38 terms

Unit 2 - Natural Resources

This unit introduces students to the periodic table and atomic structure, properties of elements, and properties of minerals. This is a unit discussing natural resources and the human need for them, the difference between a renewable and non-renewable resource, alternative energy sources and human impacts on resource availability and the environment.
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Mineral
Naturally occurring, inorganic solid with a specific chemical composition and a definite crystalline structure that forms from magma or from supersaturated solution.
Natural Resources
Resources provided by Earth, including air, water, land, all living organisms, nutrients, rocks and minerals.
Sustainable Energy
Involves global management of Earth's natural resources to ensure that current and future energy need will be met without harming the environment.
Sustainable Yield
Replacement of renewable resources at the same rate at which they are consumed.
Air Pollution
Occurs when air contains harmful levels of pollutants; can be caused by natural phenomena, such as forest fires or volcanic eruptions, or by human activities, such as burning of fossil fuels.
Mining
Extracting ore or minerals from the ground
Reclamation
A process that reduces the amount of damage mining does to ecosystems is
Renewable Resource
Any natural resource (as wood or solar energy) that can be replenished naturally with the passage of time
Non-Renewable Resource
a resource that cannot be reused or replaced easily (ex. gems, iron, copper, fossil fuels)
Urbanization
Movement of people from rural areas to cities
Deforestation
The act of cutting down trees, can cause soil erosion
Industrialization
Caused a shift from an economy based on farming to an economy based on manufacturing by machines in factories
Heat Islands
urban areas that heat up more quickly and retain heat better than nonurban areas
Mitigation
The policy of constructing or creating man-made habitats, such as wetlands, to replace those lost to development
Peat
Brownish-black material produced by partial decomposition of plant remains
Drilling
the act of drilling a hole in the earth in the hope of producing petroleum
Fossil Fuels
Coal, oil, natural gas, and other fuels that are ancient remains of plants and animals.
Hydrofracturing
a well drilled to break open rock to get natural gas, where fluid and other chemicals are injected into rocks containing natural methane gas in order to use the water pressure to fracture the rock and allow the gas to be extracted
Petroleum
A liquid mixture of complex hydrocarbon compounds; used widely as a fuel source
Natural Gas
A gas with high methane content, found along with various fossil fuels and is used as a fuel.
Alternative Energy
energy derived from sources that do not use up natural resources or harm the environment
Nuclear Fission
A nuclear reaction in which a massive nucleus splits into smaller nuclei with the simultaneous release of energy
Wind Power
power derived from the wind (as by windmills)
Turbine
A machine for producing power in which a wheel or rotor is made to revolve by a fast-moving flow of water, steam, gas, or air.
Solar Energy
Energy from the sun
Photovoltaic
a cell that converts solar energy into electrical energy
Biofuels/Biomass
Fuel that comes from plants and animals
Geothermal Energy
Energy derived from the heat in the interior of the earth
Fuel Cells
an electrochemical cell that uses replenishable substances such as hydrogen or oxygen or water to produce electricity
Hydroelectric Energy
Energy obtained from flowing water
Sustainability
The ability to keep in existence or maintain. A sustainable ecosystem is one that can be maintained
Uniformitarianism
Charles Lyell's idea that geologic processes have not changed throughout Earth's history.
Superposition
A principle that states that younger rocks lie above older rocks if the layers have not been disturbed.
Fault
A crack in the earth's crust resulting from the displacement of one side with respect to the other
Intrusion
An igneous rock layer formed when magma hardens beneath Earth's surface
Inclusion
A piece of rock that is contained in another rock.
Sustainable Farming
Agriculture that has a minimal/no impact on the land. It is often thought that these foods are healthier or safer in some way.
Traditional Farming
polyculture, crop rotation, labor intensive
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