Ecosystem Health: New Goals for Environmental Management

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Island Press, 1992 - Science - 269 pages
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As environmental regulatory and management agencies (most notably the Environmental Protection Agency) move toward a broad set of management goals to protect ecosystem health, developing an adequate definition for "ecosystem health" has become increasingly important. This work is a multidisciplinary collection of perspectives on the concept of health as it relates to ecosystems. The contributors - leading ecologists, philosophers, and economists - analyze the normative, conceptual, and biological issues surrounding the idea of ecosystem health. They examine both theoretical and practical aspects of the issues, and look at philosophical and ethical underpinnings as well as implications for public policy and ecosystems management. Ecosystem Health is a groundbreaking attempt to formulate an understanding of the quality and health of natural environments so that regulatory mandates can be brought in line with legislative goals. Ultimately, it seeks a new ethic of sustainability that will serve to protect the vital processes of nature.

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Aldo Leopolds Metaphor
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Environmental Existentialism
Environmental Therapeutic Nihilism
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Ecosystem Health and Ecological Theories
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Alternative Models of Ecosystem Restoration
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Measures of Economic and Ecological Health
Ecological Integrity Protecting Earths Life Support Systems
Toward an Operational Definition of Ecosystem Health

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Page 9 - An ecological system is healthy and free from "distress syndrome" if it is stable and sustainable — that is, if it is active and maintains its organization and autonomy over time and is resilient to stress.

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About the author (1992)

Robert Costanza is Gordon Gund Professor of Ecological Economics and Director of the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics at the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Vermont.

Bryan G. Norton is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of philosophy and environmental policy in the School of Public Policy at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He is the author or editor of several books, including "Linguistic Frameworks and Ontology", "Why Preserve Natural Variety?" and" Toward Unity among Environmentalists", and the "The Preservation of Species". He lives in Atlanta, GA.

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