Federal funding for energy conservation and renewable resources cut
Relaxed federal air and water quality standards
At the same time (1980s), visible environmental problems pushed environmental issues to the forefront
Exxon Valdez oil spill Hypodermic needles and other toxic waste washing up on beaches in NY and NJ
At the same time (1980s), visible environmental problems pushed environmental issues to the forefront
1983 EPA and National Academy of Sciences Report warns of environmental problems associated with global warming Thinning ozone layer over Antarctica
Global environmental citizenship - 1990s
1997 Kyoto Protocol
Nations pledged to reduce emissions
(US signed but did not ratify the protocol)
1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro 172 Governments participated Focus on Climate Change and Biological Diversity
Global environmental citizenship 1990s to present
Clinton administration protected more land as national monuments in lower 48 states than did any other administration
Increase awareness by the general public regarding issues of biodiversity, invasive species, global change, etc.
UN names 2003 as the International Year of Freshwater
2000-2008: Bush administration often comes under attack from Environmental Groups
Favors increased use of resources on Federal lands (e.g., “Healthy Forest” initiative)
Revisions to the Clean Air Act that allow increased pollution
VP Cheney: “Conservation may be a sign of personal virtue, but it is not a sufficient basis for a sound, comprehensive energy policy”.
2009 - future : ????
Fri, January 30, 2009 Energy, economy create balancing act for Obama Environmentalists are encouraged by President Barack Obama's focus this week on renewable energy and stricter emissions standards, although some economists are skeptical he can pull the country out of the recession while cleaning up the planet. Obama must strike a careful balance between stimulating the economy in the coming months and investing in the long-term future of the environment.
In 2009-2010, Congressional leaders put out a list of what they call wasteful provisions in the Senate version of the nearly $900 billion stimulus bill: $2 billion earmark to re-start FutureGen, a near-zero emissions coal power plant in Illinois $600 million to buy hybrid vehicles for federal employees. $1.4 billion for rural waste disposal programs. $150 million for Smithsonian museum facilities. $6 billion to turn federal buildings into "green" buildings. $650 million for wildland fire management on forest service lands. $5.5 million for "energy efficiency initiatives" at the Department of Veterans Affairs National Cemetery Administration. $850 million for Amtrak. $100 million for reducing the hazard of lead-based paint.
2. Recognize examples of local, regional and global environmental issues.
3. Name the two Naturalist Philosophers we discussed.
4. Explain why Gifford Pinchot wanted to preserve forests. Did John Muir agree with him?
5. Name the book that Aldo Leopold wrote that made him such a famous conservationist.
6. Name the book that Rachel Carson wrote that helped launch the environmental movement.
7. Trace the history of environmentalism in the US (e.g., first in the mid 1800s, naturalist philosophers, then in late 1800s-early 1900s, conservation for future use, etc…). Make sure you are aware of general timing of the major events (e.g., the EPA and major environmental legislation was in the 1970s, Exxon Valdez oil spill in the 1980s, etc.)
Basics of Ecology and Evolution Lecture Objectives: 1. Understand the scientific definition of Ecology and Evolution 2. Learn basic concepts of Ecology and Evolution Feb 2, 2011
Basic Ecological Concepts Ecology – the study of the inter-relationship between organisms and their environment Environment – everything that affects an organism it its lifetime
Organisms interact with their environment
Survival of each individual depends on getting enough to eat and not being killed
Survival of the species depends on births being higher than deaths
Environment can be divided into biotic and abiotic factors
Biotic - Living portions of the environment
Predation, parasitism, competition, etc.
Abiotic - Nonliving factors
Rain, soil type, temperature, etc.
All organisms have a range of requirements that determines where they can live The biotic and abiotic factors of any particular place determine where they do live
Often, there are not enough resources for all individuals in the population
All organisms need resources to grow and reproduce food water places to live mates Many individuals die before reproducing Some individuals are better at surviving and reproducing than others
What is Evolution? A change over time in gene / allele frequencies within a population. AA Aa aa
What is Evolution? Process by which characteristics change over generations. Evolution does not occur within an individual. Evolution does not occur within a generation. Traits must have genetic basis.
Adaptive evolution can occur through natural selection Natural Selection - the process that determines which individuals within a species will reproduce and pass their genes to the next generation. What is Evolution?
Evolution by Natural Selection Proposed by Charles Darwin in On the Origin of Species , 1859
There must be variation among individuals of a species.
This variation must be heritable .
This variation must lead to differential reproduction .
