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Environment, Resources & Sustainability

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The capacity of the earth's natural systems and human cultural systems to survive, flourish, and adapt to changing environmental conditions into the very long-term future.
break of bulk point
place where goods are transported from one form of transportation to another
restricts, limits because of conditions; food, water, shelter, resources that will limit survival
Living Things
A group of organisms that have a unique set of characterisitcs that distinguish them from all other organisms and, for organisms that reproduce sexually, can mate and produce fertile offspring. EX: all humans are mem…
benthic zone
the muddy bottom of a lake or pond beneath the limnetic zone and profundal zone
3 Principles of Sustainability
Reliance on solar energy
Natural Capital
The natural resources and natural services that keep us and other forms of life alive and support our human economies.
Natural Resources
Inputs into production that are provided by nature
Natural Services
Processes in nature, such as purification of air and water and renewal of topsoil, which support life and human economies.
a material that can be used to produce crops or other products
Perpetual Resource
Solar energy is referred to as Perpetual Resource because its supply is continuous and is expected to last at least 6 billion years, while the sun completes its life cycle.
Renewable Resource
A resource that takes anywhere from several days to several hundred years to be replenished through natural processes, as long as we do not use it up faster than nature can renew it. EX: fore…
Sustainable Yield
The highest rate at which we can use a renewable resource indefinitely without reducing its available supply.
reuse of a product in the same context in a different context
using the materials from obsolete products to create other products
capable of being used again
not capable of being used again
The Three Ps
People, Profit, Planet
6 Forms of Energy
Chemical, Electrical, Radiant, Mechanical, Nuclear, Thermal
Chemical Energy
energy that is released by a chemical reaction
a community of living organisms of a single major ecological region
Radiant Energy
energy that is transmitted in the form of (electromagnetic) radiation
Mechanical Energy
energy that comes from potential (stored) energy and kinetic (moving) energy
Nuclear Energy
energy released from the fusion or splitting of an atom
Thermal Energy
energy in the form of heat
business-to-business market
all the individuals and organizations that want goods and services to use in producing other goods and services or to sell, rent, or supply goods to others
the scenario for future patterns of production and consumption which assumes that there will be no major changes in attitudes and priorities.
Green technology
new technologies that aim to conserve the natural environment and resources.
Alluvial fans:
in arid climates, a prominent landform is an alluvial fan, which occurs at the mouth of a canyon where it exists into a valley. Flowing water produces the fan as water loses velocity whe…
Pro-poor strategies
development schemes that focus on the reduction of poverty and the narrowing of the income gap between poor people and the population as a whole. Environmental sustainability has become central to such approaches in recent years.
Communal conservancies
legally recognised common property resource management organisations in Namibia's communal lands.
process expanding effective programmes to reach large numbers of people in broader geographical area.