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C OF C / Geology / GEOL 103 / What are barrier islands, and why are they important?

What are barrier islands, and why are they important?

What are barrier islands, and why are they important?


School: College of Charleston
Department: Geology
Course: Environmental Geology
Professor: Cynthia hall
Term: Fall 2016
Tags: Geology
Cost: 50
Name: Geology 103 Final Study Guide
Description: study up!!
Uploaded: 12/06/2016
9 Pages 44 Views 7 Unlocks

Geo 103 Final  

What are barrier islands and why are they important?

Coastal Hazards  

- How do you make a wave and what are the proper3es of waves (wavelength, etc.)?      created by wind blowing over water  

    Size: wind speed : faster = bigger waves, wind dura:on: longer = bigger waves, distance  wind blows: further = bigger waves

- What are 3des and why do they occur?  

    Rise and fall of water twice daily, they occur as a result of the combina:on of the  rota:on on of the earth and gravita:onal a>rac:on.

- Know the differences in types of 3des (lunar, solar, spring, neap)  

    Earth and moon = lunar :des  

    Earth and sun = solar :des  

    Neap :de: When two rides are out-of-phase, lower than usual  

What are tides, and why do they occur?

    Spring :des: In-phase, higher than usual

- Know the parts of the beach and the processes that act on them.

If you want to learn more check out What is economic coordination?

- What is the difference between ac3ve and passive margin coasts? Which is Charleston?  Don't forget about the age old question of What is a watershed?
If you want to learn more check out What is hang up by eva hesse?

    Ac:ve: the edge of a con:nent crashing into an oceanic plate, tectonic ac:vity found  here  

    Passive: the remaining coastlines, no coali:on or subduc:on  

What are the two factors that control the availability of groundwater?

    Charleston is passive

- What are the main coastal processes (wave refrac3on, longshore current, longshore driE)  and why are they important?  

    Wave Refrac:on- waves bend as they approach the shore at an angle      Longshore Current- currents parallel to the beach within the surf zone      Longshore DriI- sediment carried by swash and backwash along the beach

- What are barrier islands and why are they important?

    Long, low, narrow island parallel to coastline, help protect the mainland.      Unstable, easily washed over, sand migrates, retrea:ng landward

- Understand what Pilkey’s “Truths of the Shoreline” are generally implying.  

    i. There is no shoreline erosion problem un:l someone builds something on the beach to  measure it by  

    ii. Construc:on on the beach reduces flexibility and in itself cause erosion  

    iii. The interests of beach property owners should not be confused with the natural  interest   If you want to learn more check out What is the total ionic equation?

    iv. Once you start stabiliza:on, you cant stop.  

    v. The cost of saving beach property is, in the long run, greater than the value of the  property to be saved.  

    vi. In order to save the beach, you destroy it.

- What are the main coastal hazards and their importance?  

    erosion and hurricanes

- What are hurricanes? Understand what they need to form, the characteris3cs of a hurricane  and the damaging effects.  

    How hurricanes are formed:  

      1. warm ocean water provides energy for the hurricane and causes more  evapora:on making humid air and clouds  

      2. winds coming together force air up  

      3. winds flow outward above the storm allowing the air below to rise          4. humid air rising makes the colds of the storm  

      5. light winds outside the hurricane steer it and let it grow  

- What are the main beach erosion preven3on and mi3ga3on methods? (engineering  approaches and non-engineering approaches)  

     JeXes, Groins, Seawalls, (cause increased erosion down-current of structure)   Don't forget about the age old question of What are people respond to incentives?

      Beach nourishment, Land use planning (expensive, dont cause erosion in new  areas)

- Understand the contribu3ons to the devasta3on in New Orleans from Hurricane Katrina, as  well as the impacts the storm had on the natural environment and the community  (from Hurricanes on Bayou movie - h"p://www.hurricaneonthebayou.com/ ).  

     Es:mated 1,836 lives lost, damages up to $115 billion , “  Though the winds  were fierce, it was Katrina’s storm surge -- es:mated to range from 8 to 30 feet -- that  proved too much for New Orleans’ ailing levees, leading to the flood that submerged  80% of the city and changed so many lives.  “

- Understand beach erosion, specifically at Folly Beach, and the impacts.  Groundwater  

- What do we mean by groundwater? How is linked to hydrologic cycle? Approximately how  much of the world’s freshwater is part of the groundwater?  

    Groundwater: water held underground in the soil or in pores and crevices in rock.

           “When precipita:on reaches the earth’s surface, some of it will flow along the surface of  the land and enter surface water like lakes, streams, and rivers, as runoff.The rest of it  soaks or percolates into the soil, called recharge. The water then moves down through  the soil as groundwater and is stored in the aquifer below.Once the water has joined the  aquifer, it doesn’t stop there. The groundwater slowly moves through the spaces and  cracks between the soil par:cles on its journey to lower eleva:ons. This movement of  water underground is called groundwater flow.Eventually, aIer years of underground  movement, the groundwater comes to a discharge area where it enters a lake or stream  and becomes surface water. There, the water will once again be evaporated and begin  the cycle again.”  We also discuss several other topics like What is the difference between civil and criminal cases?

    30% of freshwater is in the ground

- What are the two factors that control availability of groundwater? Refer to porosity and  permeability.  

    Absorp:on and storing of water in space between grains, and if water can easily flow  from one area to another.

- What do we mean by porosity? What is permeability? What kind of rocks generally have  high porosity and high permeability? What types of rocks have high porosity but low  permeability?  

    Porosity: The measure of how much of a rock is open space, space between the grains or  rock  

    Permeability: The ease of how a fluid can move through a rock  

      Rocks with high porosity and high permeability: sandstones, gravel        Rocks high porosity but low permeability: mud, clay

- What does a water table represent?  

