COAS | The City as Ecosystem
E105 | 0117 | Reynolds

Lecture 0117 2:30p-3:45p TR


Over the course of evolution from groups of wild primates towards increasingly complex and highly technological societies, humans have come to see themselves as somehow independent of nature. This perspective is perhaps most pervasive in cities, which are spatially separated from the natural landscape. Yet cities, like all human settlements, depend crucially on natural ecosystem processes for basic life support services such as air purification, climate regulation, waste decomposition, and the flow of goods such as food, pharmaceuticals, and fresh water. Furthermore, cities are themselves a kind of ecosystem; they have abiotic and biotic components that interact to create flows of energy and cycling of matter.