Journal or Book Title: Landscape Ecology for Sustainable Environment and Culture
Keywords: Households; Population; Ecosystem services; Impact; Human activities; Landscape; Coupled human and natural systems; Policy; Management; Housing
Page Number(s): 103-118
Year Published: 2013
Population sizes and growth rates are two major factors used by ecologists in assessing human impacts on ecosystems and landscapes. However, the numbers of households have been increasing much faster than population sizes. As households are basic socioeconomic units (e.g., in consumption of ecosystem services) and key components of coupled human and natural systems, household proliferation has important implications for ecosystem services. On one hand, more households consume more ecosystem services. On the other hand, more households have more impacts on the supply of ecosystem services. So far, most impacts have been negative. As a result, ecosystem services have continued to degrade. It is important to use ecosystem services more efficiently, turn households from consumers to producers of ecosystem services, and incorporate household proliferation into ecosystem service research and management.