Ecosystem Health Index Method

For this method, a synthetic ecosystem health index (EHI) in a scale of 0-100 has been developed in order to quantitatively assess the state of ecosystem health. The worst health state exists when EHI is zero. To make description easier, the EHI was divided into five categories: 0-20% (worst health state), 20-40% (bad health state), 40-60% (middle health state), 60-80% (good health state), and 80-100% (best health state). Five steps are necessary to calculate the EHI:

1. selection of basic and additional ecosystem indicators;

2. calculation of sub-EHIs for all selected indicators;

3. determination of weighting factors for all selected indicators;

4. calculation of synthetic EHI using sub-EHIs and weighting factors for all selected indicators; and

5. assessment of ecosystem health based on synthetic EHI values.

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