Final_Fall2007 - ESM 203 Earth System Science for...

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ESM 203: Earth System Science for Environmental Management Final Exam, 50% of course grade 08 December 2007, due 14 December 10:00 pm Jeff Dozier, Tom Dunne, & Carl Legleiter (via e-mail to [email protected]) The Final Examination counts 50% of your course grade. Answer all five questions, which are equally weighted. The exam is open-book. You do not have to repeat the question in your answer; just use the number and letter designations. To make our grading flow more smoothly, please start each question in your MS Word file on a new page, and start each question in MS Excel on a new worksheet. If you use MATLAB instead, please separate your files by question. Please use the file naming convention LastName_FirstI nitial{.doc,.docx,.xls,.xlsx,.m,…}. The answers to the questions will not be found through time-consuming searches through the web or textbooks. The critical requirement is to review your slides and notes from various lectures, your homework, your reading, and any specific informa- tion we provide here and to apply them to the very specific questions asked. Think about (and express clearly) the processes involved. All questions can be answered en- tirely from information you already have or that we provide in links in the exam. You may use your notes, assigned readings, or other material. You may not use each other or any other person for help, so please do not discuss the exam with anyone until next Saturday, even after you have turned in your exam (others may not have turned theirs in). 1. Evolution of Soil Characteristics a. In three short paragraphs, describe in general terms (not individual weathering processes) how rock weathering creates a storage capacity for (i) water, (ii) posi- tively charged plant nutrient ions, and (iii) carbon and nitrogen. b. In two paragraphs, explain briefly, in terms of the soil mass balance of formation and destruction, why we expect to find thin, rocky soils in the Santa Ynez Moun- tains and thick, clay-rich and iron oxide-rich soils under the Amazon basin for- est. c. Both soils have low nutrient-holding capacities (i.e. total amount of nutrients per unit area of land). The reasons for this are different in the two regions. For each region, give two reasons for the low capacity. 2. Letter to Your Uncle When you went home for Thanksgiving, your family was very interested in how your first term in our program was going, especially because of the recent news of the award of the Nobel Peace Prize to Al Gore and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
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