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Introduction to Environmental Systems
Overview Questions <ul><li>What is  an “environmental issue?”  </li></ul><ul><li>What are the basic causes of current envi...
Why study Environmental Systems? To learn… <ul><li>… how nature works.  </li></ul><ul><li>… how the environment affects us...
Key Environmental Problems  <ul><li>Habitat destruction and degradation </li></ul><ul><li>Depletion of renewable and non-r...
Causes of Environmental Problems <ul><li>Human population growth </li></ul><ul><li>Wasteful use of resources </li></ul><ul...
What is Sustainability? <ul><li>Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exis...
What is a sustainable society?  <ul><li>“ An environmentally sustainable society meets the basic resource needs of its peo...
What is an Ecological Footprint? <ul><li>The ecological footprint is a measure of human demand on the Earth's ecosystems. ...
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Introduction to environmental systems

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Transcript of "Introduction to environmental systems"

  1. 1. Introduction to Environmental Systems
  2. 2. Overview Questions <ul><li>What is an “environmental issue?” </li></ul><ul><li>What are the basic causes of current environmental problems? </li></ul><ul><li>What does it mean to be an environmentally sustainable society? </li></ul><ul><li>What is your impact, or “ecological footprint,” on the environment? </li></ul>
  3. 3. Why study Environmental Systems? To learn… <ul><li>… how nature works. </li></ul><ul><li>… how the environment affects us and how we affect the environment. </li></ul><ul><li>… how humans can live sustainably on Earth. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Key Environmental Problems <ul><li>Habitat destruction and degradation </li></ul><ul><li>Depletion of renewable and non-renewable resources </li></ul><ul><li>Pollution </li></ul><ul><li>Climate change </li></ul><ul><li>Loss of species biodiversity </li></ul>
  5. 5. Causes of Environmental Problems <ul><li>Human population growth </li></ul><ul><li>Wasteful use of resources </li></ul><ul><li>Poverty </li></ul><ul><li>Poor environmental accounting </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of environmental education </li></ul>
  6. 6. What is Sustainability? <ul><li>Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony, that permit fulfilling the social, economic and other requirements of present and future generation </li></ul>United States Environmental Protection Agency, http://www.epa.gov/sustainability/basicinfo.htm#sustainability
  7. 7. What is a sustainable society? <ul><li>“ An environmentally sustainable society meets the basic resource needs of its people in a just and equitable manner without degrading or depleting the natural capital that supplies these resources.” </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>- Living in the Environment; 15 th ed.; G. Tyler Miller, Jr. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Think about it ... How does a society achieve sustainability? </li></ul>
  8. 8. What is an Ecological Footprint? <ul><li>The ecological footprint is a measure of human demand on the Earth's ecosystems. </li></ul><ul><li>The amount of biologically productive land and water needed to supply an individual with the renewable resources he/she uses and to absorb or dispose of the wastes from such resource use. </li></ul>
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