What is restoration?

Ecosystem restoration is the process of supporting the recovery of ecosystems that have been converted or degraded because of human activities. Things such as roads, agricultural lands or energy infrastructure. It’s essentially a way to recover habitat for wildlife. That may also result in higher carbon sequestration and storage benefits in restored ecosystems. Human activities may damage the environment but also have solution to restore the environment in natural condition. Restoration of our ecosystem may be done by removing or changes state of hazardous materials in to Non-hazardous by chemical process.

What’s the difference between a degraded and converted ecosystem?

A converted ecosystem has been converted from a natural one — say, a forest or wetland — into a human-dominated one, like cropland or urban areas. A degraded ecosystem, on the other hand, isn’t as healthy as a natural one and doesn’t support as much biodiversity. The carbon storage because of human activity like pollution, invasive species, cutting down trees. That is still categorized as a forest, wetland or grassland.

What kinds of landscapes need to be restored?

We can and should restore both converted and degraded landscapes. Restoration of converted lands may result in higher benefits for biodiversity and climate. Whereas restoration of degraded lands is likely more feasible since it’s easier to work in landscapes without human infrastructure. That said, we currently have more data on which ecosystems are converted versus those that are degraded.

What are the benefits of restoration?

Restoration can help to create or expand areas where wildlife live, breed and mate. This is especially important for Canada, where over 800 different animal and plant species are at risk of extinction. Healthy habitats can also sequester carbon from the atmosphere and store it in plants and soils, helping to fight climate change. But while biodiversity and climate are important, there are other elements we need to consider, too. Any restoration plans have to take into consideration the knowledge and priorities of Indigenous Peoples and local communities so that there’s benefit for them as well.

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