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Level 77

Global Environmental Change


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Hormesis
There is a optimal level of intake for everything
LD50
the single dose that causes death in 50% of organisms exposed
Principle of progress, in four parts
1. The universe is governed by natural laws that are immutable and uniform in their operation. These laws may be discovered through observation and the application of human reason.
Naturalism
is the explanation and interpretation of phenomena in terms of natural law rather than the interdiction of supernatural forces or beings
Uniformity
to the same natural effects we must as far as possible, assign the same causes
alleles
genetic variant: particular form of a gene, where multiple forms occur
Great chain of being
From top to bottom:
Renaissance
a transitional period between the Middle Ages and the Modern Age; c. 1350-1550; marked by the revival or "rebirth" of classical culture, literature, and art in Europe.
Scholasticism
a philosophy based on revelation and deductive logic, this philosophy replaced was by a science based on observation and inductive logic
accessibility
the degree of ease with which it is possible to reach a certain location from other locations
Induction
the inference of general relationships from specific instances
Repeatability
a standard by which modern science differentiates truth from falsehood by others being able to repeat an experiment with the same results
Scientific revolution
the emergence of science in Europe during the 16th and 17th centuries
Reformation
refers to the reformation of the catholic church by exposing the lie of the pope led by Martin Luther
Materialism
metaphysical doctrine that the universe is a machine that obeys mechanical laws; the physical and material world is all that exists
Cambrian explosion
BOOM! lots of animals all of a sudden. Not one major new phylum has evolved since then.
Invisible hand of Adam smith
The idea that when a person is pursuing his own interest he frequently promotes the idea of society more effectually than when he really intends to promote it.
Noble savage
not a person, is the romantic idealization of the primitive man and his way of life, cultural primitivism
Industrial Revolution (lower case)
the application of technology to industrial production, resulting in specialization and significant increases in productive capacity
Industrial Revolution (upper case)
the first industrial revolution, the one that took place in England (1760-1830)
Agora
a central area in Greek cities used both as a marketplace and as a meeting place
Manorial system
also known as the feudal system, large portion of land owned by the Lord which was passed down to the first born son, necessities were produced by serfs, villains, or peasants
Little Ice Age
is a period between about 1300 and 1870 during which Europe and North America were subjected to much colder climates, generally, than during the 20th century.
Synergy
the creation of a whole that is greater than the simple sum of its parts
chemical weathering
the transformation of rock into one or more new compounds
control rods
can be inserted or withdrawn to speed up or slow down the chain reaction.
Linear or arithmetic growth
the rate of growth is constant
Half life
the time it takes for 50% of a substance to be degraded or broken down
Base level rise
Examples of dynamic equilibrium
Barometer
Device that measures air pressure in millibars
Polemic
is an essay written to make an argument or express an opinion
Green revolution
refers to agriculture research and innovation c. 1940-1980 that increased agriculture production in many developing nations
tragedy of the commons
lack of property rights
Straw man fallacy
the straw man fallacy consists of taking your opponents position and distorting it into an extreme or ridiculous "straw man" that is easily knocked down or refuted
Natural right
is a right a human being derives from natural law, not contingent upon human law or culture and can't be surrendered.
Law of large numbers
the law of large numbers is the observation that when the sample size is large, the results tend to converge on the theoretical probability
Morbidity
loss of average life expectancy
Mortality
increased chance of premature death
Precautionary principle
if an action or policy has a suspected risk of causing harm to the public or to the environment, in the absence of scientific consensus that the action or policy is not harmful, the bu…
Toxicity, persistence (half life), and mobility.
What are the three factors by which a substance is judged to have a potential for contamination?
Intellectual and political freedom
What are three factors present in ancient Greece that explain why modern science began there?
Give an example of a syllogism.
All men are mortal. [Major premise]
What is (or was) life expectancy at birth?
(a) For the world before the Industrial Revolution- 25
Yellowstone National Park
What was the first national park?
Resources includes all fuels, both identified and unidentified
Explain the difference between petroleum resources and reserves by briefly defining each term.
What is a climate feedback?
a knock-on effect that increases or reduces an initial change. Positive feedbacks increase an initial change. Negative feedbacks reduce that change
Inexpensive, reliable, abundant, and concentrated.
What are the four advantages of fossil fuels?
What is statistical murder?
Is the occurrence of unnecessary deaths when risks are not reduced in the most efficient manner possible?
What is an Environmental Kuznets's Curve?
Is the theory that environmental quality at first worsens with industrial development but then improves with affluence.
Hydrogen, Gas, Oil, Coal?
How do coal, oil, gas, and hydrogen rank (from lowest to highest) in terms of carbon dioxide emitted?
turbine
Generates most commercial electricity. extracts energy from a fluid flow and converts it into useful work.
water turbine (hydroelectricity):
Natural flow of water turns blade
strip mining:
Devastate ecosystem, peel back landscape
Shield Volcano
: built from countless outpourings of fluid lava flows
liquified natural gas
highly volatile.
OPEC
Organization of petroleum
Trans-Alaskan pipeline:
Carried thousands of barrels per day to fuel our increasing demnand.
Standard Oil:
Rockefellers company was the epitome of monopolistic ambition.
Persian Gulf War
Shows how costly defense can be. It was brutal and short.
nuclear power
ideal energy technology/everyman's vision of the future.
breeder reactor
generate new fuels as they burn and are bad news.
nuclear fission
basis of modern nuclear power plants.
Uranium
Exists in nature in the form of several isotopes.
