1-1 Sustainablility Notes


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  • SOLAR ENERGY Warms earth Provides energy for plants to make food for other organisms Powers winds Powers the hydrologic cycle – which includes flowing water Provides energy: wind and moving water can be turned into electricity Biodiversity Large variety of species Many ecosystems Deserts Forests Oceans Grasslands Species and systems renew soil and purify air and water.
  • Figure 1-1: Three principles of sustainability: These three interconnected principles of sustainability are derived from learning how nature has sustained a huge variety of life on the earth for at least 3.5 billion years despite drastic changes in environmental conditions. Globe photo used by permission. Image copyright Ragnarock, 2009. Used under license from Shutterstock.com.
  • Figure 1-2: Key natural resources (blue) and natural services (orange) that support and sustain the earth’s life and economies
  • Figure 1-3: Nutrient cycling: an important natural service that recycles chemicals needed by organisms from the environment (mostly from soil and water) through organisms and back to the environment.
  • Figure 1-4: Degradation of normally renewable natural resources and services in parts of the world, mostly as a result of rising population and resource use per person.
  • Figure 1.8: Natural capital use and degradation: total and per capita ecological footprints of selected countries (top). In 2003, humanity’s total or global ecological footprint was about 25% higher than the earth’s ecological capacity (bottom) and is projected to be twice the planet’s ecological capacity by 2050. Question: If we are living beyond the earth’s ecological capacity, why do you think the human population and per capita resource consumption are still growing exponentially? (Data from Worldwide Fund for Nature, Global Footprint Network)
  • Figure 1-7: Connections: simple model of how three factors—number of people, affluence (resource use per person), and technology—affect the environmental impact of populations in developing countries (top) and developed countries (bottom). While many people in affluent countries over-consume, many poor people in developing countries suffer from not having enough resources.
  • 1-1 Sustainablility Notes

    1. 1. Chapter 1Chapter 1Environmentally SustainableEnvironmentally SustainableSocietySocietyBy Mr. “hungry” ChapmanBy Mr. “hungry” Chapman
    2. 2. Environmental SustainabilityEnvironmental Sustainability• Sustainability – Ability of earth’s varioussystems, including human cultural systemsand economies, to survive and adapt tochanging environmental conditionsindefinitely.• Human actions have put long-termsustainability in doubt
    3. 3. It’s All About SustainabilityIt’s All About Sustainability• Sustainability depends on three key principles• 1. Solar energy– Warmth, Energy for plants to make food, Powers watercycle, creates wind
    4. 4. Principals’ of SustainabilityPrincipals’ of Sustainability• 2. Biodiversity (biological diversity)– Variety of species, many ecosystems, renewsoil and purify air and water
    5. 5. Principals’ of SustainabilityPrincipals’ of Sustainability• 3. Chemical Cycling– Recycles nutrients because limited supply,cycle from organisms to environment andback, needed to sustain life
    6. 6. Fig. 1-1, p. 5Solar EnergyBiodiversityChemical Cycling
    7. 7. What Is an EnvironmentallyWhat Is an EnvironmentallySustainable Society?Sustainable Society?• Our lives and economies depend on energyfrom the sun, natural resources, and naturalservices provided by the earth.• Living sustainably means living off earth’snatural processes without depleting ordegrading the natural resources.
    8. 8. Living More SustainablyLiving More Sustainably• Natural Resources - resources and servicesthat keep us and other forms of life alive.• Natural resources – materials and energy innature that are essential or useful to humans(air, water, soil)• Natural services – process in nature thatsupport life like purification of air and water,nutrient cycling.
    9. 9. Fig. 1-2, p. 7
    10. 10. DeadorganicmatterOrganicmatter inanimalsOrganicmatter inplantsInorganicmatter in soilDecompositionFig. 1-3, p. 8
    11. 11. 1-2 How Are Our Ecological1-2 How Are Our EcologicalFootprints Affecting the Earth?Footprints Affecting the Earth?• Perpetual resource – renewed continuously (Solar energy)• Renewable resource – days to centuries (water, air, forests,soil, fish populations)• Nonrenewable – fixed quantities (fossil fuels, metals, minerals)• Environmental degradation - exceeds natural replacementrate.• As our ecological footprints grow, we deplete anddegrade more of the earth’s natural capital.
    12. 12. Fig. 1-4, p. 10
    13. 13. Ecological FootprintEcological Footprint• Ecological footprint– The amount of biologically productive land andwater needed to indefinitely supply the people in agiven area with renewable resources– Also includes the land and water necessary toabsorb and recycle wastes and pollution• Per capita ecological footprint– Average ecological footprint of an individual in agiven area (takes into account number of people)• China – large ecological footprint because so many people• China – small per capita footprint each person only contributes a little
    14. 14. Fig. 1-5, p. 11Stepped Art
    15. 15. Ecological FootprintEcological Footprint• Ecological deficit–Total ecological footprint greater than whatthe earth can support–2008 study: at least 30% global excess–Humans currently need 1.3 earths–88% for high-income countries–Need 6 earths if everyone lived likeAmericans
    16. 16. Fig. 1-7, p. 13Environmentalimpact of population(I)Developing CountriesPopulation (P)Developed CountriesConsumptionper person(affluence, A)Technological impactper unit ofconsumption (T)
    17. 17. Developed Countries HaveDeveloped Countries HaveHigher ImpactsHigher Impacts• Developed countries–United States, Japan, New Zealand,most of Europe, some others–19% world population–Use 88% of world’s resources–Create 75% of world’s pollution
    18. 18. Developing CountriesDeveloping Countries• 81% world population• Middle income: Brazil, China, India• Least developed: Haiti, Nigeria,Nicaragua• Use far fewer resources per capita(per person) than developedcountries• Smaller per capita ecological footprint
    19. 19. Tragedy of the CommonsTragedy of the Commons• Environmental degradation of openlyshared renewable resources• Users focus on their own selfish, short-term gain• Works when only a small number of users• Big part of why humans now liveunsustainably