Ecosystems

To fight against the biodiversity loss and to take advantage of ecosystem services that nature can offer, urban planners integrate green spaces in urban projects. However to assess green spaces, attention is generally paid to local biodiversity (i.e. “in situ”)which concerns the plot on which buildings are constructed. The biodiversity impacted outside the construction site (i.e. “ex situ”)which concerns the extraction of materials, transportation and waste, is rarely associated to the project assessment.
Rising demand for renewable resources has increased silage maize (Zea mays L.)production characterized by intensive soil management, high fertilizer and pesticide inputs as well as simplified crop rotations. Advantages of renewable biomass production may thus be cancelled out by adverse environmental effects. Perennial crops, like cup plant (Silphium perfoliatum L.), are said to benefit arthropods. Substituting silage maize could hence increase biodiversity and foster ecosystem services.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 113, April 2019
Although the study of the effects of microplastics increased in the last years, terrestrial ecosystems remain less studied. In fact, the effects of microplastics in insects, the most abundant group of animals and major providers of key Ecosystem Services, are not well known despite the potential cascading negative effects on the ecosystems functioning in the habitats where they occur.
Plastic pollution is a global problem since 2016 when its production reached 322 million tonnes, excluding fibers. Daily discharges of microplastics (MPs, defined as
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 110, January 2019
The current paper critically reviews the state-of-the-science on (1) microplastics (MP) types and particle concentrations in freshwater ecosystems, (2) MP and nanoplastics (NP) uptake and tissue translocation, (3) MP/NP-induced effects in freshwater organisms, and (4) capabilities of MP/NP to modulate the toxicity of environmental chemicals. The reviewed literature as well as new data on MP and NP concentrations in the river Elbe and on particle uptake into human cells indicate an environmental relevance of small particles in the low nano- and micrometer range higher than that of larger MP.
Plastics entering the environment will persist and continue to degrade and fragment to smaller particles under the action of various environmental factors. These microplastics (MP) and nanoplastics (NP) are likely to pose a higher environmental impact, as well as they are more prone to adsorb organic contaminants and pathogens from the surrounding media, due to their higher surface area to volume ratio. Little known on their characteristics, fragmentation, distribution and impact on freshwater ecosystems.
Water resources are an essential and determining factor for food production, ecosystem health, and socio-economic development. The socio–economic water cycling system is a complex adaptive system. Changes in the socio-economic system at the macro level, such as industrial transformation, technical progress, and water price reform, will have impacts on water resources utilization at the micro level.
Activities in the food-energy-water nexus require ecosystem services to maintain productivity and prevent ecological degradation. This work applies techno-ecological synergy concepts in an optimization formulation to design a system for co-producing food and energy under constraints on ecological sustainability. The system includes land use activities and biomass conversion processes for the production of energy carriers, as well as supporting ecosystems that increase the supply of key ecosystem services.
It is commonly acknowledged that ants improve the hydraulic properties of soils in which they build their nests. To date, however, most studies of such soil modifications have focused on one ant species and one type of ecosystem, rather than investigating how different ant species affect different types of land cover within the same landscape. Our study focused on modifications to water infiltration and surface texture of Haplic Luvisols by two ant species—one of them present only in a forest and the other present only in a pasture.
Megacities contain at least 10 million people whose wellbeing largely depends on ecosystem services provided by remote natural areas. What is, however, most often disregarded is that nature conservation in the city can also contribute to human wellbeing benefits. The most common mind set separates cities from the rest of nature, as if they were not special kinds of natural habitats.

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