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Matter, Solid Earth, Atmosphere, Energy Flow, Ecosystem, and Biodiversity Unit - Mexico

Tells of Mexico's ecosystems and their components

Marie Millan

on 4 May 2014

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Transcript of Matter, Solid Earth, Atmosphere, Energy Flow, Ecosystem, and Biodiversity Unit - Mexico

What Are They and How Do They Work?
Typical Food Web:
Human Based Effects on the Major Nutrient Cycles:
Types of Research:
Biodiversity And Evolution:
Major Extinctions and Causes:
Fossils of Evolution:
Climate Conditions Influencing Natural Selection:
Hotspots of Diversity:
Unique Indicator:
The Blue Crab eat plankton and small fish but truly thier role is in supporting and controlling the population of other species.
The Mexican Prairie Dog keeps bug population low, the grass population ok, and it feeds the hervibores
The coral in the Gulf of Mexico provide home and protection as well as food.
The Asian Carp, the Tree Snake, and the Norway Rat are all exotic species that now live in Mexico.
Specialist Species:
The Texas Tortouse lives only in the dry scrub and grasslands. It eats cactus.
By: Keri Castle & Marie Millan
Biodiversity, Species Interactions, and Population Control:
Interspecific Competition
Parasite and Host:
Predator and Prey:
Climate and Terrestrial Biodiversity
Effect of Global Air Circulation:
Effect of Ocean Currents:
Effects of to Latitude and Topography:
Influence of Temperature and Precipitation:
Climate causing Biomes?
Human Impacts on Biomes:
Climatograph #1: Tropical Rainforest
Climatograph #2: Steppes
Aquatic Biodiversity:
Major Types of Aquatic Biodiversity:
Ecological & Economic Services:
Human Destruction:
Thanks For Watching!!
Prickly Pear Cactus- large spines on large leaves, grows fruit, and serves as a home to small desert animals.
The Black Vulture- Feeds on carrion, eggs and newborn animals, as well as it feeds on decomposing plant material.
The Wild Turkey- They eat acorns, nuts, and trees as well as amphibians and small reptiles such as lizards and snakes.
Mexican Bobcats- Eats rodents, jack rabbits, birds and deers, as well as snakes, lizards, and scorpions.
Black-Tailed Jackrabbit- eats shrubs , grasses, and cacti.
Dung Beetles- Helps improve the nutrient cycle in the soil, reduces parasitic worm load, and gets rid of waste.
Sharks, Stingrays, Dolphins, Whales, Jellyfish, Oysters, Crabs, Shrimps, a large variety of seagrasses such as Red, Green, and Brown algae.
There are three types:
- Chordates are the largest group of nektons and have bony cartilage. This group includes bony fish, whales,sharks, turtles, dolphins, and seals.
- Are nektons that include animals like squid and octopus.
- Are nekton that include animals like shrimp, which are mostly bottom dwelling animals.
Plankton includes a variety of tiny plants
, marine bacteria
, and animals
A benthos is the community of organisms which live on, in, or near the seabed. There re two types:
- animals belonging to the benthos such as Chitons.
- which are plants belonging to the benthos such as seaweed and algae.
The major hotspots of biodiversity are in
Mexico City
Central Mexico.
The extinction of the...
-Mexican Wolf
-Imperail Woodpecker
-Trump Eter Swan

Were all mainly caused by the loss of habitat that these animals depended on.
Tropical Rainforest
The effect of the global air circulation is that it mandates rain patterns and keeps the central part of Mexico dry.
Mexico has two climate zones-
One temperate and the other tropical making one part of the country cooler than the other. This division and differences in climate can lead to natural selection where species change due to differences in the environment.
Overfishing tends to lead to an imbalancement in the food cycle, thereby possibly depleting the amount of biomass that is flowing up the trophic levels.
Pollution lowers the population of the species and may lead to defects as well as poisoning especially since Mexico has such potential to have oil spills around it's waters.
Destruction of the habitat is causing species to decline in numbers due to the lesser space available to reproduce, eat and have adequate climate weather.
Since Mexico is so rich in oil and minerals, the Minerals Management Service is doing studies of the reservoirs that are located in the Gulf of Mexico as part of the "Northern Gulf of Mexico Slope Study".
Along with this, Mexico is doing studies about the types of habitats, it's inhabitants and the way they interact with each other in the "Northern Gulg of Mexico Continental Slope Habitats and Benthic Ecology Study
Both of these studies have lead to other more specific studies about the environment and the species that live within it.
