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GEOG 1001 - Part 1 Exam Study Guide

by: Melanie Basinger

GEOG 1001 - Part 1 Exam Study Guide Geog 1001

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Melanie Basinger

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Includes all possible test/quiz questions that were given in class. Includes most of the terms and definitions. All terms are listed but some I could not find the definition for. Also includes the ...
Introduction to Physical Geography
Nicholas Dunning
Study Guide
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This 14 page Study Guide was uploaded by Melanie Basinger on Monday September 19, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to Geog 1001 at University of Cincinnati taught by Nicholas Dunning in Summer 2016. Since its upload, it has received 18 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Physical Geography in Geography at University of Cincinnati.


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Date Created: 09/19/16
Introduction to Physical Geography Part 1 Exam Study Guide POSSIBLE TEST QUESTIONS 1. Mt. Rainer poses a threat to Seattle – Tacoma because… a. Lahars could reach populated areas in less than 30 minutes 2. Longitude and Latitude are both measured from angular distances from… a. The center of the Earth 3. Which map projection eliminates spatial distortion? a. None (all flat maps have distortion) 4. Which of the following is true? a. Earth wobbles on it axis on a 41,000-year cycle 5. Wien’s Law tells us… a. The Sun radiates short – wave radiation and the Earth radiates long – wave radiation 6. Surface insolation on Earth is strongest… a. In subtropical deserts 7. Regarding maritime influence on climate, which statement is true? a. Lower annual temperature range compared to a continental location at the same latitude 8. When rising air cools down to the dew point in the atmosphere and water vapor condenses into water droplets… a. Energy is released, warming the air, and causing it to rise 9. Sailing vessels typically exit harbors in the early morning because… a. Offshore (land) breezes are at their strongest 10.Subtropical deserts are largely produced by… a. Subsiding cooler air masses and higher pressure cells 11.Day time valley breezes and nighttime mountain breezes are examples of… a. Local Winds 12.Which of the following statements about ENSO is true? a. It results in warm ocean water and high rainfall in costal South America 13.Which of the following is true about clouds? a. They decrease daytime temperatures and increase nighttime temperatures 14.Which of the following types of clouds is composed entirely of ice crystals? a. Cirrus 15.Which of the following statements about Midlatitude Wave Cyclones (MLWC’s) is correct? a. MLWC’s are traveling low pressure cells 16.Which of the following statements about tropical cyclones are true? a. Tropical Cyclones are most common in late summer and early autumn when ocean surfaces are their warmest 17.Generally, when going from low to high latitudes the mean annual temperature ___ and the annual temperature range ___. a. Decreases, increases 18.Tropical Monsoons and Tropical Savannah climates are distinguished from Tropical Rainforest climates by… a. Highly seasonal precipitation 19.Which of the following statements about humid subtropical climates is true? a. East Asia precipitation is much more seasonal (dry/wet seasons) due to the monsoon effect 20.The Pacific Northwest Region (US/Canada) is a moist environment because a. There is a presence of high mountains, there is a presence of maritime air masses, and the prevailing wind direction at that latitude (the Westerlies) 21.Which of the following climate regions experiences the greatest change in monthly average temperature (temperature change from one month to the next)? a. Subarctic/Boreal Forest Climate 22.Which of the following statements is NOT true about a Tundra Climate region? a. They are found mainly in the Southern Hemisphere 23.Which of the following is NOT a significant Greenhouse Gas? a. Nitrogen 24.Which of the following is a predicted consequence of global warming? a. Flooding of low – lying coastal areas, spreading of tropical diseases (Malaria and Zika), change in species compositions, and the disruption of many international trade agreements (most likely dealing with food) 25.What are some of the consequences of ozone heating? a. Increased melanoma, increase in photochemical smog, crops and forest productivity decreases, breakdown of materials, increased UV index which is harmful to humans and animals 26.The apparent deflection of wind from a straight path in proportion to the speed of the Earth’s rotation at different latitudes is known as a. Coriolis effect 27.Coastal areas adjacent to cold ocean currents experience a. Less precipitation than