disturbances, climate and land-use changes in the Tatra Mountains

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fleischer, P.; Pichler, V.; Holko, L.; Fleischer Jr., P.; Máliš, F.; Gömöryová, E.; Cudlín, Pavel; Holeksa, J.; Michalová, Z.; Homolová, Z.; Škvarenina, J.; Střelcová, K.; Hlaváč, P.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 73, 1-2 (2017), s. 57-71 ISSN 0936-577X R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1415 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : Forest ecosystem state * Bark beetle outbreak * Long-term research Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour OBOR OECD: Environmental sciences (social aspects to be 5.7) Impact factor: 1.578, year: 2016

  4. Land use pattern, socio-economic development, and assessment of their impacts on ecosystem service value: study on natural wetlands distribution area (NWDA) in Fuzhou city, southeastern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Yuan-Bin; Zhang, Hao; Pan, Wen-Bin; Chen, Yan-Hong; Wang, Xiang-Rong

    2013-06-01

    This paper quantifies the allocation of ecosystem services value (ESV) associated with land use pattern and qualitatively examined impacts of land use changes and socio-economic factors on spatiotemporal variation of ESV in the Natural Wetland Distribution Area (NWDA), Fuzhou city, China. The results showed that total ESV of the study area decreased from 4,332.16 × 10(6) RMB Yuan in 1989 to 3,697.42 × 10(6) RMB Yuan in 2009, mainly due to the remarkable decreases in cropland (decreased by 55.3 %) and wetland (decreased by 74.2 %). Forest, water, and wetland played major roles in providing ecosystem services, accounting for over 90 % of the total ESV. Based on time series Landsat TM/ETM+ imagery, geographic information system, and historical data, analysis of the spatiotemporal variation of ESV from 1989 to 2009 was performed. It indicated that rapid expansion of urban areas along the Minjiang River resulted in significant changes in land use types, leading to a dramatic decline in ecosystem services. Meanwhile, because of land scarcity and unique ecosystem functions, the emergency of wetland and cropland protection in built-up area has become an urgent task of local authorities to the local government. Furthermore, there was still a significant negative correlation between ESV of cropland and wetland and the GDP. The results suggest that future planning of land use pattern should control encroachment of urban areas into cropland and wetland in addition to scientific and rational policies towards minimizing the adverse effects of urbanization.

  5. Payment schemes for hydrological ecosystem services as a political instrument for the sustainable management of natural resources and poverty reduction - a case study from Belén, Nicaragua

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hack, J.

    2010-08-01

    The importance of intact ecosystems for human-wellbeing as well as the dependence on functions and services they provide is undoubted. But still neither the costs of ecosystem degradation nor the benefits from ecosystem functions and services appear on socio-economic balance sheets when development takes place. Consequently overuse of natural resources is socio-economically promoted by conventional resource management policies and external effects (externalities), equally positives and negatives, remain unregarded. In this context the potential of payments for hydrological ecosystem services as a political instrument to foster sustainable natural resource use, and rural development shall be investigated. This paper introduces the principle concept of such payments, presents a case study from Nicaragua and highlights preliminary effects of the application of this instrument on natural resource use and development.

  6. Parameterization of aquatic ecosystem functioning and its natural variation: Hierarchical Bayesian modelling of plankton food web dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norros, Veera; Laine, Marko; Lignell, Risto; Thingstad, Frede

    2017-10-01

    Methods for extracting empirically and theoretically sound parameter values are urgently needed in aquatic ecosystem modelling to describe key flows and their variation in the system. Here, we compare three Bayesian formulations for mechanistic model parameterization that differ in their assumptions about the variation in parameter values between various datasets: 1) global analysis - no variation, 2) separate analysis - independent variation and 3) hierarchical analysis - variation arising from a shared distribution defined by hyperparameters. We tested these methods, using computer-generated and empirical data, coupled with simplified and reasonably realistic plankton food web models, respectively. While all methods were adequate, the simulated example demonstrated that a well-designed hierarchical analysis can result in the most accurate and precise parameter estimates and predictions, due to its ability to combine information across datasets. However, our results also highlighted sensitivity to hyperparameter prior distributions as an important caveat of hierarchical analysis. In the more complex empirical example, hierarchical analysis was able to combine precise identification of parameter values with reasonably good predictive performance, although the ranking of the methods was less straightforward. We conclude that hierarchical Bayesian analysis is a promising tool for identifying key ecosystem-functioning parameters and their variation from empirical datasets.

  7. Modeling silviculture after natural disturbance to sustain biodiversity in the longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) ecosystem : balancing complexity and implementation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brian J. Palik; Robert J. Mitchell; J. Kevin Hiers

    2002-01-01

    Modeling silviculture after natural disturbance to maintain biodiversity is a popular concept, yet its application remains elusive. We discuss difficulties inherent to this idea, and suggest approaches to facilitate implementation, using longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) as an example. Natural disturbance regimes are spatially and temporally variable. Variability...

  8. Interaction between the society around forest area with the use of biodiversity in the natural forest ecosystem of Bedugul-Pancasari, Bali

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    BRAMANTYO TRI ADI NUGROHO

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Natural ecosystem forest of Bedugul-Pancasari represents an area which located in Tabanan regency, Bali province. This ecosystem area consist of eight laid orchard at strategic area so that do not deny by many society forest exploit variety involve residing in the area. This research aimed to get the information about variance factors that influence the extraction of nature resources by the village and also to know the respondent characteristic. The result from frequency distribution table showed the age of respondent 20-35 (45% was the biggest group which taken the forest biodiversities around Bedugul-Pancasari forest. The respondent who taken the biggest forest biodiversity has income from 50,000-185,000 rupiahs (42% and 82% as a farmer. The age, the distance between house and forest, and the number of family member variables influenced the respondents to take the forest biodiversities. The Cramer’s V value for each variable is 0.592, 0.691 and 0.723 that indicated there was correlation.

  9. Effects of 3-month Mediterranean-type diet on postprandial TAG and apolipoprotein B48 in the Medi-RIVAGE cohort.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Defoort, Catherine; Vincent-Baudry, Stéphanie; Lairon, Denis

    2011-12-01

    To determine the postprandial lipaemia response before and after intervention with healthy diets in the Medi-RIVAGE cohort of subjects with moderate risk factors of CVD. One hundred and thirty-five adults (fifty-two men and eighty-three women) followed either a Mediterranean-type (MED) diet or a low-fat American Heart Association-type diet in a parallel design for 3 months. At entry and after 3 months, lipids, glucose and insulin were measured in the fasting samples; TAG and apolipoprotein B48 (ApoB48; a marker of intestinally derived chylomicrons) levels were measured in the fasting and postprandial samples after a standard test meal. The MED diet only lowered (P 25 kg/m2 showed reduced postprandial ApoB48. Men and women displayed comparable postprandial changes after dietary challenges. A MED diet appears efficient to improve postprandial lipaemia, a recently acknowledged CVD risk, in men and women at moderate cardiovascular risk.

  10. Wetlands serve as natural sources for improvement of stream ecosystem health in regions affected by acid deposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pound, Katrina L; Lawrence, Gregory B.; Passy, Sophia I.

    2013-01-01

    For over 40 years, acid deposition has been recognized as a serious international environmental problem, but efforts to restore acidified streams and biota have had limited success. The need to better understand the effects of different sources of acidity on streams has become more pressing with the recent increases in surface water organic acids, or 'brownification' associated with climate change and decreased inorganic acid deposition. Here, we carried out a large scale multi-seasonal investigation in the Adirondacks, one of the most acid-impacted regions in the United States, to assess how acid stream producers respond to local and watershed influences and whether these influences can be used in acidification remediation. We explored the pathways of wetland control on aluminum chemistry and diatom taxonomic and functional composition. We demonstrate that streams with larger watershed wetlands have higher organic content, lower concentrations of acidic anions, and lower ratios of inorganic to organic monomeric aluminum, all beneficial for diatom biodiversity and guilds producing high biomass. Although brownification has been viewed as a form of pollution, our results indicate that it may be a stimulating force for biofilm producers with potentially positive consequences for higher trophic levels. Our research also reveals that the mechanism of watershed control of local stream diatom biodiversity through wetland export of organic matter is universal in running waters, operating not only in hard streams, as previously reported, but also in acid streams. Our findings that the negative impacts of acid deposition on Adirondack stream chemistry and biota can be mitigated by wetlands have important implications for biodiversity conservation and stream ecosystem management. Future acidification research should focus on the potential for wetlands to improve stream ecosystem health in acid-impacted regions and their direct use in stream restoration, for example, through

  11. Bioavailability of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in aquatic ecosystems : influence of natural and anthropic organic matter; Biodisponibilite des hydrocarbures aromatiques polycycliques dans les ecosystemes aquatiques: influence de la matiere organique naturelle et anthropique

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gourlay, C.

    2004-11-01

    Aquatic ecosystems receive micro-pollutants. They also contain organic matter (OM) of natural and anthropogenic origins. The contaminant bioavailability in aquatic media is determined by the interactions between contaminants and OM. This work deals with the influence of organic matter from anthropogenic media on the bioavailability of hydrophobic organic pollutants. Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) have been used as model contaminants, since they are widely spread in urban media. In anthropogenic media, some OM may be bio-degraded. Up to now, most researches focused on the interactions between contaminants and humic OM that are mostly non-degradable, using physico-chemical characterizations of OM. On the contrary, in this work, the biodegradability of OM was deliberately taken into account. Indeed, we assume that the contaminant affinity for OM evolves during OM biodegradation, so that pollutants may be released in a bio-available form and then may be bond again by biodegradation sub-products. In laboratory evaluation, PAH bioavailability was assessed through the measurements of the bioaccumulation in Daphnia magna. The influence of organic matter on the bioavailability of PAHs and the evolution of this influence along OM bacterial mineralization were proved, as well as the strong binding efficiency of degradation by-products. A model of observed phenomena was elaborated. These observations about urban and natural OM effect were compared to in situ PAH bioavailability measurements in the river Seine basin. In this case, the bioavailability was estimated using Semi-Permeable Membrane Device (SPMD) sampling technique. (author)

  12. Modeling the effects of urban expansion on natural capital stocks and ecosystem service flows: A case study in the Puget Sound, Washington, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zank, Ben; Bagstad, Kenneth J.; Voigt, Brian; Villa, Ferdinando

    2016-01-01

    Urban expansion and its associated landscape modifications are important drivers of changes in ecosystem service (ES). This study examined the effects of two alternative land use-change development scenarios in the Puget Sound region of Washington State on natural capital stocks and ES flows. Land-use change model outputs served as inputs to five ES models developed using the Artificial Intelligence for Ecosystem Services (ARIES) platform. While natural capital stocks declined under managed (1.3–5.8%) and unmanaged (2.8–11.8%) development scenarios, ES flows increased by 18.5–56% and 23.2–55.7%, respectively. Human development of natural landscapes reduced their capacity for service provision, while simultaneously adding beneficiaries, particularly along the urban fringe. Using global and local Moran’s I, we identified three distinct patterns of change in ES due to projected landuse change. For services with location-dependent beneficiaries – open space proximity, viewsheds, and flood regulation – urbanization led to increased clustering and hot-spot intensities. ES flows were greatest in the managed land-use change scenario for open space proximity and flood regulation, and in the unmanaged land-use change scenario for viewsheds—a consequence of the differing ES flow mechanisms underpinning these services. We observed a third pattern – general declines in service provision – for carbon storage and sediment retention, where beneficiaries in our analysis were not location dependent. Contrary to past authors’ finding of ES declines under urbanization, a more nuanced analysis that maps and quantifies ES provision, beneficiaries, and flows better identifies gains and losses for specific ES beneficiaries as urban areas expand.

  13. Study of 90Sr and 137Cs radionuclide sorption on natural sorbents in mock-up ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tret'yakov, S.Ya.

    2002-01-01

    Sorption of 90 Sr and 137 Cs from tap drinking grade water and the Beloyarsk reservoir water on samples of natural ion exchangers, i.e. glauconite concentrate and white alluvial clay, was studied under static conditions. Coefficients of 90 Sr and 137 Cs distribution on the sorbents mentioned, depending on duration and water origin, were calculated. Sorption equilibrium for 90 Sr and 137 Cs is attained for white alluvial clay actually in 90 days and for glauconite concentrate - in 270 days. The investigations conducted permit recommending the sorbents studied as promising natural ion exchangers for contaminated water treatment for 90 Sr and 137 Cs [ru

  14. Radionuclides in terrestrial ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bocock, K.L.

    1981-01-01

    This report summarizes information on the distribution and movement of radionuclides in semi-natural terrestrial ecosystems in north-west England with particular emphasis on inputs to, and outputs from ecosystems; on plant and soil aspects; and on radionuclides in fallout and in discharges by the nuclear industry. (author)

  15. Fishing for ecosystem services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pope, Kevin L.; Pegg, Mark A.; Cole, Nicholas W.; Siddons, Stephen F.; Fedele, Alexis D.; Harmon, Brian S.; Ruskamp, Ryan L.; Turner, Dylan R.; Uerling, Caleb C.

    2016-01-01

    Ecosystems are commonly exploited and manipulated to maximize certain human benefits. Such changes can degrade systems, leading to cascading negative effects that may be initially undetected, yet ultimately result in a reduction, or complete loss, of certain valuable ecosystem services. Ecosystem-based management is intended to maintain ecosystem quality and minimize the risk of irreversible change to natural assemblages of species and to ecosystem processes while obtaining and maintaining long-term socioeconomic benefits. We discuss policy decisions in fishery management related to commonly manipulated environments with a focus on influences to ecosystem services. By focusing on broader scales, managing for ecosystem services, and taking a more proactive approach, we expect sustainable, quality fisheries that are resilient to future disturbances. To that end, we contend that: (1) management always involves tradeoffs; (2) explicit management of fisheries for ecosystem services could facilitate a transition from reactive to proactive management; and (3) adaptive co-management is a process that could enhance management for ecosystem services. We propose adaptive co-management with an ecosystem service framework where actions are implemented within ecosystem boundaries, rather than political boundaries, through strong interjurisdictional relationships.

  16. Fishing for ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pope, Kevin L; Pegg, Mark A; Cole, Nicholas W; Siddons, Stephen F; Fedele, Alexis D; Harmon, Brian S; Ruskamp, Ryan L; Turner, Dylan R; Uerling, Caleb C

    2016-12-01

    Ecosystems are commonly exploited and manipulated to maximize certain human benefits. Such changes can degrade systems, leading to cascading negative effects that may be initially undetected, yet ultimately result in a reduction, or complete loss, of certain valuable ecosystem services. Ecosystem-based management is intended to maintain ecosystem quality and minimize the risk of irreversible change to natural assemblages of species and to ecosystem processes while obtaining and maintaining long-term socioeconomic benefits. We discuss policy decisions in fishery management related to commonly manipulated environments with a focus on influences to ecosystem services. By focusing on broader scales, managing for ecosystem services, and taking a more proactive approach, we expect sustainable, quality fisheries that are resilient to future disturbances. To that end, we contend that: (1) management always involves tradeoffs; (2) explicit management of fisheries for ecosystem services could facilitate a transition from reactive to proactive management; and (3) adaptive co-management is a process that could enhance management for ecosystem services. We propose adaptive co-management with an ecosystem service framework where actions are implemented within ecosystem boundaries, rather than political boundaries, through strong interjurisdictional relationships. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  17. Assessing impacts of unconventional natural gas extraction on microbial communities in headwater stream ecosystems in Northwestern Pennsylvania

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trexler, Ryan; Solomon, Caroline; Brislawn, Colin J.; Wright, Justin R.; Rosenberger, Abigail; McClure, Erin E.; Grube, Alyssa M.; Peterson, Mark P.; Keddache, Mehdi; Mason, Olivia U.; Hazen, Terry C.; Grant, Christopher J.; Lamendella, Regina

    2014-01-01

    Hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling have increased dramatically in Pennsylvania Marcellus shale formations, however the potential for major environmental impacts are still incompletely understood. High-throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene was performed to characterize the microbial community structure of water, sediment, bryophyte, and biofilm samples from 26 headwater stream sites in northwestern Pennsylvania with different histories of fracking activity within Marcellus shale formations. Further, we describe the relationship between microbial community structure and environmental parameters measured. Approximately 3.2 million 16S rRNA gene sequences were retrieved from a total of 58 samples. Microbial community analyses showed significant reductions in species richness as well as evenness in sites with Marcellus shale activity. Beta diversity analyses revealed distinct microbial community structure between sites with and without Marcellus shale activity. For example, operational taxonomic units (OTUs) within the Acetobacteracea, Methylocystaceae, Acidobacteriaceae, and Phenylobacterium were greater than three log-fold more abundant in MSA+ sites as compared to MSA− sites. Further, several of these OTUs were strongly negatively correlated with pH and positively correlated with the number of wellpads in a watershed. It should be noted that many of the OTUs enriched in MSA+ sites are putative acidophilic and/or methanotrophic populations. This study revealed apparent shifts in the autochthonous microbial communities and highlighted potential members that could be responding to changing stream conditions as a result of nascent industrial activity in these aquatic ecosystems. PMID:25408683

  18. Assessing Impacts of Unconventional Natural Gas Extraction on Microbial Communities in Headwater Stream Ecosystems in Northwestern Pennsylvania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan eTrexler

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling have increased dramatically in Pennsylvania Marcellus shale formations, however the potential for major environmental impacts are still incompletely understood. High-throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene was performed to characterize the microbial community structure of water, sediment, bryophyte, and biofilm samples from 26 headwater stream sites in northwestern Pennsylvania with different histories of fracking activity within Marcellus shale play. Further, we describe the relationship between microbial community structure and environmental parameters measured. Approximately 3.2 million 16S rRNA gene sequences were retrieved from a total of 58 samples. Microbial community analyses showed significant reductions in species richness as well as evenness in sites with Marcellus shale activity (MSA+. Beta diversity analyses revealed distinct microbial community structure between sites with and without Marcellus shale activity (MSA-. For example, OTUs within the Acetobacteracea, Methylocystaceae, Acidobacteriaceae, and Phenylobacterium were greater than three log-fold more abundant in MSA+ sites as compared to MSA- sites. Further, several of these OTUs were strongly negatively correlated with pH and positively correlated with the number of wellpads in a watershed. It should be noted that many of the OTUs enriched in MSA+ sites are putative acidophilic and/or methanotrophic populations. This study revealed apparent shifts in the autochthonous microbial communities and highlighted potential members that could be responding to changing stream conditions as a result of nascent industrial activity in these aquatic ecosystems.

  19. Safeguarding production agriculture and natural ecosystems against biological terrorism. A U.S. Department of Agriculture emergency response framework.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sequeira, R

    1999-01-01

    Foreign pest introductions and outbreaks represent threats to agricultural productivity and ecosystems, and, thus, to the health and national security of the United States. It is advisable to identify relevant techniques and bring all appropriate strategies to bear on the problem of controlling accidentally and intentionally introduced pest outbreaks. Recent political shifts indicate that the U.S. may be at increased risk for biological terrorism. The existing emergency-response strategies of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services (APHIS) will evolve to expand activities in coordination with other emergency management agencies. APHIS will evolve its information superstructure to include extensive application of simulation models for forecasting, meteorological databases and analysis, systems analysis, geographic information systems, satellite image analysis, remote sensing, and the training of specialized cadres within the emergency-response framework capable of managing the necessary information processing and analysis. Finally, the threat of key pests ranked according to perceived risk will be assessed with mathematical models and "what-if" scenarios analyzed to determine impact and mitigation practices. An infrastructure will be maintained that periodically surveys ports and inland regions for the presence of exotic pest threats and will identify trend abnormalities. This survey and monitoring effort will include cooperation from industry groups, federal and state organizations, and academic institutions.

  20. Agricultural practices, ecosystem services and sustainability in High Nature Value farmland: Unraveling the perceptions of farmers and nonfarmers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bernués, Alberto; Tello-García, Elena; Rodríguez-Ortega, Tamara; Ripoll-Bosch, Raimon; Casasús, Isabel

    2016-01-01

    Our aim was to examine the perceptions of farmers and nonfarmers regarding the relationships between agriculture and the environment in High Nature Value (HNV) farmland. We performed content analysis of information obtained from five focus groups to derive key items (recording units such as words,

  1. Ecosystem and understory water and energy exchange for a mature, naturally regenerated pine flatwoods forest in north Florida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas L. Powell; Gregory Starr; Kenneth L. Clark; Timothy A. Martin; Henry L. Gholz

    2005-01-01

    Eddy covariance was used to measure energy fluxes from July 2000 - June 2002 above the tree canopy and above the understory in a mature, naturally regenerated slash pine (Pinus elliottii Engelm. var. elliottii) - longleaf pine (Pinus palustris Mill.) flatwoods forest. Understory latent energy (eE) and sensible...

  2. Habitat functionality for the ecosystem service of pest control: reproduction and feeding sites of pests and natural enemies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bianchi, F.J.J.A.; Schellhorn, N.A.; Cunningham, S.A.

    2013-01-01

    1 Landscape management for enhanced natural pest control requires knowledge of the ecological function of the habitats present in the landscape mosaic. However, little is known about which habitat types in agricultural landscapes function as reproduction habitats for arthropod pests and predators

  3. The ecosystem of the Yahudia Nature Reserve with emphasis on dynamics of germination and development of Quercus ithaburensis decne

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kaplan, Y.

    1984-01-01

    6 main subjects connected with the ecology of the Yahudia Forest Reserve are discussed in this paper, following a general survey of the history of nature conservation in Israel against the background of the neighbouring countries. We have described the physical and historical background of the

  4. Mediterranean-type diet is associated with higher psychological resilience in a general adult population: findings from the Moli-sani study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonaccio, M; Di Castelnuovo, A; Costanzo, S; Pounis, G; Persichillo, M; Cerletti, C; Donati, M B; de Gaetano, G; Iacoviello, L

    2018-01-01

    Psychological resilience is a measure of stress coping ability and has been associated with favourable health outcomes. While evidence on the relationship of dietary habits with a number of psychosocial conditions is available, there is lack of studies on their association with psychological resilience in a general adult population. Cross-sectional analysis on 10 812 subjects recruited within the cohort of the Moli-sani study (2005-2010). Psychological resilience was measured by the 25-item Connor-Davidson Psychological Resilience Scale. Food intake was recorded by the EPIC food frequency questionnaire and adherence to Mediterranean diet was appraised by both a Greek Mediterranean diet score and an Italian Mediterranean Index. Empirically derived dietary patterns were obtained by principal factor analysis. Multivariable linear regression analysis (95%CI) was used to test the association between dietary scores and psychological resilience. Higher adherence to Mediterranean-type diets or consumption of a vegetable-based dietary pattern (obtained from principal factor analysis) were positively associated with psychological resilience (β=0.43; 95%CI: 0.19-0.66, β=0.92; 0.69-1.16, and β=1.18; 0.93-1.44, for Greek Mediterranean diet score, Italian Mediterranean Index and the 'Olive oil and vegetables pattern', respectively). Dietary polyphenol or antioxidant intakes and greater variety in fruit and vegetable consumption were also positively associated with psychological resilience, while the associations with Western-like diets were weak. In conclusion, Mediterranean diet, vegetable-based dietary patterns and better diet quality were all positively associated with higher psychological resilience, whereas Western-type diets were not.

  5. Natural bog pine ecosystem in southern Germany is a steady and robust sink of CO2 but a minor source of CH4

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hommeltenberg, Janina; Schmid, Hans Peter; Droesler, Matthias; Werle, Peter

    2013-04-01

    Natural peatland ecosystems sequester carbon dioxide. They do this slowly but steadily, but also emit methane in small rates. Thus peatlands have both positive and negative greenhouse gas balance impacts on the climate system due to their influence on atmospheric CO2 and CH4 concentration. We present data of net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE) of almost three years (July 2010 to March 2013) and of methane fluxes over a period of nine months (July 2012 to March 2013), measured by eddy covariance technique in the bog forest "Schechenfilz". The site (47°48' N; 11°19' E, 590 m a.s.l.) is an ICOS-ecosystems associate site, located in the pre-alpine region of southern Germany, where a natural Pinus mugo rotundata forest grows on an undisturbed, almost 6 m thick peat layer. The slow growing bog pines and their low rates of carbon sequestration, in combination with high water table and thus low availability of oxygen, lead to low carbon dioxide fluxes. Photosynthesis as well as soil respiration are considerably attenuated compared to upland sites. Additionally, the high soil water content is damping the impact of dry and hot periods on CO2 exchange. Thus the CO2 balance is very robust to changing environmental parameters. While the CO2 exchange is clearly related to soil temperature and photosynthetic active radiation, we have not yet identified a parameter that governs variations in methane exchange. Various environmental parameters appear to be related to methane emissions (including soil moisture, soil and air temperature and wind direction), but the scatter with respect to half hourly methane fluxes is too large to be useful for gap modeling. Analysis of daily averages reduces the scatter, but since methane exchange exhibits considerable daily variation, daily averages are not useful to fill data gaps of half hourly fluxes. In consequence, as the daily course is the summary result of all environmental parameters having influence on the methane exchange at the half

  6. Small Boreal Lake Ecosystem Evolution under the Influence of Natural and Anthropogenic Factors: Results of Multidisciplinary Long-Term Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liudmila Shirokova

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Small aquatic ecosystems of the boreal zone are known to be most sensitive indicators of on-going environmental change as well as local anthropogenic pressure, while being highly vulnerable to external impacts. Compared to rather detailed knowledge of the evolution of large and small lakes in Scandinavia and Canada, and large lakes in Eurasia, highly abundant small boreal lakes of northwest Russia have received very little attention, although they may become important centers of attraction of growing rural population in the near future. Here we present the results of a multidisciplinary, multi-annual study of a small boreal humic lake of NW Russia. A shallow (3 m and a deep (16 m site of this lake were regularly sampled for a range of chemical and biological parameters. Average multi-daily, summer-time values of the epilimnion (upper oxygenated layer of the lake provided indications of possible trends in temperature, nutrients, and bacterio-plankton concentration that revealed the local pollution impact in the shallow zone and overall environmental trend in the deep sampling point of the lake. Organic phosphorus, nitrate, and lead were found to be most efficient tracers of local anthropogenic pollution, especially visible in the surface layer of the shallow site of the lake. Cycling of trace elements between the epilimnion and hypolimnion is tightly linked to dissolved organic matter speciation and size fractionation due to the dominance of organic and organo-ferric colloids. The capacity of lake self-purification depends on the ratio of primary productivity to mineralization of organic matter. This ratio remained >1 both during winter and summer periods, which suggests a high potential of lake recovery from the input of allochthonous dissolved organic matter and local anthropogenic pollution.

  7. Fly ash based Bacillus thuringiensis var. israelensis formulation for use against Culex quinquefasciatus, the vector of filariasis in natural ecosystems

    OpenAIRE

    S Tamilselvan; P Jambulingam; V Manoharan; R Shanmugasundaram; G Vivekanandan; A M Manonmani

    2015-01-01

    Background & objectives: Fly ash is produced in huge quantities by the various thermal power stations in India. This thermal waste has been employed as a carrier material in the preparation of a biopesticidal water dispersible powder (WDP) formulation for use against mosquitoes. In the present investigation, this newly developed fly ash based WDP formulation was evaluated in natural breeding habitats of mosquito. Methods: Fly ash based WDP formulation of Bacillus thuringiensis var. israele...

  8. Evaluating small mammal response to natural disturbance and restoration in oak ecosystems in the Mississippi alluvial valley

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith Carl G; Hamel Paul B; Fuzaro Gullo, Manoelle

    2010-01-01

    Oak species form a conspicuous and often dominant component of bottom land forests of the Mississippi Alluvial Valley. The extent of these forests has been drastically reduced as a result of clearing for agriculture in the past two centuries. Patterns of clearing have reduced the distribution of remaining forest patches to a much more flood-prone subset of the landscape than was historically the case, reducing the diversity of oak species currently present on the landscape. Intensive harvesting has further changed the composition of the remaining stands. Small remnant patches of primary forest continue to exist as Research Natural Areas on the Delta National Forest in Sharkey County, Mississippi. In particular, the Over cup Oak (Quercus lyrata) and Redgum (Liquidambar styraciflua) Research Natural Areas pres ent substantial components of the trees for which the areas were named, as well as Quercus nuttallii and smaller components of other species. Recent interest in afforestation has produced a resurgence of interest in restoration of oak forest to abandoned farmland in the region. We have studied small mammal response to restoration on an extensive experiment near the Delta National Forest since 1995. We have also examined small mammal response to a tornado that disturbed approximately half of the Over cup Oak Research Natural Area in 2008. We use these studies to demonstrate how population estimates of small mammals can be obtained from capture-recapture studies, employing different designs, and utilizing Program Capture for population estimation. Small mammal communities in these stands are more species-rich in early succession than in primary forest. The study of response to tornado damage to the Over cup Oak Research Natural Area is complicated by the fact that this particular forest type is very flood-prone, creating obstacles to colonization by small mammals. Analysis of capture-recapture data with robust methods illustrated in this study permits extraction

  9. Environmental and economic consequences of the overexploitation of natural capital and ecosystem services in Xilinguole League, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dong, X.B.; Yu, B.H.; Brown, M.T.; Zhang, Y.S.; Kang, M.Y.; Jin, Y.; Zhang, X.S.; Ulgiati, S.

    2014-01-01

    The evaluation of natural capital and environmental services has always been an important step in the implementation of sustainable development concepts and policies. The results presented in this study address the demand for environmental support of the economy of Xilinguole League in the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region as well as the value of its natural and human-made capital. The results show that the reliance of the economy of Xilinguole League on local and imported non-renewable resources (coal and minerals) decreases both the environmental and economic sustainability of the area. Emergy-based performance indicators of the Xilinguole League economy show a low sustainability index (ESI=0.79), though it is higher than for the Chinese economy as a whole (ESI=0.47), as well as a low percentage of renewable resources being used (%REN=0.16, though this is higher than for all of China, 0.09). In contrast, the grassland-based livestock sector shows a higher renewability index (%REN=0.67) and sustainability (ESI=9.61). The emergy exchange ratios (exported emergy/imported emergy) are calculated to be 4.38 for the livestock system and 4.28 for the Xilinguole economy, which is much higher than the value of 1.74 for the overall Chinese economy, indicating uncompensated overexploitation of local systems (meat and coal, respectively). Intensified coal exploitation and intensive cattle grazing are discussed to support the decision-making process for setting local energy policy and ecological compensation. It is proposed that conservation of coal resources (avoiding misuse and moderating excess extraction and trade) and protection of natural grassland capital are more advantageous in emergy terms than the “blind” pursuit of accelerated, economic growth. - Highlights: • The sustainability of theXilinguole League, Inner Mongolia, China, is assessed. • The study deals with the impact of local coal and grassland overexploitation. • Policies for impact reduction by more

  10. Migration and transfer of transuranium elements (Pu, Am) and longliving fission products (Sr, Ru, Sb, Cs, Ce, Eu) in natural forest ecosystems of the 30-km-zone around Chernobyl

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lux, D.; Kammerer, L.; Simko, M.; Hiersche, L.; Wirth, E.

    1993-01-01

    In the framework of the C.E.C. research project ECP-5 entitled ''The behaviour of radionuclides in natural and semi-natural ecosystems'' our institute carried out investigations on selected sites of forest ecosystems in the 30-km-zone of Chernobyl in cooperation with research instituts of the C.I.S. states Russia and Ukraine. Our research is concentrated on the transfer of radionuclides from soil to plants of the understorey, especially species of farns and berries, as this plants take up their nutrients mainly from the upper organic horizons. (orig.) [de

  11. Application of the 15N-Gas Flux method for measuring in situ N2 and N2O fluxes due to denitrification in natural and semi-natural terrestrial ecosystems and comparison with the acetylene inhibition technique

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sgouridis, F.; Ullah, S.; Stott, A.

