History of the Baltimore Ecosystem Study
- Structure: What is the spatial and temporal patch structure of ecological, physical, and socio-economic factors in the urban ecosystem?
- Function: What are the fluxes of energy, matter, and populations in patches of the urban ecosystem?
- People: What are the choices people and their organizations make that affect the urban ecosystem?
|Photo by Brad Neathery on Unsplash|
- BES has developed new theory (2) and methods (5) for characterizing the multidimensional, multidisciplinary nature of urban ecosystems. These efforts have facilitated analyses of urban ecosystems across the globe and the development of a new “urban systems science” that is a key component of emerging sustainability science across the globe (7).
- BES watershed research has shown that nutrient cycling and retention in urban watersheds are driven by complex dynamics, with surprisingly high nitrogen retention, climate sensitivity and surface water:groundwater interactions (1, 8). These studies have been a platform for novel analyses of the ecosystem effects of emerging contaminants (10).
- BES has helped challenge the assumption that urban biodiversity is low, replacing it with a realization that biological communities in urban environments are diverse and dynamic, with significant effects on fluxes of water, energy, carbon and nutrients and human well-being (6, 9, 4).
- The BES Household Telephone Survey has provided novel information on environmental knowledge, perceptions, values, and behaviors; how these influence ecosystem structure and function; and how changes in ecosystem structure and function may affect people’s physical activity, social cohesion, perception of neighborhood desirability, and willingness to relocate (3).
|Downtown Baltimore from the Washington Monument|
|Data uplink from the Carroll Park BES/USGS stream gauge.|
Lead Principal Investigator: Dr. Emma J. Rosi Institution: Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies
Established 1998, LTER 1637661 (3.75 funding cycles)
Sponsoring NSF Directorate / Division / NSF Program(s): BIO/DEB/Ecosystems