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Types of resources
Perpetual, non-renewable, and renewable resources
a resource that is inexhaustible on a human scale
Types of Perpetual resources are... why are these resources not more popular?
- Wind power - a rapidly growing industry, a very clean technology, someproblem with wildlife (birds), could add lights and sound to correct this problem.
- Geothermal – technology is expensive, steam produced from pumping waterinto contact with the heat in the earth’s crust.
- Solar – technology is rapidly improving, is the best perpetual energy source.
- Tidal – tides in Massachusetts average 12 ft, in some areas of Canadaaverage 30 ft, these generate power we can use, non-polluting
- Discussion: All we lack is technology for perpetual resources. Developingtechnology is the basis for better use of these energy sources.
- Oil, Coal, Minerals
- Discussion: It takes millions of years to make and hundreds of years to use it.These resources must be used with efficiency and recycling efforts. Ninety to 95% of energy used to drive a car is lost as heat- very inefficient.
discuss the Renewable resources
- Soil hundreds of years to form 1” of top soil and hours to lose it toerosion.
- Rangeland important in developing countries, grassland grazing ecosystem.
- Wetlands provide many ecological services, often lost due to filling in foragricultural use 89% of wetland have been lost in Iowa, 91% in California.
- Wildlife Human impact due to expansion of urban areas leaves wildlifeless and less habitat We must decide what level of biodiversity we want to sustain.
- Fisheries Stocks are being used at a rapid rate.
The health and productivity of resources depends on: _____ :“a philosophy of managing the environment in a way that does notdespoil, exhaust, or extinguish”
Conservation: Key concepts-
Explain Land use planning
- Which land areas should be developed, which ones to leave alone?
- a. Housing in forested area - these are areas of frequent natural burning
- b. Barrier beach development – loss of habitats to hotels and condos
- These are not sustainable practices; it appears little land use planning is done in today’smarket economy.
- taking care of the planet
- Stop erosion
- Stop draining of wetlands
- Stop degrading ecosystems
- The big question:Responsibilities of private landowners regarding public resources?
Harvest the interest and keep the principle. Sustainability isthe “bottom line” of resource use.
-____ coined the term “conservation”
1st Chief of the US Forest Service 1905-1910known for using resources - pragmatism
founder Sierra Club 1892, a naturalist, idea of protectingresources
founder Sierra Club Foundation, too radical asked towithdrawfounder Friends of the Earth, again too radicalwrote about human relationship with nature
first political figure involved in conservation, brought230 acres into the federal system
our most famous conservationist, beginning of a formalconservation movementDeveloped the idea of “land ethic”: as a respect for nature,while seeing nature as complex and fragile, a way to look at nature.
Things we need to develop:
- Environmental Viewpoint - integrity versus supply
- Environmental ethics - concern for the heritage we are leaving behind
- Ecological economics - sustainability should drive economic development
- Conservation of biodiversity and biodiversity hotspots
- concerns over ecological integrity have replaced concerns over supply
- Example: World water shortage At one time we just piped water wherever we need it.Now we try to understand the hydrologic cycle.-Aquifershave been lowered due to taking more than is replaced-Disconnection rivers are disconnected from their flood plains by levees, when flooding is stopped, aquifers are unable to fill-Salinization mineral build up on land due to irrigation water-Waterlogging land that is not able to drain-Aquatic pollution
- healthy environmental heritage is a primary responsibility
- Ethics: what is right and what is wrong
- Environmental ethics is a relatively new idea, it involves the question, What are weleaving for the future? Problems or resourcesHeritage is a primary responsibility.
- frontier ethics not viable,
- sustainability should be the focus At one time in the United States there was always a new frontier to move to onceresources were used up; there are no new frontiers today. Once humans occupy an area sources are depleted
- Sustainability should be the focus of how we use our resources.
Conservation of Biodiversity
which habitats do we protect?“Biodiversity hotspots” – an idea of protecting habitats with a largenumber of species per unit area
Conservation principles are
No waste in nature
Recycling and reuse
Ecosystem relationships - Mesocarnivore release in altered North American ecosystems
Principle of no waste in nature
Discussion: man-made waste products do not breakdown easily, we needto mimic the natural process of breakdown and reuse found in nature
-Principle of recycling and reuse
Discussion: Glass, paper, and plastic are the big 3 for recycling.Tires:
Principle of recycling limitation
We need to recycle, but when we do we are using energy and creating pollution,so reducing consumption is also needed.
Principle of Ecosystem Relationships
- “Everyone is downstream of everyone else”Discussion: During the population of the United States all large carnivore (top carnivore– bears, mountain lions, wolves, etc.) populations were reduced. And, combined withfragmentation – the break up of forested lands by roads and housing, these factors led to:
- 1. “Mesocarnivore release” or an increase in middle carnivores (raccoons, opossum, skunk, fox
- 2. An increase in white-tail deer populations
- 3. Increasing mesocarnivores lead to reduced populations of songbirds, black foot ferret, ducks (eat duck eggs and
Remember the concept – one change can change an entire ecosystem