areas adjacent to warm ocean currents 28.The temperature of the lower atmosphere is likely to be ________ on a cloudy night than that of a clear night because______. a. warmer; clouds trap, absorb and reradiate energy in the lower atmosphere 29.The steep wall of fast-approaching clouds seen in this photo is indicative of a. An incoming cold front IMPORTANT TEMRS AND CONCEPTS  Latitude: angular distance north or south of the equator. Also called parallels because the lines run parallel to the equator (east to west or west to east)  Longitude: angular distance east or west. Also called meridians (run north to south or south to north)  Equator: divides the distance between the North Pole and the South Pole exactly in half. The degree of latitude is 0  Elevation: height above a given level, specifically sea level  Meridian: a line connecting all points along the same longitude  Prime Meridian: Meridian with a value of 0 longitude. The prime meridian is located at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, England  International Date Line: At the 180 meridian. This line marks the place where each day officially begins  Time zones (how to calculate time differences)  Columbus’ mistake: Geographers realized that Earth was a sphere, but they believed it was a perfect sphere which lead to miscalculations when trying to calculate Earth’s dimensions. This lead Columbus to believe he had landed on Asia when he had actually landed on Hispaniola (Haiti and the Dominican Republic)  Map projections and distortion: All flat map projections have distortion, only a globe does not have distortion. There are four classes of projections; cylindrical, planar (azimuthal), conic, and nonperspective oval shape  Cylindrical projection: Also called Mercator Projection. The typical flat maps we see every day, the most common type of projection. Latitudes are represented accurately but the longitudes become progressively more distorted as you move towards the poles.  Equal-area projection: indicates the equivalence of all areas on the surface of the map although shape is distorted.  Earth’s position in the solar system (3 states of water): The Earth is in the Sagittarius Arm of the Orion Spur in the Milky Way Galaxy. Water is the only substance on Earth that exists in 3 forms; solid, liquid, and gas.  Earth’s orbit: Also knows as Earth’s revolution around the Sun. Earth completes one orbit around the Sun every 365.2422 days or one year.  Perihelion/Aphelion: Perihelion is Earth’s closest point to the Sun and occurs on January 3 during the Northern Hemisphere winter and the distance from the Sun is 147,255,000 km (91,500,000 miles). Aphelion is the th Earths farthest position from the Sun. Aphelion occurs on July 4 during the Northern Hemisphere summer and the distance from the Sun is 152,083,000 km (94,500,000 miles).  Earth’s rotation and axel tilt: Earth is tilted on its axis at about 23.5 degrees. Earth’s rotation is described as Earth turning on its axis which takes 24 hours, one day, to complete.  Solstice: There are 2 solstices, one in June and one in December (Summer and Winter solstice). A solstice is when the Sun reaches its highest or lowest point in the sky at noon, as marked by the shortest and longest days.  Equinox: There are 2 equinoxes, one in March and one in September. The March equinox is also known as the vernal equinox and the September equinox is known as the autumnal equinox. An equinox is when the Sun crosses the equator and day and night are exactly the same length.  Explanation of seasons: Seasons are the results of variations form the Sun’s altitude, the Sun’s declination (the latitude of the subsolar point), and the day length during the year. The seasons are also caused by Earth’s rotation on its axis, Earth’s revolutions around the Sun, and the Earth’s sphericity.  Solar inclination and insolation: Insolation is solar radiation that is intercepted by Earth. Inclination is the angular measurement of the Sun’s position above the horizon  Subsolar Point: the only point where insolation arrives perpendicular to the surface (hitting directly overhead at an angle of 90)  Insolation as related to latitude: Insolation is the solar radiation that is incoming to Earth systems. At higher latitudes, the Sun radiation that Earth receives is more diffused than areas of lower latitude.  Significance of cyclical variation in Earth’s orbit and axel tilt (Glacial/Interglacial cycles)  Importance of Ozone: The Ozone absorbs short wave UV radiation which is harmful to humans.  Greenhouse gases (especially Carbon Dioxide): methane, carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, chlorofluorocarbons (CFC’s). Making the Earth hotter  Composition of the atmosphere (general): 78% Nitrogen, 21% Oxygen, . 04% Carbon Dioxide, .9% Argon, and some trace gases.  