Environmental Science

by (13th)
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Samenvatting - Environmental Science

  • 1 Environmental Problems, Their Causes, and Sustainability

  • Three big ideas:
    • Rely more on renewable energy from the sun, including indirect forms of solar energy such as wind and flowing water, to meet most of our heating and electricity needs.
    • Protect biodiversity by preventing the degradation of the earth’s species, ecosystems, and natural processes.
    • Do not disrupt the earth’s natural chemical cycles by overloading them with harmful chemicals or by removing natural chemicals faster than the cycles can replace them. This requires relying more on pollution prevention and reducing the wasteful use of resources.
  • 1.1 What Is an Environmentally Sustainable Society?


  • CONCEPT 1-1A: Our lives and economies depend on energy
    from the sun and natural resources and natural services (natural
    capital) provided by the earth.
    CONCEPT 1-1B: Living sustainably means living off the earth’s
    natural income without depleting or degrading the natural capital
    that supplies it.
  • 1.1.1 Environmental Science Is a Study of Connections in Nature

  • What is ecology?
    The biological science that studies how organisms, or living things, interact with one another and with their environment.
  • What are species?
    A group of organisms that have distinctive traits and, for sexually reproducing organisms, can mate and produce fertile offspring.
  • What is an ecosystem?
    A set of organisms within a defined area or volume interacting with one another and with and their environment of nonliving matter and energy.
  • 1.1.2 Sustainability Is the Central Theme of This Book

  • What is natural capital?
    The natural resources and natural services that keep us and other forms of life alive and support our economies.
  • What are natural resources?
    Materials and energy in nature that are essential or useful to humans. These resources are often classified as renewable or nonrenewable.
  • What are natural services?
    Processes in nature such as purification of air and water, which support life and human economies.
  • What is nutrient cycling?
    The circulation of chemicals necessary for life, from the environment (mostly from soil and water) through organisms and back to the environment.
  • 1.1.3 Environmentally Sustainable Societies Protect Natural Capital and Live Off Its Income

  • What is an environmentally sustainable society?
    A society that that meets the current and future basic resource needs of its people in a just and equitable manner without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their basic needs.
  • 1.2 How Are Our Ecological Footprints Affecting the Earth?


  • CONCEPT 1-2 As our ecological footprints grow, we deplete
    and degrade more of the earth’s natural capital.
  • 1.2.1 Some Resources Are Renewable

  • Resources:
    • Perpetual resources: renewed continuously
    • Renewable resources: can be replenished through natural processed as long as it is not used up faster than it is renewed
  • What is sustainable yield?
    The highest rate at which a renewable resource can be used indefinitely without reducing its available supply.
  • What is environmental degradation?
    When use of a renewable resource exceeds its natural replacement rate.
  • 1.2.2 Renewable Resources and the Tragedy of the Commons

  • Two major ways to deal with the tragedy of the commons:
    • Use shared renewable resources at rates well below their estimated sustainable yields
    • Convert open-access renewable resources to private ownership
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Voorbeelden van vragen in deze samenvatting

What is ecology?
1
What are species?
1
What is an ecosystem?
1
What is natural capital?
1
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