Nav: Home

The real urban jungle

August 04, 2010

MADISON, WI, August 4, 2010 - How well do you understand life in your own backyard? Cities and suburbs form their own unique ecosystems and ecology, where humans aren't visitors; they are an integral component, like trees in a forest or coral in a reef. If more than half of the Earth's people live in cities and the amount of paved surfaces in the United States is equivalent to the area of Ohio, shouldn't our sciences thrive in the city?

Urban Ecosystem Ecology is a new book from the American Society of Agronomy (ASA), the Crop Science Society of America (CSSA), and the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA). It takes on the important task of reconciling environmental sciences with the world's growing urbanization. From wildlife to water, from urban agriculture to low-impact development, we need a better understanding of the urban ecosystem.

"Urban Ecosystem Ecology explores the ecology of urban and suburban ecosystems in its traditional sense, but it puts humans into the ecosystem rather than assigning them positions of onlookers or polluters," say editors Jacqueline Aitkenhead-Peterson and Astrid Volder. "Just as the environment of aquatic species may change because of beaver dams, or the environment of insects may change because of hurricanes, we will explore the environment of wildlife, vegetation, and soil in the circumstances of urbanization. Readers will especially benefit from a synthesis of the literature, results from urban ecosystems, and modified methods of analysis."

Jacqueline Aitkenhead-Peterson is an Assistant Professor of Urban Water and Nutrient Management within the Soil and Crop Science department at Texas A&M University. Her research and teaching have focused on stream chemistry and the impact of land use/land cover management on soil and freshwater nutrient dynamics.

Astrid Volder is an Assistant Professor of Horticultural Landscape Ecology within the Horticultural Sciences department at Texas A&M University. Her research and teaching focus on plant stress response and belowground ecology as affected by climate change, urbanization and ecosystem management.

The book includes chapters on how urban areas affect weather, air quality, water quality, and wildlife. It also addresses how to plan and manipulate the urban ecosystem through green roofs and garden roofs, green infrastructure planning, along with urban forestry and lawn ecology.
-end-
Urban Ecosystem Ecology is 478 pages, hardcover, and available from ASA, CSSA, and SSSA for $100 at www.societystore.org, or call 608-268-4960 or email books@sciencesocieties.org.

The American Society of Agronomy (ASA) www.agronomy.org, is a scientific society helping its 8,000+ members advance the disciplines and practices of agronomy by supporting professional growth and science policy initiatives, and by providing quality, research-based publications and a variety of member services.

American Society of Agronomy

Related Ecosystem Articles:

Dune ecosystem modelling
Using the acacia as an example, researchers show that the location has an effect on interaction with other species.
Deaths of migrating wildebeests key to Serengeti's vibrant ecosystem
Wildebeest carcasses, casualties of the world's largest overland animal migration, pile up annually on the banks of the Mara River in Africa and play a crucial role in vibrant ecosystem of the Serengeti plains, a new Yale-led study has found.
What could be the importance of marine and coastal cultural ecosystem services
Cultural ecosystem services reflect physical and cognitive interactions between humans and nature, and are increasingly recognised for providing experiences, capabilities and many other benefits to human societies.
Using Google to map our ecosystem
Researchers in the Singapore-ETH Centre's Future Cities Laboratory developed a method to quantify ecosystem services of street trees.
Pioneering partnership model in the McMaster innovation ecosystem
McMaster University's innovative experimental co-location between an academic research center and a rapidly growing startup company has begun to yield successes.
Pressures from grazers hastens ecosystem collapse from drought
Ecosystem collapse from extreme drought can be significantly hastened by pressures placed on drought-weakened vegetation by grazers and fungal pathogens, a new Duke-led study finds.
Using ecosystem services in municipality planning: Lessons from Sweden
In the context of increasing land use and climate change, municipality planning faces a growing challenge finding a sustainable balance between different actions to accommodate citizen's demands of ecosystem services (ES) and development projects.
Global change, ecosystem services and human well being: An assessment for Europe
Highly dependent on the different aspects of global change, variations in ecosystem services supply can also have direct impacts on human well being.
Reduced ecosystem functions in oil palm plantations
Large areas of tropical lowland forests have been replaced by oil palm plantations, with major impact on environment and people.
One Ecosystem Journal: Innovation in ecology and sustainability research publishing
Focused on the fields of ecology and sustainability, One Ecosystem is an innovative open access scholarly journal that goes beyond the conventional research article publication.

Related Ecosystem Reading:

Principles of Terrestrial Ecosystem Ecology
by F Stuart Chapin III (Author), Pamela A. Matson (Author), Peter Vitousek (Author), M.C. Chapin (Illustrator)

AeroDynamic: Inside the High-Stakes Global Jetliner Ecosystem
by Kevin Michaels (Author)

The Corporate Startup: How Established Companies Can Develop Successful Innovation Ecosystems
by Tendayi Viki; Dan Toma; Esther Gons (Author)

The Wondrous Workings of Planet Earth: Understanding Our World and Its Ecosystems
by Rachel Ignotofsky (Author)

Sea Otter Heroes: The Predators That Saved an Ecosystem
by Patricia Newman (Author)

Ecosystems of Florida
by Ronald L. Myers (Editor), John J. Ewel (Editor)

The Natural World: Portraits of Earth's Great Ecosystems
by Thomas D. Mangelsen (Photographer), Dr. Jane Goodall (Photographer)

Platform Ecosystems: Aligning Architecture, Governance, and Strategy
by Morgan Kaufmann

Properties of Ecosystems (God's Design)
by Debbie & Richard Lawrence (Author), Answers in Genesis (Editor), Answers in Genesis (Editor)

Ecosystem (Ecosystem Trilogy Book 1)
by Mostly Wind Books

Best Science Podcasts 2018

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2018. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Circular
We're told if the economy is growing, and if we keep producing, that's a good thing. But at what cost? This hour, TED speakers explore circular systems that regenerate and re-use what we already have. Guests include economist Kate Raworth, environmental activist Tristram Stuart, landscape architect Kate Orff, entrepreneur David Katz, and graphic designer Jessi Arrington.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#504 The Art of Logic
How can mathematics help us have better arguments? This week we spend the hour with "The Art of Logic in an Illogical World" author, mathematician Eugenia Cheng, as she makes her case that the logic of mathematics can combine with emotional resonance to allow us to have better debates and arguments. Along the way we learn a lot about rigorous logic using arguments you're probably having every day, while also learning a lot about our own underlying beliefs and assumptions.