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Definition of urbanization and its effect on natural resources

Question:

Discuss about the Landscape Architecture for Risks and Uncertainties.

Urbanization can be defined in a number of ways. For instance, it can be defined as a rise in the uses of energy as result of the increased population together with extensive modification of the landscape. In the United States, urbanization is slowly gaining mileage in most states as most places are being turned into urban centers. It results in a system which makes it difficult for the existence of natural resources since most of the places that perhaps would be occupied by the natural resources are taken up by the buildings and the structures (Brown, 2008).

Hence, natural areas in the context of urban set up are defined as those areas which are not occupied by human beings .hence, those areas can be grouped as ponds, lakes, parks or even streams. The main aim of this research paper is to determine how urbanization can be integrated into the context of the ecological research topic.in this research paper, the analysis is provided which clearly demonstrates how urbanization provides ecological answers and the importance of urbanization. Besides, a framework which entails ecological urbanization has also been providing. The I rise of urban centers in most parts of the North America is a sufficient evidence that there is a great need for the ecosystems with regards to urbanization, (Clarke, 2015).

The differences in physical, chemical and biotic ecosystems related to urbanization provide an exemplary connection that can be exploited by ecology.

To offer a solution to the currently existing ecological challenges, land planners and landscape architects are tasked with a unique duty towards the society. These are personnel’s that have the technological expertise on the land design, planning and solving problems.

There exist some examples of land that exhibit beautiful and impressive harmonies. An example is the national parks and the Italian cemetery which the planner and designer ensured that much focus is directed towards culture and nature .the environments were encompassed with biological patterns, wetlands, water, wind, wildlife and physical process.

Landscape urbanism – the theory behind landscape urbanism dictates that the primary and fundamental block of the buildings designed in the city should be the landscape .traditionally, buildings and roads assisted the designer in planning for the urban organization.

Urban ecology – the ecology refers to the subject that greatly focuses on the urban region and the landscape .the theory describes the landscape as the ecological unit which comprises of structures and functions in a matrix form. The landscape features include the strip, line and the corridors. Hence urban ecology provides much emphasis on the approach to understanding the patterns, drives and the result of the landscape (Brown, 2008)

Importance of natural areas in urban setup

 The components include aesthetics, social patterns, transportation, economics, and waste handling. Despite the divergence of these components in the recent past, some of the practices have been maintained. For instance, ecology had gained ground and disintegrated from planning and design .in most cases, the areas that have been of core concentration by the architects and the land planers includes small parks, housing clusters and shopping malls.

During the early time, it was a necessity for a human to take care of the ecosystems as in the modern day society. This is because nature was able to take care of itself and the human activities were limited. With the ever-growing threat of human population, the biosphere capacity in regards to sustaining the human and plant life keeps decreasing with time. Besides, this has also been contributed to the new technological advancements and the increased use of energy. Currently, all the challenges that the society aces are attributed to the social complexity and the physical science simplicity of humanity within nature itself (Clode, 2010).

The increased technological adoption has created some activities which pose as threats to the whole planet. These activities include global warming. Chemical toxicities, depletion of the ozone layer and the slow decrease in biodiversity. Nevertheless, it can’t be fully ruled that all the technological activities have completely resulted in negative impacts on the environment.an instance is the acid rains in America and Europe which have been mitigated by the continued use of scrubbers in the ejection of sulphur dioxide. Thus, generally, the human impacts are poised to have a long-term effect mostly on our children and grandchildren.

The main focus of most human is limited to only their own homes, commercial developments and at times to towns surrounding them without realizing that more and crucial forces are losing their value daily. Enacting some new technologies to create solutions even to particular natural areas is not possible since new technological challenges arise thus to bring a solution easily means that those areas are kind of segregated it’s when they can be managed. The rise in the mortality growth results into increase in population in the cities. However sometimes population drops are experienced as a result of economic fluctuations thereby leading to immigration and emigration.  A detailed approach towards the ecological patterns of the urban centres reveals the dynamic mosaic nature of the people. The society boundaries are complex such that even with the use of a satellite, it becomes difficult to reveal the exact boundaries of the city. Some of the ecological patterns that are visible are the bioecology and Ecoregions.

Framework for ecological urbanization

Nature has always been considered as a reflection of culture. This is because most of the landscapes are a function of both a natural phenomenon and human intelligence. The landscapes are designed by the human hands in collaboration with the mind, plants and animals, and finally sun and rain. The values and belief that are held by landscape designers play a pivotal role towards the relation of nature and culture whereas the concept of nature varies widely ranging from place to place, period to period and persons to persons. The landscape designs literally and figuratively help in constructing nature (Committee, 2006).

