Beyond Naturalness: Rethinking Park and Wilderness Stewardship in an Era of Rapid Change
David N. Cole, Laurie Yung
Island Press, Jun 22, 2012 - Science - 304 pages
The central concept guiding the management of parks and wilderness over the past century has been “naturalness”—to a large extent the explicit purpose in establishing these special areas was to keep them in their “natural” state. But what does that mean, particularly as the effects of stressors such as habitat fragmentation, altered disturbance regimes, pollution, invasive species, and climate change become both more pronounced and more pervasive?
Beyond Naturalness brings together leading scientists and policymakers to explore the concept of naturalness, its varied meanings, and the extent to which it provides adequate guidance regarding where, when, and how managers should intervene in ecosystem processes to protect park and wilderness values. The main conclusion is the idea that naturalness will continue to provide an important touchstone for protected area conservation, but that more specific goals and objectives are needed to guide stewardship.
The issues considered in Beyond Naturalness are central not just to conservation of parks, but to many areas of ecological thinking—including the fields of conservation biology and ecological restoration—and represent the cutting edge of discussions of both values and practice in the twenty-first century. This bookoffers excellent writing and focus, along with remarkable clarity of thought on some of the difficult questions being raised in light of new and changing stressors such as global environmental climate change.
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actions adaptive management agencies anthropogenic assessment biodiversity biological diversity challenges Chapter climate change communities Conservation Biology context decisions defined disturbance ecological integrity ecological processes ecological restoration ecological systems ecosys ecosystem processes effects environmental change example explore fire regime function future global change Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem habitat habitat fragmentation hands-off approach historical fidelity human impacts important increase invasive species Island Press Joshua Tree land landscape Leopold long-term maintain management interventions ment Millar monitoring National Park Service native biodiversity native species natural conditions nonnative Noss options outcomes park management parks and wilderness Parks Canada plant populations predators predict preserve prioritize protected area managers R. J. Hobbs range regional resilience response restoration ecology scenario planning shift spatial scales stressors structure sustain targets tected areas threats tion uncertainty values variability whitebark pine wild design Wilderness Act wilderness managers wildlife Yellowstone Zavaleta