202 Chap 2 - 2. The Changing Global Environment Geological...

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2. The Changing Global Environment Geological Base; Climate & Climate Change; Water; Human Impacts on Plants & Animals; Food Resources
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Figure 2.2, Plate Tectonics
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Figure 2.3, Global Tectonic Plates
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Plate Tectonics/Continental Drift Break-up of Africa centered supercontinent Pangaea c. 250 million yrs Before Present (BP) Formation of Tethys Sea Removal of Australia from main evolutionary line in Pangaea and around Tethys Sea Removal and return of India to create Himalayan Mountain Range Formation of major fold mountain ranges along leading edges of North and South American Plates At human scale, problems of earthquakes and volcanic activity along plate boundaries Plate Tectonic Theory confirms Evolutionary Theory Collapse of Reptiles as dominant species c. 65 million years BP, probably because of impact of asteroid in Yucatan peninsula
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Figure 2.3, Global Tectonic Plates
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Figure 2.7, Global Earthquakes and Volcanoes
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Climate Change Climate change: natural, anthropogenic, or both? Natural change--a historic pattern of 400 to 600 years interval for the past 2,000 years? Shift in North Atlantic Drift Rice cultivation in China Deforestation in Europe Recent anthropogenic change Burning hydrocarbons produces carbon dioxide. CO2 main contributor to Global Warming (Table 2.1) Large scale CO2 production began late 1770s w/Industrial Revolution & coal burning Modern CO2 production largely from automobile fleet Only EU has attempted to mitigate automobile CO2 output
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Figure 2.11: Global Pressure Systems
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Climate Planetary heat transfer from Equatorial to Polar regions Planet takes in more solar radiation between Tropics of
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202 Chap 2 - 2. The Changing Global Environment Geological...

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