Types of Gross and Net Primary Productivity Found:
The gross primary productivity is primarily comprised of the producers and plants that are in the Mexican ecosystems, especially since Mexico has quite a bit of tropical forests.
The net primary productivity is full of all the different species that live in Mexico and that have cellular respiration, thereby decreasing the amount of biomass being passed on to other animals that eat the lower trophic levels.
Although, not exactly a fossil, the Cave Fish has been a center issue surrounding evolution due to their eyes.
Scientist say that the evolution is of a convergent type. The thing is that the Cave Fish have begun to be develop with blind eyes. Some say that it was due to the dark habitat in which they live in that lead to the evolution. Others though believe that the Mexican blind fish simply don't develop eyes due to broken genes, and the lending hand of genetic drift.
The ecological services that the marine life give to Mexico are:
Water Supply- It gives the land it's life and although it's not drinkable it can still be used to keep the marshes and other habitats healthy.
Nutrient Cycling- The ocean deals with alot of nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and sulfur. These nutrients then come back to us in the fish that we eat.
Net Primary Product- The fishes that have eaten the plants and small zooplankton give Mexican's thier nutritndnts and energy that is so much needed.
The economic services that the marine life gives to Mexico are:
Fisheries- The amount of fish that are caught in the Gulf of Mexico is enough for the people of Mexico to become very wealthy. Almost half of their economy deals with and is supported by the amount of profit that the fish industry makes.
Oil and Minerals- The other half that leads the economic profits of Mexico is the drilling and exportation of oil and natural resources that are most often found in the ocean.
One of the main ways that humans are destroying the area around Mexico, is through the large oil spills that occur. The oil spills intoxicate the water, kills teh species, poisons the food supply, and overall destroies the habitat in which many species lived in. That kind of destruction takes time to fix.
Also overfishing has caused many of the population of species to decrease leading to the unbalancement of the food webs. This if not taken care of can lead to a major threat to ceratin species.
The Drosophila melanogaster and D. simulans:
These are a sort of fly that resemble one another but one can live longer and healthier in drier climates and the other cannot.

-Live in populations
The Turkey Vulture and the Black Vulture:
The two birds have been competing for the land that holds a lot of carcasses. Also their populations are rivaling each other causing more conflict between the two species.

-Lives in clumps
Trematodes and Humans
Cestodes (tapeworms) and animals
Nematodes (Roundworms) and animals (this species thrives in Mexican marine waters and the tropics
The Poison Dart Frog has commensalism with the Vermiliad plant. - Live in clumps
The Dung Beetle and Flies- Live in population
Vultures and dead animals (carcasses) -Lives in clump
Termites and fallen trees
Bobcats and snakes- Clumps
Snakes and Prarie Dogs- Snakes: Clumps, Prarie: Population
Wild Turkey and lizards- Clumps
Neotropical myrmecophilous Acacia (plant with thorns) and the ant.- Lives in population
All live in populations
-Lives in population
R-selected and K-Strategists
R-selected: Bacterioplankton,
Sulfur bacteria
K-strategist: Bobcat, manitees
The succesion that is occuring right now is secondary due to the oil spills and the effect they have had on the environment. However, that is not teh only succession happening. Deforestation is causing the land to change from tropical forests to more open areas and the warmer climate is making the land drier. In both these cases the "normal climax communtiy is when the land is back to how it used to be before the disaster hit. So that would be a restoration of the ecosystems in the water and a growth in trees and cooler climate.
Inertia VS Resilience
The ecosystems of Mexico demonstrate persistence instead of resilience because of the amount of obstacles it has overcome. Deforestation and the oil spills that destroy the habitat of countless species, doesn't stop the plants or the animals from coming back after the disaster and starting over. For example, no matter how many times man tries to keep the plants from growing and overrunning the ruins of the temples, the plants keep living and growing, showing that no matter what event might happen, the species of Mexico have a tendency to fight against the change and evolve if need be.
The ocean currents effect the climate in the way that it dictates how cold it will get in the winter. Also it controls the amount of precipitation in the area. In Mexico's case due to the warmer currents, it gets a warmer winter and more rain for the most part.
Because Mexico is closer to the equator, the overall temperature of the country is hotter than in other parts of the world, meaning that there's more sunlight and more humidity.
Affects the weather because of the elevations and the pressure systems that indicate cloud formations. Also it dictates areas that are prone to natural disasters and other things such as erathquakes.