    2015-08-01

    Soil denitrification is considered the most un-constrained process in the global N cycle due to uncertain in situ N2 flux measurements, particularly in natural and semi-natural terrestrial ecosystems. 15N tracer approaches can provide in situ measurements of both N2 and N2O simultaneously, but their use has been limited to fertilised agro-ecosystems due to the need for large 15N additions in order to detect 15N2 production against the high atmospheric N2. For 15N-N2 analyses, we have used an "in house" laboratory designed and manufactured N2 preparation instrument which can be interfaced to any commercial continuous flow isotope ratio mass spectrometer (CF-IRMS). The N2 prep unit has gas purification steps, a copper based reduction furnace, and allows the analysis of small gas injection volumes (4 μL) for 15N-N2 analysis. For the analysis of N2O, an automated Tracegas Pre-concentrator (Isoprime Ltd) coupled to an IRMS was used to measure the 15N-N2O (4 mL gas injection volume). Consequently, the coefficient of variation for the determination of isotope ratios for N2 in air and in standard N2O (0.5 ppm) was better than 0.5 %. The 15N Gas-Flux method was adapted for application in natural and semi-natural land use types (peatlands, forests and grasslands) by lowering the 15N tracer application rate to 0.04-0.5 kg 15N ha-1. For our chamber design (volume / surface = 8:1) and a 20 h incubation period, the minimum detectable flux rates were 4 μg N m-2 h-1 and 0.2 ng N m-2 h-1 for the N2 and N2O fluxes respectively. The N2 flux ranged between 2.4 and 416.6 μg N m-2 h-1, and the grassland soils showed on average 3 and 14 times higher denitrification rates than the woodland and organic soils respectively. The N2O flux was on average 20 to 200 times lower than the N2 flux, while the denitrification product ratio (N2O/N2 + N2O) was low, ranging between 0.03 and 13 %. Total denitrification rates measured by the acetylene inhibition technique under the same field conditions

  12. Application of the 15N gas-flux method for measuring in situ N2 and N2O fluxes due to denitrification in natural and semi-natural terrestrial ecosystems and comparison with the acetylene inhibition technique

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sgouridis, Fotis; Stott, Andrew; Ullah, Sami

    2016-03-01

    Soil denitrification is considered the most un-constrained process in the global N cycle due to uncertain in situ N2 flux measurements, particularly in natural and semi-natural terrestrial ecosystems. 15N tracer approaches can provide in situ measurements of both N2 and N2O simultaneously, but their use has been limited to fertilized agro-ecosystems due to the need for large 15N additions in order to detect 15N2 production against the high atmospheric N2. For 15N-N2 analyses, we have used an "in-house" laboratory designed and manufactured N2 preparation instrument which can be interfaced to any commercial continuous flow isotope ratio mass spectrometer (CF-IRMS). The N2 prep unit has gas purification steps and a copper-based reduction furnace, and allows the analysis of small gas injection volumes (4 µL) for 15N-N2 analysis. For the analysis of N2O, an automated Tracegas Preconcentrator (Isoprime Ltd) coupled to an IRMS was used to measure the 15N-N2O (4 mL gas injection volume). Consequently, the coefficient of variation for the determination of isotope ratios for N2 in air and in standard N2O (0.5 ppm) was better than 0.5 %. The 15N gas-flux method was adapted for application in natural and semi-natural land use types (peatlands, forests, and grasslands) by lowering the 15N tracer application rate to 0.04-0.5 kg 15N ha-1. The minimum detectable flux rates were 4 µg N m-2 h-1 and 0.2 ng N m-2 h-1 for the N2 and N2O fluxes respectively. Total denitrification rates measured by the acetylene inhibition technique in the same land use types correlated (r = 0.58) with the denitrification rates measured under the 15N gas-flux method, but were underestimated by a factor of 4, and this was partially attributed to the incomplete inhibition of N2O reduction to N2, under a relatively high soil moisture content, and/or the catalytic NO decomposition in the presence of acetylene. Even though relatively robust for in situ denitrification measurements, methodological

  13. How does conversion of natural tropical rainforest ecosystems affect soil bacterial and fungal communities in the Nile river watershed of Uganda?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter O Alele

    Full Text Available Uganda's forests are globally important for their conservation values but are under pressure from increasing human population and consumption. In this study, we examine how conversion of natural forest affects soil bacterial and fungal communities. Comparisons in paired natural forest and human-converted sites among four locations indicated that natural forest soils consistently had higher pH, organic carbon, nitrogen, and calcium, although variation among sites was large. Despite these differences, no effect on the diversity of dominant taxa for either bacterial or fungal communities was detected, using polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE. Composition of fungal communities did generally appear different in converted sites, but surprisingly, we did not observe a consistent pattern among sites. The spatial distribution of some taxa and community composition was associated with soil pH, organic carbon, phosphorus and sodium, suggesting that changes in soil communities were nuanced and require more robust metagenomic methods to understand the various components of the community. Given the close geographic proximity of the paired sampling sites, the similarity between natural and converted sites might be due to continued dispersal between treatments. Fungal communities showed greater environmental differentiation than bacterial communities, particularly according to soil pH. We detected biotic homogenization in converted ecosystems and substantial contribution of β-diversity to total diversity, indicating considerable geographic structure in soil biota in these forest communities. Overall, our results suggest that soil microbial communities are relatively resilient to forest conversion and despite a substantial and consistent change in the soil environment, the effects of conversion differed widely among sites. The substantial difference in soil chemistry, with generally lower nutrient quantity in converted

  14. Inadequate management of natural ecosystem in the Brazilian Amazon region results in the emergence and reemergence of arboviruses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro F. C. Vasconcelos

    Full Text Available A total of 187 different species of arboviruses and other viruses in vertebrates were identified at the Evandro Chagas Institute (IEC from 1954 to 1998, among more than 10,000 arbovirus strains isolated from humans, hematophagous insects, and wild and sentinel vertebrates. Despite intensive studies in the Brazilian Amazon region, especially in Pará State, very little is known about most of these viruses, except for information on date, time, source, and method of isolation, as well as their capacity to infect laboratory animals. This paper reviews ecological and epidemiological data and analyzes the impact of vector and host population changes on various viruses as a result of profound changes in the natural environment. Deforestation, mining, dam and highway construction, human colonization, and urbanization were the main manmade environmental changes associated with the emergence and/or reemergence of relevant arboviruses, including some known pathogens for humans.

  15. Inadequate management of natural ecosystem in the Brazilian Amazon region results in the emergence and reemergence of arboviruses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vasconcelos Pedro F. C.

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available A total of 187 different species of arboviruses and other viruses in vertebrates were identified at the Evandro Chagas Institute (IEC from 1954 to 1998, among more than 10,000 arbovirus strains isolated from humans, hematophagous insects, and wild and sentinel vertebrates. Despite intensive studies in the Brazilian Amazon region, especially in Pará State, very little is known about most of these viruses, except for information on date, time, source, and method of isolation, as well as their capacity to infect laboratory animals. This paper reviews ecological and epidemiological data and analyzes the impact of vector and host population changes on various viruses as a result of profound changes in the natural environment. Deforestation, mining, dam and highway construction, human colonization, and urbanization were the main manmade environmental changes associated with the emergence and/or reemergence of relevant arboviruses, including some known pathogens for humans.

  16. Reproduction and development of laboratory and wild house dust mites (Acari: Pyroglyphidae) and their relationship to the natural dust ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hart, B J; Crowther, D; Wilkinson, T; Biddulph, P; Ucci, M; Pretlove, S; Ridley, I; Oreszczyn, T

    2007-07-01

    Life histories of "wild" house dust mites, Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus (Trouessart) (Acari: Pyroglyphidae), were compared with laboratory cultures by using a diet consisting of skin and dust or a laboratory diet consisting of dried liver and yeast. Under constant conditions of 25 degrees C and 75% RH, fecundity and rate of reproduction were higher in laboratory cultures on both diets compared with wild mites. There were also trends for a shorter prereproductive period and more rapid egg development of laboratory mites compared with wild mites. Overall, there was little effect of diet on either strain of mites at 75% RH. At low RH (64%), fecundity was significantly lower (for both strains on both diets), and there were also trends for longer prereproductive period, reduced rate of reproduction, reduced adult survival, prolonged egg and juvenile development, or a combination compared with 75% RH. Additionally egg and juvenile mortality were significantly higher on the liver and yeast diet. Overall, the skin and dust diet favored both strains of mites at 64% RH. On the liver and yeast diet at 64% RH, wild mite adults performed significantly better than laboratory mites, and egg mortality was lower. These results suggest that laboratory mites have stronger reproduction and development than wild mites, except when under environmental stress and that diet is a significant factor, particularly in suboptimal conditions. This could have important implications for predictive models of house dust mite populations in their natural habitat. Ideally, such models should be developed using data from wild dust mite populations reared on a natural diet.

  17. Mapping monetary values of ecosystem services in support of developing ecosystem accounts

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sumarga, Elham; Hein, Lars; Edens, Bram; Suwarno, Aritta

    2015-01-01

    Ecosystem accounting has been proposed as a comprehensive, innovative approach to natural capital accounting, and basically involves the biophysical and monetary analysis of ecosystem services in a national accounting framework. Characteristic for ecosystem accounting is the spatial approach

  18. Ecosystem Services and Ecological Restoration in the Northern Shaanxi Loess Plateau, China, in Relation to Climate Fluctuation and Investments in Natural Capital

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hejie Wei

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Accurately identifying the spatiotemporal variations and driving factors of ecosystem services (ES in ecological restoration is important for ecosystem management and the sustainability of nature conservation strategies. As the Green for Grain project proceeds, food provision, water regulation and climate regulation services in the Northern Shaanxi Loess Plateau (NSLP are changing and have caused broad attention. In this study, the dynamic pattern of the normalized differential vegetation index (NDVI and the main drivers of grain production (GP, water yield (WY and net primary production (NPP in the NSLP from 2000–2013 are identified by incorporating multiple data and methods, in order to provide a better understanding of how and why ES change during ecological restoration. WY was simulated by hydrological modeling, and NPP was estimated with the Carnegie Ames Stanford Approach (CASA model. The results show that vegetation restoration continued from 2000–2013, but fluctuated because of the comprehensive influence of climate and human activity. GP and NPP both exhibited significantly increasing trends, while changes in WY occurred in two stages: decline (2000–2006 and growth (2007–2013. Spatially, significantly increasing trends in NPP and WY were detected in 52.73% and 24.76% of the region, respectively, in areas that correspond with the Green for Grain project and high precipitation growth. Correlation and partial correlation analyses show that there were different dominant factors (i.e., natural vs. anthropogenic driving ES change in the NSLP from 2000–2013. The change in WY was mainly driven by precipitation, while the improvements in GP and NPP can be attributed to investments in natural capital (i.e., chemical fertilizer, agricultural machinery power and afforestation. We also found that vegetation restoration can produce positive effects on NPP, but negative effects on WY by using response analyses of WY or NPP change to NDVI

  19. A multi-metal risk assessment strategy for natural freshwater ecosystems based on the additive inhibitory free metal ion concentration index.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, Cristina M; Ferreira, Carlos M H; Soares, Eduardo V; Soares, Helena M V M

    2017-04-01

    Scientifically sound risk assessment strategies and derivations of environmental quality standards for metals present in freshwater environments are currently hampered by insufficient chronic toxicity data collected from natural ecosystems, as well as inadequate information on metal speciation. Thus, the aim of the present study was to evaluate the impact of freshwater containing multiple metals (Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb and Zn) on the chronic toxicity (72h) to the alga Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata and compare the observed toxicity results to the total and free metal concentration of the samples. Based on the information obtained herein, an additive inhibitory free multi-metal ion concentration index, calculated as the sum of the equivalent toxicities to the free metal ion concentration of each sample, was developed. The proposed index was well correlated to the observed chronic toxicity results, indicating that the concentration addition, when expressed as the free-ion activity, can be considered a reliable indicator for the evaluation of ecological risk assessments for natural waters containing multiple metals. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Fly ash based Bacillus thuringiensis var. israelensis formulation for use against Culex quinquefasciatus, the vector of filariasis in natural ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamilselvan, S; Jambulingam, P; Manoharan, V; Shanmugasundaram, R; Vivekanandan, G; Manonmani, A M

    2015-09-01

    Fly ash is produced in huge quantities by the various thermal power stations in India. This thermal waste has been employed as a carrier material in the preparation of a biopesticidal water dispersible powder (WDP) formulation for use against mosquitoes. In the present investigation, this newly developed fly ash based WDP formulation was evaluated in natural breeding habitats of mosquito. Fly ash based WDP formulation of Bacillus thuringiensis var. israelensis (VCRC B17) was evaluated for its efficacy and residual activity in aquatic habitats supporting breeding of Culex quinquefasciatus, the vector of lymphatic filariasis in Neyveli Township, Neyveli Lignite Corporation, India for a period of one month. At an application rate of 10 kg/ha, the WDP was effective for five days regardless of the habitat, and provided 80-100% reduction in larval abundance of Cx. quinquefasciatus. The study indicates that for continued control of immature density and prevention of adult emergence, a weekly application of this formulation is necessary. This study also showed that fly ash based formulations can be used for immediate control of mosquitoes in different types of habitats and has also brought out a new avenue for the utilization of coal ash.

  1. Characteristic of pollution with groundwater inflow (90)Sr natural waters and terrestrial ecosystems near a radioactive waste storage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lavrentyeva, G V

    2014-09-01

    The studies were conducted in the territory contaminated by (90)Sr with groundwater inflow as a result of leakage from the near-surface trench-type radioactive waste storage. The vertical soil (90)Sr distribution up to the depth of 2-3 m is analyzed. The area of radioactive contamination to be calculated with a value which exceeds the minimum significant activity 1 kBq/kg for the tested soil layers: the contaminated area for the 0-5 cm soil layer amounted to 1800 ± 85 m(2), for the 5-10 cm soil layer amounted to 300 ± 12 m(2), for the 10-15 cm soil layer amounted to 180 ± 10 m(2). It is found that (90)Sr accumulation proceeds in a natural sorption geochemical barrier of the marshy terrace near flood plain. The exposure doses for terrestrial mollusks Bradybaena fruticum are presented. The excess (90)Sr interference level was registered both in the ground and surface water during winter and summer low-water periods and autumn heavy rains. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Large-scale sequestration of atmospheric carbon via plant roots in natural and agricultural ecosystems: why and how

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kell, Douglas B.

    2012-01-01

    The soil holds twice as much carbon as does the atmosphere, and most soil carbon is derived from recent photosynthesis that takes carbon into root structures and further into below-ground storage via exudates therefrom. Nonetheless, many natural and most agricultural crops have roots that extend only to about 1 m below ground. What determines the lifetime of below-ground C in various forms is not well understood, and understanding these processes is therefore key to optimising them for enhanced C sequestration. Most soils (and especially subsoils) are very far from being saturated with organic carbon, and calculations show that the amounts of C that might further be sequestered (http://dbkgroup.org/carbonsequestration/rootsystem.html) are actually very great. Breeding crops with desirable below-ground C sequestration traits, and exploiting attendant agronomic practices optimised for individual species in their relevant environments, are therefore important goals. These bring additional benefits related to improvements in soil structure and in the usage of other nutrients and water. PMID:22527402

  3. Is the invasive species Listronotus bonariensis (Kuschel (Coleoptera: Curculionidae (Argentine stem weevil a threat to New Zealand natural grassland ecosystems?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Ingeborg Patricia Barratt

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Listronotus bonariensis (Argentine stem weevil is a stem-boring weevil that has become a major pasture pest in New Zealand, and cool climate turf grass in Australia. This species is also frequently found in native tussock grassland in New Zealand. Laboratory and field trials were established to determine the risk posed to both seedlings and established plants of three native grass species compared to what happens with the most common host of this species, Lolium perenne (ryegrass. Adult weevil feeding damage scores were higher on Poa colensoi and Festuca novae-zelandiae than Chionochloa rigida. Oviposition was lower on P. colensoi than L. perenne, and no eggs were laid on F. novae-zealandiae. In field trials using the same four species established as spaced plants L. bonariensis laid more eggs per tiller in L. perenne in a low altitude pasture site than in ryegrass in a higher altitude site. No were eggs found on the three native grass species at the tussock sites, and only low numbers were found on other grasses at the low altitude pasture site. Despite this, numbers of adult weevils were extracted from the plants in the field trials. These may have comprised survivors of the original weevils added to the plants, together with naturally occurring individuals arising from the next field generation. Irrespective, higher numbers were recovered from the tussock site plants than from those from the pasture site. It was concluded that L. bonariensis is likely to have a greater impact on native grass seedling survival than on established plants.

  4. Ecosystem Jenga!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umphlett, Natalie; Brosius, Tierney; Laungani, Ramesh; Rousseau, Joe; Leslie-Pelecky, Diandra L.

    2009-01-01

    To give students a tangible model of an ecosystem and have them experience what could happen if a component of that ecosystem were removed; the authors developed a hands-on, inquiry-based activity that visually demonstrates the concept of a delicately balanced ecosystem through a modification of the popular game Jenga. This activity can be…

  5. Alpine ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    P.W. Rundel; C.I. Millar

    2016-01-01

    Alpine ecosystems are typically defined as those areas occurring above treeline, while recognizing that alpine ecosystems at a local scale may be found below this boundary for reasons including geology, geomorphology, and microclimate. The lower limit of the alpine ecosystems, the climatic treeline, varies with latitude across California, ranging from about 3500 m in...

  6. Forest Ecosystem services: Water resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas P. Holmes; James Vose; Travis Warziniack; Bill Holman

    2017-01-01

    Since the publication of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MEA 2005), awareness has steadily grown regarding the importance of maintaining natural capital. Forest vegetation is a valuable source of natural capital, and the regulation of water quantity and quality is among the most important forest ecosystem services in many regions around the world. Changes in...

  7. Environmental and Ecological Risk Assessment of Trace Metal Contamination in Mangrove Ecosystems: A Case from Zhangjiangkou Mangrove National Nature Reserve, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jun; Du, Huihong; Xu, Ye; Chen, Kai; Liang, Junhua; Ke, Hongwei; Cheng, Sha-Yen; Liu, Mengyang; Deng, Hengxiang; He, Tong; Wang, Wenqing

    2016-01-01

    Zhangjiangkou Mangrove National Nature Reserve is a subtropical wetland ecosystem in southeast coast of China, which is of dense population and rapid development. The concentrations, sources, and pollution assessment of trace metals (Cu, Cd, Pb, Cr, Zn, As, and Hg) in surface sediment from 29 sites and the biota specimen were investigated for better ecological risk assessment and environmental management. The ranges of trace metals in mg/kg sediment were as follows: Cu (10.79–26.66), Cd (0.03–0.19), Pb (36.71–59.86), Cr (9.67–134.51), Zn (119.69–157.84), As (15.65–31.60), and Hg (0.00–0.08). The sequences of the bioaccumulation of studied metals are Zn > Cu > As > Cr > Pb > Cd > Hg with few exceptions. Cluster analysis and principal component analysis revealed that the trace metals in the studied area mainly derived from anthropogenic activities, such as industrial effluents, agricultural waste, and domestic sewage. Pollution load index and geoaccumulation index were calculated for trace metals in surface sediments, which indicated unpolluted status in general except Pb, Cr, and As. PMID:27795956

  8. Contributions of algae to GPP and DOC production in an Alaskan fen: effects of historical water table manipulations on ecosystem responses to a natural flood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wyatt, Kevin H; Turetsky, Merritt R; Rober, Allison R; Giroldo, Danilo; Kane, Evan S; Stevenson, R Jan

    2012-07-01

    The role of algae in the metabolism of northern peatlands is largely unknown, as is how algae will respond to the rapid climate change being experienced in this region. In this study, we examined patterns in algal productivity, nutrients, and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) during an uncharacteristically wet summer in an Alaskan rich fen. Our sampling was conducted in three large-scale experimental plots where water table position had been manipulated (including both drying and wetting plots and a control) for the previous 4 years. This study allowed us to explore how much ecosystem memory of the antecedent water table manipulations governed algal responses to natural flooding. Despite no differences in water table position between the manipulated plots at the time of sampling, algal primary productivity was consistently higher in the lowered water table plot compared to the control or raised water table plots. In all plots, algal productivity peaked immediately following seasonal maxima in nutrient concentrations. We found a positive relationship between algal productivity and water-column DOC concentrations (r (2) = 0.85, P flooding.

  9. Governance of ecosystem services on small islands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Polman, Nico; Reinhard, Stijn; Bets, van L.K.J.; Kuhlman, Tom

    2016-01-01

    Natural ecosystems provide an attractive focus for tourism on small islands. However, at the same time tourism and other human actions can be detrimental to these ecosystems especially because governance of the ecosystem may be difficult due to the limited resilience of small island ecosystems.

  10. Do protected areas networks ensure the supply of ecosystem services? Spatial patterns of two nature reserve systems in semi-arid Spain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Castro, Antonio J.; Martín-López, Berta; López, Enrique

    2015-01-01

    production. Efforts to set aside new lands for biodiversity conservation are compromised by the globally rising demand, creating trade-offs between lands dedicated to conservation versus food production. Ecosystem services are the benefits that humans obtain from ecosystems. Recent studies suggest...

  11. Greenhouse gas emissions from natural ecosystems and agricultural lands in sub-Saharan Africa: synthesis of available data and suggestions for further research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Dong-Gill; Thomas, Andrew D.; Pelster, David; Rosenstock, Todd S.; Sanz-Cobena, Alberto

    2016-08-01

    This paper summarizes currently available data on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from African natural ecosystems and agricultural lands. The available data are used to synthesize current understanding of the drivers of change in GHG emissions, outline the knowledge gaps, and suggest future directions and strategies for GHG emission research. GHG emission data were collected from 75 studies conducted in 22 countries (n = 244) in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions were by far the largest contributor to GHG emissions and global warming potential (GWP) in SSA natural terrestrial systems. CO2 emissions ranged from 3.3 to 57.0 Mg CO2 ha-1 yr-1, methane (CH4) emissions ranged from -4.8 to 3.5 kg ha-1 yr-1 (-0.16 to 0.12 Mg CO2 equivalent (eq.) ha-1 yr-1), and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions ranged from -0.1 to 13.7 kg ha-1 yr-1 (-0.03 to 4.1 Mg CO2 eq. ha-1 yr-1). Soil physical and chemical properties, rewetting, vegetation type, forest management, and land-use changes were all found to be important factors affecting soil GHG emissions from natural terrestrial systems. In aquatic systems, CO2 was the largest contributor to total GHG emissions, ranging from 5.7 to 232.0 Mg CO2 ha-1 yr-1, followed by -26.3 to 2741.9 kg CH4 ha-1 yr-1 (-0.89 to 93.2 Mg CO2 eq. ha-1 yr-1) and 0.2 to 3.5 kg N2O ha-1 yr-1 (0.06 to 1.0 Mg CO2 eq. ha-1 yr-1). Rates of all GHG emissions from aquatic systems were affected by type, location, hydrological characteristics, and water quality. In croplands, soil GHG emissions were also dominated by CO2, ranging from 1.7 to 141.2 Mg CO2 ha-1 yr-1, with -1.3 to 66.7 kg CH4 ha-1 yr-1 (-0.04 to 2.3 Mg CO2 eq. ha-1 yr-1) and 0.05 to 112.0 kg N2O ha-1 yr-1 (0.015 to 33.4 Mg CO2 eq. ha-1 yr-1). N2O emission factors (EFs) ranged from 0.01 to 4.1 %. Incorporation of crop residues or manure with inorganic fertilizers invariably resulted in significant changes in GHG emissions, but results were inconsistent as the magnitude and direction of

  12. Past Holocene soil erosion modeling as a new way to decipher human-climate-environment interactions on natural geo-ecosystem over long time-scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonneau, Anaëlle; Di Giovanni, Christian; Chapron, Emmanuel

    2017-04-01

    Soil erosion is a global phenomenon dealing with both environmental, societal and economic issues. Soil erosion is also one of the key processes when it is a matter of Human-climate-environment interactions [1, 2] since if mechanical erosion of continental surfaces initially results from climatic forcing, it can be largely amplified by anthropogenic activities. Using multi-scalar datasets to model long-term (Holocene) erosion fluxes in contrasted areas, where human pressure is well documented by geoarchaeology, we address how landscape evolution, geomorphological processes, ecosystem response and human impacts have been connected over time. Beyond that, such interdisciplinary and integrative approach allow (1) to locally date, qualify, and in particular quantify, both climate variability (rainfall) and impacts of human activities on soils, and (2) to discuss of potential feedback mechanisms and the legacy of past socio-cultural systems on actual geo-ecosystems. Lacustrine sediment represents one of the more relevant natural archives in order to reconstruct environmental or climatic variability and human activities over the past thousand years. Over the last 50 years, the edges of lakes Paladru (low altitude site, 640 m a.s.l.) and Blanc Huez (high-altitude site, 2250 m a.s.l.), both located in Western French Alps and therefore sensitive to the same climatic influences, have been deeply studied by archaeologists who documented and dated periods of enhanced human pressures (agriculture, mining [3, 4]). In these two case-studies, we were therefore able to confront the specific calendars of local human activities with past landscape evolution (vegetation cover, 5) and soil erosion fluxes reconstituted from specific organic tracers quantified into the lacustrine sediments [3, 6]. Results demonstrated that, over the Holocene, climatic forcing, and more particularly glacial fluctuations, influenced human accessibility to high-altitude sites (lake Blanc Huez) and therefore

  13. Inclusion of the Public in the Natural Capital, Ecosystem Services and Green Infrastructure Assessments (Results of Structured Interviews with Stakeholders of Commune Liptovská Teplička

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moyzeová Milena

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Nowadays, topics like natural capital assessment, ecosystem services and green infrastructure have become frequent subjects of a number of national and international projects accomplished on local, regional, national and cross-frontier levels. These projects respond to the deterioration of biotopes due to their fragmentation and degradation as a result of constructions and tourism/recreation. This situation requires an economic assessment of ecosystems from the view point of their capacities to satisfy human necessities with simultaneous conservation of the environmental quality, and the optimal status of landscape diversity both in rural and urban areas. The aim of the Green Infrastructure initiative is to stop the loss of land as an irreplaceable natural resource and to contribute to the inclusion of ecological and sustainability aspects into the spatial planning and regional development in rural and urban areas. Green Infrastructure is the tool that may reduce the loss of ecosystem services connected with future occupation of land and improve functions of land. It may support ecological measures aimed at conservation of agricultural landscape and adoption of measures in the sphere of forest and water economies. Important role in the assessment of ecosystems is played not only by the scientists but also by experts and the public at large. This is the reason why ever more stakeholders possessing knowledge of local territory and personal life experience participate in these projects. Their judgments and views, often bearing information important for the above-mentioned assessment, are applied to proposed measures aimed at the improvement of environmental quality and quality of life in terms of sustainability. This article brings the possible example of how to include a selected sample of stakeholders into the assessment of natural capital and ecosystem services on local level in the frame of Green Infrastructure. The aim of this paper is to

  14. Ecosystem approach in education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nabiullin, Iskander

    2017-04-01

    Environmental education is a base for sustainable development. Therefore, in our school we pay great attention to environmental education. Environmental education in our school is based on ecosystem approach. What is an ecosystem approach? Ecosystem is a fundamental concept of ecology. Living organisms and their non-living environments interact with each other as a system, and the biosphere planet functions as a global ecosystem. Therefore, it is necessary for children to understand relationships in ecosystems, and we have to develop systems thinking in our students. Ecosystem approach and systems thinking should help us to solve global environmental problems. How do we implement the ecosystem approach? Students must understand that our biosphere functions as a single ecosystem and even small changes can lead to environmental disasters. Even the disappearance of one plant or animal species can lead to irreversible consequences. So in the classroom we learn the importance of each living organism for the nature. We pay special attention to endangered species, which are listed in the Red Data List. Kids are doing projects about these organisms, make videos, print brochures and newspapers. Fieldwork also plays an important role for ecosystem approach. Every summer, we go out for expeditions to study species of plants and animals listed in the Red Data List of Tatarstan. In class, students often write essays on behalf of any endangered species of plants or animals, this also helps them to understand the importance of each living organism in nature. Each spring we organise a festival of environmental projects among students. Groups of 4-5 students work on a solution of environmental problems, such as water, air or soil pollution, waste recycling, the loss of biodiversity, etc. Participants shoot a clip about their project, print brochures. Furthermore, some of the students participate in national and international scientific Olympiads with their projects. In addition to

  15. The Millennium Drought in southeast Australia (2001-2009): Natural and human causes and implications for water resources, ecosystems, economy, and society

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Dijk, Albert I. J. M.; Beck, Hylke E.; Crosbie, Russell S.; de Jeu, Richard A. M.; Liu, Yi Y.; Podger, Geoff M.; Timbal, Bertrand; Viney, Neil R.

    2013-02-01

    The "Millennium Drought" (2001-2009) can be described as the worst drought on record for southeast Australia. Adaptation to future severe droughts requires insight into the drivers of the drought and its impacts. These were analyzed using climate, water, economic, and remote sensing data combined with biophysical modeling. Prevailing El Niño conditions explained about two thirds of rainfall deficit in east Australia. Results for south Australia were inconclusive; a contribution from global climate change remains plausible but unproven. Natural processes changed the timing and magnitude of soil moisture, streamflow, and groundwater deficits by up to several years, and caused the amplification of rainfall declines in streamflow to be greater than in normal dry years. By design, river management avoided impacts on some categories of water users, but did so by exacerbating the impacts on annual irrigation agriculture and, in particular, river ecosystems. Relative rainfall reductions were amplified 1.5-1.7 times in dryland wheat yields, but the impact was offset by steady increases in cropping area and crop water use efficiency (perhaps partly due to CO2 fertilization). Impacts beyond the agricultural sector occurred (e.g., forestry, tourism, utilities) but were often diffuse and not well quantified. Key causative pathways from physical drought to the degradation of ecological, economic, and social health remain poorly understood and quantified. Combined with the multiple dimensions of multiyear droughts and the specter of climate change, this means future droughts may well break records in ever new ways and not necessarily be managed better than past ones.

  16. Long-term, Ecosystem-Scale Changes in the Southern Benguela Marine Pelagic Social-Ecological System: Interaction of Natural and Human Drivers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Astrid Jarre

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available South Africa's small pelagics fishery is currently the largest in volume and second largest in value in the southern Benguela. It exploits short-lived, small pelagic fishes such as anchovy (for reduction into fish meal and oil and sardine (for reduction as well as human consumption through canned products, and to a lesser extent redeye round herring and mesopelagics, largely for reduction. We explore the recent history (1940s to present of the social-ecological system around this fishery. The natural subsystem, at the scales of the ocean environment and the ecosystem, is characterized by high interannual and documented decadal-scale variability. We characterize the human social subsystem at the scales of the fishing industry, legislation, and west coast fishing towns, and demonstrate interdependencies between the natural and social subsystems by following system-scale changes. The pelagic fishing industry has evolved to deal with variability through consolidation, diversification, and range expansion. Legislation has increasingly looked for conservation of the resource while ensuring economic viability of the industry, and hence factory- and vessel-related jobs. Fishing communities under apartheid stayed largely dependent on company-generated infrastructure, combining seasonal employment in the fishing factories with inshore fishing, targeting rock lobster and line fish. While the pelagic industry persisted and communities survived, the resource base for both offshore and inshore fisheries gradually eroded. The advent of democracy in the mid-1990s brought allocation of long-term fishing rights to individuals or companies under conditions of depleted inshore resources aggravated by a shift in the distribution of pelagic fish away from the west coast towards the Cape south coast in the second half of the 1990s. The resultant loss of employment and fishing rights in the inshore has generated community coping strategies that include poaching and

  17. natural

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elías Gómez Macías

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Partiendo de óxido de magnesio comercial se preparó una suspensión acuosa, la cual se secó y calcinó para conferirle estabilidad térmica. El material, tanto fresco como usado, se caracterizó mediante DRX, área superficial BET y SEM-EPMA. El catalizador mostró una matriz de MgO tipo periclasa con CaO en la superficie. Las pruebas de actividad catalítica se efectuaron en lecho fijo empacado con partículas obtenidas mediante prensado, trituración y clasificación del material. El flujo de reactivos consistió en mezclas gas natural-aire por debajo del límite inferior de inflamabilidad. Para diferentes flujos y temperaturas de entrada de la mezcla reactiva, se midieron las concentraciones de CH4, CO2 y CO en los gases de combustión con un analizador de gases tipo infrarrojo no dispersivo (NDIR. Para alcanzar conversión total de metano se requirió aumentar la temperatura de entrada al lecho a medida que se incrementó el flujo de gases reaccionantes. Los resultados obtenidos permiten desarrollar un sistema de combustión catalítica de bajo costo con un material térmicamente estable, que promueva la alta eficiencia en la combustión de gas natural y elimine los problemas de estabilidad, seguridad y de impacto ambiental negativo inherentes a los procesos de combustión térmica convencional.

  18. Fire as a natural and human factor shaping the Mediterranean Ecosystems. The Montgó forest fire and the teaching for the Geograns (older than 55) students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerdà, Artemi; González Pelayo, Óscar; Mataix-Solera, Jorge; Arcenegui, Victoria; Jordán, Antonio; Úbeda, Xavier; Pereira, Paulo

    2015-04-01

    Cerdà and Civera (2012); Fernández Raga et al., (2013) and Cerdà et al., (2014) show that teaching Earth Sciences to students older than 55 is a new challenge for the universities of developed countries due to the higher life expectancy and the arrival of new students and teaching programs to the academy. Fire, due to the background of many of our students, is one of those topics that need more attention when teaching to students older than 55. Most of them see the fire as the enemy and not as a part of the natural and human ecosystems. The view of the scientists is based in the scientific method, and they see the fire as part of the ecosystems and the human societies (Roebroeks and Villa, 2011; Archibald et al., 2012; Berna et al, 2012; Romme et al., 2012; Zumbrunnen et al., 2012). Moreover, the studies developed on the soils, vegetation and hydrological response of fire affected land, show that the fire disturbance use to be short and the ecosystems return to the pre-fire period after a window of disturbance (Cerdà and Lasanta, 2005; Doerr and Cerdà, 2005; Lasanta and Cerdà, 2005; Granjed et al., 2011; Pérez Cabello et al., 2012; Bodí et al., 2013; Guenon et al., 2013; León et al., 2013: Pereira et al., 2013; Pereira et al., 2015; Prats et al., 2015), and this is related to the policies applied in different countries (Carreiras et al., 2014). More recent advances in the impact of fire on soils can be found in Bento-Gonçalves et al. (2012) This research show the different strategies that we apply to explain the students older than 55 to understand the natural processes that are involved in nature due to the fire. The lectures are developed at the lectures room as an introduction about the fire in the Earth System and how the fire modify the soils, the water resources and change the vegetation cover, and 10 hours of field work in an recently fire affected land. The second part of the course, 10 hours in the field, will be done in February during a visit

  19. Ecosystem-based management and the wealth of ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yun, Seong Do; Hutniczak, Barbara; Abbott, Joshua K; Fenichel, Eli P

    2017-06-20

    We merge inclusive wealth theory with ecosystem-based management (EBM) to address two challenges in the science of sustainable management of ecosystems. First, we generalize natural capital theory to approximate realized shadow prices for multiple interacting natural capital stocks (species) making up an ecosystem. These prices enable ecosystem components to be better included in wealth-based sustainability measures. We show that ecosystems are best envisioned as portfolios of assets, where the portfolio's performance depends on the performance of the underlying assets influenced by their interactions. Second, changes in ecosystem wealth provide an attractive headline index for EBM, regardless of whether ecosystem wealth is ultimately included in a broader wealth index. We apply our approach to the Baltic Sea ecosystem, focusing on the interacting community of three commercially important fish species: cod, herring, and sprat. Our results incorporate supporting services embodied in the shadow price of a species through its trophic interactions. Prey fish have greater shadow prices than expected based on market value, and predatory fish have lower shadow prices than expected based on market value. These results are because correctly measured shadow prices reflect interdependence and limits to substitution. We project that ecosystem wealth in the Baltic Sea fishery ecosystem generally increases conditional on the EBM-inspired multispecies maximum sustainable yield management beginning in 2017, whereas continuing the current single-species management generally results in declining wealth.

