Study sets, textbooks, questions
Upgrade to remove ads
Introduction to Environmental Science
Terms in this set (83)
Interdisciplinary study that examines the role of humans
on the earth, An interdisciplinary study that uses information from the physical sciences and social sciences to learn how the Earth works, how we interact with the Earth, and how to deal with problems.
a sum of all the conditions surrounding an organism that influences its life.
study of the relationships between organisms and their
Region in which the organisms and the physical environment form an interacting unit
direct sunlight and indirect forms of renewable solar energy
The percentage of the energy provided by solar capital that is used to sustain life
Earth's resources and ecological services
Anything obtained from the environment to meet our needs,
(and wants) i.e.food, shelter, water, metals, transportation, recreation
Resource that can be exhausted and/or take millions of years to replace --> fixed quantity
Energy resources- gas, coal, oil
Metallic mineral resources- iron, copper, aluminum
Nonmetallic mineral resources- salt, clay
can be replenished fairly rapidly by natural processes; fresh air, fresh water, plants, animals, fertile soil
Inexhaustible resources on human time scale because it is renewed continuously; Examples include solar energy and wind
Functions of nature which support life and human economies; Examples include:Air purification
Water purification, Water storage, Soil renewal, Nutrient recycling,
Food production, Conservation of biodiversity, Wildlife habitat,
Grassland & forest renewal, Waste treatment, Climate control,
Population control(species interactions), Pest Control
Natural Capital Degradation
What is our greatest environmental problems? Includes: Air and water pollution, biodiversity depletion, food supply problems, waste production
Derived from human activities.
Something that describes the current state of an environmental system
Five Key Global Environmental Indicators
1. Biological Diversity
2. Food Production
3. Average global surface temperature and CO₂ concentrations
5. Resource depletion
The presence of substances at high enough levels to harm living organisms due to: Natural occurrences= biogenic (volcanic eruptions) or Human activities= anthropogenic (burning fossil
fuels, using pesticides, etc.)
Point source pollution
Defined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as "any single identifiable source of pollution from which pollutants are discharged. They are easy to identify and control. Ex: exhaust pipe of cars, smokestacks of power plants, drainpipe of factories
Non-point source pollution
Pollution that comes into an area from another difficult to
Factors that determine damage a pollutant can cause:
1. Chemical nature
how active and harmful a pollutant is to living organism
amount of pollutant per unit volume or weight of air, water, soil
or body weight
How long a pollutant stays in the air, water, soil, or body; rate of degradation
harmful substances that can be broken down naturally like sewage
harmful materials that natural processes cannot break down.
slows or eliminates the production of pollutants,
often by switching to less harmful chemicals or
-involves removing pollutants after they have been produced
-Temporary bandage without improvements in control
-Expensive - pollutants at harmful levels can cost too much to reduce them to acceptable levels and, generally passed on to the consumer
The process of cleanup is ______________. It often removes pollutants from one part of the environment to cause problems in another
Excess heat .. are all forms of ____________ ___________.
Global climate change
Urban air pollution
Noise .... are all forms of ________ _________.
The degree of variation of life forms within a given ecosystem, biome, or and entire planet.
A measure of the genetic variation among individuals in a population. Populations with high _______ _______ are better able to respond to environmental change than populations with lower __________ __________.
The number of species in a region or in a particular type of habitat.
a group of organisms that is distinct form other groups in form,
behavior or biochemical properties. Individuals in a _______ can breed and produce fertile offspring.
Evolution of a new species. ___________ typically happens very slowly
Background Extinction Rate
The average rate at which species go extinct over the the long term. Occurs very slowly.
A measure of the diversity of ecosystems or habitats that exist in a particular region.
gases in our planets atmosphere that
act like a blanket, trapping heat near Earth's surface
the highest rate at which a renewable resource can be used indefinitely without becoming degraded or depleted
______________ ___________ are resources that are economically depleted when it costs too much to obtain what is left
Population and Economic Growth
There are two important dimensions in the growth of
human impacts on the environment:
each individual has certain basic needs for food, water, and living space, so a large _________ will generally have a higher
resource requirement and higher environmental impact
________ ________ is measured by comparing GDP in a year with the GDP from the previous year. As per capita income rises, each individual tends to consume more, increasing resource
demand and waste production
Current human population
Over a million additional people is added to the
Earth every __ days
___ % of the habitable area of the earth has been altered by
exponential increase in population increases our __________ _______ in many ways: Increased land use - results in habitat loss for other species, Increased resource use - results in changes in land cover, Increased pollution - causes climate change, sickens people, and damages ecosystems, Growth more rapid than Earth can support with less time to find solutions to environmental problems
Improvement in human well being through economic advancement
Gross National Product
market value in current dollars of all goods and services produced within and outside of a country by the country's businesses during one year.
