Life on Land

Living Edition
| Editors: Walter Leal Filho, Anabela Marisa Azul, Luciana Brandli, Pinar Gökcin Özuyar, Tony Wall

Ecological Restoration and Ecosystem Services

  • Francisco A. ComínEmail author
Living reference work entry


Ecological restoration (ER) is defined by the Society for Ecological Restoration as “the process of assisting the recovery of an ecosystem that has been degraded, damaged or destroyed” (SER 2004). This is a quite rhetoric definition that could be simplified as the processes of recovering ecosystems characteristics from a degraded standpoint. ER started with the aims of recovering the original characteristics of natural ecosystems impacted by human activities. It has been clear for a long time that it is not possible to fully recover the characteristics that the ecosystem had before degradation. Then, recovering as many as possible characteristics, particularly key components and functions, assembled as an ecosystem is a more realistic objective. Because of the relevant role of humans in the restoration process, a recent definition of ecological restoration embracing a wide range of possibilities is emerging as “the process of assisting the recovery of a degraded, damaged,...


Land use planning Spatial scale Ecological characteristics Benefits Society Future directions 
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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Instituto Pirenaico de Ecología-CSICZaragoza, Jaca, HuescaSpain

Section editors and affiliations

  • Anabela Marisa Azul
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Neuroscience and Cell BiologyUniversity of CoimbraCoimbraPortugal