Temperature influences the amount of crops that will grow and the abundance of certain species to have as a food resource. As for precipitation that directly impacts the growth of agriculture and the wellness of the land. Without precipitation, the land would become a dust bowl and there would be no life.
The climate causes biomes by dictating how much water, nutrients and other resources are given into a certain area, thereby creating various landscapes. If the climate is drier, there tends to be less rainfall, and so the creation of steppes or even savannas are done. If the climate is more welcoming n the fact that it's moist and theres more rainfall, the biome will have the neccesary nutrients to turn into a tropical rainforest.
Some of the human impacts on the biomes are mainly that we are destroying the habitats of countless species by overproducing in our agriculture without restoring the nutrients back into the soil. When that isn't done, the land becomes arid and dry, leading to lesser rainfall and finally the top soil will begin to blow away, turning the area into dust. Deforestation for the resource of timber also has an affect since that means less trees to create cover for other species lessening the biodiversity. All of this in turn leads to a change in the biomes.
The climate in the area of Mazatlan is wet and dry, depending on the season.
The area of Monterrey, Mexico is part of a steppe that is an area in which it is flat and unforested. The climate tends to be moderate.
Major Biomes
Sustaining Biodiversity:
The Species Approach
Species #1:
Species #2:
Species #3:
Impacts of Two Species:
International and National Legislation:
Green Careers:
Protected Land and Poaching:
Sustaining Terrestrial Biodiversity: The Ecosystem Approach
Sustaining Aquatic Biodiveristy
Food, Soil, and Pest Management
Environmental Hazards and Human Health:
Forest Management & Sustainablity
Rangeland Management & Sustainability
National Parks & Nature Reserves:
Threats to Ecosystems
Maintainace of Biodiversity:
Management & Sustainability:
Threats to Aquatic Ecosystem:
Maintainance of Biodiversity:
System of Aquatic Reserves:
State of Food Security:
Type of Agriculture:
Problems with Food Production:
Protecting Crops from Pests:
Biological Hazard
Chemical Hazard
AIDS Effect
Evaluation of Chemical Hazards
In Mexico, there is still a lot of poverty and corruption that leads to undernurishment of people. So really food security doesn't exist in Mexico and even though it has been said that they have reduced the amount of hunger in recent years, the Food and Agriculture Organization hasn't even been able to calculate how much it has or even really what the precise state of Mexico is as it concerns about the food security.
- Underdeveloped soils consisting of loose rock-like material.
- Very thin soils of less than 10 cm, found on hard,
continuous strata such as rock, hardpan or saltpeter.
Xerosol Arid
- Soils containing low organic matter; the top layer is of a light color, and underlying layers may contain clayish and/or salt minerals such as carbonates and sulphates.
- Similar to xerosol, but organic matter content very low.
Cambisol Light
- Colored, poorly developed soil; changes in
consistency occurs on exposure to climatic conditions.
- Very clayey soils forming deep, broad cracks when dry; sticky when wet, poor drainage.
Feozem Dark
- Colored soil, soft consistency, rich in organic matter and nutrients.
- Soil of little depth (10-15 cm), lying directly on top of
carbonated material (lime rock, for example).
Luvisol, Acrisol, Andosol, Solonchak, Gleysol,
Castantildeozem, Planosol
Excessive groundwater withdrawal -when too much of the groundwater in the water table is drained and it isn't allowed to replenish due to over farming and irrigation.
Salinization- over use of potassium fertilizers causes salt to build up on the surface of the land and that's when you get salinization.
Waterlogging- happens in other areas where the water table is too high and therefore doesn't allow anything to grow because of the excess amount of water.
*all of this occurs because of the irrigation and fertilizing of agriculture.
The major method that Mexicans use to protect their crops from pests is by using other animals to do it for them.
The Mexican free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) make a major contribution to protecting the all-important corn crops from insect damage.
Birds are more important insect predators in the dry season than bats who eat more insects and pests in the rainy season.
In Mexico they use:
The slash mulch or "tapado" system which is another example of no- tillage developed by small landholders
Some use contour farming
In Mexico there isn't much concern for what happens in the forest since the people make a lot out of cutting it down for products. However there are organizations that are trying to reduce the use of NTFP (Non-timber forest products) such as the Forest Stewardshipp Council that will certify a certain private land to make sure they are complying with forest conservation techniques.
Through the support and help of those non-profit organizations, the Mexican forest is being protected little by little to ensure that there will be a forest in the future.
Mexicans use mechanical brush management (70%) on their lands to keep the grasses growing since the rangelands are used to feed the cattles and the other animals that Mexicans hunt for meat.
