Why are costal zones so important?
(zones with great population) characterized by high biological productivity and wide range of ecosystems
What are dead zones and how do they form?
occur when runoff enters the oceans; algae blooms along the coast, microscopic plants die and then bacteria consume dissolved oxygen in water and limits oxygen for bottom organisms and results in massive die-offs creating dead zones
What is a solution to the tuna-dolphin problem?
placing a dolphin safe label on tuna products which said that companies were going to reduce dolphin bycatch and that 3 largest US tuna companies were not going to buy tuna that didnt follow regulation
explain how oceans are a common property resource
open ocean; while those waters within national jurisdiction are subject to federal, state, and local laws and regulations, it is hard to regulate amount of fish someone catches
what is the post fordism model of fisheries?
depends on production process being carried out by different transnational corporation, often located in different countries and resource extraction, production, consumption process moving from location to location (spatial fix)
define keystone species
species that have a disproportionate affect the environment relative to their biomass
runoff from land results in excessive nutrients accumulating in a water body that ultimately leads to a depletion of oxygen in the bottom waters
externality because dolphins, sea turtles, sea birds are being caught and killed when the fisherman are trying to catch tuna
what is the largest source of energy used globally?
oil, but coal and natural gas (fossil fuels) are our main energy source
what is the key reason oil has grown substantially as a global fuel source?
transportability; easy to ship, buy, store, etc.
describe peak oil theory
according to dr. M king Hubbert, because oil is a stock resource, the production rate of oil would outpace its avalible resources. Predicted that oil production in the continental US would peak between 1965-1970, also, world oil production would peak in 2000.
what is the relationship between energy and development?
fossil fuels will continue to be used as our main energy source and used to be developed with future products.
what is the relationship between fossil fuels and the industrial revolution?
coal is key to industrial revolution and started in Europe, increased average income, transition from manual labor to machines, 2nd industrial revolution around 1850 marks period when technological and economic progress gains momentum
in what region are the largest oil reserves found?
what are some impacts of biomass or charcoal use in developing countries?
indoor air pollution, respiratory disease, deforestation, climate change (environmental impacts)
what are the environmetal impacts of fossil fuel use?
coal: releases unfavorable materials upon combustion including mercury, sulfur, nitrogen, co2 acid rain. Natural gas: releases methane (GHG=global warming). Also, land water contamination
describe the basic process of acid rain
sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide is released into the air from factories/pollution, mixes with water to produce sulfuric acid and nitric acid and when it rains it comes out as acid rain/snow.
what are the effects of acid rain on aquatic ecosystems
acidified lakes become low in biodiversity and organisms lower in the food chain die off, impacting entire marine food web
what are the effects of acid rain on forest ecosystems
the ability to withstand cold decreases, inhibition of germination and reproduction and soils are depleted of important nutrients
what are some of the hazards associated with nuclear power?
production of fuel is not a clean process, improperly functioning plants experience "melt downs", waste=spent fuel is toxic for centuries and difficult to store permanently, security=transporting nuclear fuel to and from plants poses some risk.
what are some of the effects of oil spill disasters-think of the deep water horizon oil disaster
Horizon oil spill disaster was the largest incidental oil disaster in history. Ecological effects on wildlife/environments are petroleum toxicity and oxygen depletion. Social is fish/seafood become inedible (fisherman jobs lost). Health affects both workers and residents of the Gulf of Mexico.
what are some of the main benefits of renewable energy over fossil fuel energy
unlimited resources, fewer direct environmental impacts not associated with climate change or pollution released into air and water, no direct health problems, renewables locally avaliable and therefore important for national security
describe the fuel vs. food problem associated with biofuels
biofuels require huge amounts of energy for production, expensive to produce, food vs. fuel problem=ethanol requires land to produce that competes with land for fuel=this links price of food with that of oil
what are some of the problems associated with large-scale hydropower
displacement of people and flooding of ecosystems, can result in significant GHG emissions
what is geothermal energy
energy sourced from the heat of the earths crust/core energy can be used directly as heat in buildings, green houses, fish farms or for electricity
define energy efficiency and give examples
reducing the amount of energy required for goods and services Ex: home insulation, compact florescent lights, buildings, vehicles.
what are 3 different forms of biomass energy and how they are used?
traditional forms; fuelwood and charcoal. Biofuels: fuels derived from biomass, ethanal, fermentation of sugar (added to fuels), Biodiesel: from vegetable oil animal fats Biogas: gas produced by the fermentation of organic matter (biomass, manure, sewage, energy crops) methane and co2 in biogas
define energy intensity
ratio of energy demand to GDP; depends on countries stage of economic development
define energy ladder
moving from traditional fuels (dung, crop residue, fuelwood) to commercial energy (liquid/gas fuels) for healthy, cooking, electricity
define technological leapfrogging
instead of advancing to conventional more polluting energy technology, developing countries can shift to energy efficient technology=renewable energy
define and describe the carbon cycle
movement of carbon between the earths crust, ocean, atmosphere, plants, soil, animals. By removing carbon from the earths crust in the form of coal/petroleum=burn it for energy we release large amounts of carbon into the atmosphere then would normally occur.
