Natural Experiments: Ecosystem-Based Management and the Environment

Natural Experiments: Ecosystem-Based Management and the Environment

by Judith A. Layzer
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0262622149

ISBN-13: 9780262622141

Pub. Date: 10/31/2008

Publisher: MIT Press

Scholars, scientists, and policymakers have hailed ecosystem-based management (EBM) as a remedy for the perceived shortcomings of the centralized,
top-down, expert-driven environmental regulatory framework established in the United
States in the late 1960s and early 1970s. EBM entails collaborative, landscape-scale planning and flexible, adaptive

Overview

Scholars, scientists, and policymakers have hailed ecosystem-based management (EBM) as a remedy for the perceived shortcomings of the centralized,
top-down, expert-driven environmental regulatory framework established in the United
States in the late 1960s and early 1970s. EBM entails collaborative, landscape-scale planning and flexible, adaptive implementation. But although scholars have analyzed aspects of EBM for more than a decade, until now there has been no systematic empirical study of the overall approach. In Natural Experiments, Judith Layzer provides a detailed assessment of whether EBM delivers in practice the environmental benefits it promises in theory. She does this by examining four nationally known EBM
initiatives (the Balcones Canyonlands Conservation Program in Austin, Texas, the San
Diego Multiple Species Program, the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan, and the California Bay-Delta Program) and three comparison cases that used more conventional regulatory approaches (Arizona's Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan and efforts to restore Florida's Kissimmee River and California's Mono Basin). Layzer concludes that projects that set goals based on stakeholder collaboration, rather than through conventional politics, are less likely to result in environmental improvement, largely because the pursuit of consensus drives planners to avoid controversy and minimize short-term costs. Layzer's resolutely practical focus cuts through the ideological and theoretical arguments for and against EBM to identify strategies that hold genuine promise for restoring the ecological resilience of our landscapes.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780262622141
Publisher:
MIT Press
Publication date:
10/31/2008
Series:
American and Comparative Environmental Policy
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
384
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Table of Contents


Series Foreword     vii
Preface and Acknowledgments     xi
Introduction     1
Why Ecosystem-Based Management?     9
Setting Aside Habitat for Songbirds, Salamanders, and Spiders in Austin, Texas     41
Saving San Diego's Coastal Sage Scrub     71
Restoring South Florida's River of Grass     103
Averting Ecological Collapse in California's Bay-Delta     137
Conserving the Sonoran Desert in Pima County, Arizona     173
Re-creating Central Florida's Meandering Kissimmee River     205
Making History in the Mono Basin     233
Ecosystem-Based Management and the Environment     267
Notes     293
References     313
Index     353

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