Troposphere and its general characteristics: layer of sometimes unstable air nearest the ground; air temperatures in this layer decrease with height. Contains 90% of the mass of the atmosphere, vertical and horizontal mixing, turbulence, thicker over equatorial regions, shallow over poles, thicker in summer, shallower in winter at same latitude, general decrease in temperature with altitude (to the tropopause) Normal Lapse Rate: -3/5⁰F/1000’ or -6.4⁰C/km.  Stratosphere: layer of stable air above the Tropopause; air temperatures in this layer increase with height.  10 Fundamental Principles (Rules) of Meteorology and Climatology [see separate handout]  Atmospheric density and elevation  Atmospheric pressure and elevation  Adiabatic lapse (wet and dry) in the atmosphere  Radiant energy and body temperature (Sun vs Earth); short- and long-wave radiation  Stefan-Boltzmann Law: objects radiate energy at an intensity proportional to the 4th power of their Kelvin temperature (°K = °C + 273). A hot object gives off more by radiation than a cool object.  Wien’s Law: objects radiate energy at a wavelength equal to 2940 divided by their Kelvin temperature. Basically this says that any object that contains heat will radiate energy. Sun radiates short wave radiation and the Earth radiates long wave radiation.  Albedo: percentage of incoming light that is reflected. Mirror – 90 to 100 Albedo, Water – 2 to 10 Albedo.  Barometric pressure: Device used to measure air pressure. As the air pressure outside the chamber increases, it presses inward on the chamber and when the pressure outside the chamber decreases, there is less pressure on the chamber. In both these cases, the change in pressure causes the needle move.  Solar energy budget: the distribution of solar energy to various fates or uses on the Earth’s surface – reflection, surface heating, photosynthesis, and evaporation. The Ocean will absorb 20%, reflect 5%, and evaporate 75% of solar energy. The Desert will absorb 75%, reflect 20%, and evaporate 5% of solar energy.  Atmospheric heating  Turbulent transfer: removal of heat from a surface via convection  Thermal properties (capacity and inertia) of water vs land  Air temperature and water-holding capacity (humidity)  Relative humidity: the ratio of water vapor actually in the air (content) to the maximum water vapor possible in the air (capacity) at that temperature; expressed as a percentage.  Causes of cloud formation in the atmosphere  Cumulus clouds: bright and puffy cumuliform clouds up to 2000 m (6500 ft.) in altitude.  Cumulonimbus clouds: a towering, precipitation – producing cumulus cloud that is vertically developed across altitudes associated with other clouds; frequently associated with lightning and thunder and thus sometimes called thunderhead.  Cirrus clouds: wispy, filamentous ice – crystal clouds that occur above 6000 m; appear in a variety of forms, from feathery hair like fibers to veils of fused sheets  Stratus clouds: A stratiform (flat, horizontal) cloud generally below 2000 m  Atmospheric inversion  Inversions and pollution risk  Atmospheric convection: Within a room, air is warmed over a heater, becomes less dense, and rises. The increasing mass of air near the ceiling increases pressure, leading to outward displacement as well as cooling, especially farther away from the heat source. Cooled, denser air descends to the floor and is drawn towards the heater by the pressure void created by the air rising above the heater. Winds are created both along the ceiling and floor. This is a continual process, the strength of which largely depends on the constancy of the heat source  Local wind: Driven by differential heating of ground surface and resulting in development of high and low pressure cells; occurs on a diurnal basis causing wind direction to change between day and night  Land breeze/sea breezes (offshore/onshore breezes): wind along coastlines and adjoining interior areas created by different heating characteristics of land and water surfaces – onshore (landward) breezes in the afternoon and offshore (seaward) breeze at night  Valley breeze/mountain breeze: local winds, warmer air goes in during daytime valley breezes and cold air comes out during nighttime mountain breezes  Urban heat island: an urban microclimate that is warmer on average than areas in the surrounding countryside because of the interaction of solar radiation and various surface characteristics  Urban dust dome: dust domes above cities.  