The desire to stop the current dramatic loss of biodiversity has been a major stimulus for many vegetation ecologists to unravel the mechanisms responsible for the coexistence of species. After the Rio Janeiro Convention many ecologists were convinced that nature conservation would gain strong societal support if they could prove that the loss of species would have important negative effects on the ecosystem functions that are relevant to society. I conclude that in order to understand such possible effects, it is necessary to analyse the effects of individual species on those ecosystem processes that we consider to be relevant in the context of specific questions. The great challenge for the near future is to scale the effects of plant species on their local environment up to the level of the whole planet, so that we learn about possible feedbacks that might regulate or destabilize those characteristics of the globe that are essential to our society.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.