BUILD ENVIRONMENT The term built environment refers to the human-made surroundings that provide the setting for human activity, ranging in scale from buildings and parks or green space to neighborhoods and cities that can often include their supporting infrastructure, such as water supply, or energy networks. The built environment is a material, spatial and cultural product of human labor that combines physical elements and energy in forms for living, working and playing. It has been defined as “the human-made space in which people live, work, and recreate on a day-to-day basis”.
The “built environment encompasses places and spaces created or modified by people including buildings, parks, and transportation systems”. In recent years, public health research has expanded the definition of “built environment” to include healthy food access, community gardens, “walkabilty”, and “bikability”. Early concepts of built environments were introduced thousands of years ago. Hippodamus of Miletos, known as the “father of urban planning”, developed Greek cities from 498 BC to 408 BC that created order by using grid plans that mapped the city.
These early city plans eventually gave way to the City Beautiful movement in the late 1800s and early 1900s, inspired by Daniel Hudson Burnham, a reformist for the Progressivism movement who actively promoted “a reform of the landscape in tandem with political change”. The effort was in partnership with others who believed that beautifying American cities would improve the moral compass of the cities and encourage the upper class to spend their money in cities. This beautification process included parks and architectural design. Modern built environment
Currently built environments are typically used to describe the interdisciplinary field that addresses the design, construction, management, and use of these man-made surroundings as an interrelated whole as well as their relationship to human activities over time (rather than a particular element in isolation or at a single moment in time). The field is generally not regarded as a traditional profession or academic discipline in its own right, instead drawing upon areas such as economics, law, public policy, public health, management, geography, design, technology, and environmental sustainability.
Within the field of public health, built environments are referred to as building or renovating areas in an effort to improve the community’s well-being through construction of “aesthetically, health improved, and environmentally improved landscapes and living structures”. Urban planning The term “urban planning” indicates that much of the environment we inhabit is man-made and that these artificial surroundings are so extensive and cohesive that with regards to the consumption of resources, waste disposal, and productive enterprise, they are similar to organisms.
Public health In public health, built environments refer to physical environments that are designed with health and wellness as integral parts of the communities. Research has indicated that how neighborhoods are created can affect both the physical activity and mental health of the communities’ residents. Studies have shown that built environments that were expressly designed to improve physical activity are linked to higher rates of physical activity, which in turn, positively affects health.
Neighborhoods with more walkability had lower rates of obesity as well as increased physical activity among its residents. They also had lower rates of depression, higher social capital, and less alcohol abuse. Walkability features in these neighborhoods include safety, sidewalk construction, as well as destinations in which to walk. In addition, the perception of a walkable neighborhood, one that is perceived to have good sidewalks and connectivity, is correlated with higher rates of physical activity. Assessments of walkability have been completed through the use of GIS programs.
One such program, Street Smart Walk Score, is a walkability assessment tool which determines distances to grocery stores and other amenities, as well as connectivity and intersection frequency using specific addresses. Assessments such as Street Smart Walk Score can be utilized by city and county planning departments to improve existing walkability of communities. Public health also addresses additional components of built environments including “bikeability” and healthy food access such as proximity to grocery stores and community gardens.
Bikeability refers to the access that an area has granted to safe biking through multiple bike paths and bike lanes. Both walkability and bikeability have been cited as determinants of physical activity. Access to healthy food is also an important component to the built environment. A higher density of convenience stores has been associated with obesity in children. In contrast, improved access to community supermarkets and farmer’s markets is correlated with lower overweight status. Specifically in low income neighborhoods, the presence of a local grocery store is correlated with lower BMI/overweight risk.
Community gardens are also considered a part of the built environment, and have been shown to increase fruit and vegetable intake among gardeners. Scholars say that community gardens have also been shown to have positive social and psychological impacts that lead to lower levels of stress, hypertension, and an improved sense of wellness, affecting the overall health of the individual and the community. The intersection of public health with other disciplines is evident in the design process of built environments which includes environmental planning, policy development and land-use planning.
Research suggests that people are more active in mixed-use communities or those that incorporate retail and residential and densely populated areas as well as those with good street connectivity. Those who preferred to walk and live in walkable environments often have lower obesity rates and drive less over those who preferred living in auto-dependent environments. The strength of the evidence for reducing obesity through environment has been highlighted by the Center for Disease Control in its Common Community Measures for Obesity Prevention Project, which includes measures of healthy food access and physical activity environments.