Regional wind: Driven by ground heating and cooling on a seasonal basis  Monsoon wind: regional wind,  Katabatic wind: air drainage from elevated regions, flowing as gravity winds. Layers of air at the surface cool, becoming denser, and flow downslope; known worldwide by many local names  Mistral wind: famous regional wind that occurs in Europe when high pressure develops over the cold winter Alps and interior land masses generating strong, cold winds that flow towards Mediterranean lows  Pressure gradient force and wind  Coriolis Effect and wind: a moving object on the rotating Earth inevitably deviates from an apparent straight line. The deviation is relatively insignificant near the Equator, but becomes more pronounced poleward. Hence, as high altitude winds move poleward they are deflected by the Earth’s rotation  Global winds: Driven by semi-permanent pressure belts  Hadley Cell: The great atmospheric “dropout” in the subtropical regions produces bands of high air pressure both north and south of the equator. These high pressure cells generate winds (Trade Winds) in the lower atmosphere that blow towards the equator completing a convection system known as the Hadley Cell. However, unlike the simple convection model described earlier, the descending ends of the Hadley Cell in the subtropics are characterized by generally hot surface temperatures rather than cool ones  Trade Winds: Winds from the northeast and southeast that converge in the equatorial low – pressure trough, forming the intertropical convergence zone.  Subsidence climate: hot subtropical deserts. Note that subsidence climates are often seasonal, with moist tropical air masses intruding during part of the year (because Hadley cells shift north and south with the seasons)  Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ): a thermally caused low – pressure area that almost girdles Earth, with air converging and ascending all along its extent; also called equatorial low  Seasonal shift of the ITCZ and tropical/subtropical hybrid climates  High pressure cell (anticyclone): a dynamically or thermally caused area of high atmospheric pressure with descending and diverging airflows that rotate clockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and counterclockwise in the Southern Hemisphere.  Low pressure cell (cyclone): a dynamically or thermally caused area of low atmospheric pressure with ascending and converging air flows that rotate counterclockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere  Pressure cells and rotary motion  Geostrophic (upper atmosphere) winds: a wind moving between areas of different pressure along a path that is parallel to the isobars. It is a product of the pressure gradient force and the Coriolis force.  Surface friction and wind direction and speed  Subtropical High (pressure cell): one of several dynamic high – pressure area covering roughly the region from 20 to 35 N and S latitudes; responsible for the hot, dry areas of Earth arid and semiarid deserts  Midlatitude Convergence Zone (MLTZ)/sub-polar low: a region of low pressure centered approximately at 60 latitude in the North Atlantic near Iceland and in the North Pacific near the Aleutians as well as in the Southern Hemisphere. Airflow is cyclonic; weakens in the summer and strengthens in the winter  Polar High (pressure cell): Weak, anticyclonic, thermally produced pressure systems positioned roughly over each pole; that over the South Pole is the region of the lowest temperature on Earth  Westerlies: the predominate surface and aloft wind flow pattern from the subtropics to high latitudes in both hemispheres  Jet Streams: the most prominent movement in upper – level westerly wind flows; irregular, concentrated, sinuous bands of geostrophic wind, traveling at 190 mph.  Rossby Waves: an undulating horizontal motion in the upper – air westerly circulation at the middle and high latitudes  Ocean currents and air temperatures and precipitation  El Niño/Southern Oscillation and its effects on weather patterns: A periodic change in the state of the Earth’s climate caused by the slackening and temporary reversal of equatorial Pacific Ocean currents and trade winds. This results in increased sea surface temperatures on the northwest coast of South America and cooler ocean temperatures in the southwest Pacific. Correspondingly, rainfall increases in the normally arid northwest coast of South America and decreases in eastern Australia. ENSOs trigger circulation changes in the Indian Ocean and southern Atlantic that also relate to recurrent drought  Radiation fog: occurs when radiative cooling of a land surface chills the overlying air layer below its dew point creating saturation  Advection fog: occurs when an air mass migrates to a place where conditions are right for saturation to occur  Four lifting mechanisms: 1) convectional, 2) convergent, 3) orographic, 4) frontal  Orographic precipitation and windward/leeward effect  Arctic/Antarctic air masses  Polar air masses  Subtropical air masses  Tropical air masses  Equatorial air masses  Continental air masses  Maritime air masses  Warm front characteristics: Warm air masses displace cold ones by gently ascending over them. Thin cirrus clouds arrive first, followed by