The Mexican government is trying to diversify the types of animals that eat off of the rangelands and also has organizations that monitor how much of the land is being overused so that erosion can be reduced and taken care of.
is one of the biggest threat to the ecosystem since they clear about 2 million ha annually and Mexico has the fourth most biodiverse country in the world. That is why the government is now trying to stop the cutting down of the trees because it's affecting the species that live in them.
Land degradation
is also another threat since there's about 25 million ha that have been made into places where it can't really hold any life.
is by the far the biggest threat since it disturbs the ecosystem and the species and over uses the land until it's not viable any more. It clears the land and exposes it to erosion.
Mexico has split the land into nine different types of natural protected areas in the National System of Natural Protected Areas (Sinap):
Biosphere Reserves
Special Biosphere Reserves
National Parks
Natural Monuments
National Marine Parks
Natural Resource
Protected Areas which include Forestry Reserves
Flora And Fauna Protected Areas
Urban Parks
Ecological Conservation Zones
*The federal government has jurisdiction over the first seven types of parks, while the urban parks and ecological conservation zones are managed by state and municipal governments.
In Mexico there are 93 protected areas cover 11.7 million hectares or 6 percent of the national territory.
Mexico is a biodiverse hotspot because it has the tropical rainforest areas that are stock full of different species.
The Mexican government is trying to maintain the biodiversity by
protecting the forest areas and by reducing the bad effects of the agriculture
being used so that the soil doesn't get as eroded.
The population of Mexico is estimated around 114,975,406 million people with the population growth of 1.086% and a doubling time of 64.45 years.
The world’s average growth rate is 1.2% so it is slightly slower than the worlds average growth.
The birth rate is 18.9 and the death rate is 4.9 the immigration rate is -3.1 and the emigration rate is 8.7%.
The stage of demographic transition is stage three, where the population is moving towards stability through a decline in the birth rate.
Family planning is currently working in Mexico, bringing the average family birth rate of six down to two in just four decades.
Family planning is now a constitutional right for all people with health care visits, counseling, and contraceptive awareness. Today more than two thirds of women use a modern family planning method and the average number of births per woman has fallen. The number of infant deaths has also fallen by two thirds and the maternal deaths have also declined. Mexico’s population almost quadrupled between 1950 and 2000 but with the rate of population growth now cut in half the government had been able to lift more people out of poverty.
Population Unit
Government type: Federal Republic
Capital city: Mexico City
Constitution initiated February 5 1917
Civil Law system was influenced by the U.S Constitutional law with an executive, legislative, and judicial branch.
Declared an Independent state as of September 16 1810 but officially recognized as independent September 27 1821
Mexico has only recently become a democratic nation, beginning the 1970s as an only partially democratized with limited political rights and civil liberties. Elections were normally held during this period but one period, but only one party was always the winner, the PRI which controlled and manipulated the election process.
Government of Mexico
Mexico is located in North America it shares a northern border with the United States and a southern border with Guatemala and Belize. Mexico’s major geographic feature is the highland central plateau. The plateau is enclosed by two mountain chains the Sierra Madre Oriental on the east and the Sierra Madre Occidental on the west. There are no important inland waterways except for the Rio Grande which extends for 2,100 km on the boundary of the US.
The major language in Mexico is Spanish but English is often used in business and foreign affairs.
Mexico is a less developed country because channels of distribution tend to be more direct and there is a lack of true employee training a lack of modern industrialization. There is a poor distribution of wealth and income with a large gap between the upper and lower classes.
The economic growth in Mexico is increasing with a 1.8% growth every year. With a steadily growing economy and an increasing rate of exports the Mexican economy is quite sustainable.
The average ecological footprint of Mexico is 2.69. The average Mexican doesn’t currently experience affluenza but with a steady rise in economy the probability of them experiencing it in the future is possible.
Introduction to Mexico
Mexico has the second largest economy in Latin America making a majority of its money from oil producing and exporting. Because of this, one third of government revenue still comes from industry. It is also an exporter of raw materials bought by neighboring countries. There is still a larger economic gap, therefore prosperity remains a dream. In the recent decades many people choose to cross the 3000 km border into the United States to look for jobs and opportunities. Because of the United States recession, the Mexican economy has also been suffering since the credit crunch in 2008. On a more positive note, the Mexican economy has been recovering due to foreign investments. Mexico has recently been struggling with the amount of illegal trafficking of drugs along the northern border, but since the country is large not all parts of the country experience such high levels of crime. Since 1994, Mexico has had peace with native groups and these groups are gaining more rights which is allowing a positive advance towards Mexican-Indian autonomy.
