“The False Promise of Ecological Restoration Projects” presents food for thought

Nature_Balkan_PlianaA recent Blog by Richard Coniff presents a critical view to ecological restoration projects, claiming that they often provide an excuse to developers to build over natural habitats, while restoring (often unsuccessfully) secondary sites and at high cost. The author asks critical questions about ecological restoration projects. We are interested to know your opinion!

The author, Richard Coniff, quotes recent reviews of ecological restoration projects.  “A new study in the journal Ecological Indicators looked at 120 river restoration projects, mostly in Europe or North America, and found that while they were generally beneficial, they had no effect, or even a negative effect, about a third of the time“.

The same finding for river restoration projects:

Likewise, a 2010 study examined 78 river restoration projects and found that “only two showed statistically significant increases in biodiversity” compared with similar sites that had not been restored. “They may be pretty projects,” said lead author Margaret Palmer of the University of Maryland, “but they don’t provide ecological benefits.”

Richard Conniff is the author of The Species Seekers: Heroes, Fools, and the Mad Pursuit of Life on Earth and other books.

What do you think? What makes an ecological restoration project a success or failure?

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