Ecomedia Letter: h


All the physical, biological and chemical environment that surrounds a population of a species.

Habitat fragmentation

Many species of animals and plants need large uninterrupted areas of habitat to keep sustainable populations. Having habitat broken up by roads or development can trap populations of species in one or many small areas which can lead to inbreeding and extinction of the species in the area and threaten the species as a whole.


31st of October - a time to dress up for a night of fun. Instead of buying a costume, why not get creative and recycle and combine what you already have for some frightening fun.


Products that are made by hand on a small scale or individual level. The practice of handmade items encourages the continuation of craft skills and creativity.

Hard Engineering

Physical manmade structures and solutions to try to deal with natural phenomena. Examples include floodgates, levees, and attempts to re-engineer beaches. Manmade structures often end up being short term solutions and may create other unforeseen consequences due to altering of the environment.


Wood that is from broad-leafed trees. The sustainability of forests is varied and many tropical hardwoods such as teak and rosewood from many places are endangered.

Haute Green

Fashionably elegant and high quality environmentally friendly fashion. Also see Eco Chic.

Hazardous Waste

Waste that poses a threat to people or the environment. Examples include toxic, ignitable, corrosive and medical waste.


Being health conscious yourself will directly relate to the health of the environment. Generally things that are toxic to you are also toxic to other living things.

Healthy Eating

Eating healthy and fresh foods benefits not only your health but also the environment! Buying fresh locally grown produce cuts down on the processing of your food and how far it has flown to get to you.

Healthy Living

Living healthy by being aware of what is around you can benefit the earth as well as your health. Using less harsh chemical cleaners, water, electricity and producing less waste all help with healthy living and the environment.

Heavy Metal

Metal and metal compounds that can seriously affect human health. In large amounts, they can build up in biological systems and become concentrated in organisms. They include arsenic, beryllium, cadmium, hexavalent chromium, lead and mercury.


A fiber that is from a variety of the Cannabis Sariva plant, it is used to make paper, fabric, animal bedding, cordage and building materials. It differs in structure from the variety of Cannabis plant that is used as a drug and has extremely low levels of the chemicals that produce the high. In fact it is pretty much impossible to use industrial hemp as drug. It is seen as an eco friendly fiber as it is renewable and fast growing.


A substance that is used to kill unwanted or weed species of plants. Many Herbicides are chemicals and are dangerous to people and the environment if they become present in the soil, water supply or air.

High Performance Building

Buildings that are more energy efficient, use less water, need less active heating and cooling and are more cost effective to run than other buildings of a similar nature.


The movement of thinking differently and challenging society's norms that began in the 1960's in San Francisco is often associated with environmentalism. They were at the forefront of a generation that rang warning bells about humans' impact on the environment. Although it seems these days you don't need to believe in passive resistance, peace, free love or expanding your mind to be environmental with mainstream politicians and even armies having environmental policies.


Relax! Celebrate! Go green and guilt free! Enjoy your holiday even more by considering your impact on the environment when trip planning. The travel and spa industry are increasingly catering towards eco-savvy customers, so explore your options. Also see Ecotourism and Voluntourism.


Treating a system as a whole rather than only looking at individual parts one at a time. The concept can be applied to health care, business, education and the environment.


A system of medicine using natural remedies. The system is based on treating patients with small doses of substances which normally cause similar symptoms to those troubling the patient.

Hubbert's Curve (see Peak Oil)

A theory that the production of oil, when graphed, results in a bell shaped curve that will show a period of time of high oil production which falls almost as dramatically as it increased.

Hybrid Vehicle

A vehicle that has two different sources of power. The common cars popular today use a combustion engine and an electric motor. In these cars the electric motor is able to recapture some of the energy lost by braking, which makes them particularly suited to city driving. Other vehicles that are hybrids include Mopeds (bicycle that can be peddled and motor powered) as well as varieties of boats, buses and even airplanes.

Hydroelectric Power

Electric power generated by water power. Building of dams is usually used to generate a steady supply of water to fuel electric turbines. Dams often need large areas flooded to have a constant supply of water. Dams need to be regularly maintained to avoid silt (river sediment) blocking the dam. They can also limit or stop migration of animals up and down the river. Hydroelectric power is a good option for areas with lots of rivers and rainfall but not so much for arid areas.

Hydrogen Fuel

A source of fuel that is considered very environmentally friendly because it is much less polluting than burning of fossil fuels. The burning of hydrogen in air results in the production of heat, water and small amount of nitrous oxides. However, the technology and infrastructure needed to make hydrogen a main fuel source for us is still being developed.


Growing plants without soil. Nutrients are often dissolved in water to be absorbed by plants in the roots.

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