This unique addition to reference literature provides an introduction to the major concepts and contemporary issues that are essential for students of environmental science and environmental studies to know. With over 200 entries authored by world-class names like Anthony Brazel, John Day and Edward Keller, this text is divided into six sections: Environmental Science, Environments, Paradigms & Concepts, Processes & Dynamics, Scales & Techniques, and Environmental Issues.
The biome is the largest land ecosystem which is usually designated and as such is often depicted on world-scale maps. The diagnostic characteristic is the life form of mature stands of a vegetation type: a deciduous forest biome takes its name from the dominance of deciduous trees, though the exact species in the forest will vary from continent to continent. This life form exercises a degree of control over the rest of the ecosystem: it forms the structure for the non-dominant plants and for the animals, and is the essential photosynthetic layer which dominates the supply of chemical energy to the rest of the ecosystem. It may well organize the flow of radiant energy as well as in terms of how much light penetrates e.g., ...