During the last century, there has been a great and significant change in the nature of human habitation from rural to urban. The logical research focused on the urban ecology particularly on patches and entire structure contributions reveal the direct relationship to ecosystems. There lie several benefits with regards to the operation of the ecosystems in the urban boundaries .or instance in the flow of water alongside the promotion of health and environment helps in improving the life in the cities.

The Australian estate was strategically positioned land and research says that not even a single estate has enjoyed the cool and strategic positioning like Australia. Approximately covering 7.8 million square kilometres, Australian estate encompassed a broad diversity of cultures and species. Europeans still being unaware of the land, they only came to later realize that seasons were not predictable and was marked by dry and wet seasons. Besides, approximately 70% of the plant life in Australia tolerate on need fire. Hence, the consciousness learnt that plants therein had the capability of tolerating fire became a significant element towards how land could be managed.it allowed the burning of plants thereby allowing the regeneration process which benefited the grazing animals by providing them with anew habitat and feeding.by then, the animals did not have so many predators, perhaps the humans only (Handmer, 2008).

Besides, there were religious sanctions and laws regarding ecological philosophy were enacted in the land which ensures that all the persons had the responsibility of taking care of the environment. This ensured that there was no wilderness in Australian estate. The Australian natives were guided by the law which stated that they had to leave the worlds the way they had found it. Only activities that were allowed were those which allowed the balance of life but not its degradation.

Landscape urbanism and its emphasis on landscape

The millennium park was greatly affected by industrialization. For instance, the home bush, waterways and the Sydney were initially occupied by mangrove wetlands and water path before the occupation by the European settler’s .besides, the waterway that currently represents the millennium park had been occupied by a large industry of ammunition and was the biggest dumping site of the industrial wastes. Once there was an opinion from the society regarding the use of local land and culture e, the Australians decided to protect the land. The dumping stopped and only activities which ensure ecological sustainability were allowed such as landscape designs and housing.

Urban places are characterized by a large number of population and buildings. The buildings and the pavement limit the pace that is available for both human and plant life .these urban centers normally experience some changes in terms of their structure which comes as a result of the ongoing fragmentation and the physical disturbance. besides, there is also the aspect of the urban temperatures being high due to the industrial activities in the places and finally there is the aspect of the town soil quality which keeps on changing with time from the chemical activities .there are three main categories of landscape based on the land history, land vegetation, and the necessities of maintenance .the categories includes (Schmithüsen, 2014)

  • Natural leftover landscape – this refers to the land which comprises of natural plants that grow on the natural soil without any disturbance
  • Efficient landscape – this refers to the landscape that is being managed and consists of parks, cemeteries and gardens. These landscapes are marked by plants that grow on fertile soils and they are highly conserved
  • Abandoned landscape – this is the largest portion of land that has been occupied by the city .basically, they are plants which are not maintained a sometimes they suffer the consequences of being brought down as a result of negligence an lack of care by anyone.

These can be defined as activities which are directed towards assisting the environment to regain its sustainability and healthiness by attempting to make the environment gain its initial condition despite the presence of many limiting factors .in other words , ecological restoration can be defined as helping an environment that has been damaged to be back into its previous or normal condition. Ecological restoration is characterized by it being able to perform its normal roles, contain natural species, reproducing population, self-sustainability of the ecosystem and finally characteristic collection species (Katherine, 2000).

This technique is applied to new equipment’s during the cleaning of places that had been highly chemically contaminated and it is applied in both the organic and inorganic pollutants .under this method, we have some other methods including

Most of the industrial activities pollute the environment and in most of the western countries, this has been able to be mitigated by the use of enacting legislative acts on the environmental conservation.

 This technique operates in three phases which includes the transformation phase where the xenobiotic is chemically modified by the help of oxidation substances. The second phase includes the conjugation phase whereby xenobiotic which has been transformed are inactivated thereby rendering them harmless. Finally, the last phase is the compartmentalization where the xenobiotic which has been rendered harmless are taken into cell compartments.

Urban ecology and its focus on landscape as an ecological unit

This refers to the elimination of the plant pollutants by the use of green vegetation .it has been categorized into very many areas including; use of contaminates more so in the elimination of metals from the soil (Tony, 2014).

Other methods include;

  • Minimization of bioavailability by the use of plants
  • Volatilization of pollutants
  • Absorption of pollutants by the use of roots of green plants
  • Degradation of the organic contaminants.
  • Removal of contaminated air.

During the analysis of project related to ecosystems, there are factors which are taken into consideration at the same time but not separately. This factor includes legal, social, microclimate, topographic and specific site information. The applications can either be schematic or hypothetical

Schematic application

 There exist six schematic applications which justifies the principles of ecology. They include

  • Regional application – sometimes known as the microscale application which includes a regional wildlife park or can even entail a project in the suburban development
  • Site of micro scale – this refers to the cluster of the garden backyard and the corridor for the movement of the wildlife
  • Landscape – also known as mesoscale that includes a new road and an urban park(Russell, 2009).

