RESOURCES & ENVIRON
RESOURCES & ENVIRON Geog 1125
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This 12 page Class Notes was uploaded by Conrad Pfeffer on Saturday September 12, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to Geog 1125 at University of Georgia taught by Hopkins in Spring 2015. Since its upload, it has received 8 views. For similar materials see Resources and Environ in Geography at University of Georgia.
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Date Created: 09/12/15
ENERGY RESOURCES Types a resource which exists in a fixed amount in various places in the earth39s crust EX coal oil naturalgas nuclear may not be completely exhausted but economically depleted cost of extracting is greater than the monetary profit some of these can have their supplies extended by reusing andor recycling EX solarenergy wind hydropower geothermal 5 Jaw wquot Eliii mire xv wilywalill a resource which can be replenished fairly rapidly through natural processes on a human time scale hours or years or decades EX Biomass trees other plants animals NonRenewable Energy Resources Fossil Fuels solid combustible mixture of organic compounds mixed with water and sulfur and nitrogen compounds It forms from the remains of plants subjected to heat and pressure over millions of years 3098 carbon by weight Who controls it most abundant fossil fuel about 1 quadrillion metric tons US Russia China amp India have 66 of proven reserves amp N 85 of estimated undiscovered reserves le u r provides N 21 of world39s commercial energy 65 of world39s electricity amp to make 75 of world39s steel How long will it last where is it at current usage rate identified reserves will last if usages rate increases 2 per year 65 years add in unidentified reserves at current rate 900 years at increased rate 2year149 years Advantages amp Disadvantages Advantages Disadvantages ampe supplies very high environmental impact very high net energy yield land disturbance air and water pollution technoogy welldeveloped severe threat to human health low cost high CO2 emissions when burned Hs39lll l 9quot l1 H gooey liquid consisting mostly of hydrocarbon compounds and smaller amounts of oxygen sulfur and nitrogen refined lnto heating oil diesel fuel jet fuel gasoline tar etc Who controls it where is it a o gt lLll w39 How long will it last identified reserves at current usage rates quot39 53 years if usage rate increases 2year add undiscovered oil could add quot39 42 years 2040 years Advantages amp Disadvantages Advantages Disadvantages ampe supply 50 years need to find substitute within 50 years low cost with subsidies alr pollution when burned high net energy yield reeases C02 when burned easiy transported moderate water pollution ow land use artificialy low price in some places technoogy welldeveloped underground deposits of gases consisting of 5090 by weight methane gas and small amounts of heavier gaseous hydrocarbon compounds such as propane and butane Who controls itwhere is it N140 trillion cubic meters Russia amp Kazakhstan have quot39 42 of world39s reserves other countries Iran Qatar Saudi Arabia Algeria Nigeria amp Venezuela about 34 iv wig 39llnj How long will it last at current usage rate known reserves 200 years if rate increases 2year 80 years add in undiscovered reserves up to 325 years Advantages amp Disadvantages Advantages Disadvantages ampe supplies reeases C02 when burned high net energy yield difficult to transfer across oceans ow cost with subsidies methane can leakout greenhouse gas ess air pollutionlower C02 often burned and wasted at wells moderate environmental impact pipeine distribution good fuel for fuel calls and gas turbines energy released when atomic nuclei undergo a nuclear reaction such as the spontaneous emission of radioactivity nuclear fission or nuclear fusion 436 commercial reactors in 32 countries produce 6 of world39s commercial energy amp 16 of electricity usage has leveledoff and is expected to decline in the future do to high costs stricter government regulations concerns over safety amp waste disposal Advantages amp Disadvantages Advantages Disadvantages large supply high cost Low impact without accident low net energy yield moderate land distribution dangerous water pollution storage radioactive waste and facilities spreads nuclear technology used to make weapons Renewable Energy Resources direct radiant energy from the sun Advantages for use in heating a home energy is free net energy is moderate to high no C02 emissions very low air pollution and water pollution low land usage moderate costs Disadvantages for use in heating a home Need access to sun 60 of time blockage of sun by other structures Need heat storage system high costactive system Active collectors unattractive Advantages for use in generating electricity Moderate to high net energy Low to moderate environmental impact No CO2 emissions Relatively quick installation Reduces dependence on fossil fuels Disadvantages for use in generating electricity needs access to sun low efficiency need storage or backup system high land use high costs DC current must be converted to AC electrical power produced by falling or flowing of water 4 in US g k Advantages moderate to high net energy high efficiency lowcost electricity long life span low C02 emissions provides water use for other uses such as flood control Disadvantages High construction costs