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Plants and Society, 3/e
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Concept Quizzes


Reclamation is the process of restoring land disturbed by mining, pollution, farming, grazing, logging, and other human activities to its natural state or biome. For example, to reverse the global problem of deforestation, international organizations fund tree-replanting efforts.

Typically, the first step in restoring a forest of mixed hardwoods is to plant pine seedlings. Why don't the foresters plant hardwood seedlings to restore a hardwood forest? Is there an explanation to be found in ecological theory?

Short-term economic gain is often the underlying cause of rain forest destruction. The strategy of extractive reserves argues that a renewable harvest from an intact rain forest can yield greater economic profits over the long term.

Do you think the strategy of economic reserves could be employed to preserve natural areas other than the tropical rain forest? What products might be harvested from other biomes such as the prairie, the deciduous forest, the temperate rain forest, or the desert? Do you think the strategy of extractive reserves would work equally as well in developed nations as in developing countries? Explain.