Environmental geology applying geologic knowledge in

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Unformatted text preview: ronmental Geology Applying geologic knowledge in environmental decision making. Goals of environmental geology: 1) decrease environmental threats to humans (e.g. earthquake prediction). 2) aid in minimizing adverse effects on ecosystems (e.g. floodplain control). 3) provide a scientific foundation for decision makers (beach development). Case Studies Important tool which describes and analyzes past environmental events. Might help in evaluation of similar hazards and designs. Aral Sea Was 4th largest lake in world. Shrinking for >35 years. Waterline ~50 miles from former shoreline. 1989 2003 Aral Sea Aral Sea Loss of lake caused local climate change: Drier, hotter summers Colder, longer winters Frequent dust storms dumping salt and dust on agricultural fields, poisoning soil and killing crops. Loss of fishing and tourism industry. ©Lee Murray Aral Sea – Improving! Solution Irrigation halted. Canals drain waterlogged fields into sea. How People and Earth Interact Some Important Factors to Consider: Human Population Resource Consumption The Technology Factor Earth’s Impact on People Figure 1-5 More than half the inhabitants of Earth now live in cities. Green Metropolis David Owen (2009) “Why living smaller, living closer, and driving less are the keys to sustainability.” Thesis: 1) “Cities” are greener than suburbs because larger percentage of population walk, bike, uses mass transit. 2)  Share infrastructure. 3)  Live in smaller spaces with smaller energy demands (e.g. appliances) for heating and cooling. 4)  No sprawl; less commuting. Alternative: Make driving expensive! Greater population needs: 1) more resources soils, water, energy - e.g. 1-2 billion people malnourished 2) creates additional waste Human Environmental Impact Depends on how much of Earth’s resources are consumed Depends on generated waste quantity in the process of resource consumption Figure 1-2b Earth Affects People; People Change Earth People influence Earth such as by damming rivers to control floods and g...
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This note was uploaded on 04/02/2013 for the course 460 202 taught by Professor Sugarplum during the Fall '13 term at Rutgers.

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