thickening, lower clouds as the front near and precipitation ensues. Warm fronts move slowly and may bring long steady rains as well as storms  Cold front characteristics: Cold fronts displace warm air abruptly, and sometimes violently, pushing the warm air up and over the approaching cold air mass. Cold fronts approach quickly, often with little warning to those of the ground. Rapidly rising warm, moist air can generate strong storm cells along the front, sometimes including lightening, hail, or tornadoes  Occluded front: Develops above earth’s surface, and is not in contact with the ground. Typically occurs when an advancing front (usually cold) overtakes a retreating air mass, and warmer air between is forced aloft  Midlatitude Wave Cyclone: Midlatitude to subarctic, associated with Polar Front and MLCZ, large fronts, traveling low pressure cells, travel west to east, counterclockwise  Tropical Cyclones/Typhoons/Hurricanes: Develop in Tropics, initially travel east to west (Trade Winds Belt) then northeast, prominent lows, formative conditions  Saffir-Simpson Scale: Used to classify hurricanes. Category 1 – 5 with 5 being the most destructive  Thunderstorm: Thunderstorms and lightning are most common in the ITCZ and in the MLCZ reflecting unstable air conditions  Mesocyclone/super cell: Extreme low pressure development within thunderstorms creates stronger, rotational updrafts known as mesocyclones characterized by exceptionally strong winds and sometimes tornado development. Storms with mesocyclones are called Super Cells  Tornado: As moist air is drawn upward in the circulation of a mesocyclone, energy is released by condensation and wind speed and rotation increase as air pressure drops further. Funnel clouds develop when the mesocyclone narrows and rear flank downdrafts may pull the rotating cloud to the surface: a tornado. Air pressure within a tornado may be as much as 10% lower that the surrounding air mass, generating intense localized winds capable of causing great damage  Enhanced Fujita scale: Scale used to classify tornados. EF0 – EF5 with EF5 causing the most damage.  Climate: the long-term condition of the atmosphere, or weather integrated over time  Tropical Climate: where the climate is generally warm throughout the year, “A” climates, not extremely hot, but lack of cold (no winter). Warm year round as solar inclination very high. Very moist, convectional precipitation (ITCZ), onshore Trade Winds. Thus, fundamental characteristics determined by latitude  Mesothermal Climate: Midlatitudes; four seasons; mild winters  Microthermal Climate: mid to high latitudes; cold winters; deciduous/coniferous or boreal forest  [For each of the following climate types you should familiar with their characteristic patterns of temperature and precipitation and locations]:  Tropical Rainforest: a lush biome of tall broadleaf evergreen trees and diverse plants and animals, roughly between 23.5 N and 23.5 S latitude. The dense canopy of leaves is usually arranged in three levels. “Af” climate, Monotonous weather, same every day, Annual temp range ~ 5° F, less than daily temp range (unique), Very humid; daily convectional precipitation in midafternoon from ITCZ  Tropical Monsoon: “Am” climate, Results from seasonal reversal of wind direction due to changes in dominating pressure systems, Onshore winds and orographic uplift, Most prominent on west side of SE Asia, 10-20” per month for 2-4 months, period of winter drought  Tropical Savanna: a major biome containing huge expanses of grassland interrupted by trees and shrubs; a transitional area between the humid rain forests and tropical seasonal forests and drier, semiarid tropical steppes and deserts. “Aw” climate, Wet-dry tropical climate with winter drought  Humid Subtropical: “Cfa” climate, SE region of major landmasses, Precipitation max in summer due to tropical cyclonic precipitation, High summer humidity with mild winters. Found in areas affected by monsoon conditions and onshore/ offshore winds  Mediterranean: “Csa/b” climate, West side of all major landmasses, Modest annual precipitation in winter (MLCZ), summer drought (STH), Mild winters for latitude, hot (Csa) to warm (Csb) summers  Marine West Coast: “C” climate, found in mid-latitudes, Distinct seasons, mixing of tropical and polar air masses, Mild winters, hot-warm summers. o Cfb/c climate, Very mild climate for latitude, strong maritime influence, Small annual temp range for latitude, cloudy with no dry season  Humid Continental: “Dfa/b” or “Dwa/b” climate: Long hot-warm summers, cool winters, daily weather variation (MLCZ), Influence of cT or mT in summer, cPin winter, precipitation 20-50”/year, decreases toward interior/poles. Hot, humid in mid-NoAm (Toledo), Great Plains to New. England. Warm, humid most of E Europe through Central Russia, source region of large streams. Deciduous forest vegetation, Subarctic with very cold winter only in NE Asia, Korea, N China (monsoon and Siberian High)  Subarctic: Short, cool summers, long cold winters. Marked continental influence, Dominance of PH and MLCZ, Low evaporation, snow cover 5-7 months. Boreal forest vegetation, taiga, “green sea”. Dfd- only in Siberia; largest annual temperature range of all climates (+98 to –90 F world record), Dw only in NE Asia  Tundra: “ET”. 