  20. AQUATIC ECOSYSTEMS,

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aquatic ecosystems are a vital part of the urban water cycle (and of urban areas more broadly), and, if healthy, provide a range of goods and services valued by humans (Meyer 1997). For example, aquatic ecosystems (e.g., rivers, lakes, wetlands) provide potable water, food resou...

  1. Past Holocene detritism quantification and modeling from lacustrine archives in order to deconvoluate human-climate interactions on natural ecosystem over long time-scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonneau, Anaëlle; Chapron, Emmanuel; Di Giovanni, Christian; Galop, Didier; Darboux, Frédéric

    2014-05-01

    Water budget is one of the main challenges to paleoclimate researchers in relation to present-day global warming and its consequences for human societies. Associated soil degradation and erosion are thereby becoming a major concern in many parts of the world and more particularly in the Alps. Moreover, humans are considered as geomorphologic agents since few thousand years and it is now recognized that such an impact on natural ecosystem profoundly modified soils properties as well as aquatic ecosystems dynamics over long-term periods. The quantification of such inference over long time-scale is therefore essential to establish new policies to reduce mechanic soil erosion, which is one of the dominant processes in Europe, and anticipate the potential consequences of future climate change on hydric erosion. The mechanical erosion of continental surfaces results from climatic forcing, but can be amplified by the anthropogenic one. We therefore suggest that quantifying and modelling soil erosion processes within comparable Holocene lacustrine archives, allows to estimate and date which and when past human activities have had an impact on soil fluxes over the last 10000 years. Based on the present-day geomorphology of the surrounding watershed and the evolution of the vegetation cover during the Holocene, we develop an interdisciplinary approach combining quantitative organic petrography (i.e. optical characterization and quantification of soil particles within lake sediments) with high-resolution seismic profiling, age-depth models on lacustrine sediment cores and soil erosional susceptibility modeling, in order to estimate the annual volume of soil eroded over the last 10000 years, and in fine to quantify the volume of human-induced soil erosion during the Holocene period. This method is applied to close but contrasted mountainous lacustrine environments from the western French Alps: lakes Blanc Huez and Paladru, sensitive to same climatic influences but where past

  2. Assessing, mapping and quantifying cultural ecosystem services at community level

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Plieninger, T.; Dijks, S.; Oteros Rozas, E.; Bieling, C.

    2013-01-01

    Numerous studies underline the importance of immaterial benefits provided by ecosystems and especially by cultural landscapes, which are shaped by intimate human–nature interactions. However, due to methodological challenges, cultural ecosystem services are rarely fully considered in ecosystem

  3. Ecosystem Management and Ecological Modeling

    OpenAIRE

    JØrgensen, S.E.

    2002-01-01

    It is the intention of this paper to demonstrate that environmental technology must be supplemented by other tools to be able to solve environmental problems properly. Five cases are used to illustrate the possibilities of ecological engineering, a new engineering field based on ecology, as chemical engineering is based on chemistry. It encompasses restoration of ecosystems, utilization of ecosystems to the benefit of both mankind and nature, construction of ecosystems, and ecologically sound...

  4. Cambios en las propiedades del suelo, posteriores a un incendio en el Parque Nacional Natural de Los Nevados, Colombia Soil changes after a fire event in a páramo ecosystem: Los Nevados Natural National Park, Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Carlos Camargo-García

    2012-04-01

    incluso superan el empleado en esta investigación. De esta manera, determinar el efecto de las estrategias de restauración y definir cuáles pueden ser las más apropiadas es de hecho un proceso que toma tiempo. Por tal razón, es imperativo evitar cualquier actividad o evento que genere deterioro sobre este ecosistema.A fire event occurred in 2006, affected about 2400 ha of Páramo ecosystems located on the surroundings areas of Otún lagoon (4 ° 46' 58.4" N y 75° 24' 26.8" W in the Nevados Natural National Park, Colombia. Because of the worth of this area associated with the supplies of ecosystems services and the need for finding variables as indicators of soil conditions, in areas affected and non-affected by fire physical and chemical properties of soils were evaluated. The soil assessment was conducted out in areas where restoration strategies had been implemented and on two geomorphologic positions (Valleys and hills. Samples for monitoring soils were done at once of the fire, two years (2008 and three years (2009 later. To identify differences in soil characteristics evaluated between sites affected and non-affected, topographic positions and restoration treatments, a nonparametric test Kruskal-Wallis was applied. Subsequently, using the correlation coefficient of Spearman the relationships between variables were analyzed. Soils of valley positions were drastically affected and more than 50% organic matter was lost. Consequently, physical properties of soils such as bulk density and structural stability were also deteriorated. Three years after the implementation of restoration activities, there are not evidences of the improvement of soils conditions; in fact, some properties tend to be more deteriorated. Results obtained in this study permit to elucidate some variables which could be used as indicators for monitoring programs with emphasis on this resource. Also, the fragility of Páramo ecosystems is showed by means of soils deterioration. The restoration

  5. Coastal ecosystems, productivity and ecosystem protection: Coastal ecosystem management

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ngoile, M.A.K.; Horrill, C.J. (Inst. of Marine Sciences, Zanzibar (Tanzania, United Republic of))

    1993-01-01

    The coastal zone is a complex ecosystem under the influence of physical, chemical and biological processes. Under natural conditions these processes interact and maintain an equilibrium in the coastal ecosystem. Man makes a variety of important uses of coastal resources, ranging from harvesting of living resources, extraction of nonliving resources, and recreation, to the disposal of wastes. Man's extensive use of the oceans introduces factors which bring about an imbalance in the natural processes, and may result in harmful and hazardous effects to life hindering further use. Man's pressure on the resources of the coastal zone is already manifest and will increase manifold. This calls for an immediate solution to the protection and sustainable use of coastal resources. The current sectorized approach to the management of human activities will not solve the problem because the different resources of the coastal zone interact in such a manner that disturbances in one cause imbalance in the others. This is further complicated by the sectorized approach to research and limited communication between policy makers, managers, and scientists. This paper discusses strategies for managing coastal-resources use through an integrated approach. The coastal zone is presented as a unified ecosystem in equilibrium and shows that man's extensive use of the coastal resources destabilizes this equilibrium. Examples from the East Africa Region are presented. 15 refs, 2 figs, 3 tabs

  6. Coastal ecosystems, productivity and ecosystem protection: Coastal ecosystem management

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ngoile, M.A.K.; Horrill, C.J.

    1993-01-01

    The coastal zone is a complex ecosystem under the influence of physical, chemical and biological processes. Under natural conditions these processes interact and maintain an equilibrium in the coastal ecosystem. Man makes a variety of important uses of coastal resources, ranging from harvesting of living resources, extraction of nonliving resources, and recreation, to the disposal of wastes. Man's extensive use of the oceans introduces factors which bring about an imbalance in the natural processes, and may result in harmful and hazardous effects to life hindering further use. Man's pressure on the resources of the coastal zone is already manifest and will increase manifold. This calls for an immediate solution to the protection and sustainable use of coastal resources. The current sectorized approach to the management of human activities will not solve the problem because the different resources of the coastal zone interact in such a manner that disturbances in one cause imbalance in the others. This is further complicated by the sectorized approach to research and limited communication between policy makers, managers, and scientists. This paper discusses strategies for managing coastal-resources use through an integrated approach. The coastal zone is presented as a unified ecosystem in equilibrium and shows that man's extensive use of the coastal resources destabilizes this equilibrium. Examples from the East Africa Region are presented. 15 refs, 2 figs, 3 tabs

  7. Ecosystem thermodynamics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gomez Palacio, German Rau

    1998-01-01

    Ecology is no more a descriptive and self-sufficient science. Many viewpoints are needed simultaneously to give a full coverage of such complex systems: ecosystems. These viewpoints come from physics, chemistry, and nuclear physics, without a new far from equilibrium thermodynamics and without new mathematical tools such as catastrophe theory, fractal theory, cybernetics and network theory, the development of ecosystem science would never have reached the point of today. Some ideas are presented about the importance that concept such as energy, entropy, exergy information and none equilibrium have in the analysis of processes taking place in ecosystems

  8. Mirador - Carbon Cycle and Ecosystems

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Earth Science data access made simple. This Focus Area deals with the cycling of carbon in reservoirs and ecosystems as it changes naturally, is changed by humans,...

  9. Disturbance dynamics of forested ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    John A. Stanturf

    2004-01-01

    Forested ecosystems are dynamic, subject to natural developmental processes as well as natural and anthropogenic stresses and disturbances. Degradation is a related term. for lowered productive capacity from changes to forest structure of function (FAO. 2001). Degradation is not synonymous with disturbance, however; disturbance becomes degradation when natural...

  10. Ecosystem approaches to human health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nielsen N. Ole

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available The promotion of human health must be embedded in the wider pursuit of ecosystem health. Interventions will be impaired if ecosystem-linked determinants of health are not taken into account. In the extreme case, if ecosystems lose their capacity for renewal, society will lose life support services. Essential features of ecosystem health are the capacity to maintain integrity and to achieve reasonable and sustainable human goals. An ecosystem approach to research and management must be transdisciplinary and assure participation of stakeholders. These requisites provide a means for science to better deal with the complexity of ecosystems, and for policy-makers and managers to establish and achieve reasonable societal goals. The ecosystem approach can determine links between human health and activities or events which disturb ecosystem state and function. Examples are: landscape disturbance in agriculture, mining, forestry, urbanization, and natural disasters. An understanding of these links can provide guidance for management interventions and policy options that promote human health. An ecosystem approach to management must be adaptive because of irreducible uncertainty in ecosystem function.

  11. Strategic ecosystems of Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marquez Calle German

    2002-01-01

    The author relates the ecosystems in Colombia, he makes a relationship between ecosystems and population, utility of the ecosystems, transformation of the ecosystems and poverty and he shows a methodology of identification of strategic ecosystems

  12. Indicators for mapping ecosystem services: a review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Egoh, Benis N; Drakou, Evangelia; Dunbar, Martha B.; Maes, Joachim; Willemen, Louise

    2012-01-01

    Ecosystem services are the benefits that humans derive from ecosystems, such as food provisioning, water regulating and provisioning, soil productivity, and use of natural areas for recreation. The current challenge is to mainstream ecosystem services into policies and practices in order to ensure

  13. Biotic elements of NPP techno-ecosystem

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Protasov, A.A.; Silaeva, A.A.

    2013-01-01

    Specific features of biotic elements in the NPP techno-ecosystems were considered and compared with natural ecosystems. Relationships between biotic communities and environmental factors that are specific to the techno-ecosystems were discussed, and the problems of limitation of biological hindrances in operation of equipment, principles of hydrobiological and environmental monitoring were considered.

  14. Working group 7: Ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Verheyen, R.

    1976-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to evaluate the environmental impact of nuclear power plants. The effects of ionizing radiations, of the thermal and chemical pollution on aquatic ecosystems as well as on terrestrial ecosystems have been estimated. After a general survey of such effects and their interaction, practical conclusions in regard to determined areas such as Meuse-Escaut marine and the coast have been drawn. The contamination effects of food chains have been evaluted under deliberately pessimistic conditions with regard to the choice of the radionuclide as well as of concentration factors. Following the biodegradation conditions of the surface waters, criteria for the quality of the aquatic ecosystems have been established. Finally, attention has been paid on certain factors affecting the site selection especially within the frame of the nature conservation. The effects of cooling towers have been also considered. (G.C.)

  15. Man-Made Closed Ecological Systems as Model of Natural Ecosystems and as Means to Provide High Quality of Human Life in Adverse Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gitelson, I. I.; Harper, Lynn (Technical Monitor)

    1994-01-01

    For its more than thirty year long history, the experimental creation of closed ecological systems has from its very sources been distinctly and strongly motivated by the development of human life-support systems for space. As the trend developed its fundamental significance and broad opportunities of terrestrial applications of the technologies under development were coming to the foreground. Nowadays, it can be argued that development of closed ecosystems is experimental foundation of a new branch of ecology biospherics, the goal of which is to comprehend the regularities of existence of the biosphere as a unique in the Universe (in that part of it that we know, at least) closed ecosystem. Closed technologies can be implemented in life-support systems under adverse conditions of life on the Earth - in Arctic and Antarctic latitudes, deserts, high mountains or deep in the ocean, as well as under the conditions of polluted water and air. In space where the environment is hostile for life all around the cell of life should be sealed and the life-support system as close to the ideally closed cyclic turnover of the matter as possible. Under terrestrial conditions designers should strive for maximum closure of the limiting factor: water - in deserts, oxygen - in high mountains, energy - in polar latitudes, etc. Essential closure of a life-support systems withstands also pollution of the environment by the wastes of human vital activity. This is of particular importance for the quarantine of visited planets, and on the Earth under the conditions of deficient heat in high latitudes and water in and areas. The report describes experimental ecosystem 'BIOS' and exohabitats being designed on its basis, which are adapted to various conditions, described capacities of the Center for Closed Ecosystems in Drasnoyarsk for international collaboration in research and education in this field.

  16. Comparing the influence of wildfire and prescribed burns on watershed nitrogen biogeochemistry using 15N natural abundance in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem components.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephan, Kirsten; Kavanagh, Kathleen L; Koyama, Akihiro

    2015-01-01

    We evaluated differences in the effects of three low-severity spring prescribed burns and four wildfires on nitrogen (N) biogeochemistry in Rocky Mountain headwater watersheds. We compared paired (burned/unburned) watersheds of four wildfires and three spring prescribed burns for three growing seasons post-fire. To better understand fire effects on the entire watershed ecosystem, we measured N concentrations and δ15N in both the terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems components, i.e., soil, understory plants in upland and riparian areas, streamwater, and in-stream moss. In addition, we measured nitrate reductase activity in foliage of Spiraea betulifolia, a dominant understory species. We found increases of δ15N and N concentrations in both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem N pools after wildfire, but responses were limited to terrestrial N pools after prescribed burns indicating that N transfer from terrestrial to aquatic ecosystem components did not occur in low-severity prescribed burns. Foliar δ15N differed between wildfire and prescribed burn sites; the δ15N of foliage of upland plants was enriched by 2.9 ‰ (difference between burned and unburned watersheds) in the first two years after wildfire, but only 1.3 ‰ after prescribed burns. In-stream moss δ15N in wildfire-burned watersheds was enriched by 1.3 ‰, but there was no response by moss in prescription-burned watersheds, mirroring patterns of streamwater nitrate concentrations. S. betulifolia showed significantly higher nitrate reductase activity two years after wildfires relative to corresponding unburned watersheds, but no such difference was found after prescribed burns. These responses are consistent with less altered N biogeochemistry after prescribed burns relative to wildfire. We concluded that δ15N values in terrestrial and aquatic plants and streamwater nitrate concentrations after fire can be useful indicators of the magnitude and duration of fire effects and the fate of post

  17. Indicators for mapping ecosystem services: a review

    OpenAIRE

    EGOH BENIS NCHINE; DRAKOU EVANGELIA; DUNBAR MARTHA BONNET; MAES JOACHIM; WILLEMEN LOUISE

    2012-01-01

    Ecosystem services are the benefits that humans derive from ecosystems, such as food provisioning, water regulating and provisioning, soil productivity, and use of natural areas for recreation. The current challenge is to mainstream ecosystem services into policies and practices in order to ensure the continuous provision of these benefits to humans. The European Union has adopted an EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2020 in which the target of safeguarding ecosystem services is explicitly include...

  18. Changing Ecosystem Service Values Following Technological Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honey-Rosés, Jordi; Schneider, Daniel W.; Brozović, Nicholas

    2014-06-01

    Research on ecosystem services has focused mostly on natural areas or remote places, with less attention given to urban ecosystem services and their relationship with technological change. However, recent work by urban ecologists and urban designers has more closely examined and appreciated the opportunities associated with integrating natural and built infrastructures. Nevertheless, a perception remains in the literature on ecosystem services that technology may easily and irreversibly substitute for services previously obtained from ecosystems, especially when the superiority of the engineered system motivated replacement in the first place. We emphasize that the expected tradeoff between natural and manufactured capital is false. Rather, as argued in other contexts, the adoption of new technologies is complementary to ecosystem management. The complementarity of ecosystem services and technology is illustrated with a case study in Barcelona, Spain where the installation of sophisticated water treatment technology increased the value of the ecosystem services found there. Interestingly, the complementarity between natural and built infrastructures may remain even for the very ecosystems that are affected by the technological change. This finding suggests that we can expect the value of ecosystem services to co-evolve with new technologies. Technological innovation can generate new opportunities to harness value from ecosystems, and the engineered structures found in cities may generate more reliance on ecosystem processes, not less.

  19. Changing ecosystem service values following technological change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honey-Rosés, Jordi; Schneider, Daniel W; Brozović, Nicholas

    2014-06-01

    Research on ecosystem services has focused mostly on natural areas or remote places, with less attention given to urban ecosystem services and their relationship with technological change. However, recent work by urban ecologists and urban designers has more closely examined and appreciated the opportunities associated with integrating natural and built infrastructures. Nevertheless, a perception remains in the literature on ecosystem services that technology may easily and irreversibly substitute for services previously obtained from ecosystems, especially when the superiority of the engineered system motivated replacement in the first place. We emphasize that the expected tradeoff between natural and manufactured capital is false. Rather, as argued in other contexts, the adoption of new technologies is complementary to ecosystem management. The complementarity of ecosystem services and technology is illustrated with a case study in Barcelona, Spain where the installation of sophisticated water treatment technology increased the value of the ecosystem services found there. Interestingly, the complementarity between natural and built infrastructures may remain even for the very ecosystems that are affected by the technological change. This finding suggests that we can expect the value of ecosystem services to co-evolve with new technologies. Technological innovation can generate new opportunities to harness value from ecosystems, and the engineered structures found in cities may generate more reliance on ecosystem processes, not less.

  20. How does conversion of natural tropical rainforest ecosystems affect soil bacterial and fungal communities in the Nile river watershed of Uganda?

    OpenAIRE

    Alele, Peter O; Sheil, Douglas; Surget-Groba, Yann; Lingling, Shi; Cannon, Charles H

    2014-01-01

    Uganda's forests are globally important for their conservation values but are under pressure from increasing human population and consumption. In this study, we examine how conversion of natural forest affects soil bacterial and fungal communities. Comparisons in paired natural forest and human-converted sites among four locations indicated that natural forest soils consistently had higher pH, organic carbon, nitrogen, and calcium, although variation among sites was large. Despite these diffe...

  1. Epistemic Selectivities and the Valorisation of Nature: The Cases of the Nagoya Protocol and the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrich Brand and Alice B.M. Vadrot

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available This article addresses the intertwined and contentious relationship between knowledge production and policy-making inside the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD. We develop the argument that international biodiversity politics is constituted by epistemic selectivities, in which a set of favoured concepts establishes its own institutionalisation by defining ‘what needs to be governed’. Against this background the article aims to analyse the relationship between the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit-Sharing and the process towards the creation of the Intergovernmental Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES, on the one hand, and the increased popularity of the concept of ecosystem services, on the other. We argue that both cases illustrate the ‘pay to conserve logic’, prearranging the terrain of international biodiversity politics and related knowledge production and its influence on political processes. We introduce the concept of epistemic selectivities, in order to understand how this logic materialises in political institutions and to analyse the relationship between hegemonic forms of societal and scientific knowledge and that of policy knowledge. Our argument needs to be understood against the background of the wider context beyond global environmental policy by considering the political economy of biodiversity politics. This article is theoretically informed by the strategic-relational approach and focuses on the relationship between truth and power as well as on the role of the internationalised state of which the CBD is part.

  2. Human and climate impact on ¹⁵N natural abundance of plants and soils in high-mountain ecosystems: a short review and two examples from the Eastern Pamirs and Mt. Kilimanjaro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zech, Michael; Bimüller, Carolin; Hemp, Andreas; Samimi, Cyrus; Broesike, Christina; Hörold, Claudia; Zech, Wolfgang

    2011-09-01

    Population pressure increasingly endangers high-mountain ecosystems such as the pastures in the Eastern Pamirs and the mountain forests on Mt. Kilimanjaro. At the same time, these ecosystems constitute the economic basis for millions of people living there. In our study, we, therefore, aimed at characterising the land-use effects on soil degradation and N-cycling by determining the natural abundance of (15)N. A short review displays that δ(15)N of plant-soil systems may often serve as an integrated indicator of N-cycles with more positive δ(15)N values pointing towards N-losses. Results for the high-mountain pastures in the Eastern Pamirs show that intensively grazed pastures are significantly enriched in (15)N compared to the less-exploited pastures by 3.5 ‰, on average. This can be attributed to soil organic matter degradation, volatile nitrogen losses, nitrogen leaching and a general opening of the N-cycle. Similarly, the intensively degraded savanna soils, the cultivated soils and the soils under disturbed forests on the foothill of Mt. Kilimanjaro reveal very positive δ(15)N values around 6.5 ‰. In contrast, the undisturbed forest soils in the montane zone are more depleted in (15)N, indicating that here the N-cycle is relatively closed. However, significantly higher δ(15)N values characterise the upper montane forest zone at the transition to the subalpine zone. We suggest that this reflects N-losses by the recently monitored and climate change and antropogenically induced increasing fire frequency pushing the upper montane rainforest boundary rapidly downhill. Overall, we conclude that the analysis of the (15)N natural abundance in high-mountain ecosystems is a purposeful tool for detecting land-use- or climate change-induced soil degradation and N-cycle opening.

  3. Engineering Ecosystems and Synthetic Ecologies#

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mee, Michael T; Wang, Harris H

    2012-01-01

    Microbial ecosystems play an important role in nature. Engineering these systems for industrial, medical, or biotechnological purposes are important pursuits for synthetic biologists and biological engineers moving forward. Here, we provide a review of recent progress in engineering natural and synthetic microbial ecosystems. We highlight important forward engineering design principles, theoretical and quantitative models, new experimental and manipulation tools, and possible applications of microbial ecosystem engineering. We argue that simply engineering individual microbes will lead to fragile homogenous populations that are difficult to sustain, especially in highly heterogeneous and unpredictable environments. Instead, engineered microbial ecosystems are likely to be more robust and able to achieve complex tasks at the spatial and temporal resolution needed for truly programmable biology. PMID:22722235

  4. Adaptive management for ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birgé, Hannah E; Allen, Craig R; Garmestani, Ahjond S; Pope, Kevin L

    2016-12-01

    Management of natural resources for the production of ecosystem services, which are vital for human well-being, is necessary even when there is uncertainty regarding system response to management action. This uncertainty is the result of incomplete controllability, complex internal feedbacks, and non-linearity that often interferes with desired management outcomes, and insufficient understanding of nature and people. Adaptive management was developed to reduce such uncertainty. We present a framework for the application of adaptive management for ecosystem services that explicitly accounts for cross-scale tradeoffs in the production of ecosystem services. Our framework focuses on identifying key spatiotemporal scales (plot, patch, ecosystem, landscape, and region) that encompass dominant structures and processes in the system, and includes within- and cross-scale dynamics, ecosystem service tradeoffs, and management controllability within and across scales. Resilience theory recognizes that a limited set of ecological processes in a given system regulate ecosystem services, yet our understanding of these processes is poorly understood. If management actions erode or remove these processes, the system may shift into an alternative state unlikely to support the production of desired services. Adaptive management provides a process to assess the underlying within and cross-scale tradeoffs associated with production of ecosystem services while proceeding with management designed to meet the demands of a growing human population. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. An integrated approach to radionuclide flow in semi-natural ecosystems underlying exposure pathways to man. Final report of the LANDSCAPE project

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moberg, L.; Hubbard, L.; Avila, R.; Wallberg, L. [Swedish Radiation Protection Inst., Stockholm (Sweden); Feoli, E.; Scimone, M.; Milesi, C. [Trieste Univ. (Italy); Mayes, B.; Iason, G. [Macaulay Land Use Research Inst., Aberdeen (United Kingdom); Rantavaara, A.; Vetikko, V. [Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority, Helsinki (Finland); Bergman, R.; Nylen, T. [National Defence Research Establishment, Umeaa (Sweden); Palo, T.; White, N. [Swedish Univ. of Agricultural Sciences, Umeaa (Sweden). Faculty of Forestry; Raitio, H.; Aro, L.; Kaunisto, S. [The Finnish Forest Research Inst., Parkano (Finland); Guillitte, O. [Faculte Univ. des Sciences Agronomiques de Gembloux (Belgium)

    1999-10-01

    The general objective of the LANDSCAPE project has been to obtain a basis for reliable assessments of the radiation exposure to man under different time scales from radionuclides in plant and animal products of representative forest ecosystems in Europe. The work has been focussed on radiocaesium, {sup 134}Cs, {sup 137}Cs. In particular, the project has included (i) to quantify some major processes which influence the radiocaesium contamination of vegetation and fungi, (ii) to quantify radiocaesium intake of key herbivores, particularly free ranging moose, relative to food availability and degree of contamination, (iii) to quantify the influence of forest management on radiocaesium dynamics, and (iv) to incorporate these processes in dynamic models. The LANDSCAPE project has been the combined effort of eight research groups from five European countries, and this report describes the results obtained during 30 months of common work.

  6. An integrated approach to radionuclide flow in semi-natural ecosystems underlying exposure pathways to man. Final report of the LANDSCAPE project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moberg, L.; Hubbard, L.; Avila, R.; Wallberg, L.; Feoli, E.; Scimone, M.; Milesi, C.; Mayes, B.; Iason, G.; Rantavaara, A.; Vetikko, V.; Bergman, R.; Nylen, T.; Palo, T.; White, N.; Guillitte, O.

    1999-10-01

    The general objective of the LANDSCAPE project has been to obtain a basis for reliable assessments of the radiation exposure to man under different time scales from radionuclides in plant and animal products of representative forest ecosystems in Europe. The work has been focussed on radiocaesium, 134 Cs, 137 Cs. In particular, the project has included (i) to quantify some major processes which influence the radiocaesium contamination of vegetation and fungi, (ii) to quantify radiocaesium intake of key herbivores, particularly free ranging moose, relative to food availability and degree of contamination, (iii) to quantify the influence of forest management on radiocaesium dynamics, and (iv) to incorporate these processes in dynamic models. The LANDSCAPE project has been the combined effort of eight research groups from five European countries, and this report describes the results obtained during 30 months of common work

  7. Radioecology of natural systems in Colordao. Fourteenth annual progress report, May 1, 1975--July 31, 1976. [Pu diffusion in terrestrial ecosystems at Rocky Flats Plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whicker, F.W.

    1976-08-01

    This report summarizes project activities during the period May 1, 1975 through July 31, 1976. The major study on the distribution and levels of Pu in major components of the terrestrial ecosystem at Rocky Flats was completed. Supportive studies on the ecology and pathology of small mammals and their role in Pu transport were essentially completed as well. Detailed studies on mule deer food habits, population dynamics, and movements at Rocky Flats are progressing. These studies are designed to measure the potential of mule deer in transporting Pu to uncontrolled areas. Alpha autoradiographic studies designed to measure Pu particle size and distribution and spatial patterns in soil were initiated. Field and greenhouse transport pathways from soil to vegetation are in progress and some early results reported. The status of studies on seasonal kinetics of Cs in a montane lake and stable lead geochemistry in an alpine lake watershed are also reported.

  8. The biodiversity-dependent ecosystem service debt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isbell, Forest; Tilman, David; Polasky, Stephen; Loreau, Michel

    2015-02-01

    Habitat destruction is driving biodiversity loss in remaining ecosystems, and ecosystem functioning and services often directly depend on biodiversity. Thus, biodiversity loss is likely creating an ecosystem service debt: a gradual loss of biodiversity-dependent benefits that people obtain from remaining fragments of natural ecosystems. Here, we develop an approach for quantifying ecosystem service debts, and illustrate its use to estimate how one anthropogenic driver, habitat destruction, could indirectly diminish one ecosystem service, carbon storage, by creating an extinction debt. We estimate that c. 2-21 Pg C could be gradually emitted globally in remaining ecosystem fragments because of plant species loss caused by nearby habitat destruction. The wide range for this estimate reflects substantial uncertainties in how many plant species will be lost, how much species loss will impact ecosystem functioning and whether plant species loss will decrease soil carbon. Our exploratory analysis suggests that biodiversity-dependent ecosystem service debts can be globally substantial, even when locally small, if they occur diffusely across vast areas of remaining ecosystems. There is substantial value in conserving not only the quantity (area), but also the quality (biodiversity) of natural ecosystems for the sustainable provision of ecosystem services. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  9. FEGS at the inflection point: How linking Ecosystem Services to Human Benefit improves management of coastal ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Final ecosystem goods and services (FEGS) are the connection between the ecosystem resources and human stakeholders that benefit from natural capital. The FEGS concept is an extension of the ecosystem services (ES) concept (e.g., Millennium Ecosystem Assessment) and results from...

  10. Experimental assessment of ecosystem services in agriculture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandhu, Harpinder; Porter, John Roy; Wratten, Steve

    2013-01-01

    Ecosystem services are the resources and processes supplied by natural ecosystems which benefit humankind (for example, pollination of crops by insects, or water filtration by wetlands). They underpin life on earth, provide major inputs to many economic sectors and support our lifestyles....... Agricultural and urban areas are by far the largest users of ecosystems and their services and (for the first time) this book explores the role that ecosystem services play in these managed environments. The book also explores methods of evaluating ecosystem services, and discusses how these services can...

  11. Towards a network ecology of software ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Klaus Marius; Manikas, Konstantinos

    2013-01-01

    sharing and collaborating over one or more technological platforms and business model(s) that serve the actors. However, little research has investigated the properties of actual software ecosystems. In this paper, we present an exploratory study of software ecosystems using the formalizations and metrics...... of the "network ecology'' approach to the analysis of natural ecosystems. In doing so, we mine the Maven central Java repository and analyze two OSGi ecosystems: Apache Felix and Eclipse Equinox. In particular, we define the concept of an ecosystem ``neighborhood'', apply network ecology metrics...

  12. Synergy of extreme drought and shrub invasion reduce ecosystem functioning and resilience in water-limited climates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caldeira, Maria C; Lecomte, Xavier; David, Teresa S; Pinto, Joaquim G; Bugalho, Miguel N; Werner, Christiane

    2015-10-13

    Extreme drought events and plant invasions are major drivers of global change that can critically affect ecosystem functioning and alter ecosystem-atmosphere exchange. Invaders are expanding worldwide and extreme drought events are projected to increase in frequency and intensity. However, very little is known on how these drivers may interact to affect the functioning and resilience of ecosystems to extreme events. Using a manipulative shrub removal experiment and the co-occurrence of an extreme drought event (2011/2012) in a Mediterranean woodland, we show that native shrub invasion and extreme drought synergistically reduced ecosystem transpiration and the resilience of key-stone oak tree species. Ecosystem transpiration was dominated by the water use of the invasive shrub Cistus ladanifer, which further increased after the extreme drought event. Meanwhile, the transpiration of key-stone tree species decreased, indicating a competitive advantage in favour of the invader. Our results suggest that in Mediterranean-type climates the invasion of water spending species and projected recurrent extreme drought events may synergistically cause critical drought tolerance thresholds of key-stone tree species to be surpassed, corroborating observed higher tree mortality in the invaded ecosystems. Ultimately, this may shift seasonally water limited ecosystems into less desirable alternative states dominated by water spending invasive shrubs.

  13. Synergy of extreme drought and shrub invasion reduce ecosystem functioning and resilience in water-limited climates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caldeira, Maria C.; Lecomte, Xavier; David, Teresa S.; Pinto, Joaquim G.; Bugalho, Miguel N.; Werner, Christiane

    2015-10-01

    Extreme drought events and plant invasions are major drivers of global change that can critically affect ecosystem functioning and alter ecosystem-atmosphere exchange. Invaders are expanding worldwide and extreme drought events are projected to increase in frequency and intensity. However, very little is known on how these drivers may interact to affect the functioning and resilience of ecosystems to extreme events. Using a manipulative shrub removal experiment and the co-occurrence of an extreme drought event (2011/2012) in a Mediterranean woodland, we show that native shrub invasion and extreme drought synergistically reduced ecosystem transpiration and the resilience of key-stone oak tree species. Ecosystem transpiration was dominated by the water use of the invasive shrub Cistus ladanifer, which further increased after the extreme drought event. Meanwhile, the transpiration of key-stone tree species decreased, indicating a competitive advantage in favour of the invader. Our results suggest that in Mediterranean-type climates the invasion of water spending species and projected recurrent extreme drought events may synergistically cause critical drought tolerance thresholds of key-stone tree species to be surpassed, corroborating observed higher tree mortality in the invaded ecosystems. Ultimately, this may shift seasonally water limited ecosystems into less desirable alternative states dominated by water spending invasive shrubs.

  14. Assessing wildlife benefits and carbon storage from restored and natural coastal marshes in the Nisqually River Delta: Determining marsh net ecosystem carbon balance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Frank; Bergamaschi, Brian; Windham-Myers, Lisamarie; Woo, Isa; De La Cruz, Susan; Drexler, Judith; Byrd, Kristin; Thorne, Karen M.