Overview of Mexico
Marie Millan & Keri Castle
AP Environmental Science
September 5, 2012
United Nations Project
United Nations Project
Introduction to Mexico

Due to the continuous oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico, the ecosystems are becoming polluted and is killing neccessary species in the oceans that support many food webs.
Over Fishing:
Because fisheries are pushed by consumerism and the supply and demand for a certain fish to make their living, they are fishing more fish than are being able to reproduce and that is putting a lot of stress on other species that feed on those fishes.
Bottom line
is the main threat is that human interaction and disturbance in teh aquatic biodiversity is causing the species to become more dependent on a singular species for food and that is putting the whole ecosystem off balance.
There is a Gulf of Mexico fishery management council that does research and makes sure that the levels of different fish stay regulated and aren't fished to extinction. Some are: herrings, sardines, and anchovies, that represent almost 60% of the catch percentage.They also monitor the coral reefs to make sure that they aren't wiped out.
Mexico is still trying to address the issues that are plaguing the Gulf and therefore all they are doing right now is researching and trying to get all of the facts to make a resoltuion in the end that might benefit the ocean in the long run. For now, they are imposing laws that try to prevent the fishers from over fishing too much.
Mexican's don't exactly manage the freshwater ecosystems that they have. The land that is privatized by owners use the streams, lakes, and rivers to irrigate their crops and therefore use it without care. However the government is trying to get these private owners to use the water more conservatively and efficiently. The poor people are using a grassroot approach to try to retain and use the water for their crops.
Mexico is having a really tough time maintaining and preserving the ideal levels of nutrients in the freshwater that other species of fish use and survive on. The country is too focused on the profits of agriculture to think about the consequences that occur because the poor people don't really have a choice, they either use the water or they starve to death. So really right now the only people that are being able to keep the water in balance are the non-profit organizations that try to get the people to use techniques of irrigation (such as the no-till, contour agriculture) so that there isn't as much erosion, salinization, and pollution in the freshwater ecosystems.
AIDS impacts the 15-29 year old range on the age pyramid. The size of the younger population is smaller than the size of the current middle aged population.
Unfiltered water concentrated with arsenic can be hazardous to human health and can lead to cholera which kills about 300 people per year. Also the blood borne illness AIDS kills approximately 8,800 people a year.
The many chemicals released in the Gulf of Mexico in the recent oil spill of 2010 have affected both the gulf ecosystems as well as the ecosystems connected to the gulf ecosystem.
To evaluate chemical hazards they should have a set of definitions and rules as to how chemicals they use will impact the area. There should be an organization that reviews all chemicals being used and they will ensure that all chemicals being used aren’t hazardous for the people and he environment of the county.
The sea otter:
is important to the aquatic ecosystem, keeping urchin levels low and kelp levels high.
It's levels have dropped because of poaching for their fur coats and even for food. They were hunted to the brink of extinction.
The Long nosed bat:
helps maintain the insect population.
They were hunted because of misconcieved myths and legend s of being "bloodsuckers" that would kill them.
The Jico deer mouse:
provides food for the vulture, hawk, and falcon species of Mexico.
Climate change as well as the greenhouse effect is causing the habitat of the mouse to change in such a way that it will become extinct in the next 50 years.
Some green careers in Mexico include:
conservation biologists
urban planners.
The Barbary sheep:
are originally from Africa but were introduced to North America. With a lack of predators, the sheep freely graze on shrubs, bark, and trees. They have caused some plant species to become endangered.

The Central American Boa:
was originally from South America have caused much damage to agriculture as well as takes food away from other animals.
8.6% of Mexico is protected.
There is poaching of plant species, such as cacti, different insect species, like butterflies, as well as aquatic species, like sharks and whales.
To prevent poaching new laws and new penalties have been put into place and have been carried out regularly.
Mexico has legislation in place that protects approximately 2,500 wild species.
Wetlands are managed and sustained with several projects like the UK-Mexico Sustainable development dialogue project which has helped to reforest some of the mangrove wetlands.
The wetlands have also been declared protected areas and many species on the wetlands are protected by Mexican Legislation.
The Nayarit Mangrove wetlands are an aquatic reserve in Mexico that are protected by legislation, have several protected endangered species, and are a part of several projects working towards restoring the biodiversity of plant and animal species.