60-75 ° N (Arctic Coastal fringe), little in S Hem, dominated by Polar High and cA, mP, cP, no true summer. precipitation low, mostly in summer (wave cyclones); evapotranspiration even lower. Tundra vegetation; “Barrens”, Also found at high altitudes; above “tree line”, Characterized by permafrost  Tropical/Subtropical Desert  Midlatitude Cold Desert  Tropical/Subtropical Hot Steppe  Midlatitude Cold Steppe: higher latitude or altitude, often mid-latitude rain shadow or extreme continental position¸ Intermontane: Between Cascades-S Nevada and Rockies, largely rain shadow, colder with alt and latitude. Great Plains: BS prevails. Precipitation decreases S  N, temp decreases S  N. Temp increases W  E (alt), precipitation increases W  E (Bs_ to Cf_)  Global warming and Carbon Dioxide build up  Other Greenhouse gasses  Little Ice Age and its causes  Ozone Layer depletion and its consequences BOOK INFORMATION Focus Study 2.1 – Pollution (pg. 62)  Acid deposition: Damaging to Ecosystems o Acid rain and acid snow o Cost of damages exceed $50 billion annually o Damages buildings, sculptures, artifacts o Fish kills, forest damage, changes in soil chemistry  Acid formation o Sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide are emitted as by – products of fossil fuel combustion o In the atmosphere, they change into nitric acid (HNO3) and sulfuric acid (H2SO4) o They are then removed from the atmosphere by rain, snow, or attached to other particle matter o Acid settles on the land and eventually enters lakes and streams o Measured on the pH scale  normal range for precipitation is 5.3 – 6.0  acidic precipitation can be as low as 2.0  effects on natural systems o releases aluminum and magnesium from clay minerals in soil which are harmful to plants and fish o mercury deposits turn into methylmercury which is toxic to aquatic life o In Germany and Poland over 50% of their forest are dead or damaged  Nitrogen Oxides: A worsening cause o 1990 Clean Air Act seemed to solve the issue The Human Denominator Chapter 2 – Seasons and the Atmosphere (pg. 65)  Seasons/atmosphere impacts humans o Solar energy drives Earth systems o Seasonal change is the foundation of societies  Determines rhythm of life and food resources o Atmosphere protects humans o Natural pollution from wildfires, volcanoes, and wind – blown dust are detrimental to human health  Humans impact seasons/atmosphere o Climate change affects timing of the seasons  Spring is coming earlier and fall is coming later o Human made chemicals deplete the ozone layer  Ozone hole is the largest over Antarctica o Anthropogenic air pollution collects over urban areas  Northern India, eastern China  Issues for the 21 Century o Altering Earth systems  Adapt resource base as timing of seasonal patterns changes o Human made emissions must be reduced o Clean energy sources o Fuel efficiency, vehicle – emission regulations, alternative and public transportation Focus Study 3.1 – Sustainable Resources (pg. 84)  Solar Energy Applications o Sunlight is directly and widely available  Collecting Solar Energy o Solar collector: any surface that receives light from the Sun o Solar cooker is one of the most cost – effective solar applications  Box cookers that collect insolation through transparent glass or plastic  curved “parabolic” cookers that reflect and concentrate sunlight  Panel cookers that combine box and parabolic elements o Space heating  Careful design and placement of windows o Passive – solar system  Captures heat energy and stores it in a “thermal mass” o Active – solar system  Heats air or water in a collector then pumps it through a plumbing system to a tank o World’s largest operating solar thermal plant is in the Mohave Desert  Over 170,000 heliostats reflect sunlight towards receivers  Electricity Directly from Sunlight o Ex: calculator’s solar cells o Can get it on a rooftop  The Promise of Solar Energy o Economically preferable The Human Denominator Chapter 2 – Energy Balance and Global Temperatures (pg. 102)  Temperature Impacts Humans o Support Earth, life, and human society o Solar energy is harnessed for power production  Humans impact energy balance and temperature o Produce atmosphere gases and aerosols that affects clouds and the energy budget which then affect temperature and climate o Urban heat island  Issues for the 21 century o Improve energy efficiency and renewable energy o Reduce urban heat