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3 main issues studied in Enviro
Understanding and solving environmental problems
understand how we use natural resources
understand how our actions alter the environment
condition in which human needs are met in such a way that human population can survive indefinitely
shows the productive area of the Earth needed to support one person in a particular country
undesired change in air, water, or soil that negatively affects health, survival, activities
Tragedy of the Commons
When everyone is responsible for taking care of an area, no one does
Continues until collapse
Best long-term solution may be negative for individuals short-term
Small groups that migrated to forage/hunt food
Burned prairies to prevent trees; forced grasslands
Spread seeds while migrating
Little pollution, little waste
growing, breeding plants & animals for use
Farming allowed increased population size and concentration
Selective breeding & hybridization changed what plants grew & were eaten
Converting forests, etc. to farmland causes soil loos, flooding, water shortage, habitat destruction
Farming destroys the natural fertility of soil (requires artificial fertilizers)
changed from using animals, water for power to using fossil fuels
use of machines requires fewer people and less land for farming
Population growth, concentration in urban areas continued
Fuel & engines allow food & goods to be transported long distances
more pollution & artificial substances
Supply and demand
for a limited supply of an item: the more people want it, the more one can charge for it
Solution to high prices: pay more, use less, or find new sources
understanding the true likelihood of an undesirable outcome
Helps with cost-benefit analysis
higher avg. incomes, slower population growth, diverse economies, stronger social support systems
Hypothesizing and Predicting
Organizing and Analyzing data
relative arrangement of the members of a statistical population
(pattern that bars on a bar graph create when viewed as a whole)
How are statistics important to Environmental science?
collection and classification of numerical data
used to summarize, characterize, analyze, and compare data
Decision-making model/process (& values)
make a decision
Layers of the earth
CRUST - Lithosphere
MANTLE - Asthenosphere, mesosphere
CORE - Outer core, inner core
How do scientists learn about the composition of the interior layers of the earth?
When earthquakes occur
There are several spots around the globe that calculate the time it took for the movement to reach them, and then calculated their position relative to the others' to find out the properties of the matter in between
Mechanisms by which water changes form or moves
movement of water through land, air, and back
How does the ocean affect climate globally and locally
provides consistent heat when needed and absorbs heat as necessary
Layers of the atmosphere
(bottom to top)
troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere, thermosphere, exosphere, magnosphere
How do/can we effect the Ozone?
If it's too close to the earth - smog
Chemicals that react with O3 deplete the ozone layer in the stratosphere
Gases trap heat near Earth by absorbing heat radiated by land and re-radiating it toward land
How do/can we affect it?
1. Decrease emissions (oil, coal, natural gas)
2. increase the Earth's albedo - how much sunlight a surface reflects (if we make the earth reflect more light, less light and heat will be absorbed, and the Earth will cool)
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