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Term Main definition
ecological profile

Geographic-based instruments for planners and decision-makers that presents an evaluation of the environmental quality and carrying capacity of an area.

Synonyms - eco-profile
ecological succession

The gradual change on the species structure and composition of an ecological community over time.

economic instrument

An intervention designed to influence the behavior of those who highly regard the natural environment, utilize it or cause adverse impacts as a side effect of their activities, e.g. user's fee, forest charges, performance bonds, user's right, etc.


A dynamic complex of plants, animal and micro-organism communities and their non-living environment interacting as a functional unit.

ecosystem capacity

In general terms, the concept of ecosystem capacity refers to the ability of a given ecosystem asset to generate a set of ecosystem services in a sustainable way into the future.

ecosystem condition

Overall quality of an ecosystem asset, in terms of its characteristics such as extent, conguration, landscape forms, and climate and associated seasonal patterns.

ecosystem degradation

The decline in an ecosystem asset over an accounting period due to economic and other human activity. It is generally reflected in declines in ecosystem condition or declines in expected ecosystem service flows.

ecosystem resilience

The capacity of natural system to recover from disturbance.

ecosystem services

The multitude of material and nonmaterial provisions and benefits from healthy ecosystems necessary for human sustenance, well-being, and survival including support processes, provisioning and environment regulating services, and cultural resource preservation services.

Synonyms - ecosystem goods and services
ecosystem stability

The capacity of a natural system to apply self-regulating mechanisms so as to return steady state after an outside disturbance.

ecosystem structure

The physical and temporal distribution of various living organisms in an ecosystem.

ecosystem sustainability

The capacity of an ecosystem to maintain its composition, function, and structure over time, thus maintaining the productivity of the land and diversity of plants and animals.


The transition zone between two adjoining communities.


Form of sustainable tourism within a natural and cultural heritage area where community participation, protection and management of natural resources, culture and indigenous knowledge and practices, environmental education and ethics as well as economics.


Selected area with highly developed, or which have the potential to be developed into, agroindustrial, tourist recreational, commercial, banking investment and financial centers whose meters and bounds are fixed or determined by Presidential proclamation.

Synonyms - special zone