Human Impact

Discuss about differences between non-renewable and renewable resources and give at least two examples for these resources.

Non-renewable and renewable resources differentiate in the name itself. Renewable, meaning that it is a source you can use over and over. Non- renewable means you cannot, and these resources are very limited.

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Things like coal and oil are a one-time use and are harmful because of the toxins they release when used. The world is trying to switch over to renewable resources, such as hydropower and solar power. These sources can be used continuously and do not release toxins into the economy.

Where did “Tragedy of the Commons” originate and what does it mean? Additionally, give an example.

The “Tragedy of the Commons” originated in 1794 by William Foster Lloyd. This theory explains how humans use natural resources without thinking about the stamp it leaves on society and the economy. By each person thinking “it’s just one time”, causes the entire society to actually harm the earth. For example, overfishing is a part of this theory. Public fishing leads to species becoming endangered and minimalizing their population.

Define deforestation. What negative impacts does this have on the environment?

Deforestation is the act of destroying trees and other habitats in order to use the space for urbanization. Many studies show that the act of deforestation is a big cause of global climate change. Cutting down these trees produces too many greenhouse gases like carbon, and too much of these is what triggers climate change. Trees are supposed to absorb carbon, and when they die, it is released into the environment. Deforestation is also a huge factor for the loss of species of many animals, causing endangerment and extinction.

What actions are being taken to reduce bycatch?

Bycatch is a huge issue and causes harm to many marine species. Bycatch is caused by fishing of a target species, and the nets/gear used to catch them hurt other species, and sometimes killing them. To reduce this, people are creating solutions such as modifying the gear they use to make it possible for the affected species to escape. Precautions and stricter regulations have been set to reduce intentional fishing.

Explain bioaccumulation. How does your ecological footprint impact bioaccumulation?

Bioaccumulation is a huge problem to living organisms across the world. It is defined as the process in which toxins build up on living things, causing harm to their health and their impact on the environment. Our ecological footprint can cause a harmful or helpful effect on these organisms. When we cut back on our ecological footprint, we reduce the amount of hazardous substances dispersed.

How has industrialization impacted the water cycle? Be sure to explain thoroughly. (Hint: think about pH)

The natural water cycle cannot function properly in places of high industrialization. When water is in contact with urban rain-catching surfaces, it picks up hazardous materials, making the water acidic, and contaminating the runoff. The runoff then collects into the bodies of water nearby and form our needed groundwater, contaminating these sources of water as well. However, lots of urban area surfaces are impermeable, so the soil does not receive as much moisture as it needs, causing trees to have shallow root systems.

How does the decline in species diversity impact the environment? Explain at least 2 factors contributing to the loss of species diversity.

When species diversity is lost, it is just as impactful and dangerous as climate change. When ecosystems deteriorate, it will leave the environment physically and economically weak, as incomes and needs for humans and other plants and animals disappear. Factors that cause loss of species diversity include habitat loss by deforestation. As deforestation continues to rapidly increase, species that have adapted to these areas are forced out of their homes, leaving many to struggle and eventually decrease. Another problem is more human cause environmental changes like industrialization and pollution, contaminating species’ needs for survival.

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