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Posted Thu Feb 4 2010: from Environmental Protection:
Ecologists Create a More Precise Way to Measure Human Impacts
Ecologists from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and Baylor University in Texas have developed a new method for measuring the impact of human-caused environmental degradation on biodiversity that is significantly more precise than current methods and has revealed a dramatically lower ecological "tipping point" at which species are threatened.... Baker said the precision of their new method is significantly greater than methods that have been widely used for the past 40 years. For example, a decade-old analysis widely cited by environmental professionals and policymakers suggests that it takes up to 15 percent of impervious surface (meaning roads, roofs, or parking lots) or about 20 to 30 percent developed land in a given area before local water systems no longer sustain normal aquatic life. Baker and King's new method demonstrates that aquatic life actually shows significant loss of biodiversity with only 1 to 3 percent developed land in a watershed.
[Read more stories about: tipping point, ecosystem interrelationships, water issues]

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'Doc Jim says:
"Tipping points" presume that we're currently balanced.

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