    2016-06-24

    Working in partnership since 1996, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Nisqually Indian Tribe have restored 902 acres of tidally influenced coastal marsh in the Nisqually River Delta (NRD), making it the largest estuary-restoration project in the Pacific Northwest to date. Marsh restoration increases the capacity of the estuary to support a diversity of wildlife species. Restoration also increases carbon (C) production of marsh plant communities that support food webs for wildlife and can help mitigate climate change through long-term C storage in marsh soils.In 2015, an interdisciplinary team of U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) researchers began to study the benefits of carbon for wetland wildlife and storage in the NRD. Our primary goals are (1) to identify the relative importance of the different carbon sources that support juvenile chinook (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) food webs and contribute to current and historic peat formation, (2) to determine the net ecosystem carbon balance (NECB) in a reference marsh and a restoration marsh site, and (3) to model the sustainability of the reference and restoration marshes under projected sea-level rise conditions along with historical vegetation change. In this fact sheet, we focus on the main C sources and exchanges to determine NECB, including carbon dioxide (CO2) uptake through plant photosynthesis, the loss of CO2 through plant and soil respiration, emissions of methane (CH4), and the lateral movement or leaching loss of C in tidal waters.

  15. Bioremediation of cadmium-contaminated water systems using intact and alkaline-treated alga (Hydrodictyon reticulatum) naturally grown in an ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ammari, Tarek G; Al-Atiyat, Marrwa; Abu-Nameh, Eyad S; Ghrair, Ayoup; Jaradat, Da'san; Abu-Romman, Saeid

    2017-05-04

    Cadmium can enter water, soil, and food chain in amounts harmful to human health by industrial wastes. The use of intact and NaOH-treated dried algal tissues (Hydrodictyon reticulatum), a major ecosystem bio-component, for Cd removal from aqueous solutions was characterized. Cadmium biosorption was found to be dependent on solution pH, bioadsorbent dose, the interaction between pH and dose, contact time, and initial Cd concentration. The experimental results indicated that the biosorption performance of alkaline-treated algal tissues was better than that of intact tissues. The maximum biosorption capacities were 7.40 and 12.74 mg g -1 for intact and alkaline-treated bioadsorbents, respectively, at optimum operating conditions. Biosorption reaches equilibrium after 24 and 240 minutes of contact, respectively, for alkaline-treated and intact bioadsorbents. Cadmium biosorption was best fitted to Langmuir isotherm model (R 2 ≈ 0.99) and the kinetic study obeyed the pseudo-second-order kinetic model, which suggests chemisorption as the rate-limiting step in the biosorption process. Alkaline-treated algal tissues can be used as a new material of low-cost bioadsorbent for continuous flow rate treatment systems.

  16. Can we predict carbon stocks in tropical ecosystems from tree diversity? Comparing species and functional diversity in a plantation and a natural forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Jaen, Maria C; Potvin, Catherine

    2011-03-01

    • Linking tree diversity to carbon storage can provide further motivation to conserve tropical forests and to design carbon-enriched plantations. Here, we examine the role of tree diversity and functional traits in determining carbon storage in a mixed-species plantation and in a natural tropical forest in Panama. • We used species richness, functional trait diversity, species dominance and functional trait dominance to predict tree carbon storage across these two forests. Then we compared the species ranking based on wood density, maximum diameter, maximum height, and leaf mass per area (LMA) between sites to reveal how these values changed between different forests. • Increased species richness, a higher proportion of nitrogen fixers and species with low LMA increased carbon storage in the mixed-species plantation, while a higher proportion of large trees and species with high LMA increased tree carbon storage in the natural forest. Furthermore, we found that tree species varied greatly in their absolute and relative values between study sites. • Different results in different forests mean that we cannot easily predict carbon storage capacity in natural forests using data from experimental plantations. Managers should be cautious when applying functional traits measured in natural populations in the design of carbon-enriched plantations. © The Authors (2010). Journal compilation © New Phytologist Trust (2010).

  17. Effects of spatial scale on the perception and assessment of risk of natural disturbance in forested ecosystems: examples from northeastern Oregon

    Science.gov (United States)

    R. James Barbour; Miles Hemstrom; Alan Ager; Jane L. Hayes

    2005-01-01

    The perception and measurement of the risk of natural disturbances often varies depending on the spatial and temporal scales over which information is collected or analyzed. This can lead to conflicting conclusions about severity of current or past disturbances or the risk of future ones. Failure to look across scales also complicates local implementation of policies...

  18. Disturbance in boreal forest ecosystems: human impacts and natural processes. Proceedings of the International Boreal Forest Research Association 1997 annual meeting; 1997 August 4-7; Duluth, Minnesota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    The papers in these proceedings cover a wide range of topics related to human and natural disturbance processes in forests of the boreal zone in North America and Eurasia. Topics include historic and predicted landscape change; forest management; disturbance by insects, fire, air pollution, severe weather, and global climate change; and carbon cycling.

  19. Contrasting distribution patterns of invasive and naturalized non-native species along environmental gradients in a semi-arid montane ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly M. Andersen; Bridgett J. Naylor; Bryan A. Endress; Catherine G. Parks

    2015-01-01

    Questions: Mountain systems have high abiotic heterogeneity over local spatial scales, offering natural experiments for examining plant species invasions. We ask whether functional groupings explain non-native species spread into native vegetation and up elevation gradients.We examine whether non-native species distribution patterns are related to environmental...

  20. Construction of an Environmentally Sustainable Development on a Modified Coastal Sand Mined and Landfill Site—Part 2. Re-Establishing the Natural Ecosystems on the Reconstructed Beach Dunes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne-Laure Markovina

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Mimicking natural processes lead to progressive colonization and stabilization of the reconstructed beach dune ecosystem, as part of the ecologically sustainable development of Magenta Shores, on the central coast of New South Wales, Australia. The retained and enhanced incipient dune formed the first line of storm defence. Placement of fibrous Leptospermum windrows allowed wind blown sand to form crests and swales parallel to the beach. Burial of Spinifex seed head in the moist sand layer achieved primary colonization of the reconstructed dune and development of a soil fungal hyphae network prior to introduction of secondary colonizing species. Monitoring stakes were used as roosts by birds, promoting re-introduction of native plant species requiring germination by digestive tract stimulation. Bush regeneration reduced competition from weeds, allowing native vegetation cover to succeed. On-going weeding and monitoring are essential at Magenta Shores until bitou bush is controlled for the entire length of beach. The reconstructed dunes provide enhanced protection from sand movement and storm bite, for built assets, remnant significant vegetation and sensitive estuarine ecosystems.

  1. Plans to Develop a Gas Field in the Kansu on the Border of the Usturt State Nature Reserve is a Real Threat for the Ecosystem of the Reserve and Largest Population of the Saker Falcon in Kazakhstan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark V. Pestov

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Plans of JSC “KazMunayGaz” National Company” on developing the Kansu gas field, which is situated right next to current southern borders of Usturt natural reserve on Kenderli-Kayasan conservation zone (Mangystau Province of the Republic of Kazakhstan are a direct danger for the largest population of the Saker Falcon Falco cherrug korelovi in Kazakhstan and for Kenderli-Kayasan conservation zone’s ecosystem as a whole. On the contrary, the realization of plans to expand the Usturt State Reserve within the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan/GEF/UNDP project “Rising of stability of systems in conservation territories in desert ecosystems through promoting life sustaining sources compatible with biodiversity in and around conservation areas” and international expert group’s initiative of Mangystau Protected Area System to be nominated for UNESCO World Heritage status could create favorable environment for Usturt population of the Saker Falcon. It’s evident that all possible outcomes should be taken into account in the long-term planning of future development of Mangystau region, and options of development with less negative effect on environment should be chosen. In their letter to President of Kazakhstan the experts described their opinion on the necessity of imposing a moratorium on exploration and development of the Kansu gas field and concentrating on alternative fields.

  2. Radioecology of natural systems. Fifteenth annual progress report, August 1, 1976--July 31, 1977. [Plutonium transport in terrestrial ecosystems at Rocky Flats Plant with emphasis on biological effects on mule deer and coyotes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whicker, F.W.

    1977-08-01

    This report summarizes project activities during the period August 1, 1976 through July 31, 1977. Four major areas of effort are reported, namely plutonium behavior in a terrestrial ecosystem at Rocky Flats, mule deer and coyote studies at Rocky Flats, ecological consequences of transuranics in the terrestrial environment, and lead geochemistry of an alpine lake ecosystem. Much of the first area of effort involved the synthesis of data and preparation of manuscripts, although some new data are reported on plutonium levels in small mammals, plant uptake of plutonium from contaminated soil, and plutonium deposition rates on macroplot 1. The mule deer studies generated a substantial body of new information which will permit quantitative assessment of plutonium dispersion by deer that utilize contaminated areas. These studies involve population dynamics, movement and use patterns, food habits, ingestion rates of contaminated soil and vegetation and plutonium burdens of deer tissues. A related study of coyote food habits in summer at Rocky Flats is reported. A manuscript dealing with the question of ecological effects of transuranics was prepared. This manuscript incorporates data from Rocky Flats on characteristics of natural populations which occupy ecologically similar areas having differing levels of plutonium contamination. The lead geochemistry studies continued to generate new data but the data are not yet reported.

  3. Turning Subsistence Peasants into Ecosystem Servants: Inequality and the Produc-tion of Natural Resources in Lao P.D.R.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Kleinod

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper examines the nexus of nature conservation, productivity and domination in inclusive conservation approaches. It argues that the turning of subsistence peasants into “stewards and custodians of biodiversity” (CBD represents a soft form of domination according to the false alternatives of ecological instrumentality in that local development is subordinated to supposed “natural” constraints. The argument draws from critical theories of societal nature relations (Horkheimer & Adorno, 2002; Görg. 2003; Moore, 2015 as well as from extensive research on ecotourism as an instrument to reconcile conservation and development in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. From this angle, conservation is seen as a way to produce “natural” resources building on, perpetuating and creating various social inequities, based on the fiction that “nature” is essentially non-human. This case is made with regard to National Protected Areas in Laos, which are designed explicitly to accommodate local people’s needs. Among other things, ecotourism is employed to create a source of income alternative to practices seen as “unsustainable”. Thereby, economic and also moral stakes in untouched resources are to be implanted. In such way, a compromise between (rather than a reconciliation of conservation and development is imposed which is largely alien to the lived realities of local people, and only accounting partly for their needs and aspirations – an imposition which tends to produce its own countercurrents, again tying into productivity and inequality. This paper thus analyzes the workings of the nature/society dualism underlying ecological instrumentality as experienced in ecotourism as a tool for nature conservation in Laos.

  4. Modeling and assessing the function and sustainability of natural patches in salt-affected agro-ecosystems: Application to tamarisk (Tamarix chinensis Lour.) in Hetao, upper Yellow River basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Dongyang; Xu, Xu; Ramos, Tiago B.; Huang, Quanzhong; Huo, Zailin; Huang, Guanhua

    2017-09-01

    Relatively low-lying zones of natural vegetation within irrigated areas are not only carriers of biodiversity but also dry drainage areas of excess water and salts applied to nearby croplands. It is thus useful to have a correct understanding of the soil water-salt dynamics and plant water use for keeping the sustainability of those natural areas. The HYDRUS-dualKc model that couples the HYDRUS-1D model with the FAO-56 dualKc approach was extended to simulate the eco-hydrological processes in natural patches of Hetao Irrigation District (Hetao), upper Yellow River basin. Field experiments were conducted in a tamarisk (Tamarix chinensis Lour.) dominated area during the growing seasons of 2012 and 2013. The model was calibrated and validated using the two-year experimental data, and applied to analyze the water and salt dynamics and the tamarisk water consumption for the present situation. Then, various groundwater depth (i.e. the depth from groundwater surface to water table, GWD) scenarios were simulated while considering the fluctuating and constant regimes of GWD changes, as well as variations of the rooting depth. Results indicated that this natural land functioned efficiently as a drainage area for subsurface flow and excess salt from surrounding croplands. However, the present GWDs were too shallow leading to high soil evaporation and severe salt stress. The soil evaporation accounted for 50% of the total evapotranspiration (ETa) while root zone salt storage increased about 50% during growing seasons. On the basis of scenario analysis, an optimum groundwater depth of 140-200 cm with smaller fluctuation was suggested for the growing seasons of natural patches. In addition, tamarisk growth could be largely improved if the roots can grow deeper with water table decline in the future. We demonstrated that monitoring and modeling could be used to support the development of water management strategies in Hetao aimed at conserving water while sustaining local

  5. Impact of converison of mangrove ecosystem for aquaculture purposes

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Untawale, A.G.; Wafar, S.

    Mangroves, one of the highly productive ecosystems are considered as nature's own aquaculture systems because species of marine fishes, molluscs and crustaceans use tham as nursery grounds. Thus the mangrove ecosystem sustains tremendous fishery...

  6. Explaining global increases in water use efficiency: why have we overestimated responses to rising atmospheric CO(2 in natural forest ecosystems?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucas C R Silva

    Full Text Available The analysis of tree-ring carbon isotope composition (δ(13C has been widely used to estimate spatio-temporal variations in intrinsic water use efficiency (iWUE of tree species. Numerous studies have reported widespread increases in iWUE coinciding with rising atmospheric CO(2 over the past century. While this could represent a coherent global response, the fact that increases of similar magnitude were observed across biomes with no apparent effect on tree growth raises the question of whether iWUE calculations reflect actual physiological responses to elevated CO(2 levels.Here we use Monte Carlo simulations to test if an artifact of calculation could explain observed increases in iWUE. We show that highly significant positive relationships between iWUE and CO(2 occur even when simulated data (randomized δ(13C values spanning the observed range are used in place of actual tree-ring δ(13C measurements. From simulated data sets we calculated non-physiological changes in iWUE from 1900 to present and across a 4000 m altitudinal range. This generated results strikingly similar to those reported in recent studies encompassing 22 species from tropical, subtropical, temperate, boreal and mediterranean ecosystems. Only 6 of 49 surveyed case studies showed increases in iWUE significantly higher than predicted from random values.Our results reveal that increases in iWUE estimated from tree-ring δ(13C occur independently of changes in (13C discrimination that characterize physiological responses to elevated CO(2. Due to a correlation with CO(2 concentration, which is used as an independent factor in the iWUE calculation, any tree-ring δ(13C data set would inevitably generate increasing iWUE over time. Therefore, although consistent, previously reported trends in iWUE do not necessarily reflect a coherent global response to rising atmospheric CO(2. We discuss the significance of these findings and suggest ways to distinguish real from artificial

  7. Evidence for mass-independent and mass-dependent fractionation of the stable isotopes of mercury by natural processes in aquatic ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jackson, Togwell A.; Whittle, D. Michael; Evans, Marlene S.; Muir, Derek C.G.

    2008-01-01

    Isotopic and chemical analyses were performed on crustaceans, forage fish, top predator fish, and sediment cores from Lake Ontario and two boreal forest lakes to investigate fractionation of the stable isotopes of Hg in aquatic ecosystems. Multicollector inductively coupled mass spectrometry was used to determine Hg isotope abundances. The Hg isotope data for all three lakes showed mass-independent variation in the organisms but only mass-dependent variation in the sediments. The mass-independent isotope effect was characterised by (1) selective enrichment in isotopes of odd mass number ( 199 Hg and 201 Hg), (2) enrichment in 201 Hg relative to 199 Hg, (3) an inverse relationship between isotopes of odd and even mass number in fish, and (4) a positive correlation with methylHg (CH 3 Hg + ) concentration, and hence with trophic level (although lake whitefish were consistently anomalous, possibly owing to biochemical demethylation). Isotope signatures of species at the same trophic level varied with habitat and diet, differentiating between planktonic and benthic crustaceans and their predators, and between fish that frequent deep, cold water and fish of similar diet that prefer warmer, shallower water, because of corresponding differences in CH 3 Hg + and inorganic Hg content. Isotopic analysis of CH 3 Hg + and inorganic Hg extracted from lake trout proved that the mass-independent isotope effect was due to anomalously high abundances of 199 Hg and 201 Hg in CH 3 Hg + , as implied by the data for whole organisms, suggesting mass-independent fractionation during microbial methylation of Hg. The purely mass-dependent variation in the sediments is attributable to the fact that Hg in sediments is mostly inorganic. The mass-independent fractionation of Hg isotopes can be explained by effects of nuclear spin or nuclear field shift, or both, and penetration of the inner electron shells of Hg by valence electrons of Hg-binding ligands. The results of the research

  8. Nature Watch

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education; Volume 2; Issue 2. Nature Watch Decline of a Montane Ecosystem. Kartik Shanker. Feature Article Volume 2 Issue 2 February 1997 pp 75-82. Fulltext. Click here to view fulltext PDF. Permanent link: http://www.ias.ac.in/article/fulltext/reso/002/02/0075-0082 ...

  9. Reviewing the health of software ecosystems – a conceptual framework proposal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Manikas, Konstantinos; Hansen, Klaus Marius

    2013-01-01

    The health of a software ecosystem is an indication of how well the ecosystem is functioning. The measurement of health can point to issues that need to be addressed in the ecosystem and areas for the ecosystem to improve. However, the software ecosystem field lacks an applicable way to measure a...... influenced by theories from natural ecosystems and open source, (ii) identify two areas where software ecosystems differ from business and natural ecosystems, and (iii) propose a conceptual framework for defining and measuring the health of software ecosystems....

  10. Implications of agricultural transitions and urbanization for ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cumming, Graeme S; Buerkert, Andreas; Hoffmann, Ellen M; Schlecht, Eva; von Cramon-Taubadel, Stephan; Tscharntke, Teja

    2014-11-06

    Historically, farmers and hunter-gatherers relied directly on ecosystem services, which they both exploited and enjoyed. Urban populations still rely on ecosystems, but prioritize non-ecosystem services (socioeconomic). Population growth and densification increase the scale and change the nature of both ecosystem- and non-ecosystem-service supply and demand, weakening direct feedbacks between ecosystems and societies and potentially pushing social-ecological systems into traps that can lead to collapse. The interacting and mutually reinforcing processes of technological change, population growth and urbanization contribute to over-exploitation of ecosystems through complex feedbacks that have important implications for sustainable resource use.

  11. Carbon storage potential in size–density fractions from semi-natural grassland ecosystems with different productivities over varying soil depths

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Breulmann, Marc [Helmholtz-Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Department of Soil Ecology, Theodor-Lieser-Str. 4, 06120 Halle (Germany); Helmholtz-Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Environmental and Biotechnology Centre (UBZ), Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig (Germany); Boettger, Tatjana [Helmholtz-Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Department of Isotope Hydrology, Theodor-Lieser-Str. 4, D-06120 Halle (Germany); Buscot, François [Helmholtz-Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Department of Soil Ecology, Theodor-Lieser-Str. 4, 06120 Halle (Germany); German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig, Deutscher Platz 5e, 04103 Leipzig (Germany); Gruendling, Ralf [Helmholtz-Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Department, Department of Soil Physics, Theodor-Lieser-Str. 4, D-06120 Halle (Germany); Schulz, Elke [Helmholtz-Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Department of Soil Ecology, Theodor-Lieser-Str. 4, 06120 Halle (Germany)

    2016-03-01

    Researchers have increasingly recognised a profound need for more information on SOC stocks in the soil and the factors governing their stability and dynamics. Many questions still remain unanswered about the interplay between changes in plant communities and the extent to which changes in aboveground productivity affect the carbon dynamics in soils through changes in its quantity and quality. Therefore, the main aim of this research was to examine the SOC accumulation potential of semi-natural grasslands of different productivities and determine the distribution of SOM fractions over varying soil depth intervals (0–10, 10–20, 20–30 30–50 50–80 and 80 + cm). SOM fractionation was considered as a relative measure of stability to separate SOM associated with clay minerals from SOM of specific light densities less than 2 g cm{sup −3} (size-density fractionation). Two clay-associated fractions (CF1, < 1 μm; and CF2, 1–2 μm) and two light fractions (LF1, < 1.8 g cm{sup −3}; and LF2, 1.8–2.0 g cm{sup −3}) were separated. The stability of these fractions was characterised by their carbon hot water extractability (C{sub HWE}) and stable carbon isotope composition. In the semi-natural grasslands studied, most OC was stored in the top 30 cm, where turnover is rapid. Effects of low productivity grasslands became only significantly apparent when fractional OC contributions of total SOM was considered (CF1 and LF1). In deeper soil depths OC was largely attributed to the CF1 fraction of low productivity grasslands. We suggest that the majority of OM in deeper soil depth intervals is microbially-derived, as evidenced by decreasing C/N ratios and decreasing δ{sup 13}C values. The hot water extraction and natural δ{sup 13}C abundance, employed here allowed the characterisation of SOM stabilisation properties, however how climatic changes affect the fate of OM within different soil depth intervals is still unknown. - Highlights: • OC stocks over varying

  12. Microbial Ecosystems, Protection of

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bodelier, P.L.E.; Nelson, K.E.

    2014-01-01

    Synonyms Conservation of microbial diversity and ecosystem functions provided by microbes; Preservation of microbial diversity and ecosystem functions provided by microbes Definition The use, management, and conservation of ecosystems in order to preserve microbial diversity and functioning.

  13. Research applications of ecosystem patterns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert G. Bailey

    2009-01-01

    This article discusses the origins of natural ecosystem patterns from global to local scales. It describes how understanding these patterns can help scientists and managers in two ways. First, the local systems are shown within the context of larger systems. This perspective can be applied in assessing the connections between action at one scale and effect at another,...

  14. Ecosystem services: Just another catch phrase?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emily Weidner

    2011-01-01

    The "ecosystem services" concept has emerged as a popular area of discussion among policy makers and conservation advocates. Ecosystem services are the benefits people derive from nature and include the provision of water, food, wood, and fiber; regulation of climate, flood, drought, and disease; maintenance of biodiversity; and recreational, aesthetic,...

  15. Off-stage ecosystem service burdens

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pascual, Unai; Palomo, Ignacio; Adams, William M.; Chan, Kai M.A.; Daw, Tim M.; Garmendia, Eneko; Gómez-Baggethun, Erik; Groot, de Dolf; Mace, Georgina M.; Martín-López, Berta; Phelps, Jacob

    2017-01-01

    The connected nature of social-ecological systems has never been more apparent than in today's globalized world. The ecosystem service framework and associated ecosystem assessments aim to better inform the science-policy response to sustainability challenges. Such assessments, however, often

  16. Nitrogen cycling process rates across urban ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reisinger, Alexander J; Groffman, Peter M; Rosi-Marshall, Emma J

    2016-09-21

    Nitrogen (N) pollution of freshwater, estuarine, and marine ecosystems is widespread and has numerous environmental and economic impacts. A portion of this excess N comes from urban watersheds comprised of natural and engineered ecosystems which can alter downstream N export. Studies of urban N cycling have focused on either specific ecosystems or on watershed-scale mass balances. Comparisons of specific N transformations across ecosystems are required to contextualize rates from individual studies. Here we reviewed urban N cycling in terrestrial, aquatic, and engineered ecosystems, and compared N processing in these urban ecosystem types to native reference ecosystems. We found that net N mineralization and net nitrification rates were enhanced in urban forests and riparian zones relative to reference ecosystems. Denitrification was highly variable across urban ecosystem types, but no significant differences were found between urban and reference denitrification rates. When focusing on urban streams, ammonium uptake was more rapid than nitrate uptake in urban streams. Additionally, reduction of stormwater runoff coupled with potential decreases in N concentration suggests that green infrastructure may reduce downstream N export. Despite multiple environmental stressors in urban environments, ecosystems within urban watersheds can process and transform N at rates similar to or higher than reference ecosystems. © FEMS 2016. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. Biological availability of 238U, 234U and 226Ra for wild berries and meadow grasses in natural ecosystems of Belarus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sokolik, G.A.; Ovsiannikova, S.V.; Voinikava, K.V.; Ivanova, T.G.; Papenia, M.V.

    2014-01-01

    This work is devoted to investigation of behavior of 234 U, 238 U and 226 Ra by determining the soil to plant transfer under different natural conditions such as forest or swamped areas and meadow lands with different soil types. The paper summarizes the data on investigation of uranium and radium uptake by wild berries and natural meadow grasses in the typical conditions of Belarus. Parameters characterizing the biological availability of 234 U, 238 U and 226 Ra for bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus), lingonberry (Vaccinium viti-idaea), blueberry (Vaccinium iliginosum) and cranberry (Vaccinium oxycoccus palustris) as well as for widely occurring mixed meadow vegetation, which belongs to the sedge-grass or grass-sedge associations and forbs, have been established. In the sites under investigation, the deposition levels of 238+239+240 Pu were less than 0.37 kBq m −2 and 137 Cs deposition ranged between less than 0.37 and 37 kBq m −2 . It was found that activity concentrations of radionuclides in berries varied in the ranges of 0.037–0.11 for 234 U, 0.036–0.10 for 238 U and 0.11–0.43 Bq kg −1 for 226 Ra, but in the mixed meadow grasses they were 0.32–4.4, 0.24–3.9 and 0.14–6.9 Bq kg −1 accordingly. The 234 U/ 238 U activity ratios were 1.02 ± 0.01 for wild berries, 1.20 ± 0.09 for underground meadow grasses and 1.02 ± 0.02 for proper soils. The concentration ratios (CRs, dry weight basis) of 234 U and 238 U for mixed meadow grasses were 0.036–0.42 and 0.041–0.46 respectively. The correspondent geometric means (GM) were 0.13 and 0.15 with geometric standard deviations (GSD) of 2.4. The CRs of 226 Ra for meadow grasses were 0.031–1.0 with GM 0.20 and GSD 2.6. The CRs of 234 U, 238 U and 226 Ra for wild berries ranged within 0.0018–0.008 (GM is 0.0034, GSD is 1.8), 0.0018–0.008 (GM is 0.0035, GSD is 1.8) and 0.005–0.033 (GM is 0.016, GSD is 2.1) accordingly. The highest CR values of uranium for mixed meadow grasses were found in the sites

  18. Gulf of Mexico Ecosystem Status Report

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Gulf of Mexico is one of the most ecologically and economically valuable marine ecosystems in the world and is affected by a variety of natural and anthropogenic...

  19. Uncovering ecosystem service bundles through social preferences.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Berta Martín-López

    Full Text Available Ecosystem service assessments have increasingly been used to support environmental management policies, mainly based on biophysical and economic indicators. However, few studies have coped with the social-cultural dimension of ecosystem services, despite being considered a research priority. We examined how ecosystem service bundles and trade-offs emerge from diverging social preferences toward ecosystem services delivered by various types of ecosystems in Spain. We conducted 3,379 direct face-to-face questionnaires in eight different case study sites from 2007 to 2011. Overall, 90.5% of the sampled population recognized the ecosystem's capacity to deliver services. Formal studies, environmental behavior, and gender variables influenced the probability of people recognizing the ecosystem's capacity to provide services. The ecosystem services most frequently perceived by people were regulating services; of those, air purification held the greatest importance. However, statistical analysis showed that socio-cultural factors and the conservation management strategy of ecosystems (i.e., National Park, Natural Park, or a non-protected area have an effect on social preferences toward ecosystem services. Ecosystem service trade-offs and bundles were identified by analyzing social preferences through multivariate analysis (redundancy analysis and hierarchical cluster analysis. We found a clear trade-off among provisioning services (and recreational hunting versus regulating services and almost all cultural services. We identified three ecosystem service bundles associated with the conservation management strategy and the rural-urban gradient. We conclude that socio-cultural preferences toward ecosystem services can serve as a tool to identify relevant services for people, the factors underlying these social preferences, and emerging ecosystem service bundles and trade-offs.

  20. Uncovering ecosystem service bundles through social preferences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martín-López, Berta; Iniesta-Arandia, Irene; García-Llorente, Marina; Palomo, Ignacio; Casado-Arzuaga, Izaskun; Amo, David García Del; Gómez-Baggethun, Erik; Oteros-Rozas, Elisa; Palacios-Agundez, Igone; Willaarts, Bárbara; González, José A; Santos-Martín, Fernando; Onaindia, Miren; López-Santiago, Cesar; Montes, Carlos

    2012-01-01

    Ecosystem service assessments have increasingly been used to support environmental management policies, mainly based on biophysical and economic indicators. However, few studies have coped with the social-cultural dimension of ecosystem services, despite being considered a research priority. We examined how ecosystem service bundles and trade-offs emerge from diverging social preferences toward ecosystem services delivered by various types of ecosystems in Spain. We conducted 3,379 direct face-to-face questionnaires in eight different case study sites from 2007 to 2011. Overall, 90.5% of the sampled population recognized the ecosystem's capacity to deliver services. Formal studies, environmental behavior, and gender variables influenced the probability of people recognizing the ecosystem's capacity to provide services. The ecosystem services most frequently perceived by people were regulating services; of those, air purification held the greatest importance. However, statistical analysis showed that socio-cultural factors and the conservation management strategy of ecosystems (i.e., National Park, Natural Park, or a non-protected area) have an effect on social preferences toward ecosystem services. Ecosystem service trade-offs and bundles were identified by analyzing social preferences through multivariate analysis (redundancy analysis and hierarchical cluster analysis). We found a clear trade-off among provisioning services (and recreational hunting) versus regulating services and almost all cultural services. We identified three ecosystem service bundles associated with the conservation management strategy and the rural-urban gradient. We conclude that socio-cultural preferences toward ecosystem services can serve as a tool to identify relevant services for people, the factors underlying these social preferences, and emerging ecosystem service bundles and trade-offs.

  1. Human-Nature Interaction in the Eastern Pamirs of Tajikistan - Ecosystem services against the background of pasture use and energy consumption

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanselow, K. A.; Samimi, C.; Kraudzun, T.; Kreutzmann, H.

    2012-04-01

    -Dombois & Ellenberg 1974). Forage quality of the most important fodder plants was analyzed according to van Soest (1994). By combining the results the availability of metabolizable energy throughout the study area was estimated. Spatiotemporal variations of pasture use were mapped by repeatedly visiting all pasture camps from 2007 until 2009 and 280 pastoralist were interviewed. Furthermore, the development of usage rights, and the size and ownership of the herds since the Soviet era were assessed through archive work and topic-specific expert interviews. It could be shown that the mono-seasonal pasture utilization on the state farms contrasts with a distinct multi-seasonal present-day use. Consequently, pastures close to villages are permanently used, particularly in winter, and are heavily overgrazed. In contrast, grazing pressure on summer pastures is much less. However, also several distant summer pastures show high livestock numbers, which indicates that they are not underused, as it is often argued. Furthermore, it could be demonstrated that the actual degradation of dwarf shrub vegetation is not yet as severe as stated in reports and literature. These results can help to advise stakeholders (e.g. local administration, herders, NGOs) about sustainable management of the natural resources.

  2. Radionuclide transport processes in terrestrial ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Whicker, F.W.

    1983-01-01

    Some major principles and the status of knowledge concerning the transport of radionuclides through terrestrial ecosystems are reviewed. Fundamental processes which control the flow of radionuclides between ecosystem components such as air, soil, plants, and animals are described, with emphasis on deposition, resuspension, plant uptake, ingestion, and assimilation. Properties of radionuclides, organisms, and ecosystems are examined in relation to their influence on the accumulation of radioactive materials by plants and animals. The effects of the physicochemical nature of the radionuclide; morphology, physiology, and behavior of the organism; and soil, nutrient, and trophic characteristics of the ecosystem are highlighted. Observations in natural ecosystems on radionuclides such as 137 Cs, 90 Sr, 131 I, 3 H, and 239 Pu are used to illustrate current concepts. An assessment of the degree to which the processes controlling radionuclide behavior are understood and of our ability to simulate and predict such behavior with computerized models is offered. Finally, brief comments are made on research needs

  3. The Multifaceted Aspects of Ecosystem Integrity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulio A. De Leo

    1997-06-01

    Full Text Available The need to reduce human impacts on ecosystems creates pressure for adequate response, but the rush to solutions fosters the oversimplification of such notions as sustainable development and ecosystem health. Hence, it favors the tendency to ignore the complexity of natural systems. In this paper, after a brief analysis of the use and abuse of the notion of ecosystem health, we address the problem of a sound definition of ecosystem integrity, critically review the different methodological and conceptual approaches to the management of natural resources, and sketch the practical implications stemming from their implementation. We show thatthere are merits and limitations in different definitions of ecosystem integrity, for each acknowledges different aspects of ecosystem structure and functioning and reflects the subjective perspectives of humans on the value, importance, and role of biological diversity. This evaluation is based on a brief sketch of the links among biodiversity, ecosystem functioning and resilience, and a description of the problems that arise in distinguishing between natural and anthropogenic disturbance. We also emphasize the difficulty of assessing the economic value of species and habitats and the need to use adaptive management policies to deal with uncertainty and ecosystem complexity. In conclusion, while acknowledging that environmental legislation requires objective statements on ecosystem status and trends, we stress that the notion of ecological integrity is so complex that its measure cannot be expressed through a single indicator, but rather requires a set of indicators at different spatial, temporal, and hierarchical levels of ecosystem organization. Ecosystem integrity is not an absolute, monolithic concept. The existence of different sets of values regarding biological diversity and environmental risks must be explicitly accounted for and incorporated in the decision process, rather than ignored or averaged out.

  4. Global biological diversity, forests and ecosystem approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corona P

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Recent international reports and a paper published on Science stresses the lack of evidence about the reduction in the rate of biodiversity decline as expected as a consequence of political agreements on global environment. This decline is of particular concern not only with respect to the intrinsic value of the nature as such but also because it involves the reduction or loss of ecosystem services. This issue is distinctively relevant for forest ecosystems. The Ecosystem Approach proposed by the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity might be a strategy to reverse the negative trend, promoting a fair conservation and sustainable use of natural resources on an operational level.

  5. Counting all that matters: recognizing the value of ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sussane. Maleki

    2008-01-01

    Broadly defined, ecosystem services are the benefits healthy ecosystems provide to humans. Clean air, clean water, and flood control are just a few examples. Although the term is relatively new, the ecosystem services concept has long been a focus of natural resource and environmental economists. As the U.S. population increases and the forests and grasslands that...

  6. Ecological and resource economics as ecosystem management tools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephen Farber; Dennis. Bradley

    1999-01-01

    Economic pressures on ecosystems will only intensify in the future. Increased population levels, settlement patterns, and increased incomes will raise the demands for ecosystem resources and their services. The pressure to transform ecosystem natural assets into marketable commodities, whether by harvesting and mining resources or altering landscapes through...