Mexico is maintaining its aquatic biodiversity with several laws against the poaching of dolphins, sharks, and whales. Mexico is also working to restore the gulf after the oil spill of 2010. Many of the coastal areas of Mexico are also under protection to ensure that the animal species as well as the coastal environment are maintained.
Causes and Effects of Pollution
Streams and Lakes
Drinking Water and Groundwater
Obtaining Usable Water
Status of Water Shortage
Dams in Mexico
Dams in Mexico
In the lakes and streams of Mexico, an aggressive and invasive plant, the water hyacinth, or the “lirio” float on the water and interfere with fishing, aquatic life, and recreational uses. It thrives on bodies of water that are polluted and absorbs heavy metals often found in polluted waters and makes them less available for fish and other water creatures to feed on. It is hard to control since it can double in quantity every 15 days.
To control Lirio:
•Removed and hauled away.
•Chopped up and left to decay
•Harvested for fertilizer, compost, or animal feed
•Sprayed with chemicals to dry it up or kill it, or
•Eaten by natural predators introduced into the lake
Drinking water and groundwater contains high levels of E. Coli bacteria, from domestic waste. It also contains agricultural chemicals such as DDT, along with heavy metals that include copper, lead, chromium, zinc, and arsenic from industrial sites. Water pollution is due to the discharge of domestic, industrial, agricultural and mining residues. Also with the current water system, the water is treated for pollution at a main treatment center before it is pumped through a network of pipes to every area and house in the city. However water shuts off at a certain time. This along with water tanks that supply water, the water lies stagnant for up to 22 hours a day allowing for contamination from bacteria.
To improve drinking water:
Water sanitation plants are being upgraded and are cleaning more waste water. However the systems are still inadequate and many Mexican’s rely on bottled water for consumption.
In the Oceans around Mexico, much of the pollution is a result of runoff from septic tanks, cars, trucks, and boats, plus larger sources, such as farms, ranches, and forest areas. Fertilizer runoff from farms and lawns is a huge problem for coastal areas. The extra nutrients cause eutrophication - flourishing of algal blooms that deplete the water's dissolved oxygen and suffocate other marine life. Eutrophication has created enormous dead zones in several parts of the world, including the Gulf of Mexico
To improve ocean pollution:
millions of dollars are spent to restore and protect areas damaged or endangered by nonpoint source pollutants. Working with the EPA and also U.S Environmental programs, Mexico is working to reduce the amount of harmful fertilizers used on crops and also is working to control the dumping of harmful chemicals and trash.
In Mexico, the most popular form of obtaining water is through Water Bottles.
Consumption of bottled water in Mexico is estimated at more
than 15 billion litres a year, almost doubling between 1992
and 1998, and growing by 35% in 1996 and 1997 alone.
Causes: invasive species such as the the water hyacinth, or the “lirio” float on the water and interfere with fishing, aquatic life, and recreational uses. Drinking water and groundwater pollution is the result of the discharge of domestic, industrial, agricultural and mining residues. In the oceans, pollution is a result of runoff from septic tanks, cars, trucks, and boats, plus larger sources, such as farms, ranches, and forest areas. Fertilizer runoff from farms and lawns is a huge problem for coastal areas.
Effects: groundwater contains high levels of E. Coli bacteria, from domestic waste. It also contains agricultural chemicals such as DDT, along with heavy metals that include copper, lead, chromium, zinc, and arsenic from industrial sites. Poor water systems lead to stagnant water in pipes that carry water to all houses and businesses. water tanks that supply water, the water lies stagnant for up to 22 hours a day allowing for contamination from bacteria.
Leakages due to aging pipes and people illegally connecting to the system results in the loss of around 40 percent of processed water
Official figures report that 97% of the valley's population has potable water piped into their homes. In reality, however, many poor communities only receive water from tanker trucks that deposit it in 55-gallon drums previously used for shipping chemicals or other hazardous products.
In the future, it is predicted that the water shortage will worsen and due to this lack of water, food security may start to dwindle, that will in turn affect the weather and populations.
Due to large flloodplains, Mexico is susceptible to flooding when there is a great amount of rain showers, hurricanes or when the plains overflow and fill the villages and cities.
To try to stop the flooding, Mexico has built dams to protect areas with high flooding, other than that though the government hasn't done anything of present to counter this problem.
Mexico receive 8.23 million acre feet of water each year from the Glen Canyon Dam
Controls flooding so that areas don't become as devastated by weather.