Landscape architecture In landscape architecture, the built environment is understood to mean a human-made landscape, as distinguished from the natural environment; for example, a city park is a built environment. NATURAL ENVIRONMENT The natural environment encompasses all living and non-living things occurring naturally[->0] on Earth[->1] or some region thereof. It is an environment that encompasses the interaction of all living species. The concept of the natural environment can be distinguished by components: Complete ecological[->2] units that function as natural[->3] systems without massive human[->4] intervention, including all vegetation[->5], microorganisms[->6], soil[->7], rocks[->8], atmosphere[->9], and natural phenomena[->10] that occur within their boundaries. §Universal natural resources[->11] and physical phenomena[->12] that lack clear-cut boundaries, such as air[->13], water[->14], and climate[->15], as well as energy[->16], radiation[->17], electric charge[->18], and magnetism[->19], not originating from human activity.
The natural environment is contrasted with the built environment[->20], which comprises the areas and components that are strongly influenced by humans. A geographical area is regarded as a natural environment. It is difficult to find absolutely natural environments, and it is common that the naturalness varies in a continuum, from ideally 100% natural in one extreme to 0% natural in the other. More precisely, we can consider the different aspects or components of an environment, and see that their degree of naturalness is not uniform.
If, for instance, we take an agricultural field, and consider the mineralogic composition[->21] and the structure[->22] of its soil, we will find that whereas the first is quite similar to that of an undisturbed forest soil, the structure is quite different. Natural environment is often used as a synonym for habitat[->23]. For instance, when we say that the natural environment of giraffes is the savanna[->24]. PLANT STRUCTURE AND FUNCTIONS The “Typical” Plant Body The Root System (Usually underground) §Anchor the plant in the soil §Absorb water and nutrients §Conduct water and nutrients Food Storage The Shoot System (Usually above grounds) §Elevates the plant above the soil §Many functions including: §photosynthesis §reproduction & dispersal §food and water conduction TYPE OF PLANTS Cacti (Cactus) Cactus plants are well adapted to hot and dry weather by storing water in their succulent stems. They are also known for their spines, for which they are famous. Flowers Flowers are the reproductive part of angiosperms, also known as flowering plants. Herbs Herbs are used for culinary, medicinal and spiritual uses. In cuisine, the leaves of the herb are normally the only part used.
All parts of herbs are used in various medical or spiritual practices. Shrubs and Bushes Usually under 6 m tall, shrubs and bushes are categorized as woody plants. Shrubs have multiple stems and many are covered with flowers of all shapes and sizes. Trees Trees are everywhere in the world. Trees are tall, large and some are very old. Trees are important in fighting soil erosion and responsible for the clean oxygen we breathe. Vegetables The term ‘vegetable’ is not actually a scientific classification of a plant, but rather strictly a culinary term.
Vegetables are parts of plants (flower buds, seeds, stems, fruits, etc) that are edible and used in culinary dishes. PLANT Plants, also called green plants (Viridiplantae in Latin), are living organisms of the kingdom Plantae including such multicellular groups as flowering plants, conifers, ferns and mosses, as well as, depending on definition, the green algae, but not red or brown seaweeds like kelp, nor fungi or bacteria. Green plants have cell walls with cellulose and characteristically obtain most of their energy from sunlight via photosynthesis using chlorophyll contained in chloroplasts, which gives them their green color.
Some plants are parasitic and may not produce normal amounts of chlorophyll or photosynthesize. Plants are also characterized by sexual reproduction, modular and indeterminate growth, and an alteration of generations, although asexual reproduction is common, and some plants bloom only once while others bear only one bloom. Precise numbers are difficult to determine, but as of 2010, there are thought to be 300–315 thousand species of plants, of which the great majority, some 260–290 thousand, are seed plants.
Green plants provide most of the world’s free oxygen and are the basis of most of the earth’s ecologies, especially on land. Plants described as grains, fruits and vegetables form mankind’s basic foodstuffs, and have been domesticated for millennia. Plants enrich our lives as flowers and ornaments. Until recently and in great variety they have served as the source of most of our medicines and drugs. Their scientific study is known as botany. [-;0] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Nature [-;1] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Earth [-;2] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Ecological -;3] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Nature [-;4] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Human [-;5] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Vegetation [-;6] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Microorganisms [-;7] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Soil [-;8] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Rock_(geology) [-;9] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Atmosphere [-;10] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Natural_phenomenon [-;11] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Natural_resource [-;12] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Physical_phenomena [-;13] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Air -;14] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Water [-;15] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Climate [-;16] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Energy [-;17] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Radiation [-;18] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Electric_charge [-;19] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Magnetism [-;20] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Built_environment [-;21] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Mineralogy [-;22] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Soil_structure [-;23] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Habitat [-;24] – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Savanna