what is the keeling curve-what does it measure and what does it show?
measurement of co2 concentration in the atmosphere. shows overall increase in co2, annual fluctuations related to northern hemisphere seasons.
using ice core samples scientists have been able to look at warming and atmospheric carbon dioxide that goes back more than 800,000 years. What does the evidence show?
indicates that there has been climate fluctuations in the past, but temperature and the rate of change are higher than ever
what is the greenhouse effect?
the process by which gases in the atmosphere trap heat and some energy is trapped and heats the earth
what are some of the environmental impacts of climate change?
potential agricultural losses, island/coastal areas lost due to high sea level rise, species extinction and ecosystem collapse, increase in disease incidence
what are some social impacts of climate change? in other words, how do environmental impacts of climate change affect humans?
deaths, mosquito diseases, migration to higher land
which sets of countries are most responsible for climate change (industrialized or developing countries)
industrialized, emitting GHG
which country is the largest emitter of GHG
which country is the largest emitter on a per capita basis?
which sets of countries are most vulnerable to climate change impacts? (industrialized or developing countries)
what is the kyoto protocol
an agreement between signatory countries to reduce carbon emissions, countries can trade emissions with each other. Annex I=developed countries have early and mandatory cuts, share ten w/Annex 2=less developed countries have voluntary cuts and through clean development. Mech=cleaner energy tech.
describe cap and trade
emissions capped at a certain level, a company that wants to emit more will buy the right to emit from a company/country that emits less.
what is one of the main contradiction of green consumption and climate change
green consumption is said to lower/stop emissions but consumption uses up resources, produces waste and degrades the environment
process through which plants use the suns energy to convert co2 into organic compounds (sugar) to build tissure
define emissions trading
market mech. for trading the right to emit a limited amount of a material (carbon credits)
define carbon offset
the purchase of polluting rights/credits from an activity that retires from the carbon cycle
define climate change mitigation
not able to adapt to climate change impacts
define carbon sequestration
plant more trees to eliminate carbon
reducing emissions from deforestation and degradation
discuss links between development and climate change
development=improvement (living conditions of people in less developed countries. Development has relied on heavy use of fossil fuels as main driver for industrialization
what are the key pillars of the development project
industrial modernization: import substitution industrialization major strategy of 3rd world development and advocated use of capital intensive technologies. Agricultural modernization: green revolution=started in mexico as a project aimed at creating new technologies to increase food output and address world hunger
why are developing countries more vulnerable to climate change
more reliant on ecosystem services and natural capital for production more of their population live in physically and economically precarious conditions, limited financial and institutional capacity to adapt
what is the clean development mechanism
flexibility mechanism of the kyoto protocol with 2 goals: GHG reduction and sustainable development in host countries lower cost of mitigation, allows participants of developing countries. Limitatichs=low develop. benefits, problems of proof that projects are add., limited scope
through what program was industrial agriculture initiated in developing countries?
what are the problems associated with industrial agriculture?
high yielding varieties grown in monoculture, water and chemical intensive, depending on petroleum
scientists suggest that global temperatures should not increase more than how many degrees?
5 degrees C
what are some health effects associated with toxics and pollution in our environment?
lung cancer, cardiovascular disease, respiratory infection, asthma, allergy, diabetes
what is particulate matter and how is it released
tiny particles released from different sources (combustion, dust, processes like welding)
why is it so dangerous for human health?
cancer causing pollutants get into lungs and skin
how can people get mercury poisoning
eating fish that are contaminated with mercury
place and process from which a pollutant originates and is released or emitted into the environment
contact of certain duration between a person and a pollutant
amount of a pollutant that enters the body
define health effect
impact of pollutant on health
define environmental justice
a paradigm that suggests that all communities regardless of race or class should be treated equally with regards to environmental laws and the distribution positive/negative environment attributes
what are some of the foundational movements of EJ
civil rights movement (disproportionate impact of environment hazards was a product of social and economic structures that had earlier produced racial oppression. Anti-toxics movement-women concerned about families health
residents opposed to new development (oil refinery) or waste disposal (landfills) in their community
what are strategies used to combat environmental injustice?
community organizing, monitoring, protective policies, investing in cleaner technology
what EJ issue (contaminant) has Native Americans been most concerned about on their land?
exposed to high levels of toxins of mining companies uranium mining
what EJ issue (contaminant) has farm workers been most concerned about?
exposed to contaminants of pesticide use contaminating water
what is climate justice and give one example of climate injustice
focus on ethical dimensions of climate change sites where companies dump toxic materials and families of low income area or color move to.
what are some of the impacts of the recent nuclear disaster in Japan?
radiation expose that can cause cancer