High environmental impact by flooding natural areas converting land habitat to lake habitat changing water flow dynamics sediment dynamics etc May increase C02 emissions from decaying biomass in reservoir ATMOSPHERIC RESOURCES COMPOSITION OF THE ATMOSPHERE atmosphere a mixture of discrete gases and solid amp liquid particles suspended in it found in same proportions within lower atmosphere As altitude increases percentages stay the same but amount decreases present in differing amounts spatially andor temporally Constant Gases 3 gases makeup just under 100 of the atmosphere 4 by volume in tropics to lt 1 in deserts source of clouds and precipitation absorbs radiant energy amp important in energy transfer Water is only substance found in all 3 states solid liquid gas ltOOOOS by volume of the atmosphere concentrated in the 1 o thought to be caused by increased amounts of chlorofluorocarbons CFCs in the stratosphere CFC39s are a family of chemicals used as coolants Freon propellants in aerosol cans cleaners for computer chips sterilants fumigants bubbles in foam insulation amp packaging UV radiation breaks apart the CFC molecule and the chlorine atom then reacts with an 03 molecule breaking it apart ozone layer thinning is primarily around the Antarctic amp Arctic areas o ozone layer may be reduced by as much as 50 around the Antarctic and 1138 around the Arctic area leg because there is no sunlight to break l winter they build up during the 1 ll i Consequences of less ozone 0 increased amount of UV at surface as much as 310 in the southern hemisphere 0 increased cases of skin cancer and cataracts 0 increased damage to plants and animals Solutions to the ozone problem 0 stop reducing ozonedepleting chemicals some computer models indicate it will take up to 50100 years to return ozone layers to pre1950 levels 0 Montreal Protocol agreement of 1987 was a step in this direction VERTICAL STRUCTU RE OF THE ATMOSPHERE force exerted by the weight of a column of air above a given point 0 At sea level the average pressure is 1013 mb or 1 kg above every cm3 2992 inches of mercury o lnverse relationship between air pressure and height 0 pressure decreases height increases 0 50 atmosphere below 56 km 336 mi 0 90 of atmosphere below 16 km 96 mi measure of the degree of hotness or coldness of a substance lr llll T is a function of pressure and volume T may decrease or increase with increasing altitude in the Troposphere it normally decreases 65 Ckm if the T increases with altitude it39s called an a change in T with a change in altitude is called the 4 main layers based on temperature l l T usually deceases with increasing altitude from surface to average height of 12 km or 4000039 T stays constant or increases with altitude lg ozonosphere very little H20 l T decreases with increasing altitude between N 50 amp 80 km 31 amp 50 mi T increases dramatically with altitude T 39s may reach upwards of area above 80 km 50 mi 33933 Harm km gg gg ll39 Sr HEl39lE gt 9 m a39n man do Seafloor sediments Oxygen isotope analysis Tree rings Palynology Geology Historical Records CLIMATE CHANGE CAUSES Plate Tectonics Volcanic output Solar variation Astronomical Theory eccentricity obliquity precession Changes in ability of oceans to store 20281 heat Changes in ocean currents directions andor temperatures Changes in average sea level change amount of C02 and heat stored Changes in levels of photosynthesis activity affect CO2 level Changes in storage of carbon in soils affect C02 levels Changes in cloud cover change temperatures at earth s surface Changes in atmospheric C02 levels a quotgreenhouse gasquot which traps outgoing LW amp thus helps keep the earth warm if levels increase can lead to global warming since 1800 have seen a 25 increase on C02 levels from burning of fossil fuels a 5 C T increase has been detected since 1880 but not sure the only cause is increased CO2 levels Changes in atmospheric levels of other greenhouse gases may also contribute to increased T 39s What is Global Warming the atmosphere is heated by process known as the greenhouse effect LW radiation is quotbouncedquot back amp forth between the atmosphere esp Clouds dust and any C02 amp the ground This helps to keep the earths average T some 35 C warmer than it would be otherwise global warming is basically an enhanced natural greenhouse effect or greenhouse effect on overload Does Global Warming Exist last 2030 yrs increased levels of C02 methane amp other Greenhouse gases since 1800 have seen a 25 increase in C02 levels highest it has been in past 420000 years by some estimates 5 of 6 hottest years on record in 198039s amp 399039s 2 hottest in 1998 amp 2001 a 6 C T 11 F increase has been detected since 1861 predictions that mean surface T will increase 1458 C 25104 F between 2000 amp 2100 if trend continues some melting of landbased ice caps amp floating ice around Greenland earth39s poles amp shrinking of mountain glaciers Causes for these changes Natural climate fluctuations change due to human activities a combo of both Effects of Global Warming increased surface temperatures increased temperature in polar regions leads to increased melting ice caps and sea ice can lead to increased sea levels alter precipitation patterns such that some areas see an increase while others see a decrease increase rate of desertification amp thus decrease arable land shifting areas where crops