  7. The Bitterroot Ecosystem Management Research Project: What we have learned

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helen Y. Smith

    2000-01-01

    The varied topics presented in these symposium proceedings represent the diverse nature of the Bitterroot Ecosystem Management Research Project (BEMRP). Separated into six sections, the papers cover the different themes researched by BEMRP collaborators as well as brief overviews of five other ecosystem management projects. The sections are: Understanding the Ecosystem...

  8. Effects of ice storm on forest ecosystem of southern China in 2008 Shaoqiang Wang1, Lei Zhou1, Weimin Ju2, Kun Huang1 1Key Lab of Ecosystem Network Observation and Modeling, Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Beijing, 10010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shaoqiang

    2014-05-01

    Evidence is mounting that an increase in extreme climate events has begun to occur worldwide during the recent decades, which affect biosphere function and biodiversity. Ecosystems returned to its original structures and functions to maintain its sustainability, which was closely dependent on ecosystem resilience. Understanding the resilience and recovery capacity of ecosystem to extreme climate events is essential to predicting future ecosystem responses to climate change. Given the overwhelming importance of this region in the overall carbon cycle of forest ecosystems in China, south China suffered a destructive ice storm in 2008. In this study, we used the number of freezing day and a process-based model (Boreal Ecosystem Productivity Simulator, BEPS) to characterize the spatial distribution of ice storm region in southeastern China and explore the impacts on carbon cycle of forest ecosystem over the past decade. The ecosystem variables, i.e. Net primary productivity (NPP), Evapotranspiration (ET), and Water use efficiency (WUE, the ratio of NPP to ET) from the outputs of BEPS models were used to detect the resistance and resilience of forest ecosystem in southern China. The pattern of ice storm-induced forest productivity widespread decline was closely related to the number of freezing day during the ice storm period. The NPP of forest area suffered heavy ice storm returned to normal status after five months with high temperature and ample moisture, indicated a high resilience of subtropical forest in China. The long-term changes of forest WUE remain stable, behaving an inherent sensitivity of ecosystem to extreme climate events. In addition, ground visits suggested that the recovery of forest productivity was attributed to rapid growth of understory. Understanding the variability and recovery threshold of ecosystem following extreme climate events help us to better simulate and predict the variability of ecosystem structure and function under current and

  9. Natural Capital, Ecosystem Services and Soil Change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Robinson, D A; Hockley, N; Dominati, E

    2012-01-01

    There is a general consensus among climate models that the direct influence of increasing temperature on evaporative demand will result in drier soils, reduced water supply, and more frequent drought conditions. The data available to evaluate long-term soil water trends that may result from climate...... change are sparse. We examine soil water data collected over a 32-yr period at four sites covering a 1000-m elevation gradient in a semiarid watershed. Meteorological data from these sites have previously confirmed a significant, increasing temperature trend with no significant precipitation trend during...... the period of record. There are, however, well-documented climatic trends with elevation that may influence vegetative response to a warming climate. We evaluated the soil water data to: (i) determine any significant temporal trends and (ii) compare soil water among sites to evaluate spatial trends...

  10. Nature: the many benefits of ecosystem services

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Reid, WV

    2006-10-19

    Full Text Available Historically, conservation has largely relied on the considerations of intrinsic value that McCauley sees as the only solution. This has been manifestly insufficient as a response to the increasing threats to biodiversity, particularly in the world...

  11. Ecosystem degradation in India

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sinha, B.N.

    1990-01-01

    Environmental and ecosystem studies have assumed greater relevance in the last decade of the twentieth century than even before. The urban settlements are becoming over-crowded and industries are increasingly polluting the air, water and sound in our larger metropolises. Degradation of different types of ecosystem are discussed in this book, Ecosystem Degradation in India. The book has been divided into seven chapters: Introduction, Coastal and Delta Ecosystem, River Basin Ecosystem, Mountain Ecosystem, Forest Ecosystem, Urban Ecosystem and the last chapter deals with the Environmental Problems and Planning. In the introduction the environmental and ecosystem degradation problems in India is highlighted as a whole while in other chapters mostly case studies by experts who know their respective terrain very intimately are included. The case study papers cover most part of India and deal with local problems, stretching from east coast to west coast and from Kashmir to Kanyakumari. (author)

  12. Transformation of Digital Ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Henningsson, Stefan; Hedman, Jonas

    2014-01-01

    the Digital Ecosystem Technology Transformation (DETT) framework for explaining technology-based transformation of digital ecosystems by integrating theories of business and technology ecosystems. The framework depicts ecosystem transformation as distributed and emergent from micro-, meso-, and macro- level...... coopetition. The DETT framework consists an alternative to the existing explanations of digital ecosystem transformation as the rational management of one central actor balancing ecosystem tensions. We illustrate the use of the framework by a case study of transformation in the digital payment ecosystem......In digital ecosystems, the fusion relation between business and technology means that the decision of technical compatibility of the offering is also the decision of how to position the firm relative to the coopetive relations that characterize business ecosystems. In this article we develop...

  13. Valuation of rangeland ecosystem services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gascoigne, W.R.

    2011-01-01

    Economic valuation lends itself well to the anthropocentric orientation of ecosystem services. An economic perspective on ecosystems portrays them as natural assets providing a flow of goods and services valuable to individuals and society collectively. A few examples include the purification of drinking water, reduced risk from flooding and other extreme events, pollination of agricultural crops, climate regulation, and recreation opportunities from plant and animal habitat maintenance, among many others. Once these goods and services are identified and quantified, they can be monetized to complete the valuation process. The monetization of ecosystem goods and services (in the form of dollars) provides a common metric that allows for cross-comparison of attributes and evaluation of differing ecological scenarios. Complicating the monetization process is the fact that most of these goods and services are public and non-market in nature; meaning they are non-rival and non-exclusive and are typically not sold in a traditional market setting where monetary values are revealed. Instead, one must employ non-market valuation techniques, with primary valuation methods typically being very time and resource consuming, intimidating to non-economists, and often impractical. For these reasons, benefit transfer methods have gained popularity. This methodology harnesses the primary collection results of existing studies to make inferences about the economic values of non-market goods and services at an alternative policy site (in place and/or in time). For instance, if a primary valuation study on oak reestablishment on rangelands in southern California yielded a value of $30 per-acre associated with water regulation, this result can be transferred, with some adjustments, to say something about the value of an acre of oaks on rangelands in northern portions of the state. The economic valuation of rangeland ecosystem services has many roles. Economic values may be used as input

  14. Ecotoxicology and ecosystems health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Damiani, Giovanni

    2002-01-01

    There is mounting evidence that traditional investigations are no longer sufficient either to assess the ecological characteristics of a resource or to better understand the dynamics of an ecosystem. Reliable experimental data to be used for further investigation as well as for environmental corrective action are obtained using the traditional quantitative and qualitative biological methods. In fact, environmental health is connected with well functioning global and local ecological cycles, that also assure renewable, good quality natural resources. There is, therefore, a keen need for new, adequate techniques based on biological parameters that will allow for a better understanding and protection of the environment. The use of biological indexes and indicators and toxicology tests have been also prescribed by a recent Italian law on water protection. Differences between toxicology, environmental toxicology and ecotoxicology, often used as equivalent terms, are also analyzed. Furthermore a new classification is proposed and mapping of ecobiotic and toxicologic data on studying waters in river basins.

  15. System of Environmental-Economic Accounting 2012 : Experimental Ecosystem Accounting

    OpenAIRE

    United Nations

    2014-01-01

    Ecosystem accounting is a coherent and integrated approach to the assessment of the environment through the measurement of ecosystems, and measurement of the flows of services from ecosystems into economic and other human activity. The scale on which the accounting may be conducted varies: the ecosystems measured may range from specific land cover type areas, such as forests, to larger integrated areas, such as river basins, and may include areas considered to be relatively natural and tho...

  16. Uncovering Ecosystem Service Bundles through Social Preferences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martín-López, Berta; Iniesta-Arandia, Irene; García-Llorente, Marina; Palomo, Ignacio; Casado-Arzuaga, Izaskun; Amo, David García Del; Gómez-Baggethun, Erik; Oteros-Rozas, Elisa; Palacios-Agundez, Igone; Willaarts, Bárbara; González, José A.; Santos-Martín, Fernando; Onaindia, Miren; López-Santiago, Cesar; Montes, Carlos

    2012-01-01

    Ecosystem service assessments have increasingly been used to support environmental management policies, mainly based on biophysical and economic indicators. However, few studies have coped with the social-cultural dimension of ecosystem services, despite being considered a research priority. We examined how ecosystem service bundles and trade-offs emerge from diverging social preferences toward ecosystem services delivered by various types of ecosystems in Spain. We conducted 3,379 direct face-to-face questionnaires in eight different case study sites from 2007 to 2011. Overall, 90.5% of the sampled population recognized the ecosystem’s capacity to deliver services. Formal studies, environmental behavior, and gender variables influenced the probability of people recognizing the ecosystem’s capacity to provide services. The ecosystem services most frequently perceived by people were regulating services; of those, air purification held the greatest importance. However, statistical analysis showed that socio-cultural factors and the conservation management strategy of ecosystems (i.e., National Park, Natural Park, or a non-protected area) have an effect on social preferences toward ecosystem services. Ecosystem service trade-offs and bundles were identified by analyzing social preferences through multivariate analysis (redundancy analysis and hierarchical cluster analysis). We found a clear trade-off among provisioning services (and recreational hunting) versus regulating services and almost all cultural services. We identified three ecosystem service bundles associated with the conservation management strategy and the rural-urban gradient. We conclude that socio-cultural preferences toward ecosystem services can serve as a tool to identify relevant services for people, the factors underlying these social preferences, and emerging ecosystem service bundles and trade-offs. PMID:22720006

  17. Rights to ecosystem services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Davidson, M.

    2014-01-01

    Ecosystem services are the benefits people obtain from ecosystems. Many of these services are provided outside the borders of the land where they are produced; this article investigates who is entitled to these non-excludable ecosystem services from two libertarian perspectives. Taking a

  18. Towards ecosystem accounting

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duku, C.; Rathjens, H.; Zwart, S.J.; Hein, L.

    2015-01-01

    Ecosystem accounting is an emerging field that aims to provide a consistent approach to analysing environment-economy interactions. One of the specific features of ecosystem accounting is the distinction between the capacity and the flow of ecosystem services. Ecohydrological modelling to support

  19. Global Ecosystem Restoration Index

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fernandez, Miguel; Garcia, Monica; Fernandez, Nestor

    2015-01-01

    The Global ecosystem restoration index (GERI) is a composite index that integrates structural and functional aspects of the ecosystem restoration process. These elements are evaluated through a window that looks into a baseline for degraded ecosystems with the objective to assess restoration...

  20. Ecosystem classification, Chapter 2

    Science.gov (United States)

    M.J. Robin-Abbott; L.H. Pardo

    2011-01-01

    The ecosystem classification in this report is based on the ecoregions developed through the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) for North America (CEC 1997). Only ecosystems that occur in the United States are included. CEC ecoregions are described, with slight modifications, below (CEC 1997) and shown in Figures 2.1 and 2.2. We chose this ecosystem...

  1. Going Beyond the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: An Index System of Human Dependence on Ecosystem Services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Wu; Dietz, Thomas; Liu, Wei; Luo, Junyan; Liu, Jianguo

    2013-01-01

    The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) estimated that two thirds of ecosystem services on the earth have degraded or are in decline due to the unprecedented scale of human activities during recent decades. These changes will have tremendous consequences for human well-being, and offer both risks and opportunities for a wide range of stakeholders. Yet these risks and opportunities have not been well managed due in part to the lack of quantitative understanding of human dependence on ecosystem services. Here, we propose an index of dependence on ecosystem services (IDES) system to quantify human dependence on ecosystem services. We demonstrate the construction of the IDES system using household survey data. We show that the overall index and sub-indices can reflect the general pattern of households' dependences on ecosystem services, and their variations across time, space, and different forms of capital (i.e., natural, human, financial, manufactured, and social capitals). We support the proposition that the poor are more dependent on ecosystem services and further generalize this proposition by arguing that those disadvantaged groups who possess low levels of any form of capital except for natural capital are more dependent on ecosystem services than those with greater control of capital. The higher value of the overall IDES or sub-index represents the higher dependence on the corresponding ecosystem services, and thus the higher vulnerability to the degradation or decline of corresponding ecosystem services. The IDES system improves our understanding of human dependence on ecosystem services. It also provides insights into strategies for alleviating poverty, for targeting priority groups of conservation programs, and for managing risks and opportunities due to changes of ecosystem services at multiple scales. PMID:23717634

  2. Going beyond the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: an index system of human dependence on ecosystem services.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wu Yang

    Full Text Available The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA estimated that two thirds of ecosystem services on the earth have degraded or are in decline due to the unprecedented scale of human activities during recent decades. These changes will have tremendous consequences for human well-being, and offer both risks and opportunities for a wide range of stakeholders. Yet these risks and opportunities have not been well managed due in part to the lack of quantitative understanding of human dependence on ecosystem services. Here, we propose an index of dependence on ecosystem services (IDES system to quantify human dependence on ecosystem services. We demonstrate the construction of the IDES system using household survey data. We show that the overall index and sub-indices can reflect the general pattern of households' dependences on ecosystem services, and their variations across time, space, and different forms of capital (i.e., natural, human, financial, manufactured, and social capitals. We support the proposition that the poor are more dependent on ecosystem services and further generalize this proposition by arguing that those disadvantaged groups who possess low levels of any form of capital except for natural capital are more dependent on ecosystem services than those with greater control of capital. The higher value of the overall IDES or sub-index represents the higher dependence on the corresponding ecosystem services, and thus the higher vulnerability to the degradation or decline of corresponding ecosystem services. The IDES system improves our understanding of human dependence on ecosystem services. It also provides insights into strategies for alleviating poverty, for targeting priority groups of conservation programs, and for managing risks and opportunities due to changes of ecosystem services at multiple scales.

  3. Going beyond the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: an index system of human dependence on ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Wu; Dietz, Thomas; Liu, Wei; Luo, Junyan; Liu, Jianguo

    2013-01-01

    The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) estimated that two thirds of ecosystem services on the earth have degraded or are in decline due to the unprecedented scale of human activities during recent decades. These changes will have tremendous consequences for human well-being, and offer both risks and opportunities for a wide range of stakeholders. Yet these risks and opportunities have not been well managed due in part to the lack of quantitative understanding of human dependence on ecosystem services. Here, we propose an index of dependence on ecosystem services (IDES) system to quantify human dependence on ecosystem services. We demonstrate the construction of the IDES system using household survey data. We show that the overall index and sub-indices can reflect the general pattern of households' dependences on ecosystem services, and their variations across time, space, and different forms of capital (i.e., natural, human, financial, manufactured, and social capitals). We support the proposition that the poor are more dependent on ecosystem services and further generalize this proposition by arguing that those disadvantaged groups who possess low levels of any form of capital except for natural capital are more dependent on ecosystem services than those with greater control of capital. The higher value of the overall IDES or sub-index represents the higher dependence on the corresponding ecosystem services, and thus the higher vulnerability to the degradation or decline of corresponding ecosystem services. The IDES system improves our understanding of human dependence on ecosystem services. It also provides insights into strategies for alleviating poverty, for targeting priority groups of conservation programs, and for managing risks and opportunities due to changes of ecosystem services at multiple scales.

  4. Ecosystem services in ECOCLIM

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Lise Lotte; Boegh, Eva; Bendtsen, J

    that actions initiated to reduce anthropogenic GHG emissions are sustainable and not destructive to existing ecosystem services. Therefore it is important to address i.e. land use change in relation to the regulating services of the ecosystems, such as carbon sequestration and climate regulation. At present...... a thorough understanding of the ecosystem processes controlling the uptake or emissions of GHG is fundamental. Here we present ECOCLIM in the context of ecosystem services and the experimental studies within ECOCLIM which will lead to an enhanced understanding of Danish ecosystems....

  5. Integrating ecosystem services in terrestrial conservation planning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Mei-Hua; Lo, Shang-Lien; Yang, Chih-Kai

    2017-05-01

    The purpose of this study is to estimate the benefits of ecosystem services for prioritization of land use conservation and to highlight the importance of ecosystem services by comparison between ecosystem service value and green GDP accounting. Based on land use pattern and benefit transfer method, this research estimated value of ecosystem services in Taiwan. Scientific information of land use and land cover change is accessed through multi-year satellite imagery moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS), and geographic information system (GIS) technology. Combined with benefit transfer method, this research estimated the ecosystem service valuation of forest, grassland, cropland, wetland, water, and urban for the period of 2000 to 2015 in Taiwan. It is found that forest made the greatest contribution and the significant increasing area of wetland has huge potential benefit for environmental conservation in Taiwan. We recommend placing maintaining wetland ecosystem in Taiwan with higher priority. This research also compared ecosystem service value with natural capital consumption which would essentially facilitate policy makers to understand the relationship between benefits gained from natural capital and the loss from human-made capital.

  6. Stability measures in arid ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nosshi, M. I.; Brunsell, N. A.; Koerner, S.

    2015-12-01

    Stability, the capacity of ecosystems to persist in the face of change, has proven its relevance as a fundamental component of ecological theory. Here, we would like to explore meaningful and quantifiable metrics to define stability, with a focus on highly variable arid and semi-arid savanna ecosystems. Recognizing the importance of a characteristic timescale to any definition of stability, our metrics will be focused scales from annual to multi-annual, capturing different aspects of stability. Our three measures of stability, in increasing order of temporal scale, are: (1) Ecosystem resistance, quantified as the degree to which the system maintains its mean state in response to a perturbation (drought), based on inter-annual variability in Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI). (2) An optimization approach, relevant to arid systems with pulse dynamics, that models vegetation structure and function based on a trade off between the ability to respond to resource availability and avoid stress. (3) Community resilience, measured as species turnover rate (β diversity). Understanding the nature of stability in structurally-diverse arid ecosystems, which are highly variable, yields theoretical insight which has practical implications.

  7. Evolutionary diversification in stickleback affects ecosystem functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harmon, Luke J; Matthews, Blake; Des Roches, Simone; Chase, Jonathan M; Shurin, Jonathan B; Schluter, Dolph

    2009-04-30

    Explaining the ecological causes of evolutionary diversification is a major focus of biology, but surprisingly little has been said about the effects of evolutionary diversification on ecosystems. The number of species in an ecosystem and their traits are key predictors of many ecosystem-level processes, such as rates of productivity, biomass sequestration and decomposition. Here we demonstrate short-term ecosystem-level effects of adaptive radiation in the threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) over the past 10,000 years. These fish have undergone recent parallel diversification in several lakes in coastal British Columbia, resulting in the formation of two specialized species (benthic and limnetic) from a generalist ancestor. Using a mesocosm experiment, we demonstrate that this diversification has strong effects on ecosystems, affecting prey community structure, total primary production, and the nature of dissolved organic materials that regulate the spectral properties of light transmission in the system. However, these ecosystem effects do not simply increase in their relative strength with increasing specialization and species richness; instead, they reflect the complex and indirect consequences of ecosystem engineering by sticklebacks. It is well known that ecological factors influence adaptive radiation. We demonstrate that adaptive radiation, even over short timescales, can have profound effects on ecosystems.

  8. Ecosystem services in the Great Lakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinman, Alan D.; Cardinale, Bradley J; Munns Jr, Wayne R; Ogdahl, Mary E.; Allan, David J; Angadi, Ted; Bartlett, Sarah; Brauman, Kate; Byappanahalli, Muruleedhara; Doss, Matt; Dupont, Diane; Johns, Annie; Kashian, Donna; Lupi, Frank; McIntyre, Peter B.; Miller, Todd; Moore, Michael P.; Muenich, Rebecca Logsdon; Poudel, Rajendra; Price, James; Provencher, Bill; Rea, Anne; Read, Jennifer; Renzetti, Steven; Sohngen, Brent; Washburn, Erica

    2017-01-01

    A comprehensive inventory of ecosystem services across the entire Great Lakes basin is currently lacking and is needed to make informed management decisions. A greater appreciation and understanding of ecosystem services, including both use and non-use services, may have avoided misguided resource management decisions in the past that resulted in negative legacies inherited by future generations. Given the interest in ecosystem services and lack of a coherent approach to addressing this topic in the Great Lakes, a summit was convened involving 28 experts working on various aspects of ecosystem services in the Great Lakes. The invited attendees spanned a variety of social and natural sciences. Given the unique status of the Great Lakes as the world's largest collective repository of surface freshwater, and the numerous stressors threatening this valuable resource, timing was propitious to examine ecosystem services. Several themes and recommendations emerged from the summit. There was general consensus that: 1) a comprehensive inventory of ecosystem services throughout the Great Lakes is a desirable goal but would require considerable resources; 2) more spatially and temporally intensive data are needed to overcome our data gaps, but the arrangement of data networks and observatories must be well-coordinated; 3) trade-offs must be considered as part of ecosystem services analyses; and 4) formation of a Great Lakes Institute for Ecosystem Services, to provide a hub for research, meetings, and training is desirable. Several challenges also emerged during the summit, which are discussed.

  9. Monitoring Trends in Productivity to Identify Vulnerable Ecosystems: Measuring Ecosystem Condition and Drought Resistance Across California Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malone, S. L.; Tulbure, M. G.; Pérez-Luque, A. J.; Ryan, M. G.; Joyce, L. A.

    2016-12-01

    Terrestrial ecosystems are vital for their role in fixing and storing carbon and recycling water and nutrients. Ecosystems buffer the atmosphere from large changes in carbon dioxide through processes (i.e. photosynthesis, respiration, evapotranspiration, and nutrient cycling) that are both driven by and an important feedback to climate and disturbance regimes. Although we understand the carbon value provided by ecosystems, the persistence of carbon sinks is a concern because the processes promoting carbon storage change overtime, shift with climate, and are heavily influenced by disturbance regimes. Combined with the diversity of natural ecosystems, the recent occurrence of drought make California an important case study to examine variations in productivity and drought resistance. We used a time series (2002-2014) of climate and productivity indices to identify drivers of ecosystem condition and drought resistance. Our results show distinct patterns in water use efficiency (WUE) in resilient and vulnerable ecosystems. Under normal conditions WUE varied across California (0.08 to 3.85 g C mm-1 H2O) and WUE generally increased under severe drought conditions in 2014 (pdrought conditions. Strong correlations between changes in WUE, precipitation and leaf area index (LAI) indicate that ecosystems with a lower average LAI (i.e. grasslands) also had greater C uptake rates and higher rates of carbon uptake efficiency (CUE = NPP/ LAI) under severe drought conditions. Drought severity, precipitation and WUE were identified as important drivers of shifts in ecosystem classes over the study period. These findings have important implications for understanding climate change effects on primary productivity and C sequestration across ecosystems and how this may influence ecosystem resistance in the future.

  10. Strategies for conservation of endangered ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ashraf, M.; Hussain, M.; Ahmad, M.S.A.

    2012-01-01

    The planet Earth is known to host a rich biodiversity owing to its suitable environmental conditions for life and at a larger scale it is regarded as a major ecosystem. Healthy existence of living organisms in this ecosystem depends on proper functioning of all the associated environmental factors. Since millennia, living organisms have adapted to thrive under a limited range of environmental conditions. Nevertheless previous history of the earth and fossil records indicates that the biodiversity housed by the planet earth has experienced five major catastrophic extinctions due to change in physical environment. Even currently, it is undergoing sixth major extinction event mainly due to anthropogenic activities. The human activities are proving a dual menace for biodiversity. On the one hand, it is causing habitat loss through intensive deforestation, conversion of different natural plant communities for agriculture, and urbanization and industrialization. Moreover, it is resulting in habitat degradation by polluting both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, emitting air pollutants resulting in acid rains, ozone layer depletion, global warming, heavy metal contamination and eutrophication of water bodies. As a result, healthy existence of both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems and their associated biodiversity is altogether threatened. Worldwide efforts are underway to conserve the threatened ecosystems and their related biodiversity. A number of international conventions have been held to conserve natural ecosystems. Pakistan being a signatory of these conventions has its obligation to join hands with international community to conserve the endangered ecosystems within as well as outside its bounds. Under the existing scenario the objective of organizing this symposium was to pinpoint the threats to endangered ecosystems of the world in general and those in Pakistan in particular, and to develop suitable strategies for conservation of such paralyzed ecosystems

  11. Ship canals and aquatic ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aron, William I.; Smith, Stanford H.

    1971-01-01

    Through a combination of ecosystem homeostasis and the perversity of man and nature, oftentimes the significant biological changes effected by environmental modifications are not detected until long after the initial change has taken place. The immediate impact, which may range from the spectacular to the undetectable, is a deceptive measure of the long-term and often more important changes in the ecosystem. Two major engineering achievements illustrate this premise: (i) construction of the Erie Canal, which provided access from the Atlantic Ocean to the Great Lakes, and the Welland Canal, which bypasses the block between Lakes Ontario and Erie created by Niagara Falls (Fig. 1), and (ii) construction of the Suez Canal between the Red Sea and the Mediterranean Sea.

  12. Ecosystem quality in LCIA

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Woods, John S.; Damiani, Mattia; Fantke, Peter

    2017-01-01

    viewpoint and recommendations for future developments in LCIA related to the ecosystem quality area of protection (AoP). Through our recommendations, we aim to encourage LCIA developments that improve the usefulness and global acceptability of LCIA results. Methods: We analyze current ecosystem quality...... metrics and provide recommendations to the LCIA research community for achieving further developments towards comparable and more ecologically relevant metrics addressing ecosystem quality. Results and discussion: We recommend that LCIA development for ecosystem quality should tend towards species......—should be framed to facilitate their final expression in a single, aggregated metric. This would also improve comparability with other LCIA damage-level indicators. Furthermore, to allow for a broader inclusion of ecosystem quality perspectives, the development of an additional indicator related to ecosystem...

  13. Neighbourhood-scale urban forest ecosystem classification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steenberg, James W N; Millward, Andrew A; Duinker, Peter N; Nowak, David J; Robinson, Pamela J

    2015-11-01

    Urban forests are now recognized as essential components of sustainable cities, but there remains uncertainty concerning how to stratify and classify urban landscapes into units of ecological significance at spatial scales appropriate for management. Ecosystem classification is an approach that entails quantifying the social and ecological processes that shape ecosystem conditions into logical and relatively homogeneous management units, making the potential for ecosystem-based decision support available to urban planners. The purpose of this study is to develop and propose a framework for urban forest ecosystem classification (UFEC). The multifactor framework integrates 12 ecosystem components that characterize the biophysical landscape, built environment, and human population. This framework is then applied at the neighbourhood scale in Toronto, Canada, using hierarchical cluster analysis. The analysis used 27 spatially-explicit variables to quantify the ecosystem components in Toronto. Twelve ecosystem classes were identified in this UFEC application. Across the ecosystem classes, tree canopy cover was positively related to economic wealth, especially income. However, education levels and homeownership were occasionally inconsistent with the expected positive relationship with canopy cover. Open green space and stocking had variable relationships with economic wealth and were more closely related to population density, building intensity, and land use. The UFEC can provide ecosystem-based information for greening initiatives, tree planting, and the maintenance of the existing canopy. Moreover, its use has the potential to inform the prioritization of limited municipal resources according to ecological conditions and to concerns of social equity in the access to nature and distribution of ecosystem service supply. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Nitrogen Deposition Effects on Ecosystem Services and Interactions with other Pollutants and Climate Change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Erisman, J.W.; Leach, A.; Adams, M.; Vries, de W.

    2014-01-01

    Ecosystem services are defined as the ecological and socio-economic value of goods and services provided by natural and semi-natural ecosystems. Ecosystem services are being impacted by many human induced stresses, one of them being nitrogen (N) deposition and its interactions with other pollutants

  15. Carbon and nitrogen cycles in European ecosystems respond differently to global warming

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beier, C.; Emmett, B.A.; Peñuelas, J.; Schmidt, I.K.; Tietema, A.; Estiarte, M.; Gundersen, P.; Llorens, L.; Riis-Nielsen, T.; Sowerby, A.; Gorissen, A.

    2008-01-01

    The global climate is predicted to become significantly warmer over the next century. This will affect ecosystem processes and the functioning of semi natural and natural ecosystems in many parts of the world. However, as various ecosystem processes may be affected to a different extent, balances

  16. Dynamic belowground ecosystem

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harris, W. F.; Santantonio, D.; McGinty, D.

    1979-01-01

    Roots comprise the primary interface between plant and soil for uptake of water and nutrients. Much is known about the biochemistry, cell physiology and membrane physics associated with these important processes. In this paper we discuss the role of the belowground ecosystem, especially the autotrophic root component, in the structure and function of forest ecosystems. Beyond recognizing roles of anchoring terrestrial plants and uptake of water and nutrients, this component of the forest has been largely neglected in an ecosystem context. In order to focus discussion on the properties of the belowground ecosystem, we use the term rhizosphere to include roots, mycorrhizae, microbes, and rhizophagus invertebrates.

  17. Introduction to watershed ecosystem services: Chapter 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Jefferson S.; Stallard, Robert F.; Kirn, Vanessa

    2015-01-01

    Humans derive a great number of goods and services from terrestrial ecosystems (Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, 2003, 2005). Some, like timber, fruits, bush meat, and other forest based food stuffs, are evident but others are not so obvious. Increasingly policy makers have realized the importance of forests and other ecosystems in sequestering carbon, as clearing of once vibrant vegetation or draining of swamps releases carbon dioxide (U.S. DOE, 2012) and where planting trees – particularly in the tropics - takes carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere (Bala et al., 2007). Scientists and conservationists have long called our attention to the value of Neotropical landscapes for biodiversity conservation as forests and other ecosystems harbor vast numbers of species. In recent decades conservationists and policy makers have also highlighted the potential of forests and other ecosystems to regulate stream flows (Ibáñez et al., 2002, Laurance, 2007 but also see Calder et al., 2007) and play a role in assuring clean water (Uriarte et al., 2011). All of these goods and services are part of what is collectively referred to as ecosystem services or goods and services that are provided to humanity through the unimpeded natural function of the ecosystem.

  18. BUSINESS ECOSYSTEMS VS BUSINESS DIGITAL ECOSYSTEMS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marinela Lazarica

    2006-05-01

    Full Text Available E-business is often described as the small organisations’ gateway to global business and markets. The adoption of Internet-based technologies for e-business is a continuous process, with sequential steps of evolution. The latter step in the adoption of Internet-based technologies for business, where the business services and the software components are supported by a pervasive software environment, which shows an evolutionary and self-organising behaviour are named digital business ecosystems. The digital business ecosystems are characterized by intelligent software components and services, knowledge transfer, interactive training frameworks and integration of business processes and e-government models.

  19. Life around the North Water ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hastrup, Kirsten Blinkenberg; Andersen, Astrid Oberborbeck; Grønnow, Bjarne

    2018-01-01

    The formation of the North Water in Smith Sound about 4500 years ago, as evidenced by the establishment of bird colonies and human presence, also initiated a long-term anthropogenic agent as part of this High Arctic ecosystem. Different epochs have influenced the human occupation in the area...... drivers in terms of weather and climate affecting the northern hemisphere also impact accessibility and productivity of the ecosystem, with cascading effects on social drivers, again acting back on the natural ecologies. Despite its apparent isolation, the ecosystem had and still has wide ranging spatial...... ramifications that extend beyond the High Arctic, and include human activity. The challenge is to determine what is internal and what is external to an ecosystem....

  20. Urban forests and pollution mitigation: Analyzing ecosystem services and disservices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Escobedo, Francisco J.; Kroeger, Timm; Wagner, John E.

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to integrate the concepts of ecosystem services and disservices when assessing the efficacy of using urban forests for mitigating pollution. A brief review of the literature identifies some pollution mitigation ecosystem services provided by urban forests. Existing ecosystem services definitions and typologies from the economics and ecological literature are adapted and applied to urban forest management and the concepts of ecosystem disservices from natural and semi-natural systems are discussed. Examples of the urban forest ecosystem services of air quality and carbon dioxide sequestration are used to illustrate issues associated with assessing their efficacy in mitigating urban pollution. Development of urban forest management alternatives that mitigate pollution should consider scale, contexts, heterogeneity, management intensities and other social and economic co-benefits, tradeoffs, and costs affecting stakeholders and urban sustainability goals. - Environmental managers should analyze ecosystem services and disservices when developing urban forest management alternatives for mitigating urban pollution.

  1. A National Approach to Quantify and Map Biodiversity Conservation Metrics within an Ecosystem Services Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecosystem services, i.e., "services provided to humans from natural systems," have become a key issue of this century in resource management, conservation planning, human well-being, and environmental decision analysis. Mapping and quantifying ecosystem services have be...

  2. Toward an integration of evolutionary biology and ecosystem science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matthews, Blake; Narwani, Anita; Hausch, Stephen; Nonaka, Etsuko; Peter, Hannes; Yamamichi, Masato; Sullam, Karen E; Bird, Kali C; Thomas, Mridul K; Hanley, Torrance C; Turner, Caroline B

    2011-07-01

    At present, the disciplines of evolutionary biology and ecosystem science are weakly integrated. As a result, we have a poor understanding of how the ecological and evolutionary processes that create, maintain, and change biological diversity affect the flux of energy and materials in global biogeochemical cycles. The goal of this article was to review several research fields at the interfaces between ecosystem science, community ecology and evolutionary biology, and suggest new ways to integrate evolutionary biology and ecosystem science. In particular, we focus on how phenotypic evolution by natural selection can influence ecosystem functions by affecting processes at the environmental, population and community scale of ecosystem organization. We develop an eco-evolutionary model to illustrate linkages between evolutionary change (e.g. phenotypic evolution of producer), ecological interactions (e.g. consumer grazing) and ecosystem processes (e.g. nutrient cycling). We conclude by proposing experiments to test the ecosystem consequences of evolutionary changes. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  3. What can ecology contribute to ecosystem-based management?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thrush, Simon F; Dayton, Paul K

    2010-01-01

    Modern fishing changes the ocean environment in many ways, including disturbing the sea floor, altering the food webs, and shifting many important ecosystem functions. Natural history, oceanographic, habitat, behavior, and ecological information must be integrated to implement meaningful ecosystem-based management. We discuss the urgent need to expand the concept of essential fish habitat to include important food-web relationships. The need for a broader perspective in terms of ecosystem function and the effects of interactive stressors is emphasized to maintain the vitality and resilience of valued ecosystems. Maintenance of multiple ecosystem functions is a key factor in the adaptive capacity of ecosystems to change. We argue that an ecological understanding of resilience embraces uncertainty and encourages multiple approaches to the management of humans such that ecosystem functions are maintained.

