Geology: Chapter One-- Introduction
Geology: Chapter One-- Introduction 105
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This 7 page Class Notes was uploaded by Ashleigh Provance on Monday February 22, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to 105 at University of Mississippi taught by Amanda Patterson in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 76 views. For similar materials see Geol Web in Geology at University of Mississippi.
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Date Created: 02/22/16
Geolgoy Chapter One: Objectives:Part One 1. Concepts of environmental science structure of earth and plate tectonics rocks and minerals linkages between geological processes and the living world ▯ ▯ Chapter One: Philosophy and Fundamental Concepts ▯ Case History- Hispaniola( Haiti and Dominican Republic) Comparative studies- observing and describing the history of an area and making inferences within a larger framework— involves geological records Uniformitarianism- we study processes operating today, we can say something about what happened in the past Domincan republic- agriculture- forest covered landscape, Haiti- desolate, dry landscape—soil erosion and deforestation –unsafe water o 2010- earthquake in Haiti—destroyed 1/3 the population ▯ ▯ Introduction to Environmental Geology: ▯ -Earth began 4. 6 billion years ago – solar nebula collapsed- formed stars and planets ▯ - Earth Life began 3.5 billion years ago—only fossils are left to mark our place in Earth’s history ▯ -fossil record: species become eventually extinct Geology: science of processes related to the structure and history of earth and its life o Relies on chemistry, physics and biology- interdisciplinary science Environmental Geology: human interactions with the physical environment- links physical, biological, and social processes ▯ Studies: ▯ 1. earth materials- like rocks and minerals to determine their use as resources and effects of human health ▯ 2. natural hazards- floods to minimize loss of life and property ▯ 3. land for site selection ▯ 4. hydrologic processes to evaluate water pollution ▯ 5. geological processes- formation of mountains- to evaluate local and global change ▯ ▯ Preston Cloud: Origin of Universe Big bang theory- 7 billion years ago explosion of atomic particles produced our galaxies, stars and planets Supernova- produced a solar nebula – cloud of dust and gas – sun formed at the center Bombardment of meteorites ▯ ▯ Preston Cloud: Origin of Atmosphere and Water ▯ -water from comets and water vapor from volcanoes ▯ -organisms produced oxygen through photosynthesis—ozone layer was created shielded earth from radiation – plants colonized ▯ -law of faunal assemblages- rocks with similar fossils are most likely a similar geologic age ▯ ▯ Concept One: Human Population Growth ▯ - number one environmental problem is the increase in human population increase in population- increase in total impact—more resources needed, greater environmental disruption ▯ ▯ A. Exponential Growth Number of people added to the population each year is not constant; rather, a constant percentage of the current population is added each year(13) o 2 aspects: 1. Growth rate- measured as percentage 2. Doubling time- time it takes for whatever is growing to double population grows slow at first, then increases more rapidly, then continues at a very rapid rate ▯ doubling time = 70/growth rate-- JSHAPE age structure is important employment/lack there of human population increases- 1.4 percent per year ▯ ▯ History Of Population Growth: ▯ - once agriculture was incorporated- population increased by several hundred times due to stable food supply ▯ - industrial period/industrial revolution- modern sanitation + medicine was incorporated- 10 times increase growth ▯ - 2013: 7 billion; 2050: 9 billion ▯ ▯ - growing in limited space—population is already above a comfortable carrying capacity(16) education is our hope for population control ▯ some resources are not renewable ---- It is impossible to support exponential population growth, with a finite resource base population reduction: attributed to birth control, marrying later in life, and education of women Concept Two: Sustainability - environmental objective - sustainability: future generations will have equal access to the resources are planet offers - renewable sources: air and water - non-renewable: possible for sustainability such as fossil fuels and minerals by conservation and recycling, and focusing on how that mineral is used and developing substitutes for the uses - solid and liquid wastes should be recycled—wastes that are considered pollutants could easily be turned into resources - land is an important resource- human activity uses more soil and rock than any other earth process Environmental Crisis: result of overpopulation, urbanization, and industrialization deforestation, soil erosion, mining of resources, development of groundwater and surface water resources results damage to environment relationship between: environmental degradation and resource utilization Earth will outlive the human race ▯ ▯ Concept Three: Earth As a System ▯ - system: defined part of the universe we study example; volcanoes, rivers, ocean basin ▯ ▯ Input/output Analysis: Analyzes change in open systems Input=output- steady state is establishes, no net change occurs Our planet is roughly a steady state system- solar radiation is balanced by output of radiation from Earth ▯ Second Type: input is less than the output— Example: use of resources or harvest of plants ▯ Third Type: input is greater than the output Example: pollution of a lake – water source is completely used up or animals can become extinct ▯ ▯ Aral Sea: Water diversion for agriculture nearly eliminated the sea Diversion of the two main rivers has resulted in a drop in surface elevation and loss of surface area Example of how quickly environmental damage can bring about regional change ▯ ▯ Evaluate Change? Average residence time- measure of time it takes for the stock or supply of the material to be cycled through the system o T=s/f – total size/rate of transfer ▯ Predict Change: Uniformitarianism- “the present is the key to the past”—if a flood happened 200 years ago we can assume the same type of flooding will occur Environmental unity- one action causes a chain of actions— links between processes ▯ ▯ Gaia Hypothesis: 1. life affects the planetary environment 2. life affects the environment for the betterment of life 3. life controls the environment Concept Four: Hazardous Earth Processes natural hazards(earthquakes,floods,etc.) can kill people natural hazards that produce huge disasters are called Catastrophes increase in human population—forces people to live in hazardous areas urbanization and deforestation make landslides more likely coal, gas, burning increased concentration of CO2 in air— contribute to global warming ▯ ▯ Concept Five: Scientific Knowledge Scientific Method o 1. Educated guess- make careful observations and try to understand what is going on—based on the observations a scientist will develop a question o 2. Hypothesis- develop a possible answer to the question o 3. Conclusion- interpret and analyze data conclusion can either accept or reject hypothesis ▯ review:SM 1. Form a question 2. Refine question after observations 3. Form Hypothesis to answer question 4. Test hypothesis by analysis and data 5. Draw conclusion to accept or reject hypothesis ▯ ▯ theory- if the hypothesis withstands a sufficient number of experiments ▯ greenhouse effect- carbon dioxide is causing global warming by trapping heat in the lower atmosphere ▯ land ethic- we are responsible to other individuals and society and to the total environment—we are the land’s protectors not conquerors ▯ ▯ Easter Island: Collapsed in a few decades as a result from degradation of the island’s limited resource base Limited resources can’t support a growing human population ▯ ▯ Precautionary principle- pg 36-37 ▯