Most of the architects and land designers have shifted much focus on the urban areas and this focus can either promote national and regional developments towards attaining a sustainable environment or can be a great source of hunch back. Research says that professional architects have had plans of constructing cities which improve the environment using alternative building techniques such as green buildings .there are factors that should first be taken into consideration towards achieving a green society.  These factors include

  • Density – the density of the area that is intended to be occupied by a building should be taken into account. Municipal regulations which dictate the habitation unity per hectare, the water supply, parking space, waste management and street width should be considered. This is because higher concentrations in the city results in a threat to the effective management of resources and preservation of species
  • Community – the community refers to the interaction of the persons within their surroundings, hence a builder should be able to erect a multifamily structure which provides opportunities to the whole community(Webster, 2008).
  • Automobile –the urban industry is dominated by the automobile sector more so the highways, streets, roads etc. The building should be placed in such a ways that there is less pollution from the automobiles and that the buildings themselves do not promote urban congestion thereby creating a lot of traffic jams.

Other factors which need consideration include the landscape ecology, politics, and the convergence of ecology and public attitudes

Ecological networks are very significant in ensuring that there is freedom of movement in the corridors particularly for the wildlife and also linkage of the pavements and patches .hence, the development of ecological networks in the urban centers should adopt the greenway techniques which refers to the implementation of the networks in collaboration with green spaces and green belt thereby enhancing green infrastructure (Brown, 2008).

Conclusion

The research project has provided a Demonstration and analysis of the understanding of the fundamentals of landscape and urban ecology, landscape phenomena, ecological patterns and processes. The manner in which the Landscape Architecture can substantiate its claims and deliver on its promise of ecological design in the increasingly contested and changing world of the Anthropocene has also been presented. From the research, t can be an inference that the adoption of greenway techniques is among the best methods that will help promote the ecological sustainability. various architectural theories have also been providing additionally, various key principles, theory and methods of landscape ecology and the integration of ecological design principles into landscape architecture and planning across small and large scales have also been discussed. This has been punctuated by two key case studies i.e. the millennium park and the Australian estate on how the design principles had been integrated .the relationship between nature and culture and the influence of the relationship and the  practice of a Landscape Architect  has been intricately elaborated and it  can be  applied in different geographical regions (Russell, 2009).

References

Chrichton, T. (2009). ARCHITECTURES. South Australia: Country Fire Services.

Chris, T. (2008). LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE  (illustrated ed.). Sussex: Envirobook.

Clarke, S. (2015). ECOLOGICAL PATTERNS (reprint ed.). Food & Agriculture Org.

Clode, D. (2010). urban ecology. Melbourne: Melbourne University Publishing.

Committee, F. (2016). ecological networks. Madison: University of Wisconsin.

Edward, J. (2012). The RISK MANAGEMENT Manual (2 ed.). Welshpool: FESA, Fire & Emergency Services Authority of Western Australia.

Johann, D. (2014). ecology. Cape Town: African Minds.

John, H. (2008). Community landscape  (illustrated ed.). Clayton: Csiro Publishing.

Julia, D. (2012). An Economic Evaluation of Bushfire Prevention and Suppression in Victoria. London: Performance Evaluation Division, Department of Natural Resources and Environment.

Mannix, I. (2011). RISKS AND UNCERTAINTIES. New York City: HarperCollins Publishers.

McDonald, R. (2009). Introduction to Natural and Man-made Disasters and Their Effects on Buildings. Abingdon: Routledge.

Phil, S. (2008). Grassfires: Fuel, Weather and Fire Behaviour (illustrated, revised ed.). Clayton: Csiro Publishing.

Rarry, L. (2008). CONSTRUCTION SITES  (reprint ed.). Ithaka: Australian Government Publishing Service.

Ramsay, C. (2013). Landscape and Building Design  (illustrated ed.). Clayton: Csiro Publishing.

Raymond, D. (2012). Environmental Management and Governance: Intergovernmental Approaches to Hazards and Sustainability (illustrated ed.). Oxfordshire: Taylor & Francis.

Russell, J. (2009). Culture, Ecology and Economy of Fire Management in North Australian Savannas: Rekindling the Wurrk Tradition. Melbourne: Csiro Publishing.

Schmithüsen, F. (2014). Cross-sectoral Policy Developments in architecture. Oxfordshire: CABI.

Webster, J. (2008). Essential Risk Management Safety Tips. Clayton: Csiro Publishing.

Webster, K. (2010). architectural constructions  (illustrated ed.). Random House.

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