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Regional Environmental Change

, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp 89–90 | Cite as

Advanced terrestrial ecosystem analysis and modelling

  • Wolfgang Cramer
Editorial

Ecosystems are important for human life and human livelihoods are affected when ecosystem functioning is degraded beyond some threshold. Consequently, most quantitative assessments of ecosystem dynamics have been motivated by a mix of academic curiosity and pressing resource or environmental problems. A classic case for this dualism was presented by research into the expected evolution of the impacts of acid rain in Europe during the 1980s: once the wide-spread damages became evident in Central European forests and freshwater ecosystems, stakeholders quickly began to demand a reliable risk assessment for what was perceived as an ecologically complex and dangerous situation. Scientists attempting to respond to this challenge employed a range of different approaches: while some embarked on data-rich, problem-oriented phenomenological assessments (where do the damages occur, how can they be classified, which climatic or atmospheric deposition patterns coincide, etc.), others went for a...

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Earth System AnalysisPotsdam Institute for Climate Impact ResearchPotsdamGermany

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