Issue: Contributions of land to human life - Space occupied by human activities
This is an issue under the Land theme of the Data Reporting System.
The land contributes many benefits to human life but utilising those contributions can exert pressures on the land environment. Environmental degradation resulting from these and other pressures could ultimately erode the land’s capacity to supply these benefits. In the shorter term, the additional effort needed to obtain these contributions in the face of environmental degradation could exert even greater and more damaging long-term pressure on the environment.
To have the full story, it is therefore important to track not only what is happening to the pressures, the resulting condition of the land and the societal responses but also what is happening to the contributions. If the contributions can be maintained or increased while responses are undertaken to ensure that environmental pressures are reduced and environmental condition maintained or improved, then the contributions from the land can become environmentally sustainable.
One absolute requirement human settlements place on the land is somewhere to exit. Humans are essentially land animals and (with very few exceptions) need to form their settlements on land. The continuing demand for more land to accommodate expanding human populations and activities is a major reason for human pressure on other life forms using the land, and on the services they provide both to humans and to other life.
- LD-15 Area and proportion of land surface occupied by human settlements, structures and activities that support human settlement
Area and proportion of land occupied by human activities are straightforward measures of how much land space is occupied by such activities.
- LD-19 Land use and land use change
The range and changes of land uses in Australia provide information about changes in the importance of land space to human life.
- Land - Land condition- Land cover
- Land - Land condition- Soil stability and quality
- Land - Land condition- Condition of terrestrial species and ecological communities
- Land - Direct pressure of human activities on the land- Soil loss and loss of soil quality
- Land - Direct pressure of human activities on the land- Land clearing
- Land - Direct pressure of human activities on the land- Pollution to and from the land
- Biodiversity - Landscapes- Ecosystem diversity
- Biodiversity - Pressures on biodiversity- Land clearing
- Biodiversity - Species, habitats and ecological communities- Conservation status of species and ecological communities
- Coasts and Oceans - Direct pressure of human activities on coasts and oceans- Direct pressure of coastal activities (other than shipping and fishing)