This book was prepared for publication by an International Working Group of experts under the auspices of COGEOENVIRONMENT - the Commission of the International Union of Geological Sciences (lUGS) on Geological Sciences for Environmental Planning and lUGS-GEM (Commission on Geosciences for Environmental Management). The main aim of the Working Group 'Geology and Ecosystems' was to develop an interdisciplinary approach to the study of the mechanisms and special features within the 'living tissue - inert nature' system under different regional, geological, and anthropogenic conditions. This activity requires international contributions from many scientific fields. It requires efforts from scientists specializing in fields such as: environmental impacts of extractive industries, anthropogenic development and medical problems related to geology and ecosystem interaction, the prediction of the geoenvironmental evolution of ecosystems, etc. The Working Group determined the goal and objectives of the book, developed the main content, discussed the parts and chapters, and formed the team of authors and the Editorial Board. The Meetings of the Working Group (Vilnius, Lithuania, 2002 and Warsaw-Kielniki, Poland, 2003) were dedicated to discussion and approval of the main content of all chapters in the Book.