Public participation in environmental decision-making: a case study of ecosystem restoration in South Florida
The “ecosystem” is the conceptual model guiding environmental restoration projects in the Florida Everglades, a large wetlands region in the southern United States. According to applied ecological frameworks, ecosystems are geographies (of various temporal and spatial scales) where systemic interrelationships of organisms and habitat occur. With current project estimates at 14.8 billion dollars, ecosystem restoration in South Florida represents one of the largest and most expensive environmental projects ever attempted. In this article, I provide an overview of the changes to the Florida Everglades which have led to the need for restorative interventions. I then outline the conceptual framework guiding ecosystem management in South Florida, focusing on the transformation of this framework that occurs through its institutionalization into a set of management and planning practices. The article ends with a discussion of how the “public” is conceptualized within this institutionalized ecosystem management framework, and the ramifications of this conceptualization for Everglades restoration public engagement activities.
Volume (Year): 80 (2006)
Issue (Month): p ()
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