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Human Impacts on the Geosphere

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David Barrett

on 16 March 2017

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Transcript of Human Impacts on the Geosphere

DRQ’s #____-____
Pollution changes the composition of the air which disrupts Earth’s natural cycles and functions
Sulfur oxides (SOx) and Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) cause acid rain
Pollution issues:
Water covers about 70% of Earth
Usable fresh water is less than 1% of all Earth’s water
Water Resources
#___: What is solar energy and what are some advantages?
#___: Explain the process that produces energy in a nuclear power plant.
#___: Describe problems associated with increased use of nuclear energy
#___: What is the source of geothermal energy?
#___: How is tidal power harnessed?
DRQ’s # ____-____
Evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of alternate energy sources.
Today’s Objectives
#___: What is the difference between renewable and nonrenewable resources? Name 3 examples of each.
#___: What are fossil fuels? Name 3 of them.
#___: What are mineral resources?
#___: Which nonmetallic material is used to make:
Table Salt
Cosmetics and Paint
#___: What are alternative energy sources?
DRQ’s: #____-____
Nonmetallic mineral resources – mined to extract nonmetallic elements or for their physical/chemical properties
Fossil Fuels
Nonrenewable – takes millions of years to form and accumulate
When present supplies run out, they will be gone
they are being consumed faster than they can be replaced
EX: oil, coal, copper and iron
Renewable – can be replaced in a fairly short period of time
can be replaced at roughly the same rate of consumption
EX: plants & animals used for food, cotton, trees
Chapter 4: Earth’s Resources
Distinguish between renewable and nonrenewable resources.
Identify which energy resources are fossil fuels.
Today’s Objectives
Introduction Video Clip
#___: What is the difference between renewable and nonrenewable resources? Name 3 examples of each.
#___: What are fossil fuels? Name 3 of them.
#___: What are 2 good substitutes for the dwindling petroleum supply?
#___: What is ore?
DRQ’s: #____-____
Selective cutting and reforestation are ways the logging industry are preserving forests.
Caring for the Land
Protecting land resources involves preventing pollution, repairing the land, preventing erosion and using resources conservatively.
Responsible farmers have techniques in place which help prevent soil erosion and preserve the fertility of the soil:

Contour Plowing
Planting trees at the perimeter of crop fields
Crop Rotation
Fertilize with compost
Compost – partially decomposed organic material. Many people make their own for their gardens.
Caring for the Land
Clean Air Act – 1970, established the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for harmful pollutants
Carbon monoxide (CO)
Ozone (O3)
Lead (Pb)
Sulfur dioxide (SO2)
Nitrogen Oxides (NOx)
Clean Air

Clean Water Act – 1972, reduce and eliminate point source pollution in surface waters

Safe Drinking Water Act – 1974, set maximum contamination levels for drinking water supplies
US has 6% of the world’s population, but we use 30% of the world’s resources and produce 33% of the world’s garbage!
Conservation – the careful use of resources
The best way to combat pollution is to prevent it in the first place
Starting in the 1970’s, the federal government passed several laws to prevent or decrease pollution and protect resources
Protecting Resources
Identify the first laws passed to deal with water pollution, air pollution and how to protect land resources.
Today’s Objectives
Increased carbon dioxide levels can increase strength of the Greenhouse Effect, raising global temperatures
Called global climate change (AKA global warming)
CFC’s & HCFC’s (Chlorofluorocarbon and hydrochlorofluorocarbon) destroy the ozone layer letting in too much UV radiation which can cause cancer
Pollution issues:
The composition of our air helps maintain life on Earth
Oxygen to breathe
Ozone to block UV radiation
Water vapor to maintain temperatures and drive weather
CO2 (carbon dioxide) to maintain temperatures through the Greenhouse Effect
Air Resources
Both types of pollution can cause damage to plants, animals, people, and to the land itself
Pollution issues:
Point source pollution: comes from a specific, known location
Ex: factory pipes, water treatment plants, leaky landfills

Non-point source pollution: pollution that has a nonspecific point of origin
Ex: runoff – water flows overland and carries many pollutants with it
Pollution issues:
Identify and evaluate current trends in damage to the earth’s systems due to human activity.
Explain why fresh water is a vital resource.
Recognize why the chemical composition of the atmosphere is important.
Identify earth’s most important land resources.
Today’s Objectives
Currently 90% of the world’s energy comes from fossil fuels, which will someday be exhausted!
Group Activity
Alternate Energy Sources
Ore – a useful metallic mineral that can be mined at a profit
EX: Iron, copper, zinc, gold, etc.
Mineral Deposits
Oil shale – shale that contains a waxy oily substance called kerogen; not practical for mass consumption due to the extremely high cost of refining
Petroleum (AKA oil) & Natural gas – form from plants and animals buried in ancient seas
Oil trap – geologic “pocket” that allows large amounts of fluids to accumulate; this oil is a thick liquid called crude oil
Estimates of remaining oil supplies vary from 20 to 100 years
Fossil Fuels
Fossil fuel – any hydrocarbon that is used as a fuel
form from the remains of living things
EX: coal, oil, natural gas
Fossil Fuels
Emissions of these pollutants has decreased 24% since the CAA was passed
Cars are now the major source of air pollution in the world!
Cars are now required to monitor their emissions and manufacturers are being required to increase fuel efficiency
Alternative fuels like ethanol
and alternative cars like
electrics and hybrids or helping
to curb these emissions.
Clean Air
Land resources include soil, trees, minerals & energy resources

Pollution issues:
Mining destroys land and causes erosion
Certain farming practices can cause erosion and also contaminate the soil
Deforestation destroys ecosystems and can also cause soil erosion
Plus MANY MORE problems !!!!
Land Resources
Other oil sources – fuels from tar sands and oil shale may eventually replace oil from traditional reserves
Tar sand – clay and sand mixed with oil and tar; more difficult to pump than crude oil; expensive to separate
Coal – heat and pressure transform partially decomposed plant material over millions of years

70% of U.S. coal is burned in power plants to generate electricity
mining scars the land and must be repaired
releases sulfur oxides (SOx) which cause acid rain
Fossil Fuels
The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) – 1976, requires governments and companies to store, transport, and dispose of hazardous wastes according to strict guide lines.
Made open dumps and old style land-fills illegal.
Land-fills must now be lined with plastic or clay liners.
Caring for the Land
You will read “Greenhouse Hamburger” while taking notes:
Concepts or words you don’t understand
Questions you might have
Things that you find interesting
Main ideas or central themes

You have 20 minutes…..and yes, you must analyze the charts and graphs on the second page until you understand what they mean 
Today’s Thinking Activity
Adverse Effects on Geosphere
What are some reasons why companies would remove entire sections of forests?
Ex. clear-cutting
vegetation removal, also removes roots.
roots hold in soil
lack of roots increase soil erosion since nothing is holding it in
fossil fuel formation
human population growth
coal formation - last part
Spend 30 seconds and talk to your neighbor about the negative aspects of mining.
Now let's make a list of these negative aspects as a class
take 30 seconds to talk about negative effects of agriculture.
let's make a list
Everything that we need for our survival and well-being depends on our natural environment.
looks to decrease ecological footprint
decrease amount of impact humans have on the environment
Cut down on the amount of resources you use.
What are some simple things you can do to conserve resources?
What are things that are easy to re-use?
What resources do these objects come from?
processing old materials into new products
cuts down on the amount of waste
reduces resources used
Building impermeable surfaces increase runoff
Increases amount of water in nearby rivers
Increases velocity of water
Increases erosion!
(Also runoff pollution)

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