Virtual Natural Environments and Benefits to Health

Researchers at the European Centre for the Environment and Human Health (ECEHH -- part of the Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry) and the University of Birmingham has compared the benefits of interaction with actual and virtual natural environments and concluded that the development of accurate simulations are likely to be beneficial to those who cannot interact with nature because of infirmity or other limitations: but virtual worlds are not a substitute for the real thing.

According to the biophilia hypothesis, there are substantial benefits that humans obtain from the experience of natural environments, ranging from stress reduction to attention restoration.    So can we replace urban parks and street trees with a wall-size ulra HD screen, a suntan lamp, and a treadmill?