Margaret Burchett, Fraser Torpy & Jane Tarran; Plants and Indoor Environmental Quality Group; and Faculty of Science, University of Technology Sydney.
Human ecology (humans in their relationships with the environment) has a history extending up to two million years. Our species has continued to be biologically well adapted to ‘nature’ over this period. We are reliant on plants for everything we need, from food, shelter and oxygen to also being the sink for carbon dioxide (unknown by our ancestors). Our ancestors recognised an essential role for plants in providing pleasure, perfumes, peace, piety and glimpses of ‘paradise’. We still have the same requirements as our forebears. In contrast, the increasingly rapid growth of modern cities has occured over only the last two hundred years. How well adapted are we to our new, urban ecology? Download PDF