Tuesday, August 7, 2012: 1:30 PM-5:00 PM
Portland Blrm 253, Oregon Convention Center
Jill Baron, Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory, United States Geological Survey
Daniel B. Fagre, Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center
Jeffrey A. Hicke, University of Idaho
In 2002 the Rocky Mountain region boasted the fastest growing human population in the country. Prior to that more than a century of natural resource exploitation for water, minerals, energy, forest and animal products left a patchwork legacy of altered ecosystems that now serves as the palimpsest for current attempts to manage public and private lands and resources while adapting to climate change. In 2002 we forecast a future of continued erosion of natural processes and habitats in the Rocky Mountains if decisions continue to be made piecemeal and isolated from each other. We suggested instead that land, water, biota and society are parts of an interconnected whole and must be managed accordingly. Rocky Mountain ecosystems of today and tomorrow are a mosaic of human habitation and uses embedded within a less utilized natural setting. Ten years after publication of the book "Rocky Mountain Futures, an Ecological Perspective," we revisit this profoundly human landscape. In evaluating the current state of Rocky Mountain coupled human - natural ecosystems we ask what we, as scientists, as resource managers, as policy makers, and as citizens, have learned about ecosystem stewardship. Each speaker will rise to the challenge of evaluating management practices in light of short-term services and long-term sustainability. Our symposium is all about preserving ecosystems and their functions, extracting natural resources while minimizing the loss of services, and above all attempting to implement a balanced approach that may lead toward sustainable existence of humans in the Rocky Mountain region.
Rocky Mountain Chapter