Ecology in Times of Scarcity

TitleEcology in Times of Scarcity
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsDay, JW, Hall, CAS, Yanez-Arancibia, A, Pimentel, D, Ibanez-Marti, C, Mitsch, WJ
Date PublishedApril/2009
Accession NumberLUQ.970

In an energy-scarcefuture,ecosystem services will become moreimportant in supporting the human economy. The primary role of ecology will be the sustainable management of ecosystems. Energy scarcity will afect ecology in a number of ways. Ecology will become more expensive,which will be justified by its help in solving societal problems,especially in maintaining ecosystem services. Applied research on highly productive ecosystems,including agroecosystems,will dominate ecology. Ecology may become less collegial and morecompetitive. Biodiversity preservation will beclosely tied to preservation of productive ecosystems and provision of high ecosystem services. Restoration and management of rich natural ecosystems will be as important as protection of existing wild areas. Energy-intensivemicromanagement of ecosystems will become less feasible. Ecotechnology and,more specifically,ecological engineering and self-design are appropriate bases for sustainable ecosystem management. We usethe Mississippi River basin as a casestudy forecology in times of scarcity.