An area of study that concentrates on how culture mediates the dynamic interactions between human populations and the ecosystems in their habitats. Accordingly ecological anthropologists have variously addressed each of the main categories of natural resources, including water, soils, plants, animals, minerals, and energy, but each with special attention to how a particular culture influences daily decisions, choices, and activities in exploiting them. The primary approaches within contemporary ecological anthropology are cultural ecology, historical ecology, political ecology, and spiritual ecology. Building on these approaches is the applied dimension of ecological anthropology called environmental anthropology.