Gross Domestic Product
market value in current dollars of all goods and services produced only within a country during one year.
per capita GDP
GDP divided by the population at mid year , each persons "slice of the pie"
- highly industrialized with high per capita GDP
-1.2 billion people, US, Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand
and most of Europe
- Small amount of people making a huge impact on environment
represents 20% of world population that controls 85% of
wealth, 88% of resources and produce 75% of pollution and
- low per capita GDP
- 5.4 billion people, most in Africa, Asia, & Latin America (China,
India, Brazil, and Mexico
- More people using fewer resources
- represents 95% of projected increase in the worlds population
- represents 80% of world population that controls 15% of wealth, 12% of resources and produce 15% of pollution and waste
1 in __ is hungry, malnourished, lacks access to clean water,
decent housing and health care.
makes up 4.6% of the world's population, but consumes 25% of all oil production and generates 50% of all toxic wastes in the world
the inability to meet one's basic economic needs
____________ has harmful environmental and health effects :
-many desperate for basic needs, therefore deplete or degrade forests, soil, grasslands, and wildlife for short-term survival
- don't have luxury of worrying about long-term environmental quality
- Malnutrition - lack of protein and other nutrients
- Premature death - 7 million die each day, with
2/3 being children under the age of 5
- Limited access to adequate sanitation facilities and clean water (38% lack access)
term coined to describe the unsustainable addiction to over-consumption and materialism exhibited in the lifestyles of
many affluent consumers in the US and other developed countries and the rising middle class in China and India
Harmful environmental impact due to:
High levels of consumption
Unnecessary waste of resources
can provide funding for Developing technologies to reduce
________ plays a larger part in the degradation of the environment than __________
living on the Earth in a way that allows us to use its resources without depriving future generations of those resources.
the ability of the environment to function indefinitely, without going into decline from over use of natural systems that maintain life.
satisfying the basic needs of the people for food, clean air &
water, and shelter indefinitely without (1) depleting or degrading
natural resources & (2) preventing future generations from meeting their basic needs
development that balances current human well-being and economic advancement with resource management for the benefit of future generations.
________ has sustained itself for billions of years by using solar energy, biodiversity, population control, and nutrient cycling—
lessons from nature that we can apply to our lifestyles
Planetary management worldview
nature exists for our use and benefit. We are separate from nature.
intrinsic value: humans;
role of humans:master
we use nature for our benefit, but we must make wise decisions concerning the sustainability of the planet
intrinsic value: humans and nature;
role of humans: caretakers
Environmental wisdom worldview
we are a part of nature and no more important than any other part. We must learn to integrate into the Earth systems.
intrinsic value: species;
role of humans: one of many
Tragedy of the Commons
Overuse of common property resources, which are owned by no
one but available to everyone free of charge.
Examples are clean air, oceans, fish, Antarctica.
This leads to exploitation and then no one can use the resource.
" If I don't use this resource then someone else will, the little bit
I pollute is not enough to matter"
_____ of agricultural lands show signs of degradation.
Any set of interacting components that influence one another by exchanging energy or materials
As Earth's surface is warmed by the Sun, it radiates heat outward. Heat-trapping gases absorb the outgoing heat and reradiate some of it back to the Earth.
A statement or idea that can be falsified, or proved wrong.
Genuine Progress Indicator
This is the measurement that is used by economists etc. that is more comprehensive of how a society works. It takes into account the positive and negative (consumption, wealth, inequality, and security) aspects of economic growth.
The practice of assigning monetary value to seemingly intangible benefits and natural capital
WHEN THERE IS SOME SCIENTIFIC UNCERTAINTY ABOUT POTENTIALLY SERIOUS HARM FROM CHEMICALS OR TECHNOLOGIES, DECISION MARKERS SHOULD ACT TO PREVENT HARM TO HUMANS AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Sets found in the same folder
Cogat Vocabulary week 4
Key Iowa Assessments Vocabulary
Sets with similar terms
APES Ch. 1
APES Ch. 1
Environmental Problems- Chapter 1
AP Environmental Science
Other sets by this creator
Easy Spanish Step by Step Chaps 1-4
APES Unit 2
Spanish Adjectives from Unit 1
Other Quizlet sets
TCU Environmental Science Test 1
life science chapter 23
EXPLAINED and defined Earth Science Honors Vocabul…