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Unformatted text preview: and diamonds but gold is the most plentiful placer deposit 5) weathering processes can leave behind residual mineral deposits  ­when rocks become dissolved by rainwater or groundwater they leave behind some deposits e.g. bauxite: aluminum resource Fossil Fuels Q: what are fossil fuels?  ­remains of plants (mostly) and animals that were once trapped in sedimentary rocks and are anaerobically decomposed  ­as they undergo high pressure/high heat during burial this causes chemical alteration  ­plants (rich in resins, waxes) tend to form coal (most abundant fossil fuel), methane and natural gas  ­these deposits were mostly formed in the Carboniferous period when peat swamps were widespread  ­this is when the great coal beds of the Eastern US were formed  ­plankton (containing proteins, carbohydrates) settling to the sea floor in large quantities in anoxic conditions create oil  ­nearly always found in marine sedimentary rocks  ­know that oil comes from decomposed organic matter because 1) oil has particular optical properties known only in hydrocarbons derived from organic matter 2) oil contains compounds that originate in living matter  ­hydrocarbon oils were initially used in lamps and replaced whale ­oil lamps  ­oil deposits were initially hand dug and the first well was established in Pennsylvania which produced 35 barrels a day  ­...
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This note was uploaded on 10/11/2012 for the course UGS 302 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at University of Texas at Austin.

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