Approaches to Understanding Long-term Human–Environment Interactions: Past, Present and Future

Dearing JA, Yang X, Dong X, Zhang E, Chen X, Langdon PG, Zhang K, Zhang W & Dawson TP

Eds: Matthews JA

, 134-162, 2012Book title:

The SAGE Handbook of Environmental Change: Volume 1

Publisher:

Sage Publications

Book chapter on a case study by the Regional Integration Working Group.

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Recent international reports from the global environmental change (GEC) communities, like the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP, 2007), Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, 2007), and Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MEA, 2005) paint a disturbing picture of global environments.

Not only are regional declines in biodiversity, ecological resilience and ecological services (Costanza et al., 1997) now well established, but these are also becoming increasingly conflated with accelerating climate change, demographic pressures, land use change and resource depletion. The result is an explosion of multiple stressed ecosystems and ecological services with our conventional understanding of ‘causes’ of change increasingly questioned (e.g., Lambin et al., 2001).

The GEC community is tasked with improving our understanding of human-environment interactions in order that science can inform the most appropriate public policies.

Category: Book chapters