Isotopes
Forms of the same element that have different number of neutrons.
radioactive decay
releases large numbers of neutrons, which fly off at a high speed.
half-life
time required for one half of the isotope to decay into another form.
Moderator
a substance such as graphite or "heavy water."
nuclear reactor
absorb free neutrons by using a moderator.
reactor vessel
fuel rods and control rods are immersed in water in this thick/sealed thing.
Concentric Zone Model
1920s: A model of the internal structure of cities in which social groups are spatially arranged in a series of rings.
Atmosphere
This is a mixture of gases that surrounds Earth. In addition to containing the oxygen you need to breathe, it protects you from the sun's damaging rays and is always changing.
nuclear meltdown
Loss of coolant water causes the reactor vessel o overheat, melting the fuel rods and control rods.
radioactive wastes
nuclear power produces dangerous wastes.
NIMBY
Not in my backyard.
Lake Karachay
the deadliest spot on Earth, standing for 1 hour will kill you.
Tokaimura
Accident occurred here where fuel reprocessing plant stored low-level radioactive wastes.
Three Mile Island
Nuclear power plant was chugging along on schedule.
nuclear fusion
two atoms of hydrogen fuse to form one atom of helium, releasing an enormous amount of energy.
wind power
non-nuclear alternative.
non-nuclear alternative
water power (hydroelectricity)
geothermal energy
great alternative energy source.
solar power
is used in many ways in this day in age.
photovoltaic cell (PVC)
has dropped 50-fold since their invention, only recently affordable, rapid increase in sales.
biosphere
earth, air, and water woven into each, the spark of life
hydrogen fuel cells
very promising source of energy, especially to replace oil-powered auto engines-electric cars.
Global
world wide
Global Warming
the recent and ongoing global average increase in temperature near the Earth's surface
Climate
The average weather that occurs in a given region over a long period-typically over several decades
tilt of axis
causes the changes in the seasons. Not constant or predictable.
Precession
Long term cycle of 23,000 years.
pole star
closest star to that point.
Polaris
Pole star.
Thuban
When pyramids were under construction, this was the pole star.
Vega
12,000 years ago this was the pole star.
o16/o18 is what?
o16: slightly lighter than o18, tends to evaporate more easily. O18 is heavier.
Younger Dryas
12,000 years ago. Lasted 1,000 years of a cold snap.
Late Paleocene Thermal Maximum
Rapid rise in temperatures is called this.
Medieval Warm Period
Before the little ice age temperatures were above average.
tree rings
useful for tracking annual changes in climate.
pollen grains
give useful data. Are like floral fingerprints, each shape unique to one species.
terminal moraine
glacial features showing the path/maximum extent of glaciers.
glacial erratic
boulders dropped by retreating glaciers.
Ice Ages
Led to agricultural revolution. Better technology, rotation/diversification of crops.
isotope ratios
reflect surface temperatures
ice cores
increasingly used to study climate change/yield a wealth of data.
Biological weathering
the breakdown of rock by plants and animals
residence time
the time that greenhouse gases remain in the atmosphere.
removal time
similar to residence time that greenhouse gases remain in the atmosphere.
ozone
This is a form of oxygen that is high in the atmosphere. It shields living things from much of the harmful radiation given off by the sun.
tropospheric ozone
could be a serious problem.
sulfate aerosol
come from natural sources.
organic aerosol
vegetation produces this. Smoky mountains are smoky because of this.
Year Without a Summer (1816)
series of volcanic eruptions, culminating in 1815.
Twomey Effect
smaller droplets increase total surface area for reflection.
water efficiency (plants)
effects of global warming provides for an increased amount of this.
oceanic conveyor belt
redistribute tropical heat from the equator to the poles.
thermal expansion
increasing temperature of water expands volume of water.
Kyoto Conference of 1997
Landmark in environmental policy. To sharply cut back on carbon dioxide emissions.
Subsidence
Lowering of the sea floor in the Gulf of Mexico.
trash
rubbish
Midden
Archaeologists spend entire careers sifting through the trash heaps of vanished civilizations.
municipal solid waste (MSW)
in the USA amounts to 210 million pounds per day. We throw all our old parts away.
Incinerators
weren't much better, generated dangerous levels of air pollution. One of our primary means of solid waste disposal.
Landfills
come with a lot of problems (smell, rodents, etc). not well designed.
Leachate
Catches dangerous chemicals in this so they don't pollute the groundwater.
over 100 in the US.
how many landfill gas plants are there in the us.
Univ. of Arizona Garbage Project
created an ever expanding database of discards
Lightweighting
means reducing the thickness of plastics
national bottle law
force the beverage industry to pay a deposit for bottle returns
Louisiana
info 2nd to last
Toxic Release Inventory (TRI)
is available to the public, posted online
synergistic effects
But no one knows what happens when you mix them together.
injection well
store chemicals in a deep well, with positive pressure applied to keep it from coming back up
grass-roots activism
has generated a strong and growing organization to protect poor communities from being used as dumping grounds
Shintech
Latest battle in Louisiana was fought over a Japanese company
Toxic release inventory does what
report of the types and amounts of pollutants released by chemical companies each year, available to public and posted online was important.
Twomey effect (essay?
smaller droplets increase total surface area for reflection. Think of one large reflective sphere vs. a dozen smaller spheres.
opec (esssay)
organization of petroleum exporting countries. turned tap off in 1970's to force up the price of oil, went from 2.5 a barrel to 10.50 a barrel, now over 100.
hubberts peak
says that for any given geographical area, the rate of petroleum production tends to follow a bell-shaped curve, primary theories of peak oil.
synthetic fuels
convert coal into a liquid fuel, more efficient burn