  4. Will ecosystem management supply woodland caribou habitat in northwestern Ontario?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David L. Euler

    1998-03-01

    Full Text Available Ecosystem management is emerging as an important concept in managing forests. Although the basic conceptual idea is not new, important defining principles are developing that elucidate some of the specific attributes of ecosystem management. These principles include: the maintenance of all ecosystems in the managed forest, rhe emulation of natural disturbance patterns on rhe landscape and the insurance that structure and function of forested ecosystems are conserved. Forest management has an impact on woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou, although the presence of wolves (Canis lupus and moose (Alces alces in the same northern ecosystems also affects the caribou-forestry interacrion. Specific management for caribou as a featured species has been proposed, based on managing large landscape blocks. Ecosystem management would also produce habitat in a manner that might accomplish the goal of conserving woodland caribou as well as maintaining other important ecosystem functions.

  5. Belowground ecosystems [chapter 9

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carole Coe Klopatek

    1995-01-01

    The USDA Forest Service defined ecosystem management as "an ecological approach to achieve multiple-use management of national forests and grasslands by blending the needs of people and environmental values in such a way that national forests and grasslands represent diverse, healthy, productive, and sustainable ecosystems" (June 4, 1992, letter from Chief FS...

  6. Ecosystem Management and Sustainability

    Science.gov (United States)

    J.D. Peine; B.L. Jacobs; K.E. Franzreb; M.R. Stevens

    2011-01-01

    Ecosystem management (EM) promotes an integrated approach to environmental issues; its central goal is the protection of entire ecosystems. By focusing on an interdisciplinary solution to environmental challenges, EM can help to synthesize societal, economic scientific, and governmental goals. Furthermore, as EM becomes part of the foundation of environmental...

  7. Ecosystem Management: Synthesis and Findings

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-04-29

    G.W. 1982. The Gulf Coast pitcher plant bogs. American Scientist 70:260-267 Folkerts, G.W. 1997. Citronelle Ponds: Little-known wetlands of the...The Nature Conservancy, Arlington, Virginia, USA. Guerin, D.N. 1993. Oak dome clonal structure and fire ecology in a Florida longleaf pine...effects of fire on species compositon in cypress dome ecosystem. Florida Scientist 41:25-31. Garten, Jr., C.T., J.B. Gentry, and R.R. Sharitz. 1977. An

  8. Mapping cultural ecosystem services:

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Paracchini, Maria Luisa; Zulian, Grazia; Kopperoinen, Leena

    2014-01-01

    Research on ecosystem services mapping and valuing has increased significantly in recent years. However, compared to provisioning and regulating services, cultural ecosystem services have not yet been fully integrated into operational frameworks. One reason for this is that transdisciplinarity...... surveys are a main source of information. Among cultural ecosystem services, assessment of outdoor recreation can be based on a large pool of literature developed mostly in social and medical science, and landscape and ecology studies. This paper presents a methodology to include recreation...... in the conceptual framework for EU wide ecosystem assessments (Maes et al., 2013), which couples existing approaches for recreation management at country level with behavioural data derived from surveys, and population distribution data. The proposed framework is based on three components: the ecosystem function...

  9. Soil conservation and ecosystem services

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rattan Lal

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Accelerated soil erosion, driven by anthropogenic activities such as conversion of natural ecosystems to agroecosystems and mechanical tillage, has numerous adverse impacts on ecosystem services. In addition to degrading soil quality and reducing agronomic/biomass productivity on-site through a decrease in use-efficiency of inputs, off-site impacts of accelerated erosion include eutrophication and contamination, sedimentation of reservoirs and waterways, and emissions of greenhouse gases (e.g., CO2, CH4 and N2O. While advancing food and nutritional security, adoption of restorative land use and recommended management practices are important to strengthening numerous ecosystem services such as improving water quality and renewability, increasing below and above-ground biodiversity, enhancing soil resilience to climate change and extreme events, and mitigating climate change by sequestering C in soil and reducing the emission of CO2, CH4 and N2O. An effective control of accelerated erosion is essential to sustainable development and improving the environment.

  10. Thermal alteration of aquatic ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gibbons, J.W.; Sharitz, R.R.

    1974-01-01

    The studies summarized emphasize that heated effluents may function to enrich or to stress an ecosystem, depending upon the biological feature examined. However, the potential for negative impact on aquatic environments must not be underestimated. The ultimate consequences of the sometimes drastic alteration of behavior patterns and life-history phenomena in the surviving inhabitants of thermal areas have yet to be assessed. The relatively short time span of thermal field studies has not allowed thorough understanding of the biological chain reactions that may take place as physiological and genetic adjustments are made. Ensuing changes in species interactions, practically uninvestigated at this time, may create heretofore unsuspected ecosystem changes. Man's challenge for the future is to gain a more thorough comprehension of thermal ecology and to determine how waste heat may be used as an energy subsidy rather than a stress to aquatic systems. These and subsequent studies may assist in understanding how natural ecosystems respond to temperature elevation and will lead to the development of concepts and principles pertaining to thermally altered environmental systems. (U.S.)

  11. Elasticity in ecosystem services: exploring the variable relationship between ecosystems and human well-being

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim M. Daw

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Although ecosystem services are increasingly recognized as benefits people obtain from nature, we still have a poor understanding of how they actually enhance multidimensional human well-being, and how well-being is affected by ecosystem change. We develop a concept of "ecosystem service elasticity" (ES elasticity that describes the sensitivity of human well-being to changes in ecosystems. ES Elasticity is a result of complex social and ecological dynamics and is context dependent, individually variable, and likely to demonstrate nonlinear dynamics such as thresholds and hysteresis. We present a conceptual framework that unpacks the chain of causality from ecosystem stocks through flows, goods, value, and shares to contribute to the well-being of different people. This framework builds on previous conceptualizations, but places multidimensional well-being of different people as the final element. This ultimately disaggregated approach emphasizes how different people access benefits and how benefits match their needs or aspirations. Applying this framework to case studies of individual coastal ecosystem services in East Africa illustrates a wide range of social and ecological factors that can affect ES elasticity. For example, food web and habitat dynamics affect the sensitivity of different fisheries ecosystem services to ecological change. Meanwhile high cultural significance, or lack of alternatives enhance ES elasticity, while social mechanisms that prevent access can reduce elasticity. Mapping out how chains are interlinked illustrates how different types of value and the well-being of different people are linked to each other and to common ecological stocks. We suggest that examining chains for individual ecosystem services can suggest potential interventions aimed at poverty alleviation and sustainable ecosystems while mapping out of interlinkages between chains can help to identify possible ecosystem service trade-offs and winners and

  12. Proving the ecosystem value through hydrological modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorner, W.; Spachinger, K.; Porter, M.; Metzka, R.

    2008-11-01

    Ecosystems provide valuable functions. Also natural floodplains and river structures offer different types of ecosystem functions such as habitat function, recreational area and natural detention. From an economic stand point the loss (or rehabilitation) of these natural systems and their provided natural services can be valued as a damage (or benefit). Consequently these natural goods and services must be economically valued in project assessments e.g. cost-benefit-analysis or cost comparison. Especially in smaller catchments and river systems exists significant evidence that natural flood detention reduces flood risk and contributes to flood protection. Several research projects evaluated the mitigating effect of land use, river training and the loss of natural flood plains on development, peak and volume of floods. The presented project analysis the hypothesis that ignoring natural detention and hydrological ecosystem services could result in economically inefficient solutions for flood protection and mitigation. In test areas, subcatchments of the Danube in Germany, a combination of hydrological and hydrodynamic models with economic evaluation techniques was applied. Different forms of land use, river structure and flood protection measures were assed and compared from a hydrological and economic point of view. A hydrodynamic model was used to simulate flows to assess the extent of flood affected areas and damages to buildings and infrastructure as well as to investigate the impacts of levees and river structure on a local scale. These model results provided the basis for an economic assessment. Different economic valuation techniques, such as flood damage functions, cost comparison method and substation-approach were used to compare the outcomes of different hydrological scenarios from an economic point of view and value the ecosystem service. The results give significant evidence that natural detention must be evaluated as part of flood mitigation projects

  13. Proving the ecosystem value through hydrological modelling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dorner, W; Spachinger, K; Metzka, R; Porter, M

    2008-01-01

    Ecosystems provide valuable functions. Also natural floodplains and river structures offer different types of ecosystem functions such as habitat function, recreational area and natural detention. From an economic stand point the loss (or rehabilitation) of these natural systems and their provided natural services can be valued as a damage (or benefit). Consequently these natural goods and services must be economically valued in project assessments e.g. cost-benefit-analysis or cost comparison. Especially in smaller catchments and river systems exists significant evidence that natural flood detention reduces flood risk and contributes to flood protection. Several research projects evaluated the mitigating effect of land use, river training and the loss of natural flood plains on development, peak and volume of floods. The presented project analysis the hypothesis that ignoring natural detention and hydrological ecosystem services could result in economically inefficient solutions for flood protection and mitigation. In test areas, subcatchments of the Danube in Germany, a combination of hydrological and hydrodynamic models with economic evaluation techniques was applied. Different forms of land use, river structure and flood protection measures were assed and compared from a hydrological and economic point of view. A hydrodynamic model was used to simulate flows to assess the extent of flood affected areas and damages to buildings and infrastructure as well as to investigate the impacts of levees and river structure on a local scale. These model results provided the basis for an economic assessment. Different economic valuation techniques, such as flood damage functions, cost comparison method and substation-approach were used to compare the outcomes of different hydrological scenarios from an economic point of view and value the ecosystem service. The results give significant evidence that natural detention must be evaluated as part of flood mitigation projects

  14. Transformational restoration: novel ecosystems in Denmark

    Science.gov (United States)

    John A. Stanturf; Palle Madsen; Khosro Sagheb-Talebi; Ole K. Hansen

    2018-01-01

    Restoring the estimated 1 billion hectares of degraded forests must consider future climate accompanied by novel ecosystems. Transformational restoration can play a key role in adaptation to climate change but it is conceptually the most divergent from contemporary approaches favoring native species and natural disturbance regimes. Here...

  15. Early detection of ecosystem regime shifts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lindegren, Martin; Dakos, Vasilis; Groeger, Joachim P.

    2012-01-01

    Critical transitions between alternative stable states have been shown to occur across an array of complex systems. While our ability to identify abrupt regime shifts in natural ecosystems has improved, detection of potential early-warning signals previous to such shifts is still very limited. Us...

  16. Agencies within communities, communities within ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jane Kapler Smith; Kerry McMenus

    2000-01-01

    Can scientific information and intensive, extensive public involvement through facilitated meetings be expected to lead to agreement on natural resource issues? Communications and research in the Bitterroot Ecosystem Management Research Project indicate that, where people’s values differ greatly, consensus is not a realistic goal for short term planning processes....

  17. Chemicals: Assessment of Risks to Ecosystem Services (CARES)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maltby, L.; Brink, van den P.J.; Faber, J.H.; Marshall, Stuart

    2016-01-01

    Chemicals may have positive or negative effects on human well-being. The long-term survival and well-being of human populations depend on the sustainable use of ecosystems. The biophysical components of ecosystems (i.e., land, water, air, minerals, species, genes) provide the stocks of natural

  18. Detecting forest cover and ecosystem service change using ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Natural forests in Uganda have experienced both spatial and temporal modifications from different drivers which need to be monitored to assess the impacts of such changes on ecosystems and prevent related risks of reduction in ecosystem service benefits. Ground investigations may be complex because of dual ...

  19. Ecosystem Services Valuation as an Opportunity for Inquiry Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Zachary P.; Bennett, Drew E.

    2016-01-01

    Teaching ecosystem services provides an ideal opportunity to use inquiry-based learning to help students make connections between ecological, geological, and social systems. The idea of ecosystem services, or the benefits nature provides to society, has emerged as a key concept in a host of environmental fields and is just beginning to gain…

  20. ASF Data Used to Monitor Wetland Ecosystem Services

    Science.gov (United States)

    As the advantages of using synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data to map ecosystems and monitor fundamental ecosystem processes are elucidated, natural resource managers are beginning to rely on SAR data as a viable alternative to optical data – which has been more commonly available and better underst...

  1. Institutional barriers and incentives for ecosystem management: a problem analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    H.J. Cortner; M.A. Shannon; M.G. Wallace; S. Burke; M.A. Moote

    1996-01-01

    Ecosystem management is currently being proposed as a new resource management philosophy. This approach to resource management will require changes in how society approaches nature, science, and politics. Further, if efforts to implement ecosystem management are to succeed, institutional issues must be examined. This report identifies five problem areas where social...

  2. Description of the General Equilibrium Model of Ecosystem Services (GEMES)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Travis Warziniack; David Finnoff; Jenny Apriesnig

    2017-01-01

    This paper serves as documentation for the General Equilibrium Model of Ecosystem Services (GEMES). GEMES is a regional computable general equilibrium model that is composed of values derived from natural capital and ecosystem services. It models households, producing sectors, and governments, linked to one another through commodity and factor markets. GEMES was...

  3. Detecting Forest Cover and Ecosystem Service Change Using ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    user

    Mitigation of climate change impacts on ecosystem services requires more attention and monitoring of forest cover ... degradation of natural forests is accompanied by decline in supply of many ecosystem service benefits ... and resource managers are those that are linked to human activities such as deforestation and land.

  4. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: MA Scenarios

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: MA Scenarios provide useful insight into the complex factors that drive ecosystem change, estimating the magnitude of regional...

  5. Human-modified ecosystems and future evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Western, David

    2001-01-01

    Our global impact is finally receiving the scientific attention it deserves. The outcome will largely determine the future course of evolution. Human-modified ecosystems are shaped by our activities and their side effects. They share a common set of traits including simplified food webs, landscape homogenization, and high nutrient and energy inputs. Ecosystem simplification is the ecological hallmark of humanity and the reason for our evolutionary success. However, the side effects of our profligacy and poor resource practices are now so pervasive as to threaten our future no less than that of biological diversity itself. This article looks at human impact on ecosystems and the consequences for evolution. It concludes that future evolution will be shaped by our awareness of the global threats, our willingness to take action, and our ability to do so. Our ability is presently hampered by several factors, including the poor state of ecosystem and planetary knowledge, ignorance of human impact, lack of guidelines for sustainability, and a paucity of good policies, practices, and incentives for adopting those guidelines in daily life. Conservation philosophy, science, and practice must be framed against the reality of human-dominated ecosystems, rather than the separation of humanity and nature underlying the modern conservation movement. The steps scientists can take to imbed science in conservation and conservation in the societal process affecting the future of ecosystems and human well-being are discussed. PMID:11344294

  6. Trade and the governance of ecosystem services

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Norgaard, Richard B.; Jin, Ling

    2008-01-01

    We work with a basic general equilibrium model of an economy with an industrial good and a rural good. Industrial good production results in pollution that affects the provision of ecosystem services and thereby the production of the rural good. The assignment of ecosystem rights to the industrial polluters or to the rural pollutees results in differential transaction costs that affect production possibilities between the two goods. Ecosystem rights are assigned to maximize social welfare. Over time, technological change and differences in income superiority affect the choice of the assignment of rights. Opening to trade affects the choice of the assignment of ecosystem rights depending on the nature of technological change, but the relative income superiority of goods no longer affects the assignment of ecosystem rights in a small economy. Thus, among other findings, we demonstrate that the phenomena known as the environmental Kuznets curve does not hold for the protection of ecosystem services in production, or production externalities generally, because trade separates consumption from production. (author)

  7. Placing ecosystem sustainability within the context of dynamic earth systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sidle, R. C.

    2013-12-01

    Because the concept of ecosystem sustainability and the practice of sustainable land management both have long-term foci, it is necessary to view these from the perspective of dynamic rather than static systems. In addition to the typical static system approach for assessing ecosystem sustainability, three additional perspectives are presented. These are resilient systems, systems where tipping points occur, and systems subject to episodic geophysical resetting. Ecosystem resilience accommodates both natural and anthropogenic stressors and should be considered to properly frame many ecosystem assessments. A more complex problem emerges when stressors push systems to tipping points, causing a regime shift. Both chronic anthropogenic activities (e.g., over-grazing, forest conversion, poor irrigation practices) and natural changes (e.g., climate anomalies, geochemical weathering, tectonic uplift, vegetative succession) can exhaust ecosystem resilience leading to a rapid change in state. Anthropogenic perturbations can also lower the initiation threshold and increase the magnitude and frequency of certain natural disasters, increasing the likelihood of ecosystem change. Furthermore, when major episodic geophysical events (e.g., large earthquakes, tsunami, and floods; widespread volcanic activity and landslides) exceed thresholds of ecosystem resilience they may reset the attributes of entire systems or landscapes. Large disasters can initiate a cascade of linked events, as in the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake, where tsunami, fires, landslides, artificial fillslope collapses, radioactive releases, and associated health effects occurred. Understanding the potential for natural change (both chronic and episodic) in ecosystems is essential not only to the environmental aspect of sustainability but also to economic and social aspects. Examples are presented for: (1) ecosystems vulnerable to tipping points (Yunnan, China) and (2) ecosystems reset by earthquakes and

  8. Payments for Ecosystem Services

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chan, Kai M.A; Anderson, Emily K.; Chapman, Mollie

    2017-01-01

    Payments for ecosystem services (PES) programs are one prominent strategy to address economic externalities of resource extraction and commodity production, improving both social and ecological outcomes. But do PES and related incentive programs achieve that lofty goal? Along with considerable...

  9. Ecosystem Analysis Program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burgess, R.L.

    1978-01-01

    Progress is reported on the following research programs: analysis and modeling of ecosystems; EDFB/IBP data center; biome analysis studies; land/water interaction studies; and computer programs for development of models

  10. Revisiting software ecosystems research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Manikas, Konstantinos

    2016-01-01

    ‘Software ecosystems’ is argued to first appear as a concept more than 10 years ago and software ecosystem research started to take off in 2010. We conduct a systematic literature study, based on the most extensive literature review in the field up to date, with two primarily aims: (a) to provide...... an updated overview of the field and (b) to document evolution in the field. In total, we analyze 231 papers from 2007 until 2014 and provide an overview of the research in software ecosystems. Our analysis reveals a field that is rapidly growing both in volume and empirical focus while becoming more mature...... from evolving. We propose means for future research and the community to address them. Finally, our analysis shapes the view of the field having evolved outside the existing definitions of software ecosystems and thus propose the update of the definition of software ecosystems....

  11. Pesticide Pollution in Ecosystems

    OpenAIRE

    İlter, Hüseyin; Kurt, Burak; Ötegen, Volkan Recai; Akbaba, Muhsin

    2018-01-01

    Pesticidepollution affects both aquatic and soil ecosystems. Factors that promotepesticide pollution include drainage patterns, properties of the pesticide,rainfall, microbial activity, treatment surface and rate of application.Pesticides are able to move from one ecosystem to another through processessuch as transfer (mobility) and transformation (degradation). Transfer mayoccur through surface runoff, vapourization to atmosphere, sorption (adsorp‐tion/desorp-tion), plant uptakeor soil water...

  12. Information technology challenges of biodiversity and ecosystems informatics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schnase, J.L.; Cushing, J.; Frame, M.; Frondorf, A.; Landis, E.; Maier, D.; Silberschatz, A.

    2003-01-01

    Computer scientists, biologists, and natural resource managers recently met to examine the prospects for advancing computer science and information technology research by focusing on the complex and often-unique challenges found in the biodiversity and ecosystem domain. The workshop and its final report reveal that the biodiversity and ecosystem sciences are fundamentally information sciences and often address problems having distinctive attributes of scale and socio-technical complexity. The paper provides an overview of the emerging field of biodiversity and ecosystem informatics and demonstrates how the demands of biodiversity and ecosystem research can advance our understanding and use of information technologies.

  13. Structured ecosystem-scale approach to marine water quality management

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Taljaard, Susan

    2006-10-01

    Full Text Available Activities and developments in the coastal zone, and in adjacent catchments, pose an increasing threat to the sustainability of the natural and socio-economic goods and services supplied by marine ecosystems. Governing authorities have had...

  14. Ecological forecasting: new tools for coastal and marine ecosystem management

    OpenAIRE

    2003-01-01

    Policy makers, natural resource managers, regulators, and the public often call on scientists to estimate the potential ecological changes caused by both natural and human-induced stresses, and to determine how those changes will impact people and the environment. To develop accurate forecasts of ecological changes we need to: 1) increase understanding of ecosystem composition, structure, and functioning, 2) expand ecosystem monitoring and apply advanced scientific information to make the...

  15. Assessing and managing freshwater ecosystems vulnerable to global change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angeler, David G.; Allen, Craig R.; Birge, Hannah E.; Drakare, Stina; McKie, Brendan G.; Johnson, Richard K.

    2014-01-01

    Freshwater ecosystems are important for global biodiversity and provide essential ecosystem services. There is consensus in the scientific literature that freshwater ecosystems are vulnerable to the impacts of environmental change, which may trigger irreversible regime shifts upon which biodiversity and ecosystem services may be lost. There are profound uncertainties regarding the management and assessment of the vulnerability of freshwater ecosystems to environmental change. Quantitative approaches are needed to reduce this uncertainty. We describe available statistical and modeling approaches along with case studies that demonstrate how resilience theory can be applied to aid decision-making in natural resources management. We highlight especially how long-term monitoring efforts combined with ecological theory can provide a novel nexus between ecological impact assessment and management, and the quantification of systemic vulnerability and thus the resilience of ecosystems to environmental change.

  16. REVIEW: Mangrove ecosystem in Java: 1. recent status

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    PURIN CANDRA PURNAMA

    2003-07-01

    Full Text Available Mangrove ecosystem is a specific ecosystem that only take about 2% of total land in the earth. Indonesian mangrove ecosystem is the widest in the world and as a center of distributioan and ecosystem biodiversity, however it undergoes rapid and dramatic destruction. In just 11 years, between 1982-1993, more than 50% of Indonesian mangrove disappeared. The most factor threatening the mangrove ecosystem is human activities, including convertion to aquaculture, deforestation, and environmental pollution. Other factors such as reclamation, sedimentation, and natural disturbance are also contributed to the disappearance of the mangrove. Mangrove ecosystem is very important in term of socio-economic and ecology functions. Because of its functions, wide range of people alaways paid attention whenever mangrove restoration taken place. Mangrove restoration potentially increases mangrove resource value, protect the coastal area from destruction, conserve biodiversity, fish production and both of directly and indirectly support the life of surrounding people.

  17. Assessing and managing freshwater ecosystems vulnerable to environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angeler, David G; Allen, Craig R; Birgé, Hannah E; Drakare, Stina; McKie, Brendan G; Johnson, Richard K

    2014-01-01

    Freshwater ecosystems are important for global biodiversity and provide essential ecosystem services. There is consensus in the scientific literature that freshwater ecosystems are vulnerable to the impacts of environmental change, which may trigger irreversible regime shifts upon which biodiversity and ecosystem services may be lost. There are profound uncertainties regarding the management and assessment of the vulnerability of freshwater ecosystems to environmental change. Quantitative approaches are needed to reduce this uncertainty. We describe available statistical and modeling approaches along with case studies that demonstrate how resilience theory can be applied to aid decision-making in natural resources management. We highlight especially how long-term monitoring efforts combined with ecological theory can provide a novel nexus between ecological impact assessment and management, and the quantification of systemic vulnerability and thus the resilience of ecosystems to environmental change.

  18. Monetary accounting of ecosystem services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Remme, R.P.; Edens, Bram; Schröter, Matthias; Hein, Lars

    2015-01-01

    Ecosystem accounting aims to provide a better understanding of ecosystem contributions to the economy in a spatially explicit way. Ecosystem accounting monitors ecosystem services and measures their monetary value using exchange values consistent with the System of National Accounts (SNA). We

  19. Sustainable development level evaluation based on ecosystem services welfare index

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, W.; Shi, Z.

    2015-12-01

    Rapidly economic development makes global ecosystem degradation and ecosystem services descent, which aroused people's concern increasingly. A serious of disastrous weather such as sandstorm, haze, and floods become the focus of public. Take an example of the impact on natural ecosystems, firstly, human are over-dependence on the supply services provided by ecosystem, especially the grain, fibers, forest and so on, resulting other ecosystem services decline. Secondly, the raising artificial ecosystems lead to the simplification of system structure and function. End up with environment pollution and habitat fragmentation, which endanger human well-being. Ecosystem Services Welfare Index was introduced into this study. Evaluating the sustainable development level of regional ecology and society by calculating the efficiency of per unit ecosystem services consumption contributes to the human welfare. Welfare is the degree of human satisfaction, including not only the economic level, but also the education, health, and housing. This study will select the human development index (HDI) as the representation of human welfare, and ecosystem services footprint index (ESFI) presenting the ecosystem services consumption. According the results, 31 province in China could be divided into several different type, "high development- low efficiency- high consumption", "low development - high efficiency- low consumption" and "low development- high efficiency- low consumption", which could be evidence for decision makers.

  20. Impacts of land-use change to ecosystem services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stohlgren, Tom; Holcombe, Tracy R.

    2013-01-01

    Increasing human populations on the landscape and globe coincide with increasing demands for food, energy, and other natural resources, with generally negative impacts to wildlife habitat, air and water quality, and natural scenery. Here we define and describe the impacts of land-use change on ecosystem services – the services that ecosystems provide humans such as filtering air and water, providing food, resources, recreation, and esthetics. We show how the human footprint is rapidly expanding due to population growth, demand for resources, and globalization. Increased trade and transportation has brought all the continents back together, creating new challenges for conserving native species and ecosystems.

  1. Ecosystem services – current challenges and opportunities for ecological research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klaus eBirkhofer

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The concept of ecosystem services was originally developed to illustrate the benefits that natural ecosystems generate for society and to raise awareness for biodiversity and ecosystem conservation. In this article we identify major challenges and opportunities for ecologists involved in empirical or modeling ecosystem service research. The first challenge arises from the fact that the ecosystem service concept has not been generated in the context of managed systems. Ecologists need to identify the effect of anthropogenic interventions in order to propose practices to benefit service-providing organisms and associated services. The second challenge arises from the need to evaluate relationships between indicators of ecosystem services that are collected in ecological studies while accounting for uncertainties of ecological processes that underlie these services. We suggest basing the assessment of ecosystem services on the utilization of sets of indicators that cover aspects of service-providing units, ecosystem management and landscape modification. The third challenge arises from our limited understanding of the nature of relationships between services and a lack of a general statistical framework to address these links. To manage ecosystem service provisioning, ecologists need to establish whether services respond to a shared driver or if services are directly linked to each other. Finally, studies relating biodiversity to ecosystem services often focus on services at small spatial or short temporal scales, but research on the protection of services is often directed towards services providing benefits at large spatial scales. Ecological research needs to address a range of spatial and temporal scales to provide a multifaceted understanding of how nature promotes human well-being. Addressing these challenges in the future offers a unique opportunity for ecologists to act as promoters for the understanding about how to conserve benefits

  2. Dimensions of ecosystem theory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    O'Neill, R.V.; Reichle, D.E.

    1979-01-01

    Various dimensions of ecosystem structure and behavior that seem to develop from the ubiquitous phenomena of system growth and persistence were studied. While growth and persistence attributes of ecosystems may appear to be simplistic phenomena upon which to base a comprehensive ecosystem theory, these same attributes have been fundamental to the theoretical development of other biological disciplines. These attributes were explored at a hierarchical level in a self-organizing system, and adaptive system strategies that result were analyzed. Previously developed causative relations (Reichle et al., 1975c) were examined, their theoretical implications expounded upon, and the assumptions tested with data from a variety of forest types. The conclusions are not a theory in themselves, but a state of organization of concepts contributing towards a unifying theory, along the lines promulgated by Bray (1958). The inferences drawn rely heavily upon data from forested ecosystems of the world, and have yet to be validated against data from a much more diverse range of ecosystem types. Not all of the interpretations are logically tight - there is room for other explanations, which it is hoped will provide fruitful grounds for further speculation

  3. Secondary School Students' Environmental Concerns and Attitudes toward Forest Ecosystem Services: Implications for Biodiversity Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torkar, Gregor

    2016-01-01

    Alarming declines in biodiversity have encouraged scientists to begin promoting the idea of the services ecosystems offer to humans in order to gain support for conservation. The concept of ecosystem services is designed to communicate societal dependence on various natural ecosystems. Schools play an important role in educating students to be…

  4. The role of trees in the restoration of degraded agro-ecosystems ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The increased conversion of natural forest ecosystems to agro-ecosystem without commensurate sustainable management leads to rapid degradation, thus threatening food security situation. Agro-ecosystems as the domain of agriculture activities need to be restored through a sustainable land use management system ...

  5. Sustainable development and use of ecosystems with non-forest trees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Non-forest trees are components of managed ecosystems including orchards and agroforestry systems and natural ecosystems such as savannas and riparian corridors. Each of these ecosystems includes trees but does not have a complete tree canopy or spatial extent necessary to create a true forest ecosy...

  6. Predator control of ecosystem nutrient dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitz, Oswald J; Hawlena, Dror; Trussell, Geoffrey C

    2010-10-01

    Predators are predominantly valued for their ability to control prey, as indicators of high levels of biodiversity and as tourism attractions. This view, however, is incomplete because it does not acknowledge that predators may play a significant role in the delivery of critical life-support services such as ecosystem nutrient cycling. New research is beginning to show that predator effects on nutrient cycling are ubiquitous. These effects emerge from direct nutrient excretion, egestion or translocation within and across ecosystem boundaries after prey consumption, and from indirect effects mediated by predator interactions with prey. Depending on their behavioural ecology, predators can create heterogeneous or homogeneous nutrient distributions across natural landscapes. Because predator species are disproportionately vulnerable to elimination from ecosystems, we stand to lose much more from their disappearance than their simple charismatic attractiveness. 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  7. Coso geothermal environmental overview study ecosystem quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leitner, P.

    1981-09-01

    The Coso Known Geothermal Resource Area is located just east of the Sierra Nevada, in the broad transition zone between the Mohave and Great Basin desert ecosystems. The prospect of large-scale geothermal energy development here in the near future has led to concern for the protection of biological resources. Objectives here are the identification of ecosystem issues, evaluation of the existing data base, and recommendation of additional studies needed to resolve key issues. High-priority issues include the need for (1) site-specific data on the occurrence of plant and animal species of special concern, (2) accurate and detailed information on the nature and extent of the geothermal resource, and (3) implementation of a comprehensive plan for ecosystem protection.

  8. Radiocesium in a Danish pine forest ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Strandberg, M.

    1994-01-01

    During the autumn of 1991, a Scots pine forest, Tisvilde Hegn, was investigated with respect to the distribution of radiocesium on compartments in the forest ecosystem. The sandy acidic soil is poor, with a approximately 5-cm thick layer of organic soil, and clay content is very low, between 0...... of the different components of the forest ecosystem to accumulate radiocesium. OR is defined as the ratio between the content of Cs-137 kg-1 (dry wt.) and the deposition per meter square. In vascular plants, mosses and lichens, OR varied between 0.01 and 0.1 m2/kg. In fungi, it varied between 0.05 and 4.5 m2/kg......-natural ecosystems in Denmark....

  9. Health, biodiversity, and natural resource use on the Amazon frontier: an ecosystem approach Saúde, biodiversidade e uso de recursos naturais na fronteira da Amazônia: uma abordagem ecossistêmica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tamsyn P. Murray

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available This study aims to improve the health of rural Amazonian communities through the development and application of a participatory ecosystem approach to human health assessment. In the study area marked seasonal fluctuations dictate food availability, water quality and disease outbreak. Determining the causal linkages between ecosystem variables, resource use and health required a variety of forms of inquiry at multiple scales with local participation. Landscape spatial mapping of resource use demonstrated the diversity of the ecological resources upon which communities depend. Household surveys detailed family and individual consumption and production patterns. Anthropometric measurements, parasite loading, water quality and anemia levels were used as indicators of health status. This was complemented with an ethnographic and participatory health assessment that provided the foundation for developing community action plans addressing health issues. Discussion is focused on three attributes of an ecosystem approach; (a methodological pluralism, (b cross-scale interactions and (c participatory action research.O estudo visa melhorar a saúde das comunidades rurais amazônicas mediante o desenvolvimento e a aplicação de abordagem ecossistêmica participante na avaliação da saúde humana. Na área estudada, oscilações sazonais definem a disponibilidade de alimentos, a qualidade da água e a incidência de doenças. A determinação dos elos causais entre variáveis ecossistêmicas, uso de recursos e saúde exigiu uma gama de formas de investigação, em múltiplas escalas, com participação local. O mapeamento espacial da paisagem quanto ao uso de recursos mostrou a diversidade dos recursos ecológicos de que as comunidades dependem. Inquéritos domiciliares detalharam padrões de consumo e produção familiares e individuais. Medidas antropométricas, carga parasitária, qualidade da água e níveis de anemia foram empregados como indicadores

  10. Does the Ecosystem Service Concept Reach its Limits in Urban Environments?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone A. Beichler

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available There is a rapidly growing body of literature on the theory about the ecosystem service concept and the practical assessment of ecosystem services in different contexts ranging from natural to urban environments. Yet, where does the concept reach its limits? This paper critically reflects the application of the ecosystem service concept in urban environments illustrating the handling of urban structures (incl. built-up areas and the risk that the normative principle of the concept could be missed. It is shown that in theory urban structures refer to a variety of ecosystem concepts. As a starting point for ecosystem service assessments, these could be classified into natural, managed, constructed and overbuilt systems. Since ecosystem service concepts do not directly refer to a specific ecosystem definition, but to biophysical structures and processes, all of these classes could be included. However, the dependency on context and scale makes a differentiation in practical ecosystem services assessment challenging. We conclude that the ecosystem service concept does not reach its limits in urban environments, but urban environments represent an extreme case characterized by multifunctionality and a high degree of modification that enables to uncover research challenges applying in any environment. There is a need for a more transparent reporting of theoretical and methodological assumptions to facilitate the comparability between ecosystem service assessments. Comprehensive approaches that consider multiple ecosystem services and include human input, human modification, the ecosystem status as well as their interactions are required to understand the spatial relations between ecosystem services delivered by different ecosystems.

