Ecological restoration is the replenishment of conditions that support natural ecosystems. Natural ecosystems consist of both biotic and abiotic influences that interact with one another. Plants, animals and microorganisms qualify as biotic influences while water, sediments and weather are abiotic. The interactivity between life and its environment constitutes an ecological system.

Restoration Is the Reverse of Degradation

Since the industrial revolution, roughly starting in the mid 1700s, ecological degradation has increased in magnitude. Examples of human caused ecological degradation include deforestation, oceanic pollution and global warming. Human driven impacts can ultimately deprive animals of the resources and habitats that they depend on for survival. Furthermore, plants and microorganisms are commonly killed, leading to lowered soil quality, diminishing crop yields and decreasing biodiversity.

Practitioners of restoration create the conditions necessary for plants, animals, and microorganisms to reinvigorate themselves through natural processes. For example, if you were to remove non-native plant species from a targeted area or crop, you would consequently be improving survival conditions for native plant species by making them less likely to be displaced. Once invasive plant species have been removed, native plant ecosystems become more capable of diversifying themselves. Plant diversity is an imperative element in plant resistance to pathogens and adverse weather. Restoration is effectively the reversal of ecological degradation.

Ecological Restoration Aims To Improve The Living World

Restoration initiatives can be pioneered by almost anyone, governments, corporations, groups individuals. Restorers of natural ecosystems participate in efforts like reforestation, revegetation, and various clean-up projects. Revegetation seeds vegetable crops and plants where they have been lost. Reforestation involves restocking depleted forests and woodlands. Human civilizations depend on vegetation forests and woodlands for food, energy, medicine, clothing and much more.

Restoration in the form of clean-up projects is insufficient to eliminate the hostile consequences of anthropogenic climate change. Humanity must collectively reform its economies with the natural world in mind. Adverse changes in naturally occurring ecosystems can not be completely avoided; in fact, it is a natural part of the life and death cycles that ecosystems experience as they evolve over time. However, anthropogenic environmental changes commonly take place on an industrial scale, making their impacts much more difficult to recover from. Reducing our environmental impact ensures the continued survival of natural ecosystems and prevents further biodiversity loss, degradations in soil quality and water pollution.

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