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109 terms

Doucette APES CHp 1,2,3,4,5,6,7

aesthetic justification
An argument for the conservation of nature on the grounds that nature is beautiful and beauty is important and valuable to people
carrying capacity
largest number of individuals of a population that a environment can support, largest number of individuals of a population that a environment can support
ecological justification
an argument based on the idea that there is a value to a certain factor that my not benefit an individual directly but is crucial for maintaining the species
Gaia Hypothesis
States that the environment on a global level has been changed for the better by life over the history of life on earth.
Cities, mostly characteristic of the developing world, where high population growth and migration have caused them to explode in population since World War II. All megacities are plagued by chaotic and unplanned growth, terrible pollution, and widespread poverty.
Moral justification
Various aspects of the environment have the right to exist.
Precautionary Principle
When a threat is of serious environmental damage, we should not wait for scientific proof before taking action.
The ability of an ecosystem to maintain stability among its biological resources so that there is a steady optimun yield
sustainable ecosystem
An ecosystem that can maintain its essential functions while being harvested
sustainable resource harvest
the same quantity of a resource can be harvested each year
utilitarian justification
Sees some aspect of the environment as valuable because it benefits individuals economically or are necessary for human survival
controlled experiment
a test of the effect of a single variable by changing it while keeping all other variables the same
deductive reasoning
reasoning from the general to the particular (or from cause to effect)
dependent variable
variable that is measured and depends on the independent variable
The ability to be disproved
experimental controls
condition that insures the manipulated variable actually caused an observed change in the responding variable
a concept whose truth can be proved
a proposal intended to explain certain facts or observations
independent variable
the experimental factor that is manipulated; the variable whose effect is being studied
inductive reasoning
reasoning based on patterns you observe
logical interpretation based on prior knowledge and experience
manipulated variable
factor in an experiment that a scientist purposely changes; also known as independent variable
a symbolic representation of an idea, system, or structure to make somthing understandable
a personal experience as seen through one of the senses, influenced by background knowledge and personal experiences
operational definitions
clear, precise definitions and instructions about how to observe and measure concepts and variables
the statements that set forth the reasons or evidence
a measure of how likely it is that some event will occur
Ideas that are claimed to have scientific validity, but are inherently untestable and/ or lack empirical support and/ or were arrived at through faulty reasoning or poor scientific methodolog
qualitative data
Data associated with a more humanistic approach to geography, often collected through interviews, empirical observations, or the interpretation of texts, artwork, old maps
quantitative data
Data represented as numerical figures that can be expressed in numerical terms, counted, or compared on a scale
responding variable
factor in an experiment that a scientist wants to observe, which may change in response to the manipulated variable; also known as a dependent variable
scientific method
a method of investigation involving observation and theory to test scientific hypotheses
scientific theory
a theory that explains scientific observations
a widely accepted explanatory idea that is broad in scope and supported by a large body of evidence
factor being testes
average residence time
how long it takes for a material to move through a system
the regions of the surface and atmosphere of the Earth (or other planet) where living organisms exist
all the plant and animal life of a particular region
closed system
Matter is not allowed to enter or leave
doubling time
the time required for a population to double in size
a system formed by the interaction of a community of organisms with their physical environment
environmental unity
everything affects each other.
exponential growth
growth pattern in which the individuals in a population reproduce at a constant rate
response to an inquiry or experiment
gaia hypothesis
Life controls the environment for the continuation of life
lag time
The time between a stimulus and the response of a system.
negative feedback
feedback in opposite phase with (decreasing) the input
open system
matter can enter from or escape to the surroundings
overshoot and collapse
This occurs when growth in one part of a system over time exceeds carrying capacity, resulting in sudden decline in one or both parts of the system.
positive feedback
feedback in phase with (augmenting) the input
steady state
A state in which members of a population die as quickly as new members are born
set of components or parts that function together to act as a whole.
is the idea that the geologic processes that operate today also operated in the past
age structure
proportion of people in different age groups in a population
birth rate
the ratio of live births in an area to the population of that area
death rate
the ratio of deaths in an area to the population of that area
demographic transition
change in a population from high birth and death rates to low birth and death rates
growth rate
the rate of increase in size per unit time
human carrying capacity
Theoretical estimates of the numbers of humans who could inhabit Earth at the same time
life expectancy
The estimated average number of years (or other time period used as a measure) that an individual of a specific age can expect to live.
logistic carrying capacity
in terms of the logistic curve, the population size at which births equal deaths and there is no net change in the population
logistic growth curve
phase A is exponental growth, Phase B is when population reaches carrying capacity and stops increasing rapidly
maximum lifetime
genetically determined maximum possible age to which an individual of a species can live
a group of organisms of the same species populating a given area
population dynamics
The study of changes in population sizes and the cause of these changes.