  11. Ecosystem Vulnerability Review: Proposal of an Interdisciplinary Ecosystem Assessment Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weißhuhn, Peter; Müller, Felix; Wiggering, Hubert

    2018-03-14

    To safeguard the sustainable use of ecosystems and their services, early detection of potentially damaging changes in functional capabilities is needed. To support a proper ecosystem management, the analysis of an ecosystem's vulnerability provide information on its weaknesses as well as on its capacity to recover after suffering an impact. However, the application of the vulnerability concept to ecosystems is still an emerging topic. After providing background on the vulnerability concept, we summarize existing ecosystem vulnerability research on the basis of a systematic literature review with a special focus on ecosystem type, disciplinary background, and more detailed definition of the ecosystem vulnerability components. Using the Web of Science TM Core Collection, we overviewed the literature from 1991 onwards but used the 5 years from 2011 to 2015 for an in-depth analysis, including 129 articles. We found that ecosystem vulnerability analysis has been applied most notably in conservation biology, climate change research, and ecological risk assessments, pinpointing a limited spreading across the environmental sciences. It occurred primarily within marine and freshwater ecosystems. To avoid confusion, we recommend using the unambiguous term ecosystem vulnerability rather than ecological, environmental, population, or community vulnerability. Further, common ground has been identified, on which to define the ecosystem vulnerability components exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity. We propose a framework for ecosystem assessments that coherently connects the concepts of vulnerability, resilience, and adaptability as different ecosystem responses. A short outlook on the possible operationalization of the concept by ecosystem vulnerabilty indices, and a conclusion section complete the review.

  12. Ecosystem Services Flows: Why Stakeholders’ Power Relationships Matter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felipe-Lucia, María R.; Martín-López, Berta; Lavorel, Sandra; Berraquero-Díaz, Luis; Escalera-Reyes, Javier; Comín, Francisco A.

    2015-01-01

    The ecosystem services framework has enabled the broader public to acknowledge the benefits nature provides to different stakeholders. However, not all stakeholders benefit equally from these services. Rather, power relationships are a key factor influencing the access of individuals or groups to ecosystem services. In this paper, we propose an adaptation of the “cascade” framework for ecosystem services to integrate the analysis of ecological interactions among ecosystem services and stakeholders’ interactions, reflecting power relationships that mediate ecosystem services flows. We illustrate its application using the floodplain of the River Piedra (Spain) as a case study. First, we used structural equation modelling (SEM) to model the dependence relationships among ecosystem services. Second, we performed semi-structured interviews to identify formal power relationships among stakeholders. Third, we depicted ecosystem services according to stakeholders’ ability to use, manage or impair ecosystem services in order to expose how power relationships mediate access to ecosystem services. Our results revealed that the strongest power was held by those stakeholders who managed (although did not use) those keystone ecosystem properties and services that determine the provision of other services (i.e., intermediate regulating and final services). In contrast, non-empowered stakeholders were only able to access the remaining non-excludable and non-rival ecosystem services (i.e., some of the cultural services, freshwater supply, water quality, and biological control). In addition, land stewardship, access rights, and governance appeared as critical factors determining the status of ecosystem services. Finally, we stress the need to analyse the role of stakeholders and their relationships to foster equal access to ecosystem services. PMID:26201000

  13. Ecosystem Services Flows: Why Stakeholders' Power Relationships Matter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felipe-Lucia, María R; Martín-López, Berta; Lavorel, Sandra; Berraquero-Díaz, Luis; Escalera-Reyes, Javier; Comín, Francisco A

    2015-01-01

    The ecosystem services framework has enabled the broader public to acknowledge the benefits nature provides to different stakeholders. However, not all stakeholders benefit equally from these services. Rather, power relationships are a key factor influencing the access of individuals or groups to ecosystem services. In this paper, we propose an adaptation of the "cascade" framework for ecosystem services to integrate the analysis of ecological interactions among ecosystem services and stakeholders' interactions, reflecting power relationships that mediate ecosystem services flows. We illustrate its application using the floodplain of the River Piedra (Spain) as a case study. First, we used structural equation modelling (SEM) to model the dependence relationships among ecosystem services. Second, we performed semi-structured interviews to identify formal power relationships among stakeholders. Third, we depicted ecosystem services according to stakeholders' ability to use, manage or impair ecosystem services in order to expose how power relationships mediate access to ecosystem services. Our results revealed that the strongest power was held by those stakeholders who managed (although did not use) those keystone ecosystem properties and services that determine the provision of other services (i.e., intermediate regulating and final services). In contrast, non-empowered stakeholders were only able to access the remaining non-excludable and non-rival ecosystem services (i.e., some of the cultural services, freshwater supply, water quality, and biological control). In addition, land stewardship, access rights, and governance appeared as critical factors determining the status of ecosystem services. Finally, we stress the need to analyse the role of stakeholders and their relationships to foster equal access to ecosystem services.

  14. Sea Ice Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arrigo, Kevin R.

    2014-01-01

    Polar sea ice is one of the largest ecosystems on Earth. The liquid brine fraction of the ice matrix is home to a diverse array of organisms, ranging from tiny archaea to larger fish and invertebrates. These organisms can tolerate high brine salinity and low temperature but do best when conditions are milder. Thriving ice algal communities, generally dominated by diatoms, live at the ice/water interface and in recently flooded surface and interior layers, especially during spring, when temperatures begin to rise. Although protists dominate the sea ice biomass, heterotrophic bacteria are also abundant. The sea ice ecosystem provides food for a host of animals, with crustaceans being the most conspicuous. Uneaten organic matter from the ice sinks through the water column and feeds benthic ecosystems. As sea ice extent declines, ice algae likely contribute a shrinking fraction of the total amount of organic matter produced in polar waters.

  15. Benefits of investing in ecosystem restoration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DE Groot, Rudolf S; Blignaut, James; VAN DER Ploeg, Sander; Aronson, James; Elmqvist, Thomas; Farley, Joshua

    2013-12-01

    Measures aimed at conservation or restoration of ecosystems are often seen as net-cost projects by governments and businesses because they are based on incomplete and often faulty cost-benefit analyses. After screening over 200 studies, we examined the costs (94 studies) and benefits (225 studies) of ecosystem restoration projects that had sufficient reliable data in 9 different biomes ranging from coral reefs to tropical forests. Costs included capital investment and maintenance of the restoration project, and benefits were based on the monetary value of the total bundle of ecosystem services provided by the restored ecosystem. Assuming restoration is always imperfect and benefits attain only 75% of the maximum value of the reference systems over 20 years, we calculated the net present value at the social discount rates of 2% and 8%. We also conducted 2 threshold cum sensitivity analyses. Benefit-cost ratios ranged from about 0.05:1 (coral reefs and coastal systems, worst-case scenario) to as much as 35:1 (grasslands, best-case scenario). Our results provide only partial estimates of benefits at one point in time and reflect the lower limit of the welfare benefits of ecosystem restoration because both scarcity of and demand for ecosystem services is increasing and new benefits of natural ecosystems and biological diversity are being discovered. Nonetheless, when accounting for even the incomplete range of known benefits through the use of static estimates that fail to capture rising values, the majority of the restoration projects we analyzed provided net benefits and should be considered not only as profitable but also as high-yielding investments. Beneficios de Invertir en la Restauración de Ecosistemas. © 2013 Society for Conservation Biology.

  16. Coral reef ecosystem

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Wafar, M.V.M.; Wafar, S.

    3 Coral Reef Ecosystem M. V M. Wafar 1 and Sayeeda Wafar Among the various inland and coastal wetlands, it is probably the coral reef ecosystem that has generated the greatest sc-ientific and economic interest and received in the recent years a world... they play in global biogeochemical cycles as sinks for atmo spheric carbon dioxide. The economic potential includes c-aleium car bonate, food and ornamental fishes, bio-molecules, tourism, molluscan shells, macro-algae, a range of other minor products...

  17. Tribal Ecosystem Research Program (TERP) Workshop ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    USEPA is developing alternative approaches to quantify improvements to impaired waterbodies (USEPA 303(d)/TMDL Draft Guidance). Tribal environmental programs are leading the way in the paradigm shift towards sustainability of natural resources. Resources such as wildlife, aquatic habitat are dependent on the development of a riparian and upland management strategy, which considers and adapts to certain ecological relationships. Tribal traditional environmental knowledge (TEK) is a central concept in the cultural and resource stewardship practices of Native Americans. Native American populations have been accumulating knowledge of these ecosystem relationships, and have relied on them for basic survival for thousands of years. As such, TEK is the accumulated understanding of ecosystem function. As North America’s first environmental stewards, Native American populations have developed a unique relationship with the land and its resources. Objective of this workshop is to fuse TEK with environmental science to create an ecosystem, or landscape, research program oriented toward land management practices. This is essentially translating and combining TEK with an ecosystem function approach to provide a comprehensive basis for identifying and evaluating current and historical land use practices. Tribal and USEPA cooperative stream and wetland research focuses on making the connections between upland and riparian ecosystems. Analyzing spatial relationships and short

  18. Bosbus; mobile nature reserve

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Matton, T.; Kuypers, V.H.M.; Timmermans, W.

    2004-01-01

    Nature has discovered the global village. Over the years, hundreds of exotic plants and animals have made their way into the Netherlands. They take advantage of the existing urban infrastructure to seek out suitable niches in the city. People rarely think of these urban ecosystems in terms of

  19. Environmental Impacts of the Use of Ecosystem Services: Case Study of Birdwatching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kronenberg, Jakub

    2014-09-01

    The main reason for promoting the concept of ecosystem services lies in its potential to contribute to environmental conservation. Highlighting the benefits derived from ecosystems fosters an understanding of humans' dependence on nature, as users of ecosystem services. However, the act of using ecosystem services may not be environmentally neutral. As with the use of products and services generated within an economy, the use of ecosystem services may lead to unintended environmental consequences throughout the `ecosystem services supply chain.' This article puts forward a framework for analyzing environmental impacts related to the use of ecosystem services, indicating five categories of impact: (1) direct impacts (directly limiting the service's future availability); and four categories of indirect impacts, i.e., on broader ecosystem structures and processes, which can ultimately also affect the initial service: (2) impacts related to managing ecosystems to maximize the delivery of selected services (affecting ecosystems' capacity to provide other services); (3) impacts associated with accessing ecosystems to use their services (affecting other ecosystem components); (4) additional consumption of products, infrastructure or services required to use a selected ecosystem service, and their life-cycle environmental impacts; and (5) broader impacts on the society as a whole (environmental awareness of ecosystem service users and other stakeholders). To test the usefulness of this framework, the article uses the case study of birdwatching, which demonstrates all of the above categories of impacts. The article justifies the need for a broader consideration of environmental impacts related to the use of ecosystem services.

  20. Novel urban ecosystems, biodiversity, and conservation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kowarik, Ingo

    2011-01-01

    With increasing urbanization the importance of cities for biodiversity conservation grows. This paper reviews the ways in which biodiversity is affected by urbanization and discusses the consequences of different conservation approaches. Cities can be richer in plant species, including in native species, than rural areas. Alien species can lead to both homogenization and differentiation among urban regions. Urban habitats can harbor self-sustaining populations of rare and endangered native species, but cannot replace the complete functionality of (semi-)natural remnants. While many conservation approaches tend to focus on such relict habitats and native species in urban settings, this paper argues for a paradigm shift towards considering the whole range of urban ecosystems. Although conservation attitudes may be challenged by the novelty of some urban ecosystems, which are often linked to high numbers of nonnative species, it is promising to consider their associated ecosystem services, social benefits, and possible contribution to biodiversity conservation. - Highlights: → This paper reviews biotic responses to urbanization and urban conservation approaches. → Cities may be rich in both native and nonnative species. → Urban habitats cannot replace the functionality of natural remnants. → However, even novel urban habitats may harbour rare and endangered species. → Conservation approaches should consider the perspective of novel urban ecosystems. - This paper reviews the ways in which biodiversity is affected by urbanization and argues for expanding urban conservation approaches.

  1. The challenges of incorporating cultural ecosystem services into environmental assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satz, Debra; Gould, Rachelle K; Chan, Kai M A; Guerry, Anne; Norton, Bryan; Satterfield, Terre; Halpern, Benjamin S; Levine, Jordan; Woodside, Ulalia; Hannahs, Neil; Basurto, Xavier; Klain, Sarah

    2013-10-01

    The ecosystem services concept is used to make explicit the diverse benefits ecosystems provide to people, with the goal of improving assessment and, ultimately, decision-making. Alongside material benefits such as natural resources (e.g., clean water, timber), this concept includes-through the 'cultural' category of ecosystem services-diverse non-material benefits that people obtain through interactions with ecosystems (e.g., spiritual inspiration, cultural identity, recreation). Despite the longstanding focus of ecosystem services research on measurement, most cultural ecosystem services have defined measurement and inclusion alongside other more 'material' services. This gap in measurement of cultural ecosystem services is a product of several perceived problems, some of which are not real problems and some of which can be mitigated or even solved without undue difficulty. Because of the fractured nature of the literature, these problems continue to plague the discussion of cultural services. In this paper we discuss several such problems, which although they have been addressed singly, have not been brought together in a single discussion. There is a need for a single, accessible treatment of the importance and feasibility of integrating cultural ecosystem services alongside others.

  2. The potential of carbon sequestration to mitigate against climate change in forests and agro ecosystems of Zimbabwe

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mujuru, L.

    2014-01-01

    Climate change adversely affects human livelihoods and the environment through alteration of temperatures, rainfall patterns, sea level rise and ecosystem productivity. Developing countries are more vulnerable to climate change because they directly depend on agriculture and natural ecosystem

  3. Environmental contamination in Antarctic ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bargagli, R

    2008-08-01

    Although the remote continent of Antarctica is perceived as the symbol of the last great wilderness, the human presence in the Southern Ocean and the continent began in the early 1900s for hunting, fishing and exploration, and many invasive plant and animal species have been deliberately introduced in several sub-Antarctic islands. Over the last 50 years, the development of research and tourism have locally affected terrestrial and marine coastal ecosystems through fuel combustion (for transportation and energy production), accidental oil spills, waste incineration and sewage. Although natural "barriers" such as oceanic and atmospheric circulation protect Antarctica from lower latitude water and air masses, available data on concentrations of metals, pesticides and other persistent pollutants in air, snow, mosses, lichens and marine organisms show that most persistent contaminants in the Antarctic environment are transported from other continents in the Southern Hemisphere. At present, levels of most contaminants in Antarctic organisms are lower than those in related species from other remote regions, except for the natural accumulation of Cd and Hg in several marine organisms and especially in albatrosses and petrels. The concentrations of organic pollutants in the eggs of an opportunistic top predator such as the south polar skua are close to those that may cause adverse health effects. Population growth and industrial development in several countries of the Southern Hemisphere are changing the global pattern of persistent anthropogenic contaminants and new classes of chemicals have already been detected in the Antarctic environment. Although the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty provides strict guidelines for the protection of the Antarctic environment and establishes obligations for all human activity in the continent and the Southern Ocean, global warming, population growth and industrial development in countries of the Southern

  4. Radiation stability of animate nature

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Romanov, G.N.; Spirin, D.A.

    1990-01-01

    The main principles of radiation safety for animate nature including provisions for biological species protection and main requirement for animate nature radiation protection, which is the guarantee of any ecosystem integrity, are discussed. Ecosystem should be taken as the objective unit for animate nature radiation protection. The maximum dose of biot irradiation may amount to 0.5 Gy/year, which is 20-fold lower than the main dose limit for animate nature and 40-fold lower than ecological dose limits for conifers as the weakest radiostable member in ecosystem, at environment radioactive contamination determined by radiation safety standards. The radiation protection of animate nature is guaranteed at such levels of environment radioactive contamination

  5. Formation of Service Ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jonas, Julia M.; Sörhammar, David; Satzger, Gerhard

    proposition; a value proposition (e.g., a business opportunity or a business idea) may form the starting point for actors to collaborate and integrate resources in order realize the value proposition. The initiator of a service ecosystem could for example be an actor (Mark Zuckerberg), resources (website...

  6. Governing ecosystem services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verburg, René; Selnes, Trond; Verweij, Pita

    2016-01-01

    The TEEB approach to the use of ecosystem services has found its way to policy as a means to biodiversity conservation and greening of the economy. In this paper we analysed the uptake of the TEEB approach at national and local levels by applying a framework that revolves around the problem,

  7. Governance of Ecosystem Services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Primmer, Eeva; Jokinen, Pekka; Blicharska, Malgorzata; Barton, David N.; Bugter, Rob; Potschin, Marion

    2015-01-01

    Biodiversity conservation policies justified with science and intrinsic value arguments have produced disappointing outcomes, and the need for conservation is now being additionally justified with the concept of ecosystem services. However, little, if any empirical attention is paid to ways in

  8. The Ecosystem Engineer

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Walles, B.; Salvador de Paiva, J.; Van Prooijen, B.; Ysebaert, T.; Smaal, A.C.

    2015-01-01

    Ecosystem engineers that inhabit coastal and estuarine environments, such as reef building oysters, do not only stabilise the sediment within their reefs, but their influence might also extend far outside their reefs, affecting tidal flat morphology and protecting the surrounding soft-sediment

  9. Shelf-sea ecosystems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Walsh, J J

    1980-01-01

    An analysis of the food chain dynamics of the Oregon, Alaskan, and New York shelves is made with respect to differences in physical forcing of these ecosystems. The world's shelves are 10% of the area of the ocean, yield 99% of the world's fish catch, and may be a major sink in the global CO/sub 2/ budget.

  10. Practical Strategies for Integrating Final Ecosystem Goods and ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    The concept of Final Ecosystem Goods and Services (FEGS) explicitly connects ecosystem services to the people that benefit from them. This report presents a number of practical strategies for incorporating FEGS, and more broadly ecosystem services, into the decision-making process. Whether a decision process is in early or late stages, or whether a process includes informal or formal decision analysis, there are multiple points where ecosystem services concepts can be integrated. This report uses Structured Decision Making (SDM) as an organizing framework to illustrate the role ecosystem services can play in a values-focused decision-process, including: • Clarifying the decision context: Ecosystem services can help clarify the potential impacts of an issue on natural resources together with their spatial and temporal extent based on supply and delivery of those services, and help identify beneficiaries for inclusion as stakeholders in the deliberative process. • Defining objectives and performance measures: Ecosystem services may directly represent stakeholder objectives, or may be means toward achieving other objectives. • Creating alternatives: Ecosystem services can bring to light creative alternatives for achieving other social, economic, health, or general well-being objectives. • Estimating consequences: Ecosystem services assessments can implement ecological production functions (EPFs) and ecological benefits functions (EBFs) to link decision alt

  11. Facing uncertainty in ecosystem services-based resource management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grêt-Regamey, Adrienne; Brunner, Sibyl H; Altwegg, Jürg; Bebi, Peter

    2013-09-01

    The concept of ecosystem services is increasingly used as a support for natural resource management decisions. While the science for assessing ecosystem services is improving, appropriate methods to address uncertainties in a quantitative manner are missing. Ignoring parameter uncertainties, modeling uncertainties and uncertainties related to human-environment interactions can modify decisions and lead to overlooking important management possibilities. In this contribution, we present a new approach for mapping the uncertainties in the assessment of multiple ecosystem services. The spatially explicit risk approach links Bayesian networks to a Geographic Information System for forecasting the value of a bundle of ecosystem services and quantifies the uncertainties related to the outcomes in a spatially explicit manner. We demonstrate that mapping uncertainties in ecosystem services assessments provides key information for decision-makers seeking critical areas in the delivery of ecosystem services in a case study in the Swiss Alps. The results suggest that not only the total value of the bundle of ecosystem services is highly dependent on uncertainties, but the spatial pattern of the ecosystem services values changes substantially when considering uncertainties. This is particularly important for the long-term management of mountain forest ecosystems, which have long rotation stands and are highly sensitive to pressing climate and socio-economic changes. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. [Urban ecosystem services: A review].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, Qi-zheng; Huang, Gan-lin; Wu, Jian-guo

    2015-04-01

    Maintaining and improving ecosystem services in urban areas and human well-being are essential for sustainable development and therefore constitute an important topic in urban ecology. Here we reviewed studies on ecosystem services in urban areas. Based on the concept and classification of urban ecosystem services, we summarized characteristics of urban ecosystem services, including the human domination, high demand of ecosystem services in urban areas, spatial heterogeneity and temporal dynamics of ecosystem services supply and demand in urban areas, multi-services of urban green infrastructures, the socio-economic dimension of ecosystem services supply and ecosystem disservices in urban areas. Among different urban ecosystem services, the regulating service and cultural service are particularly indispensable to benefit human health. We pointed out that tradeoffs among different types of ecosystem services mostly occur between supportive service and cultural service, as well as regulating service and cultural service. In particular, we emphasized the relationship between landscape design (i.e. green infrastructure) and ecosystem services supply. Finally, we discussed current gaps to link urban ecosystem services studies to landscape design and management and pointed out several directions for future research in urban ecosystem services.

  13. Aquatic biodiversity in forests: A weak link in ecosystem services resilience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penaluna, Brooke E.; Olson, Deanna H.; Flitcroft, Rebecca L; Weber, Matthew A.; Bellmore, J. Ryan; Wondzell, Steven M.; Dunham, Jason; Johnson, Sherri L.; Reeves, Gordon H.

    2017-01-01

    The diversity of aquatic ecosystems is being quickly reduced on many continents, warranting a closer examination of the consequences for ecological integrity and ecosystem services. Here we describe intermediate and final ecosystem services derived from aquatic biodiversity in forests. We include a summary of the factors framing the assembly of aquatic biodiversity in forests in natural systems and how they change with a variety of natural disturbances and human-derived stressors. We consider forested aquatic ecosystems as a multi-state portfolio, with diverse assemblages and life-history strategies occurring at local scales as a consequence of a mosaic of habitat conditions and past disturbances and stressors. Maintaining this multi-state portfolio of assemblages requires a broad perspective of ecosystem structure, various functions, services, and management implications relative to contemporary stressors. Because aquatic biodiversity provides multiple ecosystem services to forests, activities that compromise aquatic ecosystems and biodiversity could be an issue for maintaining forest ecosystem integrity. We illustrate these concepts with examples of aquatic biodiversity and ecosystem services in forests of northwestern North America, also known as Northeast Pacific Rim. Encouraging management planning at broad as well as local spatial scales to recognize multi-state ecosystem management goals has promise for maintaining valuable ecosystem services. Ultimately, integration of information from socio-ecological ecosystems will be needed to maintain ecosystem services derived directly and indirectly from forest aquatic biota.

  14. Spatial characterisation of the Benguela ecosystem for ecosystem ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The three countries of the Benguela Current Large Marine Ecosystem (BCLME), namely Angola, Namibia and South Africa, have committed to implementing ecosystem-based management (EBM) including an ecosystem approach to fisheries (EAF) in the region, to put in practice the principles of sustainable development in ...

  15. Coastal ecosystems for protection against storm surge

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Mascarenhas, A.

    reservoirs. Channels, lakes, ponds and marshes distribute flood waters, whereas natural topographic depressions can store large volumes of surge water (Fig.2). Unfortunately, such settings are fast diminishing as structures are being located in reclaimed... Hazards", Spl. Vol. of IGC O.P. Varma, G.V. Rajamanickam & Eugene Wilson (eds.), Ind. Geol. Cong., 2010, pp. 135-145. 9 Coastal Ecosystems for Protection against Storm Surge Antonio Mascarenhas National Institute of Oceanography, Dona Paula-403004 (Goa...

  16. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: MA Population

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: MA Population data sets provide baseline population information as one of the drivers of ecosystem change. The data helped in...

  17. Natural gas; Gas Natural

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lopes, Carlos A.; Moraes, Claudia C.D. [Eletricidade de Sao Paulo S.A. (ELETROPAULO), Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil); Fonseca, Carlos H.F. [Centrais Eletricas de Santa Catarina S.A., Florianopolis, SC (Brazil); Silva, Clecio Fabricio da; Alves, Ricardo P. [Companhia Paranaense de Energia (COPEL), Curitiba, PR (Brazil); Sposito, Edivaldo Soares; Hulle, Lutero [Espirito Santo Centrais Eletricas S.A. (ESCELSA), Vitoria, ES (Brazil); S. Martins, Icaro da [Centrais Eletricas do Norte do Brasil S.A. (ELETRONORTE), Belem, PA (Brazil); Vilhena, Joao Luiz S. de [Companhia Energetica de Minas Gerais (CEMIG), Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil); Fagundes, Zaluar Aquino [Companhia Estadual de Energia Eletrica do Estado do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil)

    1996-12-31

    An increase in the consumption of natural gas in Brazil is an expected fact in what concerns energetic planning. This work presents the existing situation in what concerns natural gas utilization in the main world economies, as well as an analysis of the participation of this fuel among the energy final consumption per sources. The Brazilian consumption of natural gas is also analysed as well as the international agreement between Brazil and Bolivia for natural gas commercialization. Some legal, institutional and political aspects related to natural gas commercialization are also discussed. Finally, several benefits to be brought by the utilization of natural gas are presented 10 refs., 3 tabs.

  18. Green Infrastructure, Ecosystem Services, and Human Health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Coutts

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Contemporary ecological models of health prominently feature the natural environment as fundamental to the ecosystem services that support human life, health, and well-being. The natural environment encompasses and permeates all other spheres of influence on health. Reviews of the natural environment and health literature have tended, at times intentionally, to focus on a limited subset of ecosystem services as well as health benefits stemming from the presence, and access and exposure to, green infrastructure. The sweeping influence of green infrastructure on the myriad ecosystem services essential to health has therefore often been underrepresented. This survey of the literature aims to provide a more comprehensive picture—in the form of a primer—of the many simultaneously acting health co-benefits of green infrastructure. It is hoped that a more accurately exhaustive list of benefits will not only instigate further research into the health co-benefits of green infrastructure but also promote consilience in the many fields, including public health, that must be involved in the landscape conservation necessary to protect and improve health and well-being.

  19. Green Infrastructure, Ecosystem Services, and Human Health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coutts, Christopher; Hahn, Micah

    2015-08-18

    Contemporary ecological models of health prominently feature the natural environment as fundamental to the ecosystem services that support human life, health, and well-being. The natural environment encompasses and permeates all other spheres of influence on health. Reviews of the natural environment and health literature have tended, at times intentionally, to focus on a limited subset of ecosystem services as well as health benefits stemming from the presence, and access and exposure to, green infrastructure. The sweeping influence of green infrastructure on the myriad ecosystem services essential to health has therefore often been underrepresented. This survey of the literature aims to provide a more comprehensive picture-in the form of a primer-of the many simultaneously acting health co-benefits of green infrastructure. It is hoped that a more accurately exhaustive list of benefits will not only instigate further research into the health co-benefits of green infrastructure but also promote consilience in the many fields, including public health, that must be involved in the landscape conservation necessary to protect and improve health and well-being.

  20. Key insights for the future of urban ecosystem services research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peleg Kremer

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the dynamics of urban ecosystem services is a necessary requirement for adequate planning, management, and governance of urban green infrastructure. Through the three-year Urban Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (URBES research project, we conducted case study and comparative research on urban biodiversity and ecosystem services across seven cities in Europe and the United States. Reviewing > 50 peer-reviewed publications from the project, we present and discuss seven key insights that reflect cumulative findings from the project as well as the state-of-the-art knowledge in urban ecosystem services research. The insights from our review indicate that cross-sectoral, multiscale, interdisciplinary research is beginning to provide a solid scientific foundation for applying the ecosystem services framework in urban areas and land management. Our review offers a foundation for seeking novel, nature-based solutions to emerging urban challenges such as wicked environmental change issues.

  1. Interregional flows of ecosystem services: Concepts, typology and four cases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schröter, Matthias; Koellner, Thomas; Alkemade, Rob; Arnhold, Sebastian; Bagstad, Kenneth J.; Frank, Karin; Erb, Karl-Heinz; Kastner, Thomas; Kissinger, Meidad; Liu, Jianguo; López-Hoffman, Laura; Maes, Joachim; Marques, Alexandra; Martín-López, Berta; Meyer, Carsten; Schulp, Catharina J. E.; Thober, Jule; Wolff, Sarah; Bonn, Aletta

    2018-01-01

    Conserving and managing global natural capital requires an understanding of the complexity of flows of ecosystem services across geographic boundaries. Failing to understand and to incorporate these flows into national and international ecosystem assessments leads to incomplete and potentially skewed conclusions, impairing society’s ability to identify sustainable management and policy choices. In this paper, we synthesise existing knowledge and develop a conceptual framework for analysing interregional ecosystem service flows. We synthesise the types of such flows, the characteristics of sending and receiving socio-ecological systems, and the impacts of ecosystem service flows on interregional sustainability. Using four cases (trade of certified coffee, migration of northern pintails, flood protection in the Danube watershed, and information on giant pandas), we test the conceptual framework and show how an enhanced understanding of interregional telecouplings in socio-ecological systems can inform ecosystem service-based decision making and governance with respect to sustainability goals.

  2. Balancing conservation needs with uses of river ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sabater, Sergi; Elosegui, Arturo

    2014-01-01

    Rivers are among the most diverse and threatened ecosystems on the earth, but their conservation are a requisite for sustainable development. Conservation must consider both the structure and the functioning of the elements (usually species), as well as of their ecosystem. Therefore, successful river conservation must go beyond protecting species to protecting entire ecosystems and the processes that give each ecosystem its special characteristics. River conservation has to meet the legitimate aspirations of human populations for clean, readily available supply of water, without compromising the water needs of ecosystems and nature. Therefore, it is essential to take a landscape perspective that incorporates processes occurring in the riverine riparian areas as well as on connectivity with the land and across the river network.

  3. Ecosystems Vulnerability Challenge and Prize Competition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, J. H.; Frame, M. T.; Ferriter, O.; Recker, J.

    2014-12-01

    Stimulating innovation and private sector entrepreneurship is an important way to advance the preparedness of communities, businesses and individuals for the impacts of climate change on certain aspects of ecosystems, such as: fire regimes; water availability; carbon sequestration; biodiversity conservation; weather-related hazards, and the spread of invasive species. The creation of tools is critical to help communities and natural resource managers better understand the impacts of climate change on ecosystems and the potential resulting implications for ecosystem services and conservation efforts. The Department of the Interior is leading an interagency effort to develop the Ecosystems Vulnerability theme as part of the President's Climate Action Plan. This effort will provide seamless access to relevant datasets that can help address such issues as: risk of wildfires to local communities and federal lands; water sensitivity to climate change; and understanding the role of ecosystems in a changing climate. This session will provide an overview of the proposed Ecosystem Vulnerability Challenge and Prize Competition, outlining the intended audience, scope, goals, and overall timeline. The session will provide an opportunity for participants to offer new ideas. Through the Challenge, access will be made available to critical datasets for software developers, engineers, scientists, students, and researchers to develop and submit applications addressing critical science issues facing our Nation today. Application submission criteria and guidelines will also be discussed. The Challenge will be open to all sectors and organizations (i.e. federal, non-federal, private sector, non-profits, and universities) within the United States. It is anticipated the Challenge will run from early January 2015 until spring of 2015.

  4. The Coevolution of Digital Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    SungYong, Um

    2016-01-01

    Digital ecosystems are one of the most important strategic issues in the current digital economy. Digital ecosystems are dynamic and generative. They evolve as new firms join and as heterogeneous systems are integrated into other systems. These features digital ecosystems determine economic and technological success in the competition among…

  5. Promoting Transfer of Ecosystems Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Yawen; Hmelo-Silver, Cindy E.; Jordan, Rebecca; Eberbach, Catherine; Sinha, Suparna

    2016-01-01

    This study examines to what extent students transferred their knowledge from a familiar aquatic ecosystem to an unfamiliar rainforest ecosystem after participating in a technology-rich inquiry curriculum. We coded students' drawings for components of important ecosystems concepts at pre- and posttest. Our analysis examined the extent to which each…

  6. Ecosystems in the Learning Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Louviere, Gregory

    2011-01-01

    Habitats, ecology and evolution are a few of the many metaphors commonly associated with the domain of biological ecosystems. Surprisingly, these and other similar biological metaphors are proving to be equally associated with a phenomenon known as digital ecosystems. Digital ecosystems make a direct connection between biological properties and…

  7. Life sciences and space research XXIV(4) - Natural and artificial ecosystems; Proceedings of the Topical Meeting of the Interdisciplinary Scientific Commission F (Meetings F10, F11, F1 and F12) of the COSPAR 28th Plenary Meeting, The Hague, Netherlands, June 25-July 6, 1990

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macelroy, R. D. (Editor); Averner, M. M. (Editor); Tibbits, T. W. (Editor); Bugbee, B. B. (Editor); Horneck, G. (Editor); Dunlop, E. H. (Editor)

    1992-01-01

    The present conference on natural and artificial ecosystems and their application to space research encompasses both in-flight and ground-based issues of recycling and control in regenerative life support, the relationships of productivity and facility design in higher plant growth, life-support systems for manned missions to Mars, and biochemical engineering applications in space. Specific issues addressed include interface problems between material recycling systems and plants, temperature and humidity control on a lunar base, the CELSS Test-Facility Project, achieving closure in plant-growth facilities, and life-support systems for Mars transit. Also addressed are a closed equilibrated biological aquatic system, a simulated Mars outpost in the Antarctica dry valleys, analyses of human kidney-cell populations separated on the space shuttle, and the evolution of a phase-separated gravity-independent bioreactor.

