This report is a product of the Panel to Review the Critical Ecosystem Studies Initiative—a panel organized
by the National Research Council (NRC) in response to congressional concerns that the restoration of the greater
Everglades ecosystem be supported by the best possible science. The Critical Ecosystem Studies Initiative
(CESI) has been the primary investment by the U.S. Department of the Interior to provide scientific information
to advise restoration decision-making and to guide its own land management responsibilities for South Florida
.society for ecological restoration
The Science and Practice of Ecological Restoration Editorial Board James Aronson, EDITOR Karen D. Holl, ASSOCIATE EDITOR Donald A. Falk, Richard J. Hobbs, Margaret A. Palmer
A complete list of titles in this series can be found in the back of this book. The Society for Ecological Restoration (SER) is an international nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote ecological restoration as a means of sustaining the diversity of life on Earth and reestablishing an ecologically healthy relationship between nature and culture.
Ecological issues and environmental problems have become exceedingly complex. Today,
it is hubris to suppose that any single discipline can provide all the solutions for protecting
and restoring ecological integrity. We have entered an age where professional humility is
the only operational means for approaching environmental understanding and prediction.
The history and development of the longleaf pine (Pinus palustris Mill.) ecosystem in the southeastern
United States has intrigued natural resource professionals, researchers, and the general
public for many decades. Prior to European settlement, longleaf pine forests were one of the
most extensive ecosystems in North America. Most recent estimates suggest that only about
2.2% of the original area remains today, making it one of the most threatened ecosystems in
The research effort on which this book is based has involved continuous analyses of
various river–estuarine and coastal systems in the southeastern United States since 1970.
These long-term studies have been carried out using a combination of field descriptive
and experimental (lab and field) approaches.
Ecological Applications at the Level of Organisms and Single-Species Populations: Restoration, Biosecurity and Conservation
The expanding human population (Figure 7.1) has created a wide variety of environmental problems. Our species is not unique in depleting and contaminating the environment but we are certainly unique in using ﬁre, fossil fuels and nuclear ﬁssion to provide the energy to do work.
The 8th International Congress of Ecology was held in Seoul, South Korea in
August 2002, and was hosted by the Ecological Society of Korea. The Congress
theme was 'Ecological Issues in a Changing World', and this volume includes
selected contributions to illustrate some of the important topics which were
discussed during the Congress.
Problems of scale have exercised the minds of ecologists for many years, and
will continue to do so into the future. This volume deals with this subject and with
mathematical approaches to improve our understanding of complex ecological
The DSS will enable examination of existing conditions, forecasting of future conditions, and simulation of
alternatives that will be ecologically sustaining and socially desired. The DSS will address watershed, water
quality, water quantity, groundwater and ecosystem restoration needs at the small watershed, major
watershed, tributary river, and main stem Minnesota River reach levels of spatial scale. The DSS will
enable forecasting future conditions.
Our precious planet is in peril. The economic overshoot of ecological thresholds is seemingly
the order of the day. Yet, it is clearly not enough to lament the excessive economic use and
human domination of ecosystems and sit as if in sackcloth and ashes while romanticizing the
days gone by.
The following paragraphs describe a set of activities leading to development of a watershed and water
quality management plan for the MRB. The tasks described below create a framework for the study. It is
anticipated that these tasks will be accomplished in a collaborative fashion; study goals will be set by the
Interagency Study Team, and individual partners will develop data, models, and other pertinent information
to accomplish each task in cooperation with the other partners.
A decision support system (DSS) will be developed, using the results of the MRB model system and other
existing watershed DSSs to enable decision-making about investments in watershed management, aquatic
ecosystem restoration, water quality, water quantity, and groundwater management measures in the MRB.
The DSS will be explicitly designed to meet sponsor needs. The DSS will be linked to the Basin GIS to
enable visualization of the spatial arrangement of management measures.
The outputs of an ARIES session have numerous practical uses for conservation and economic development planning. Notably, they can show which regions are critical to maintaining the supply and flows of particular benefits for specific beneficiary groups. By prioritizing conservation and restoration activities around sources and sinks for particular services, benefit flows may be maintained or increased. Similarly, focusing development or extractive resource use outside these regions can prevent degradation of benefit flows.
Biological invasions are one of the major threats to our native biodiversity. The
magnitude of biodiversity losses, land degradation and productivity losses of managed
and natural ecosystems due to invasive species is enormous. It has an adverse
impact on our efforts to maintain biodiversity and on our conservation programs,
and thus could create societal instability.
The landmass on which we live is an integral part of our water catchment. Any human activity
will inevitably have some consequences on the availability and composition of fresh
waters. These consequences are becoming increasingly important and detectable as the human
population grows. The problem is to be addressed at the global scale, as frequently,
decisions made have inter-regional and international impacts, and must therefore be coordinated.
In a number of European Member States, for example, the availability of water resources
depends on the activities of other upstream countries.
Coastal Louisiana's built and natural environment faces risks from catastrophic tropical storms. Concurrently, the region is experiencing a dramatic conversion of coastal land and associated habitats to open water and a loss of important services provided by such ecosystems. Louisiana's Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) engaged in a detailed modeling, simulation, and analysis exercise, the results of which informed Louisiana's Comprehensive Master Plan for a Sustainable Coast.
Restoration ecology is a subdiscipline of ecological engineering that has been growing out of the need and desire to add ecological value to ecosystems that have been degraded by human impacts.
Conserving Living Natural Resources provides students, managers, and general readers with an
introduction to the principles of managing biological resources. It presents the historical and
conceptual contexts of three seminal approaches to the management of living natural
resources: utilitarian management for harvest of featured species and control of unwanted
species, protection and restoration of populations and habitats to maintain biodiversity, and
management of complex ecosystems to sustain both productivity and biodiversity.
The consideration of an ecosystem approach recognizes the important link between fish
community structure and its habitat has been further emphasized in the Strategic Vision
Great Lakes Fishery Commission first decade of the new millennium (GLFC 2001).
The Study Team will select a set of ecosystem services that will be affected by watershed management,
aquatic ecosystem, and water quality restoration. The model system will be used to simulate the effects of
management measures on the production of ecosystem services. Rules for the spatial effects by number,
geographic location, and area (as appropriate) of application of management measures on the production of
ecosystem services will be developed.
The EPA’s ecosystem protection programs encompass a wide range of approaches that address
specific at-risk regional areas and larger categories of threatened systems, such as urban waters,
estuaries, and wetlands. Locally generated pollution, combined with pollution carried by rivers
and streams and through air deposition, can accumulate in these ecosystems and degrade them
over time. The EPA and its federal partners along with states, tribes, municipalities, and private
parties, will continue efforts to restore the integrity of the imperiled waters of the United States.