Evolution is the change in allele frequencies in a population over time Some Mechanisms of Evolution: Natural Selection Mutation Genetic Drift Migration Sexual Selection
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Feb. 2010
3 Feb. 2010 By Matt Walker Climate change causes wolverine decline across Canada The wolverine, a predator renowned for its strength and tenacious character, may be slowly melting away along with the snowpack upon which it lives. Research shows wolverine numbers are falling across North America. Their decline has been linked to less snow settling as a result of climate change. The study is the first to show a decline in the abundance of any land species due to vanishing snowpack. It has evolved for life on the snowpack, having thick fur and outsized feet that help it move across and hunt on snow.
Evolution in action Pepper Moths in England two forms: light and dark
Light colored ones could blend in with lichens on trees
Prior to 1845, most moths light colored
Evolution in action Pepper Moths in England
Light colored moths easy for birds to see on soot-covered tree, dark colored moths harder to see
Increasing pollution led to soot-covered trees without lichens By 1950, most moths black
Several generations later Several more generations later Before 1845 Environment changes, now more black moths and fewer white moths survive to adulthood Several more generations later TIME How did this change occur?
Why did this change occur? Light colored trees made light form less visible, but increasing pollution led to dark, soot-covered trees Early studies (Tutt 1896, Kettlewell-1950 ’s) suggested predation by birds was the primary cause.
Recent research suggests that the story may be more complicated. Conclusion: This is evolution in action (clear change over time). BUT, the mechanisms responsible for that change are complex. For example, bird vision is different than human vision.
Evolution does not just happen on long time scales
Evolution is important for real-word issues: agricultural, conservation, health
* Disease dynamics * Invasive species, climate change, habitat loss * Antibiotic and pesticide/herbicide resistance
Evolution in action Resistance to antibiotics
Evolution in action Resistance to herbicides
Coevolution: When two or more species interact closely they can influence each other ’s evolutionary direction. Evolutionary change in one species will lead to evolutionary change in other or the second species may go extinct. Red Queen Hypothesis Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass : “in this place it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place."
CNN 'Intelligent design' taught in Pennsylvania Wednesday, January 19, 2005 HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania (AP) -- High school students heard about "intelligent design" for the first time Tuesday in the Pennsylvania school district that attracted national attention by requiring students to be made aware of it as an alternative to the theory of evolution. CNN School board to appeal ruling to remove evolution stickers Tuesday, January 18, 2005 ATLANTA, Georgia (CNN) -- A suburban Atlanta school district Monday decided to appeal a federal judge's ruling that it must remove from biology textbooks stickers that refer to evolution as " a theory not a fact ." The stickers were inserted in all high school biology textbooks in the county in 2002.
Jan 28, 2011 Evolution teaching poor in U.S. high schools Most U.S. high school biology teachers "fail to forthrightly explain evolutionary biology," finds an educator survey. And at least 13% "strongly support" teaching creationism. Only 28% of the 926 teachers surveyed, "unabashedly introduce evidence that evolution has occurred and craft lesson plans so that evolution is a theme that unifies disparate topics in biology,” Most biology teachers belong to the "cautious 60%," who are "neither strong advocates for evolutionary biology nor explicit endorsers of nonscientific alternatives," the study says.
Jan 19, 2011 Opinion - Steven Newton Creationists have gotten clever, but there's still no debate over evolution Creationists and intelligent design proponents have gotten clever. Instead of pushing for creationism to be taught in science classes, they're merely asking that schools fairly present 'the scientific evidence' against evolution. The only problem? There isn't any.
Development of Theories and Laws Theory — A widely accepted, plausible generalization about fundamental scientific concepts that explain why things happen. Law — A uniform or constant fact of nature that describes what happens in nature. Hypothesis — Logical statement that potentially explains an event, or answers a question.
August 17, 2005 Evangelical Scientists Refute Gravity With New 'Intelligent Falling' Theory KANSAS CITY, KS—As the debate over the teaching of evolution in public schools continues, a new controversy over the science curriculum arose Monday in this embattled Midwestern state. Scientists from the Evangelical Center For Faith-Based Reasoning are now asserting that the long-held "theory of gravity" is flawed, and they have responded to it with a new theory of Intelligent Falling. "Gravity—which is taught to our children as a law—is founded on great gaps in understanding. The laws predict the mutual force between all bodies of mass, but they cannot explain that force. Isaac Newton himself said, 'I suspect that my theories may all depend upon a force for which philosophers have searched all of nature in vain.' Of course, he is alluding to a higher power." Note : the Onion is a fake new source…
By the end of this lecture you should be able to:
Define ecology, abiotic and biotic factors.
Define evolution and explain how evolution occurs.
Provide 3 examples of evolution in action. Be able to recognize new examples of evolution in action.