  8. [Niche comparison of dominant entomopathogenic fungi in three forest ecosystems].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Ming-Jun; Huang, Bo; Li, Zeng-Zhi

    2011-05-01

    An investigation was made on the quantitative composition, niche width, and niche overlap of dominant entomopathogenic fungi in three different forest ecosystems, i.e., natural broad-leaved forest, natural secondary broad-leaved forest, and pure Masson' s pine plantation. In the three forest ecosystems, Beauveria bassiana was the first dominant species in natural secondary broad-leaved forest, the second in pure Masson's pine plantation, and the third in natural broad-leaved forest. B. bassiana had the broadest temporal niche width and nutritional niche width, whereas the dominant species Isaria cateinannulata, L. farinose, and I. tenuipes had much smaller niche widths. Meanwhile, B. bassiana had larger temporal niche overlaps but smaller nutritional niche overlaps with other dominant entomopathogenic fungi. It was suggested that in the three forest ecosystems, B. bassiana had the longest occurrence duration, widest host range, and strongest environmental adaptability.

  9. Human dimensions in ecosystem management: a USDA Forest Service perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deborah S. Carr

    1995-01-01

    For many decades, the natural resource profession has approached the management of public lands as exclusively a natural science endeavor requiring purely technical solutions. With the adoption of an ecosystem management philosophy, the USDA Forest Service has acknowledged the centrality of people in land management policy and decision-making. This paper explores the...

  10. Marine Ecosystem Services

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hasler, Berit; Ahtiainen, Heini; Hasselström, Linus

    MARECOS (Marine Ecosystem Services) er et tværfagligt studie, der har haft til formål at tilvejebringe information vedrørende kortlægning og værdisætning af økosystemtjenester, som kan anvendes i forbindelse med udformning af regulering på det marine område såvel nationalt, som regionalt og...

  11. The river ecosystem

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Descy, J.P.; Lambinon, J.

    1984-01-01

    From the standpoint of the ecologist, a river is an ecosystem characterized by its biocoenosis, in dynamic equilibrium with the abiotic environment. This ecosystem can be envisaged at the structural level by examining its physical, chemical and biological properties, together with the relationships existing between these compartments. The biocoenotic structure of a river is relatively complex: it manifests, among other specific features, the presence of plankton communities which show marked space-time variations. The function of the river ecosystem can be approximated by a study of the relationships between the biotic and abiotic components: primary production, secondary production, recycling of organic matter, etc. Lotic environments are subject to frequent disturbance from various forms of man-made pollution: organic pollution, eutrophization, thermal pollution, mineral pollution, contamination by organic and mineral micropollutants, as well as by radionuclides, mechanical pollution and physical degradation. The biocoenotic effects of these forms of pollution may be evaluated, in particular, using biological indicators (bioindicators): these are either able to show the overall impact of the pollution on the biocoenosis or else they permit the detection and evaluation of certain pollutant forms. (author)

  12. Microplastic in Aquatic Ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivleva, Natalia P; Wiesheu, Alexandra C; Niessner, Reinhard

    2017-02-06

    The contamination of marine and freshwater ecosystems with plastic, and especially with microplastic (MP), is a global ecological problem of increasing scientific concern. This has stimulated a great deal of research on the occurrence of MP, interaction of MP with chemical pollutants, the uptake of MP by aquatic organisms, and the resulting (negative) impact of MP. Herein, we review the major issues of MP in aquatic environments, with the principal aims 1) to characterize the methods applied for MP analysis (including sampling, processing, identification and quantification), indicate the most reliable techniques, and discuss the required further improvements; 2) to estimate the abundance of MP in marine/freshwater ecosystems and clarify the problems that hamper the comparability of such results; and 3) to summarize the existing literature on the uptake of MP by living organisms. Finally, we identify knowledge gaps, suggest possible strategies to assess environmental risks arising from MP, and discuss prospects to minimize MP abundance in aquatic ecosystems. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  13. Water-use strategies of six co-existing Mediterranean woody species during a summer drought

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Quero, J.L.; Sterck, F.J.; Martínez-Vilalta, J.; Villar, R.

    2011-01-01

    Drought stress is known to limit plant performance in Mediterranean-type ecosystems. We have investigated the dynamics of the hydraulics, gas exchange and morphology of six co-existing Mediterranean woody species growing under natural field conditions during a drought that continued during the

  14. Characterizing the Danish telemedicine ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Manikas, Konstantinos; Hansen, Klaus Marius

    2013-01-01

    and interoperability issues, silo solutions, and lack of guidelines and standards. In this paper, we characterise the ecosystem evolved around the telemedicine services in Denmark and study the actors involved in this ecosystem. We establish a method for this study, where we define two actor roles and ways...... of characterizing actor contributions, and apply the method to the largest healthcare region of Denmark. Our findings reveal an ecosystem that is relatively closed to new actors, where the actors tend to be related to single telemedicine applications, the applications have low connectivity, and the most influential...... actors of the ecosystem can be characterised as both being beneficial and inhibitory to the ecosystem prosperity....

  15. Adaptive management for ecosystem services (j/a) | Science ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Management of natural resources for the production of ecosystem services, which are vital for human well-being, is necessary even when there is uncertainty regarding system response to management action. This uncertainty is the result of incomplete controllability, complex internal feedbacks, and non-linearity that often interferes with desired management outcomes, and insufficient understanding of nature and people. Adaptive management was developed to reduce such uncertainty. We present a framework for the application of adaptive management for ecosystem services that explicitly accounts for cross-scale tradeoffs in the production of ecosystem services. Our framework focuses on identifying key spatiotemporal scales (plot, patch, ecosystem, landscape, and region) that encompass dominant structures and processes in the system, and includes within- and cross-scale dynamics, ecosystem service tradeoffs, and management controllability within and across scales. Resilience theory recognizes that a limited set of ecological processes in a given system regulate ecosystem services, yet our understanding of these processes is poorly understood. If management actions erode or remove these processes, the system may shift into an alternative state unlikely to support the production of desired services. Adaptive management provides a process to assess the underlying within and cross-scale tradeoffs associated with production of ecosystem services while proceeding with manage

  16. Methane Production by Seagrass Ecosystems in the Red Sea

    KAUST Repository

    Garcias Bonet, Neus

    2017-11-07

    Atmospheric methane (CH) is the second strongest greenhouse gas and it is emitted to the atmosphere naturally by different sources. It is crucial to define the dimension of these natural emissions in order to forecast changes in atmospheric CH mixing ratio in future scenarios. However, CH emissions by seagrass ecosystems in shallow marine coastal systems have been neglected although their global extension. Here we quantify the CH production rates of seagrass ecosystems in the Red Sea. We measured changes in CH concentration and its isotopic signature by cavity ring-down spectroscopy on chambers containing sediment and plants. We detected CH production in all the seagrass stations with an average rate of 85.09 ± 27.80 μmol CH m d. Our results show that there is no seasonal or daily pattern in the CH production rates by seagrass ecosystems in the Red Sea. Taking in account the range of global estimates for seagrass coverage and the average seagrass CH production, the global CH production and emission by seagrass ecosystems could range from 0.09 to 2.7 Tg yr. Because CH emission by seagrass ecosystems had not been included in previous global CH budgets, our estimate would increase the contribution of marine global emissions, hitherto estimated at 9.1 Tg yr, by about 30%. Thus, the potential contribution of seagrass ecosystems to marine CH emissions provides sufficient evidence of the relevance of these fluxes as to include seagrass ecosystems in future assessments of the global CH budgets.

  17. Agroecology: the key role of arbuscular mycorrhizas in ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gianinazzi, Silvio; Gollotte, Armelle; Binet, Marie-Noëlle; van Tuinen, Diederik; Redecker, Dirk; Wipf, Daniel

    2010-11-01

    The beneficial effects of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi on plant performance and soil health are essential for the sustainable management of agricultural ecosystems. Nevertheless, since the 'first green revolution', less attention has been given to beneficial soil microorganisms in general and to AM fungi in particular. Human society benefits from a multitude of resources and processes from natural and managed ecosystems, to which AM make a crucial contribution. These resources and processes, which are called ecosystem services, include products like food and processes like nutrient transfer. Many people have been under the illusion that these ecosystem services are free, invulnerable and infinitely available; taken for granted as public benefits, they lack a formal market and are traditionally absent from society's balance sheet. In 1997, a team of researchers from the USA, Argentina and the Netherlands put an average price tag of US $33 trillion a year on these fundamental ecosystem services. The present review highlights the key role that the AM symbiosis can play as an ecosystem service provider to guarantee plant productivity and quality in emerging systems of sustainable agriculture. The appropriate management of ecosystem services rendered by AM will impact on natural resource conservation and utilisation with an obvious net gain for human society.

  18. Monitoring and modeling human interactions with ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milesi, Cristina

    With rapidly increasing consumption rates and global population, there is a growing interest in understanding how to balance human activities with the other components of the Earth system. Humans alter ecosystem functioning with land cover changes, greenhouse gas emissions and overexploitation of natural resources. On the other side, climate and its inherent interannual variability drive global Net Primary Productivity (NPP), the base of energy for all trophic levels, shaping humans' distribution on the land surface and their sensitivity to natural and accelerated patterns of variation in ecosystem processes. In this thesis, I analyzed anthropogenic influences on ecosystems and ecosystems impacts on humans through a multi-scale approach. Anthropogenic influences were analyzed with a special focus on urban ecosystems, the living environment of nearly half of the global population and almost 90% of the population in the industrialized countries. A poorly quantified aspect of urban ecosystems is the biogeochemistry of urban vegetation, intensively managed through fertilization and irrigation. In chapter 1, adapting the ecosystem model Biome-BGC, I simulated the growth of turf grasses across the United States, and estimated their potential impact on the continental water and carbon budget. Using a remote sensing-based approach, I also developed a methodology to estimate the impact of land cover changes due to urbanization on the regional photosynthetic capacity (chapter 2), finding that low-density urbanization can retain high levels of net primary productivity, although at the expense of inefficient sprawl. One of the feedbacks of urbanization is the urban heat island effect, which I analyzed in conjunction with a remote sensing based estimate of fractional impervious surface area, showing how this is related to increases in land surface temperatures, independently from geographic location and population density (chapter 3). Finally, in chapter 4, I described the

  19. Chemicals: Assessment of Risks to Ecosystem Services (CARES)

    OpenAIRE

    Maltby, L.; Brink, van den, P.J.; Faber, J.H.; Marshall, Stuart

    2016-01-01

    Chemicals may have positive or negative effects on human well-being. The long-term survival and well-being of human populations depend on the sustainable use of ecosystems. The biophysical components of ecosystems (i.e., land, water, air, minerals, species, genes) provide the stocks of natural capital from which benefits (e.g., clean air and water, food and fiber, disease suppression and climate regulation) flow.

  20. The provision of ecosystem services in response to global change: Evidences and applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafortezza, Raffaele; Chen, Jiquan

    2016-05-01

    As a consequence of the global increase in economic and societal prosperity, ecosystems and natural resources have been substantially exploited, degraded, or even destroyed in the last century. To prevent further deprivation of the quality of ecosystems, the ecosystem services concept has become a central issue in environmental studies. A growing number of environmental agencies and organizations worldwide are now embracing integrated approaches to plan and manage ecosystems, sharing a goal to maintain the long-term provision of ecosystem services for sustainability. A daunting challenge in this process is to move from general pronouncements about the tremendous benefits that ecosystems provide to society to defensible assessments of their services. In other words, we must move beyond the scientific evidences of the ecosystem services concept to its practical applications. In this work, we discuss the theoretical foundations and applications of ecosystem services with a focus on the assessment of ecosystem service trade-offs and synergies at various spatial and temporal scales. Here, we offer examples of the main factors related to land use management that may affect the provision of ecosystem services and provide direction for future research on ecosystem services and related nature-based solutions. We also provide a briefing on the major topics covered in this Special Issue, which focuses on the provision of ecosystem services in the context of global change. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. The Collapse of Ecosystem Engineer Populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José F. Fontanari

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Humans are the ultimate ecosystem engineers who have profoundly transformed the world’s landscapes in order to enhance their survival. Somewhat paradoxically, however, sometimes the unforeseen effect of this ecosystem engineering is the very collapse of the population it intended to protect. Here we use a spatial version of a standard population dynamics model of ecosystem engineers to study the colonization of unexplored virgin territories by a small settlement of engineers. We find that during the expansion phase the population density reaches values much higher than those the environment can support in the equilibrium situation. When the colonization front reaches the boundary of the available space, the population density plunges sharply and attains its equilibrium value. The collapse takes place without warning and happens just after the population reaches its peak number. We conclude that overpopulation and the consequent collapse of an expanding population of ecosystem engineers is a natural consequence of the nonlinear feedback between the population and environment variables.

  2. Ecosystem Approach To Flood Disaster Risk Reduction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    RK Kamble

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available India is one of the ten worst disaster prone countries of the world. The country is prone to disasters due to number of factors; both natural and anthropogenic, including adverse geo-climatic conditions, topographical features, environmental degradation, population growth, urbanisation, industrlisation, non-scientific development practices etc. The factors either in original or by accelerating the intensity and frequency of disasters are responsible for heavy toll of human lives and disrupting the life support systems in the country. India has 40 million hectares of the flood-prone area, on an average, flood affect an area of around 7.5 million hectares per year. Knowledge of environmental systems and processes are key factors in the management of disasters, particularly the hydro-metrological ones. Management of flood risk and disaster is a multi-dimensional affair that calls for interdisciplinary approach. Ecosystem based disaster risk reduction builds on ecosystem management principles, strategies and tools in order to maximise ecosystem services for risk reduction. This perspective takes into account the integration of social and ecological systems, placing people at the centre of decision making. The present paper has been attempted to demonstrate how ecosystem-based approach can help in flood disaster risk reduction. International Journal of Environment, Volume-2, Issue-1, Sep-Nov 2013, Pages 70-82 DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3126/ije.v2i1.9209

  3. Ecosystem Management. A Management View

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ravn-Jonsen, Lars

    The need for management of the marine ecosystem using a broad perspective has been recommended under a variety of names. This paper uses the term Ecosystem Management, which is seen as a convergence between the ecological idea of an organisational hierarchy and the idea of strategic planning...... with a planning hierarchy---with the ecosystem being the strategic planning level. Management planning requires, in order to establish a quantifiable means and ends chain, that the goals at the ecosystem level can be linked to operational levels; ecosystem properties must therefore be reducible to lower...... genetic relation. The population structure is below the ecosystem in terms of the planning level, and goals for the community's genetic structure cannot be meaningful defined without setting strategic goals at the ecosystem level for functional groups....

  4. Conceptual Framework of Ecosystem Services in Landscape Planning, Malaysia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lee Bak Yeo

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the concept of ecosystem services and its trend, scale and gradient, through reviewing articles, books and internet sources. Result shows that evaluation of ecosystem services in small towns within urban-rural gradient in developing countries still not being scrutinized explicitly, especially trade-offs’ concern. Environmental damages in the developing countries are burgeoning. As land conversion from natural capital to built capital is also keep on rising for temporal economic interests. Therefore, it has induced changes in ecological functions and affected the ecosystem services supply. In the context of Peninsular Malaysia, ungoverned built capitals and flaw of policy further contribute to fallacious decision making. And yet, there is still no specific framework or initiatives directly deals with ecosystem and biodiversity. A conceptual framework has been proposed to assess and value ecosystem services through integration of InVEST model (Integrated Valuation of Ecosystem Services and Tradeoffs and bundle of ecosystem services. The framework allows stakeholders to have an insight of the pros and cons about the landscape changes, be it in ecological, economic or social-cultural perspectives. Therefore, it may help to ameliorate the trade-offs and enhance the synergies of ecosystem services that eventually can contribute to attaining human well-being, and to promote sustainable growth.

  5. Trajectories of ecosystem service change in restored peatlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Martin; Shuttleworth, Emma; Pilkington, Mike; Allott, Tim; Walker, Jonathan; Spencer, Tom

    2017-04-01

    Peatlands provide a wide range of ecosystem services but across the world degradation of these systems through a range of human impacts has had a negative effect on the provision of these services. A wide variety of peatland restoration approaches have been developed with the aim of mitigating these impacts. Understanding of trajectories of change in ecosystem structure and function is central to evaluating the efficacy of these restoration methods. This paper considers data on post-restoration trajectories of water table change, vegetation recovery, runoff production and water quality based on extensive data from peatland restoration work in the southern Pennines of the U.K. Data have been compiled from multiple restoration initiatives undertaken across the region, spanning up to 12 years post restoration. The data show variations in the time scale of ecosystem change which are indicative of the process basis of the ecosystem trajectories. Rapid changes in runoff are controlled by physical changes to the peatland surface. These are contrasted with longer term evolution of vegetation and water table behaviour which suggest ongoing recovery as the ecosystem adjusts to the restoration process. In order to assess restoration of ecosystem function, and so of ecosystem services, it is important that the process links between ecosystem structure and function are well understood. Establishing typical restoration trajectories can be of practical use in determining restoration project milestones, and can also provide insight into the nature of these process links.

  6. Obscuring ecosystem function with application of the ecosystem services concept.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Markus J; Hall, Damon M; Feldpausch-Parker, Andrea M; Peterson, Tarla Rai

    2010-02-01

    Conservationists commonly have framed ecological concerns in economic terms to garner political support for conservation and to increase public interest in preserving global biodiversity. Beginning in the early 1980s, conservation biologists adapted neoliberal economics to reframe ecosystem functions and related biodiversity as ecosystem services to humanity. Despite the economic success of programs such as the Catskill/Delaware watershed management plan in the United States and the creation of global carbon exchanges, today's marketplace often fails to adequately protect biodiversity. We used a Marxist critique to explain one reason for this failure and to suggest a possible, if partial, response. Reframing ecosystem functions as economic services does not address the political problem of commodification. Just as it obscures the labor of human workers, commodification obscures the importance of the biota (ecosystem workers) and related abiotic factors that contribute to ecosystem functions. This erasure of work done by ecosystems impedes public understanding of biodiversity. Odum and Odum's radical suggestion to use the language of ecosystems (i.e., emergy or energy memory) to describe economies, rather than using the language of economics (i.e., services) to describe ecosystems, reverses this erasure of the ecosystem worker. Considering the current dominance of economic forces, however, implementing such solutions would require social changes similar in magnitude to those that occurred during the 1960s. Niklas Luhmann argues that such substantive, yet rapid, social change requires synergy among multiple societal function systems (i.e., economy, education, law, politics, religion, science), rather than reliance on a single social sphere, such as the economy. Explicitly presenting ecosystem services as discreet and incomplete aspects of ecosystem functions not only allows potential economic and environmental benefits associated with ecosystem services, but also

  7. Climate change impacts on ecosystems and ecosystem services in the United States: Process and prospects for sustained assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grimm, Nancy B.; Groffman, Peter M; Staudinger, Michelle D.; Tallis, Heather

    2016-01-01

    The third United States National Climate Assessment emphasized an evaluation of not just the impacts of climate change on species and ecosystems, but also the impacts of climate change on the benefits that people derive from nature, known as ecosystem services. The ecosystems, biodiversity, and ecosystem services component of the assessment largely drew upon the findings of a transdisciplinary workshop aimed at developing technical input for the assessment, involving participants from diverse sectors. A small author team distilled and synthesized this and hundreds of other technical input to develop the key findings of the assessment. The process of developing and ranking key findings hinged on identifying impacts that had particular, demonstrable effects on the U.S. public via changes in national ecosystem services. Findings showed that ecosystem services are threatened by the impacts of climate change on water supplies, species distributions and phenology, as well as multiple assaults on ecosystem integrity that, when compounded by climate change, reduce the capacity of ecosystems to buffer against extreme events. As ecosystems change, such benefits as water sustainability and protection from storms that are afforded by intact ecosystems are projected to decline across the continent due to climate change. An ongoing, sustained assessment that focuses on the co-production of actionable climate science will allow scientists from a range of disciplines to ascertain the capability of their forecasting models to project environmental and ecological change and link it to ecosystem services; additionally, an iterative process of evaluation, development of management strategies, monitoring, and reevaluation will increase the applicability and usability of the science by the U.S. public.

  8. [Assessment of shallow groundwater nitrate concentrations in typical terrestrial ecosystems of Chinese Ecosystem Research Network (CERN) during 2004-2009].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Zhi-Wei; Zhang, Xin-Yu; Sun, Xiao-Min; Yuan, Guo-Fu; Wang, Sheng-Zhong; Liu, Wen-Hua

    2011-10-01

    The nitrate-N (NO3(-) -N) concentrations of 38 shallow groundwater wells from 31 of the typical terrestrial ecosystems on Chinese Ecosystem Research Network (CERN) were assessed using the monitoring data from 2004 to 2009. The results showed that the average values of NO3(-) -N concentrations were significantly higher in the agricultural (4.85 mg x L(-1) +/- 0.42 mg x L(-1)), desert (oasis) (3.72 mg x L(-1) +/- 0.42 mg x L(-1)) and urban ecosystems (3.77 mg x L(-1) 0.51 mg x L(-1)) than in the grass (1.59 mg x L(-1) +/- 0.35 mg L(-1)) and forest ecosystems (0.39 mg x L(-1) +/- 0.03 mg x L(-1)). Nitrate was the major form of nitrogen, with between 56% to 88% of nitrogen in the nitrate-N form in the shallow groundwater of desert (oasis), urban and agricultural ecosystems. Nitrate-N concentrations for some agricultural ecosystems (Ansai, Yanting, Yucheng) and desert (oasis) ecosystems (Cele, Linze, Akesu) analysis exceeded the 10 mg x L(-1) World Health Organization drinking water standards between 14.3% and 84.6%. Significant seasonality was found in Ansai, Fengqiu, Yanting agricultural ecosystems and the Beijing urban ecosystem using the relatively high frequency monitoring data, with the higher nitrate concentrations usually found during summer and winter months. The monitoring results indicated that the shallow groundwater of agricultural ecosystems was contaminated by agricultural management practices, i.e. fertilization, while the shallow groundwater of forest ecosystems was under natural condition with no contamination from human activities.

  9. Evaluating ecosystem services provided by non-native species: an experimental test in California grasslands.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Stein

    Full Text Available The concept of ecosystem services--the benefits that nature provides to human's society--has gained increasing attention over the past decade. Increasing global abiotic and biotic change, including species invasions, is threatening the secure delivery of these ecosystem services. Efficient evaluation methods of ecosystem services are urgently needed to improve our ability to determine management strategies and restoration goals in face of these new emerging ecosystems. Considering a range of multiple ecosystem functions may be a useful way to determine such strategies. We tested this framework experimentally in California grasslands, where large shifts in species composition have occurred since the late 1700's. We compared a suite of ecosystem functions within one historic native and two non-native species assemblages under different grazing intensities to address how different species assemblages vary in provisioning, regulatory and supporting ecosystem services. Forage production was reduced in one non-native assemblage (medusahead. Cultural ecosystem services, such as native species diversity, were inherently lower in both non-native assemblages, whereas most other services were maintained across grazing intensities. All systems provided similar ecosystem services under the highest grazing intensity treatment, which simulated unsustainable grazing intensity. We suggest that applying a more comprehensive ecosystem framework that considers multiple ecosystem services to evaluate new emerging ecosystems is a valuable tool to determine management goals and how to intervene in a changing ecosystem.

  10. Evaluating ecosystem services provided by non-native species: an experimental test in California grasslands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, Claudia; Hallett, Lauren M; Harpole, W Stanley; Suding, Katharine N

    2014-01-01

    The concept of ecosystem services--the benefits that nature provides to human's society--has gained increasing attention over the past decade. Increasing global abiotic and biotic change, including species invasions, is threatening the secure delivery of these ecosystem services. Efficient evaluation methods of ecosystem services are urgently needed to improve our ability to determine management strategies and restoration goals in face of these new emerging ecosystems. Considering a range of multiple ecosystem functions may be a useful way to determine such strategies. We tested this framework experimentally in California grasslands, where large shifts in species composition have occurred since the late 1700's. We compared a suite of ecosystem functions within one historic native and two non-native species assemblages under different grazing intensities to address how different species assemblages vary in provisioning, regulatory and supporting ecosystem services. Forage production was reduced in one non-native assemblage (medusahead). Cultural ecosystem services, such as native species diversity, were inherently lower in both non-native assemblages, whereas most other services were maintained across grazing intensities. All systems provided similar ecosystem services under the highest grazing intensity treatment, which simulated unsustainable grazing intensity. We suggest that applying a more comprehensive ecosystem framework that considers multiple ecosystem services to evaluate new emerging ecosystems is a valuable tool to determine management goals and how to intervene in a changing ecosystem.

  11. Assessing Land Use Change and Its Impact on Ecosystem Services in Northern Thailand

    OpenAIRE

    Sunsanee Arunyawat; Rajendra P. Shrestha

    2016-01-01

    Ecosystem services are highly vulnerable to a number of impacts due to the complex effects of human use of natural resources and subsequent land use change. Assessment of the impact of change in land use with respect to ecosystem services is necessary in order to implement appropriate land uses that enhance ecosystem services. This study analysed the impact of change in land use on ecosystem services using the Integrated Valuation of Ecosystem Services and Trade-offs (InVEST) model to map and...

  12. ESTIMAP: A GIS-BASED MODEL TO MAP ECOSYSTEM SERVICES IN THE EUROPEAN UNION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Zulian

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Policies of the European Union which affect the use or protection of natural resources increasingly need spatial data on the supply, the flow and the demand of ecosystem services. The model ESTIMAP was developed to this purpose. ESTIMAP departs from land cover and land use maps to which it adds other spatial information with the objective to map various ecosystem services. This study introduces the ESTIMAP map as tool to support the mapping and modelling of ecosystem services at European scale. Examples are provided for three regulating ecosystem services, air quality regulation, coastal protection, and pollination and one cultural ecosystem services, recreation. 

  13. Sustainable web ecosystem design

    CERN Document Server

    O'Toole, Greg

    2013-01-01

    This book is about the process of creating web-based systems (i.e., websites, content, etc.) that consider each of the parts, the modules, the organisms - binary or otherwise - that make up a balanced, sustainable web ecosystem. In the current media-rich environment, a website is more than a collection of relative html documents of text and images on a static desktop computer monitor. There is now an unlimited combination of screens, devices, platforms, browsers, locations, versions, users, and exabytes of data with which to interact. Written in a highly approachable, practical style, this boo

  14. Is the Chilean Diet a Mediterranean-type Diet?

    OpenAIRE

    JAIME ROZOWSKI; ÓSCAR CASTILLO

    2004-01-01

    Food intake in Chile has changed markedly in the last decades, showing an increase in fat consumption and presently a small fruit and vegetables intake. A parallel is made between the Chilean and Mediterranean diet (mainly the one from Spain, Italy, and Greece), both currently and from 50 years ago. The main differences and similarities are based on food availability. Although Chilean diet seems to be approaching the traditional Mediterranean diet of the 60's, there is concern about changes t...

  15. Rainfall interception by the vegetation in a Mediterranean type climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno-Pérez, M. F.; Roldán-Cañas, J.; Cienfuegos, I.

    2012-04-01

    The study of rainfall interception by the canopy of the vegetation is of great importance in the basin water balance, because a large part returns to the atmosphere as evaporation. The presence or absence of vegetation not only affects the amount of rainfall that reaches the ground level also affects the moisture content in soil and surface runoff. In arid or semiarid regions there are few studies related to the Mediterranean vegetation and its relationship to hydrological processes. Furthermore, most studies have characterized the interception by rainfall simulators in the laboratory. The aim of this study was to evaluate in situ the amount and distribution of rainfall through the process of interception by the canopy of trees and shrubs present in the hydrologic watershed of "The Cabril" (Córdoba, southern Spain). The predominant vegetation is scrub, composed mostly of rockrose (Cistus ladanifer), and arboreal formations of tree pines (Pinus pinea). The record of precipitation was performed using a rain gauge tipping bowl Eijkelkamp mark during periods of rain occurred in 2010 and 2011. The amount of precipitation intercepted by the canopy has been determined indirectly from the difference between incident precipitation and rain that passes through the canopy of vegetation, which is divided into the flow of throughfall and cortical flow. To measure the throughfall the soil surface was waterproofed. Throughfall volume that is generated after each rain event is collected in four tanks of 200 liters capacity interconnected. For measurement of cortical flow a spiral hose previously cut lengthwise was placed around the trunk in the case of tree pines. In rockrose, a container was installed around it at its base. Monitoring soil moisture was determined by moisture probes 6 Delta-T SM200 randomly distributed, which records the water content of the topsoil. Compared with rockrose, there is a higher percentage of interception in pine and lowest percentage of cortical runoff. This is due to the architecture of the rockrose and the resin secreted by the stem and leaves, acting as a water repellent and reducing the retention of intercepted rainfall. Besides, in both species decreases the capacity of interception with increasing rainfall.

  16. Global change impacts on mangrove ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKee, Karen L.

    2004-01-01

    Mangroves are tropical/subtropical communities of primarily tree species that grow in the intertidal zone. These tidal forests are important coastal ecosystems that are valued for a variety of ecological and societal goods and services. Major local threats to mangrove ecosystems worldwide include clearcutting and trimming of forests for urban, agricultural, or industrial expansion; hydrological alterations; toxic chemical spills; and eutrophication. In many countries with mangroves, much of the human population resides in the coastal zone, and their activities often negatively impact the integrity of mangrove forests. In addition, eutrophication, which is the process whereby nutrients build up to higher than normal levels in a natural system, is possibly one of the most serious threats to mangroves and associated ecosystems such as coral reefs. Scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) at the National Wetlands Research Center are working to more fully understand global impacts on these significant ecosystems.Changes in climate and other factors may also affect mangroves, but in complex ways. Global warming may promote expansion of mangrove forests to higher latitudes and accelerate sea-level rise through melting of polar ice or steric expansion of oceans. Changes in sea level would alter flooding patterns and the structure and areal extent of mangroves. Climate change may also alter rainfall patterns, which would in turn change local salinity regimes and competitive interactions of mangroves with other wetland species. Increases in frequency or intensity of tropical storms and hurricanes in combination with sea-level rise may alter erosion and sedimentation rates in mangrove forests. Another global change factor that may directly affect mangrove growth is increased atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2), caused by burning of fossil fuels and other factors. Elevated CO2 concentration may increase mangrove growth by stimulating photosynthesis or improving water use

  17. Network Skewness Measures Resilience in Lake Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langdon, P. G.; Wang, R.; Dearing, J.; Zhang, E.; Doncaster, P.; Yang, X.; Yang, H.; Dong, X.; Hu, Z.; Xu, M.; Yanjie, Z.; Shen, J.

    2017-12-01

    Changes in ecosystem resilience defy straightforward quantification from biodiversity metrics, which ignore influences of community structure. Naturally self-organized network structures show positive skewness in the distribution of node connections. Here we test for skewness reduction in lake diatom communities facing anthropogenic stressors, across a network of 273 lakes in China containing 452 diatom species. Species connections show positively skewed distributions in little-impacted lakes, switching to negative skewness in lakes associated with human settlement, surrounding land-use change, and higher phosphorus concentration. Dated sediment cores reveal a down-shifting of network skewness as human impacts intensify, and reversal with recovery from disturbance. The appearance and degree of negative skew presents a new diagnostic for quantifying system resilience and impacts from exogenous forcing on ecosystem communities.

  18. Effect of Groundwater Abstraction on Fen Ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johansen, Ole; Pedersen, Morten Lauge; Jensen, Jacob Birk

    2011-01-01

    within a distance of 1.5 km to a planned well field. In the river valley the interaction between groundwater and surface water is strongly affected by low permeable sediments. These sediments reduce the direct discharge to the river and have a large impact on the functioning and presence of the rich fen......Quantifying the effects of groundwater abstraction on fen ecosystems located in discharge areas can be complicated. The water level in fens is close to the terrain surface most of the year and it is controlled by a relatively constant groundwater exfiltration. It is difficult to measure...... the exfiltration fluxes and thus water level data is typically used to evaluate if the ecosystem is affected. The paper presents collected data and analysis from a case study, where the hydrological effect of groundwater abstraction on rich fens and springs in a Danish river valley has been studied. The natural...

  19. Radio-capacity of ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kultakhmedov, Yu.; Kultakhmedova-Vyshnyakova, V.

    1997-01-01

    This paper consider a universal approach to ecosystems of different types, based on representation of their radio-capacity. The concept of ecosystem includes reproduction of components (bio-productivity) and conditions such as maintaining of environment quality. Radio-capacity in the case of radionuclide pollution appears in accumulation and redistribution of radionuclides in the ecosystem. As a result the radionuclides are redistributed and buried in soil or lake bottom sediments. Estimation models for the radio-capacity of water and terrestrial ecosystems are represented. The calculations of the radio-capacity factor of water ecosystems are performed, and the high radio-capacity of a freshwater reservoir (F=0.6-0.8) and extremely high radio-capacity of a reservoir cascade (F c =0.99) is shown material from the Dnieper's cascade reservoirs. The methods of radio-capacity estimation of agroecosystems, wood and marine ecosystems are developed. (authors)

  20. Devil's in the details: Using archaeological and historical data to refine ecosystem models at the local level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Don Hann

    2006-01-01

    The United States Forest Service is charged with managing extensive and varied ecosystems throughout the country. Under the rubric of “ecosystem management” the goal has been to provide goods and services from Forest Service lands while maintaining ecological integrity. Recognizing that ecosystems are dynamic in nature, the concept of Historical Range of Variability (...