island effects Focus Study 4.1 – Sustainable Resources (pg. 130)  Wind power o Wind power development is slow  The Nature of Wind Energy o Along coastlines influenced by trade winds and westerly winds and where mountain passes constrict air flow and interior valleys develop thermal low – pressure areas thus drawing air across the landscape. Where localized winds occur o Enhance local economies  Wind Power Status and Benefits o 39 states, biggest in Texas, California, Iowa, Illinois, and Oregon o Cheaper than oil, coal, natural gas, and nuclear power The Human Denominator Chapter 4 – Global Circulation (pg. 136)  Atmospheric and Oceanic Circulation impacts humans o Contribute to Earth’s general atmospheric circulation o Natural oscillations in global circulation (ENSO) affect global weather o Ocean currents carry human debris and non – native species into remote areas and spread oil spills across the globe  Humans Impact Atmospheric and Oceanic Circulation o Climate change may be altering patterns of atmospheric circulation especially in relation to Arctic sea – ice melting and the jet stream o Possible intensification of subtropical high – pressure cells o Air pollution is Asia effects monsoonal wind flow; weaker flow could reduce rainfall and affect water availability  Issues for the 21 Century o Windy energy is renewable o Ongoing climate change may affect ocean currents Focus Study 5.1 – Natural Hazards (pg. 176)  Hurricane Katrina & Sandy: Development, Effects, and Links to Climate Change o 2005/2012 o Two most expensive hurricanes in US history  Katrina and Coastal Flooding o Category 5 over the Gulf of Mexico and was a category 3 when it reached New Orleans  Winds over 125 mph o Was a textbook cyclone o Huge flooding, broke through the water retention walls o Army Corps of Engineers put over $12 billion into prevention for future hurricanes  Sandys Unusual Development o 2012 o Began as tropic depression 18 in the Caribbean Sea o Center of the hurricane hit New Jersey at 11 pm on October 29 o Cost $75 billion in damages o Broke records  Hurricanes and Climate Change o Sandys destruction was worsened by the recent sea – level rise o Higher sea – surface temperatures caused by climate change o Continued ocean warming combined with the increasing coastal population will likely lead to more intensive storms and future depopulation of coastal areas (Outer Banks) The Human Denominator Chapter 5 – Weather (pg. 180)  Weather impacts humans o Frontal activity and Midlatitude cyclones bring severe weather that affects transportation systems and daily life o Sever weather events can cause destruction and human casualties  Humans impact Weather o Rising temperature has caused shrinking spring snow cover of the Northern Hemisphere o Sea – level rise is increasing tropical cyclone storm surge on the US East Coasts st  Issues for the 21 Century o Global snowfall will decrease, extreme snowfall events will increase in intensity o Increasing ocean temperatures with climate change will strengthen the intensity and frequency of tropical cyclones The Human Denominator Chapter 7 – Climate Regions (pg. 242)  Climate Impact Humans o Affects agriculture, water availability, natural hazards  Humans Impact Climate o Anthropogenic climate change is altering Earth systems that affect temperature and moisture and therefore climate  Issues for the 21 Century o Global warming is causing a poleward shift in the boundaries of climate regions Focus Study 8.1 – Climate Change (pg. 260)  Global Climate Feedback Mechanisms o Water vapor feedback, permafrost – climate feedback, CO2 – weathering feedback  Water – Vapor Feedback o Most abundant natural greenhouse gas o As air temperature rises, evaporation increases because the capacity to absorb water vapor is greater for warm air than for cooler air o Not well understood  Carbon – Climate Feedback o Occurs as warming temperatures lead to permafrost thaw  CO2 – Weathering Feedback o Negative feedback o Occurs over long periods of time o Provides a natural buffer to climatic change The Human Denominator Chapter 8 – Taking Action on Climate Change (pg. 277)  Climate Change Impacts Humans o Affects all Earth systems o Drives weather and triggers extreme events which could cause human hardship and fatalities  Humans Impact Climate Change o Anthropogenic activities produce greenhouse gases o Cost – effect greenhouse gas reduction strategies are ready and could slow the rste of climate change  Issues for the 21 Century o Using agricultural practices to help soils retain carbon o Planting trees to help sequester carbon in terrestrial ecosystems o Reducing use of fossil fuels, supporting renewable energy, and changing lifestyles to use fewer resources o Protecting and restoring natural ecosystems that are carbon reservoirs


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