Can use them to get hydrological power if the government wished
Some bad news is that a series of dams on a river, especially in arid areas, can reduce downstream flow to a trickle and prevent it from reaching the ocean as a part of the hydrologic cycle.
It disrupts the natural enviornment surrounding the dam.
It disturbs the fish and their spawning areas so that their number diminish and aren't enough to feed those that make out a living for hooking that food source.
Aside from water bottles, people in Mexico use the water found on tap. It isn't very healthy but some can't afford to buy clean bottled water.
Dealing with Air Pollution
Pollution Problems
Effects of...
Climate Change
Health Effects
Major Outdoor Pollution Problems:
Major Indoor Pollution Problems:
Acid Deposition-
Ozone Depletion-
Effects of A Warmer Atmosphere:
Annual Temperature
How to Slow Climate Change:
Extreme Weather: In 2007, a devastating flood put 80% of the southern state of Tabasco under water and caused some $5 billion in damage, while farming in the north has been hurt by a lengthy drought.
Rising Sea Temperature: Mexico lies in the path of hurricanes both from the Atlantic and Pacific which many scientists believe are becoming stronger as a result of rising sea temperatures.
Rising sea levels: from melting polar ice caps threaten nearly half of the country's eastern seaboard.
Effects: Higher temperatures causing heat waves, the rising temperature of the oceans that will in turn cause more extreme weather as well as disrupting the natural habitats and their sense of balance.
In some areas in Mexico, there will be droughts that will cause agricultural development to halt and will negatively affect the crop yield, thereby driving the population to have a scarcity of food.
Diseases will spread because of the higher flood rates and ecosystems will be destroyed.
Mexican President Felipe Calderon has signed a climate change bill that will introduce sweeping environmental reform.
The bill requires the country to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 30 percent by 2020, requires 35 percent of its energy come form renewable sources by 2024, requires mandatory emissions reporting, establishes a carbon-trading market and creates a commission to oversee implementation of the changes.
Calderon said on his Twitter page that the bill has made Mexico the first developing nation to pass such a law.
Effects: The less ozone is in the stratosphere to protect our Earth, the more UV rays are able to enter our atmosphere and effect our lives.
This in turn leads to UV radiation effecting the human health by causing a variety of health problems such as eye irritation and skin cancer, as well as damage early developmental stages of fish, shrimp, crab, amphibians and other animals.
Increases in solar UV radiation could affect our land and aquatic cycles, altering both sources and sinks of greenhouse and chemically-important trace gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), carbonyl sulfide (COS) and other gases, including ozone.
These potential changes would contribute to biosphere-atmosphere feedbacks that attenuate or reinforce the atmospheric buildup of these gases.
What's being done to reduce:
On a cold day in September 1987 in Montreal, 24 countries, including Mexico signed the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. It was designed to reduce the production and consumption of ozone depleting substances in order to reduce their abundance in the atmosphere, and thereby protect the earth’s fragile ozone Layer. 
The effects of pollution can range from a little irritation to acute sickness or even to premature death.
Disturbances in the respiratory system. Some hydrocarbons are potent mutagens, i.e. cause cancer.
Carboxi-haemoglobin is formed by the combination of carbon monoxide and haemoglobin in the blood and prevents oxygen being carried from the lungs to the target tissues
In the 1990s the government introduced air quality improvement programs — PIICA and PROAIRE that include a rotating one-weekday ban on private car use.
The government is working to expand the low-emissions Metrobus system, which has eliminated 80,000 tons of carbon monoxide annually since 2005.
Also, a suburban train system is to replace hundreds of thousands of vehicles.
Overall,Mexico replaced the city's "soot-belching" old cars, removed lead from gasoline, embraced natural gas, expanded public transportation, and relocated refineries and factories.
Pollution not only causes health and environmental problems, but the pollution also has financial ramifications. Doctor's visits, medications, and hospital stays cost the people of Mexico money as well as the government. These expenditures can cause the people to not get medical care as frequently as they need it. Smog held in by the surrounding mountains creates a constant thick haze smothering the city. Respiratory problems are common in almost every person and animals die from lack of clean air.
The main source of air pollution in Mexico is from cars. Also the geographical location of Mexico with its mountainous terrain keeps smog in one place and doesn't allow air flow.
Indoor air pollution is mainly the exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and volatile organic compounds.
In the rural areas, the burning of firewood for cooking and heat in homes creates particles in the air.
In the work place, it is the drawing in of the polluted air from outside .