    A water table is the boundary between saturated zone and unsaturated zone. Below the  water table, rocks and soil are full of water.  

- What do we mean by zone of satura3on?  

The layer where all pore space is filled with water

- What is an aquifer? Give an example of rock forma3on that can serve as a good aquifer.  What does unconfined and confined aquifer mean? What is an aquitard?  

    Aquifer: a body of saturated rock through which water can easily move.

              Examples: sandstone, conglomerate, fractured limestone and unconsolidated  sand and gravel

   “Unconfined aquifers are those into which water seeps from the ground surface directly  above the aquifer. Confined aquifers are those in which an impermeable dirt/rock layer  exists that prevents water from seeping into the aquifer from the ground surface located  directly above. Instead, water seeps into confined aquifers from farther away where the  impermeable layer doesn't exist.”

- How does a cone of depression form?  

    The lowering of the water table due to pumping

- How does excessive pumping of groundwater near coastal environments contribute to salt  water intrusion?  

    Low eleva:on areas, rela:ve to sea level, may be inundated by the sea - What are some of the effects of excessive pumping/usage of ground water:  

    water table decline, ground water deple:on, ground subsidence, chemical  contamina:on.  

- Is groundwater a renewable natural resource?  


Streams and Flooding

- What is a watershed and what are SC’s 4 primary watersheds?  

    Watershed: A region from which a par:cular stream gets all its water SCs 4 Primary Watersheds: PASS - Peedee, ACE Basin, Savannah, Santee.

- What are the types of streams (i.e. upstream versus downstream)?  

    The direc:on of travel from a source to an outlet is with the current, or downstream     The direc:on of travel from an outlet to a source is against the current, or upstream.

- What does it mean we all live downstream?  

the quality of water available to us is determined by our upstream neighbors

- How is sediment transported in rivers (suspended, dissolved, and bed)?

- Discharge: What is it and how does it relate to floods?

    volume of water moving past a point on a river over a unit :me, flood magnitude and  frequency are es:mated from discharge recurrence interval graphs

- What are the parts of a meandering stream and how do they form?

    Found in flat lowland areas, slow with looping channels, carry sand, silt and mud, not  stable but move back and forth across floodplain

- Delta – What is it and how does it form?  

    When a river enters a large body of water the current slows down, sediments drop out  of the water, main channel of river oIen breaks up into small channels (distributaries)

- Floods: understand...  

o floodplains

o rela3onship between magnitude and frequency – recurrence interval o upstream  vs. downstream floods

o impacts of urbaniza3on on flooding

o flood control methods and their effec3veness

o flood hazard mi3ga3on methods

Earth Science Literacy Principles  

- What is Earth Science Literacy?  

    Understanding earths influence on us and ours on earth.

- Why is it important?  

    So we know what we need to do to protect the planet and ourselves

- Know that the two dis3nct types of Earth’s crust are oceanic and con3nental      Con:nental: Land  

    Oceanic: Ocean

- What does it mean that the Earth is a whole and what are the four major systems making  up Earth? (See Big Idea 3)  

    “The four major systems of Earth are the geosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and  biosphere. The geosphere includes a metallic core, solid and molten rock, soil, and  sediments. The atmosphere is the envelope of gas surrounding Earth. The hydrosphere  includes the ice, water vapor, and liquid water in the atmosphere, the ocean, lakes,  streams, soils, and groundwater. The biosphere includes Earth’s life, which can be found  in many parts of the geosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere. Humans are part of the  biosphere, and human ac:vi:es have important impacts on all four spheres.”  

    Fours systems: Land, Water, Air, Life

-  Be able to look at things from an earth system science perspec5ve...the connec5ons  between spheres.  

- What is convec3on and what are the consequences of it on Earth’s surface?  

    Convec:on: Heat from the core is released to the surface which pushes magma to the  surface where it solidifies, feeding the plates.  

- What primary geologic processes occur at plate boundaries?

    Convergent: plates collide, creates mountains, subduc:on, tranches, earthquakes      Divergent: plates spread apart, volcanoes and earthquakes

           Transform: slipping of plates past one another, earthquakes  

- What are the three plate boundaries; where is new crust made; where is older crust  recycled?  

    Divergent, Convergent, Transform;  

    New crust is made at the divergent plate boundary, crust is recycled at convergent. - Understand how licle water is available for human consump3on (see idea 5.8).  

    “Most of this fresh water is stored as glaciers in Antarc:ca and Greenland. Less than 1%  of Earth’s near surface water is drinkable liquid fresh water, and about 99% of this water  is in the form of groundwater in the pores and fractures within soil, sediment, and rock.”

- How do earth scien3sts help move society toward sustainability (see Big Idea 7)  

    “. Renewable energy sources, such as solar, wind, hydroelectric, and geothermal, are  being developed. They will replace fossil fuels as those become scarcer, more expensive  to retrieve from Earth, and undesirable due to environmental damage. Earth scien:sts  foster global coopera:on and science-informed stewardship that can help to ensure the  availability of resources for future genera:ons.”


- Can humans contribute to the frequency and intensity of natural hazards?  

    Yes, Climate change is warming the waters leading to more intense storms, part of this  climate change is due to the burning of fossil fuels, done by humans

- Can humans eliminate natural hazards? If so, how? If not, what can we do?  

    No we cannot, however, we can help prevent them by taking care of the environment,  we can also help avoid living in areas greatly affected by natural hazards

- Do humans contribute to global climate change? If so, in what ways?      Yes, the burning of fossil fuels greatly contributes to climate change

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