Using Biological Criteria to Protect Ecological Health

  • James R. Karr
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (volume 28)


Among organisms that inhabit Earth, the human species is unique for three reasons. First, our population size and the extent of our geographic distribution gives us an impact that is unprecendented in the history of life on Earth. Five times in the last 600 million years, cataclysmic events, driven by major geological or astronomical forces such as meteorite strikes or climate change, have set back the evolutionary process with a spasm of extinction that was global in scope (Wilson 1992). As we move into the 21st century, the human species, a biological agent, is likely to be responsible for the next massive extinction event.


Human Society United States Environmental Protection Agency Ecological Integrity Biotic Integrity Ecological Health 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • James R. Karr
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Environmental StudiesUniversity of Washington FM-12SeattleUSA

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