can be grown affect availability of water resources by altering rates of evaporation and precipitation alter structure and location of world s biomes uncertainties positive amp negative feedback mechanisms increased T may lead to increased ice melt which leads to gt water vapor amounts in atmosphere which leads to increased cloud cover which leads to decreased solar radiation which can lead to decreased T waste less energy by improving efficiency use less oil and coal rely more on cleaner energy sources wind natural gas solar etc Possible economic advantages to following the above Boost global economy provide jobs cost less than trying to deal with the effects of not changing do nothing some believe it is not a threat or even a hoax do more research before acting act now to reduce the risks a type of precautionary strategy before it gets any worst or we humans are beyond some type of quotpoint of no returnquot POLLUTING of the ENVIRONMENT airborne particles and gases in concentrations which endanger health of organisms and environment Sources NonHuman created volcanoes sea salt pollen fire dust bacteria viruses Human created combustion of fossil fuels chemical and nuclear processes refining processes mining farming Categories pollutants emitted directly from an identifiable source Q carbon monoxide 23 comes from cars the most abundant primary pollutant Q39s sulfur oxides from coal amp oil combustion can become acid deposition m nitric oxides from power plants amp cars can also become acid deposition Particulate matter solid particles amp liquid droplets volatile organic compounds also called hydrocarbons solid liquid amp gases of H amp C in cities primarily from cars produced in atmosphere through reactions among primary pollutants many triggered by sunlight in photochemical reactions sulfuric acid H2504 502 H20 one form of acid rain M harmful near the surface component of smog harms crops and other vegetation irritates eyes and lungs Smog in urban and industrial areas a mixture of different pollutants some primary and some secondary Effects Human Health tissue damage too much CO can lead to death NO s linked to heart disease SO s linked to respiratory problems some hydrocarbons are carcinogenic EPA estimates anywhere from 65000 to 200000 deathsyear N 50 billion in health care costs amp lost productivity Environmental Health plants leaf damage defoliation reduced photosynthesis reduced growth reduced crop yield T 29 precipitation which has a pH lt 5 to 56 normal pH of unpolluted rain can be rain snow fog may be dry amp acidify the water on contact May be sulfuric acid S02 water or nitric acid N02 water low levels of primary pollutants amp high levels of secondary pollutants Sensitive amp affected areas S Canada amp Midwest US to NE US areas just east of Appalachians N Europe some New York lakes increased acidity from 65 in 1932 to 48 in 1975 numerous cases of fish dieoffs forest declines interferes with nutrient uptake changes soil pH damage leaves quoteatsquot away corrodes stone structures statues etc Solutions Government intervention primarily by cleaning emissions before they are released Burn less fossil fuel Use cleaner energy sources lmprove fuel efficiency Indoor Air Pollution Types primarily from manmade chemicals another is 5 may by 2 to 5 times higher inside a home than outside levels may be up to 18 times higher inside a vehicle than outside Sources manmade household materials furniture building materials drapes upholstery clothing cleaning products etc Solutions increaseimprove ventilation of air by use of exhaust hoods changing air more frequently with outside air circulate air through greenhouses use lesspolluting materials etc WATER POLLUTION Types Pointsource the source of the pollution is readily identifiable such as a pipe discharging waste into a river NonPoint Source cannot be traced to any single site of discharge usually a large land area such as agricultural lands of urban areas may be materials such as organic wastes organic chemicals inorganic chemicals sediment dirt infectious agents etc Sources waterusing industries steel chemicals paper products and food processing are major polluters municipal sewage wastewater from houses hotels businesses restaurants etc Most of it is cleaned but still some pollution ln LDC39s there may be little if any sewer treatment v for drinking cooking amp bathing agriculture fertilizers pesticides and other chemicals put on fields too often end up in nearby lakes and rivers nonvegetated land areas increase sediment runoff and thus load of streams lakes etc primarily from bare agricultural lands or deforestedcleared lands Effects making potential drinking water undrinkable andor increasing cost of cleaning before drinking harm to aquatic life oxygen depletion increased toxic levels in organisms such as fish thermal pollution passagecreation of diseases such as typhoid cholera etc Solutions reduce fertilizer pesticide and other agricultural nonpoint runoff by reducing use or by planting vegetation buffer zones reduce sediment runoff by reducing soil erosion cleanup emissions from point sources upgrade sewage treatment plants increase monitoring of and enforcement of current laws and strengthen current laws Land Pollution Sources byproducts of consumerism the packaging of all the quotstuffquot we buy send use
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