The main effects of acid rain are the destruction of buildings in both rural and urban areas. The acid rain is also affecting the ancient ruins of the Mayans and Aztecs, eroding the structures and buildings of the ancient cities.
Non Renewable Energy
The major sources of energy in Mexico are those of oil and natural gas distributed by the two most pronoun companies: the oil company, Petroleos Mexicanos (PEMEX), and the national electricity utility, Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE).
The advantages of using these two forms of energy is that both are heavily and easily found in Mexico. They are aboundant and it is easy for Mexico to run it's country on these forms of energy. Also when they exports these goods, they get large amounts of profit, which allows them to get even more of the oil and natural gas.
The disadvantage of these energy sources is that they are nonrenewable and will at some point be gone, at which point Mexico will have to resort to a different measure to get it's energy. Another thing is that if these are leaked they can cause major problems for the environment and the people. For example the great Exxon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, which destroyed countless habitats in and around the Gulf. Also these create pollution and cause health concerns such as methane leaks and such.
Demographic and industrial growth trends have placed extreme pressure on Mexico's ecological systems. They have deteriorated the air, water, and soil quality in most regions of the country. Twenty of the country's 40 river basins receive 90% of Mexican discharges, with only a small fraction effectively treated. Over 95% of Mexico's solid and hazardous waste is dumped in unregistered, unsecured dump sites, affecting water and soil quality.
Geology and Nonrenewable Minerals
Transform faults such as the the San Andreas fault, that runs along the northwestern coast of Mexico creates earthquakes that tend to occur at shallow depths and form fairly straight linear patterns.
Mexico suffers from beach erosion due to waves and wind caused mainly by hurricanes and global warming.
Chemical weathering caused by the smog and the extensive amount of pollution in the Mexican air causes rocks to react with substances present in water or in the air, producing chemical weathering. Such smog and high levels of CO2 can cause acid rain that also leads to chemical weathering and material deterioration.
Major hazards in Mexico are that of the frequency of Hurricanes. They so often that they are seasonal events:Pacific hurricane season: May 15 to November 30 - affecting cities such as Acapulco, Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta and Los Cabos
Atlantic hurricane season: June 1 to November 30 - affecting cities such as Cancun, Cozumel, Veracruz and the Mayan Riviera.
Major mineral resources: petroleum, silver, copper, gold, lead & zinc
Problems: Although zinc occurs naturally in rivers, sometimes the zinc when being extracted gets leaked, and having too much can damage wild plants and animals. The sensitivity of fish and invertebrates (such as insects, worms and shrimps) to zinc varies greatly depending on species and is substantially reduced when the water is “hard” (i.e. contains a naturally high level of calcium carbonate). Same goes for the other minerals. When they are extracted they damage the land around them by destroying the natural habitat and causing pollution.
Mexico's depletion time is decreasing every year due to the extensive use ofthe minerals. Right now, the percentage of GNI in mexico due to the minerals is 5.7% compared to that of 8.2% in 2008. Copper has an expected life of about 10 years since Mexico is the leading exporter of Copper ore
To use the materials more sustainably, Mexico could start to recycle the materials and minerals they use to create new things and to reduce the amount of minerals that are extracted from the ground every day. They should find other forms of materials or energy sources to use instead of the main ones from which they are depleting from.
The government of Mexico has launched the Special Climate Change Program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 40 percent a year by 2030 without sacrificing economic development. The strategy encompasses a sweeping transformation of the domestic home appliance markets to increase energy efficiency and offset the projected 4.8 percent annual increase in electricity demand.
Mexico leads Latin America in solar energy production. Historically, the main applications of solar energy technologies in Mexico have been for non-electric active solar system applications for space heating, water heating and drying crops.
Mexico is home to one of the largest wind farms in Latin America. Wind power in hand with solar power, powers most of the country. Advantages of the wind farms is that they can be built in agricultural and rural areas without much disruption to the land.
Biomass is already an energy source in the more rural and agricultural areas of Mexico. People who live on farms and in older homes rely on burning firewood for heat and cooking. However biomass isnt reallly a major energy contributor due to the air pollution it can cause. Mexico's poor air quality is monitored and the burning of biomass only adds to that pollution.
Mexico ranks third worldwide in geothermal energy generation with 959 megawatts, just behind the United States and the Philippines. In Mexico there are geothermal power plants in Baja California, Coahuila, Puebla, Michoacan and Jalisco.
Hydrogen power in Mexico isn't a reality, but it is definitely a great potential energy source. So far only extensive research has been done to figure out how to make hydrogen a possible energy source.
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