The Fundamental Processes in Ecology Life and the Earth System

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The Fundamental Processes in Ecology Life and the Earth System by Wilkinson, David M., 9780192884657
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  • ISBN: 9780192884657 | 0192884654
  • Cover: Paperback
  • Copyright: 12/5/2023

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This thought-provoking book introduces a way to study ecosystems that is resonant with current thinking in the fields of earth system science, geobiology, and planetology. Instead of organizing the subject around a hierarchical series of entities (e.g. genes, individuals, populations, species, communities, and the biosphere), the book provides an alternative process-based approach and proposes a truly planetary view of ecological science. It demonstrates how the idea of fundamental ecological processes can be developed at the systems level, specifically their involvement in control and feedback mechanisms. This enables the reader to reconsider fundamental ecological processes such as energy flow, guilds, trade-offs, carbon cycling, and photosynthesis, and to put them in a global (and even planetary) context. In so doing, the book places a much stronger emphasis on microorganisms.

Since publication of the first edition in 2006, ever growing societal concern about environmental sustainability has ensured that the earth system science/Gaian approach has steadily gained traction. Its integration with ecology is now more important than ever if ecological science is to effectively contribute to the massive problems and future challenges associated with global environmental change.

The Fundamental Processes in Ecology is an accessible text for senior undergraduates, graduate student seminar courses, and researchers in the fields of ecology, environmental sustainability, earth system science, evolutionary biology, palaeontology, history of life, astrobiology, planetology, climatology, geology, and physical geography.
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