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The Watersheds Paradigm Physical Concepts and a Useful Approach to Teaching about Watersheds
John Wesley Powell <ul><li>Best known  for the 1869 Powell Geographic Expedition </li></ul><ul><ul><li>3 month river trip ...
History of Watershed Concept <ul><li>“ A watershed is that area of land, a bounded hydrologic system, within which all liv...
Definition of a Watershed An area of land that drains into a  body of water.
Watershed System - A Slice of Earth <ul><li>Interactions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Air </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Water </li><...
Watershed Connections <ul><li>Watershed concepts can be related to lessons about: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Maps, mountains, o...
Earth’s Water <ul><li>70%   of Earth is covered with water </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sea water = 95.5% </li></ul></ul><ul><ul>...
 
Watershed Boundaries <ul><li>Defined by areas of higher elevation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Water flows downhill to common poi...
Chesapeake Bay Watershed <ul><li>Geological result of the last ice age </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ice age ended ~12,000 years a...
Ecosystem Context <ul><li>Environmental Health of Urban and Suburban Areas </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Total impervious area </l...
Urban Pollutants and their Sources <ul><li>Nutrients </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Atmospheric deposition and washout </li></ul></...
“ We All Live Downstream” <ul><li>Everyone lives in a watershed </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Understand the ecosystem </li></ul><...
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Watersheds 4 Teachers

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Transcript of "Watersheds 4 Teachers"

  1. 1. The Watersheds Paradigm Physical Concepts and a Useful Approach to Teaching about Watersheds
  2. 2. John Wesley Powell <ul><li>Best known for the 1869 Powell Geographic Expedition </li></ul><ul><ul><li>3 month river trip down the Green and Colorado Rivers. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>First passage through the Grand Canyon. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Born in 1834, Died in 1902 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Lost his right arm while serving in the Union Army during the Civil War. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rowed length of Mississippi River and Ohio River by himself. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Known as a soldier, geologist, and explorer of American West </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Completely self-taught in the sciences. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Professor of Geology at Illinois Wesleyan University </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Helped found the Illinois Museum of Natural History </li></ul></ul>Photos courtesy of the USGS.
  3. 3. History of Watershed Concept <ul><li>“ A watershed is that area of land, a bounded hydrologic system, within which all living things are inextricably linked by their common water course and where, as humans settled, simple logic demanded that they become part of a community.” </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>John Wesley Powell </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Definition of a Watershed An area of land that drains into a body of water.
  5. 5. Watershed System - A Slice of Earth <ul><li>Interactions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Air </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Water </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Flora and Fauna </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Soil, rocks, minerals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Humans </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Framework for understanding Earth and its inhabitants </li></ul>
  6. 6. Watershed Connections <ul><li>Watershed concepts can be related to lessons about: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Maps, mountains, oceans </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rivers, streams, lakes, bays… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wetlands </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Estuaries </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ground water </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Plants, grasses, trees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Animals, fish, birds </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>HUMANS – where they live, work, travel </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Earth’s Water <ul><li>70% of Earth is covered with water </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sea water = 95.5% </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Surface water = 0.1% </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Glacial Water = 1.8% </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ground Water = 1.7% </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Most of our drinking water comes from the ground! </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Saline Ground Water = 0.9% </li></ul></ul>
  8. 9. Watershed Boundaries <ul><li>Defined by areas of higher elevation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Water flows downhill to common point. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Smaller watersheds are “nested” in larger watersheds. </li></ul></ul>
  9. 10. Chesapeake Bay Watershed <ul><li>Geological result of the last ice age </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ice age ended ~12,000 years ago </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Melting glaciers and rising sea level flooded Susquehanna river basin, creating Chesapeake Bay </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Originally 90% forested </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Now 58% forested </li></ul></ul></ul>Movie courtesy of NASA
  10. 11. Ecosystem Context <ul><li>Environmental Health of Urban and Suburban Areas </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Total impervious area </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Stream bank vegetation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Nitrates in streams </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Phosphorous in streams </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Chemical contamination </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Animal community status </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Natural ecosystem services </li></ul></ul>Clip art courtesy of the EPA.
  11. 12. Urban Pollutants and their Sources <ul><li>Nutrients </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Atmospheric deposition and washout </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Septic system seepage or overflows </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lawn fertilization </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Pathogens </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Urban wildlife and domestic pets </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wastewater discharges </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Sediment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Erosion due to increased runoff </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Exposed soils at construction sites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Urban runoff (tire wear from city streets </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Industrial Chemicals/Pesticides </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Intermittent pulse exposures (weather related) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Runoff and groundwater contamination from land-based sources (waste disposal, etc.) </li></ul></ul>
  12. 13. “ We All Live Downstream” <ul><li>Everyone lives in a watershed </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Understand the ecosystem </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Damage to one part of the ecosystem spreads to other parts </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Understand the physical forces shaping the ecosystem </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create a understanding of the environment upon which all life is based </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Pollution causes contaminated runoff, hurting the whole ecosystem </li></ul>
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