A group of individuals capable of interbreeding.
zero population growth
when the birth rate equals the death rate
Biogeochemical Cycle
the cycling of chemical elements or compounds through the atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, and lithosphere
Carbon-Silicate Cycle
The cycling of carbon over long period of time, which gets involved with the cycling of silicon.
Carbon Cycle
the circulation and reutilization of carbon atoms especially via the process of photosynthesis and respiration.
Chemical Reaction
the process by which one or more substances change to produce one or more different substances
process in which fixed nitrogen compounds are converted back into nitrogen gas and returned to the atmosphere
Drainage Basin
The area that contributes to surface runoff to a stream or river
Geologic Cycle
four sequences of Earth processes: the hydrologic, rock, tectonic, and geochemical cycles
Hydrologic Cycle
the natural process by which water is purified and made fresh through evaporation and precipitation. The cycle provides all the fresh water available for biological life.
Limiting Factor
condition that restricts a population's growth, such a space, disease, and food availability.
A chemical substance that an organism must obtain in relatively large amounts
Nutrients required in small or trace amounts. Some examples are phosphorus, sulfur, and potassium.
Missing Carbon Sink
Substantial amounts of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere but apparently not reabsorbed and thus remaining unaccounted for.
Nitrogen Cycle
the circulation and reutilization of nitrogen in both inorganic and organic places.
Nitrogen Fixation
process of converting nitrogen gas into ammonia or nitrate
Phosphorus Cycle
Cyclic movement of phosphorus in different chemical forms from the environment to organisms and then back to the environment
Plate Tectonics
the theory that pieces of Earth's lithosphere are in constant motion, driven by convection currents in the mantle
Rock Cycle
sequence of events in which rocks are formed, destroyed, altered, and reformed by geological processes
Tectonic Cycle
creation and destruction of lithosphere
Organisms that are able to make their own food
Community Level Interactions
the indirect and complicated interactions within a community. Ex: a predator feeding on its prey, which feeds on autotrophs
organisms that break down wastes and dead organisms and return raw materials to the environment
Ecological Community
A group of populations of different species living in the same area with varying degrees of interactions with others
Food Chains
a series of steps in which organisms transferring energy by eating or being eaten.
Food Webs
A complex diagram representing the many energy pathways in an ecosystem
Keystone Species
a species whose impact on its community or ecosystem are much larger and more influential than would be expected from mere abundance
the gradual and orderly process of change in an ecosystem brought about by the progressive replacement of one community by another until a stable climax is established
Trophic Level
organism that represents a feeding step in the movement of energy and materials through an ecosystem
A boundary of an ecosystem on land; within this area all the water that reaches this area will flow out the same stream
Biological diversity
The variety and complexity of species present and interacting in an ecosystem and the relative abundance of each.
Biological Evolution
Basically, the theory that present days species developed from earlier, very different species over the course of earth's history.
Competitive Exclusion Principle
ecological rule that states that no two species can occupy the same exact niche in the same habitat at the same time
Ecological Niche
(ecology) the status of an organism within its environment and community (affecting its survival as a species)
(genetics) a segment of DNA that is involved in producing a polypeptide chain
Genetic Drift
The gradual changes in gene frequencies in a population due to random events
the type of environment in which an organism or group normally lives or occurs
the movement of persons from one country or locality to another
a change or alteration in form or qualities
Obligate Symbionts
two species that cannot survive without each other
Natural Selection
a natural process resulting in the evolution of organisms best adapted to the environment
a specific kind of something
the relation between two different species of organisms that are interdependent
The smaller participant in a symbiotic relationship, living in or on the host.