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Valuation of Ecosystem Services Towards Ecological Citizenship

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Land systems in almost all developed countries call for a new integrated resource management toward greener sustainable landscape that will cover the material needs of the current generation, while optimizing restoration activities toward potential natural vegetation. It is necessity to introduce a new unique integrative methodology for the co-existence of traditional economic land-use with optimal landscape restoration management through integrated ecological and economic valuations.

Earth System Governance initiative consists of such distribution of resources that reconciles the needs of human generations, while surviving and restoring the ecosystem services. Human societies and their economies decisively depend on the life supporting functions and services of earth's ecosystems (MEA 2005). Natural ecosystems protect against harmful cosmic radiation; continually control the composition of atmosphere; produce fertile soil and biomass; clear air and water; mitigate climate extremes; maintain biodiversity; decompose organic waste etc. (deGroot et al. 2002).

The principal activities could be to develop the capability for understanding, assessing, and enhancing human use of terrestrial ecosystems and their multiple services, considering key sectors of rural land use in case study areas, with a view to their interpretation across wider regions. The research activities have to focus on describing and understanding both previous and current ecosystem functions, values and services to society, in rural, urban or peri-urban environments, and linkages to and influences from the natural, economic and socio-cultural environment (Costanza et al. 1997).

For hundreds of millions of years, the landscape ecosystems (vegetation on continents) have been creating the life-supporting conditions for heterotrophic organisms. Self-organizing processes in autotrophic ecosystems tend to climax in vegetation that is characterized by maximal use of solar energy and by maximal ability to produce life-supporting conditions (composition of atmosphere, mitigation of temperature extremes, cleaning air and water, retaining nutrients, etc.) and to keep the nutrients and water inside the ecosystem (Ripl 2003).
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 January 2011

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