But the rationale for creating battlefield parks has changed over the past 100 years, as have attitudes about battlefield conservation with a related emphasis on the physical landscapes themselves, leading to their management for multiple, layered assets through principles of constructive conservation. Existing battlefield parks provide perhaps the longest-standing examples of the evolution of landscapes of war toward generators of multiple ecosystem benefits. Moving from battlefield parks that, in some cases, have not seen warfare for hundreds of years, we examined landscapes of more recent conflict and considered the future collateral values that could be attained by establishing parks at conflict sites along international borders. The evolution of warfare suggests that current and future wars are unlikely to be restricted to well-defined battlefields that can later be set aside as protected landscapes.
Copyright © 2020, Natural History. This article first appeared in Natural History 128 (2), 22-27.
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Lookingbill, Todd, and Peter Smallwood. 2020. “Landscapes of War. (Cover Story).” Natural History 128 (2): 22–27.