AQA Environmental Science notes for Unit 1

My notes for each topic in the aqa specification for environmental science unit 1 the living environment

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Environmental Science Unit 1 Specification
3.1.1 ­
Conditions for
Life on Earth
Objective Notes
1. The main conditions E a r
ly
C ondi
ti
ons on Eart
h
which allow life to a) Wa t
e r
i
s essenti
al
to
all
l
ivi
ng or
g ani
sms ,
both
for
it
s physi
ologi
cal
functi
ons i
n l
ivi
ng organi
sms
and f
o r
t
he
w ay
it
changes
the
w i
der
envir
onme nt.
survive on Planet It
s
ma i
n funct
ions
a nd
processes ar
e :
Earth P hysi
ologi
ca l
sol
vent
­ mo st
chemical
r
e act
ion
in
cell
s t
ake
place
d i
ssol
ve d
in
w at
er
S uitabl
e
ab i
otic T r
ansp or
t
­
w at
er
is
the sol
vent
in
b l
ood and sap.
I
t
transport
s oxygen,
carbon di
oxide,
sugars,
amino aci
ds,
w ast
e pr
oducts,
miner
al
nutri
ents,
etc.
f
a ct
ors:
T empe r
ature
con t
rol
­
the evaporat
ion
of water
f
rom the s
kin c
a n
be
used t
o
cool
the
body whe n
it
i
s t
oo hot.
Heat
can al
so be
tr
ansported
in
a) A vail
abil
it
y of
the bl
ood,
for
inst
a nce
fr
om t
he core
of
the body
to sk
in t
o i
ncrease heat
loss.
w at
e r
A noma l
ous expansion
on fr
eezing ­
becau se
ice
fl
oats
it
keeps ver
y cold
air
above t
he i
ce separat
e f
rom the water
bel
ow ,
whi
ch pr
eve nt
s
b) A ppropri
a te the water
f
rom co ol
ing
as much
as i
t
w oul
d have wi
thout
the i
ce.
Th i
s pr
even t
s l
akes i
n col
d ar
ea s
fr
om f
reezi
ng sol
id
in
w i
nter
.
temp erature
ran ge H i
gh specif
ic
hea t
capaci
ty
­ t
h i
s causes
w at
er
to warm up and cool
down sl
ow l
y,
helpi
ng to
mo derat
e the
rat
e
and si
ze of
t
emp er
ature
c) S ui
tab l
e amb ien t
chan ges.
ga ses P r
ovisi
on
of
aq uat
ic
habit
ats ­
such as
river
s,
lakes
an d
ocean s.
d) L i
ght b) Mo st
areas
o f
eart
h have t
emp erat
ures above
0 C ,
which
all
ow s
li
quid
w at
e r
t
o be pr
esen t
.
Mo st
enzyme s
requir
e l
iqui
d water
as
a sol
vent
and
d enat
ure
at
higher
t
emp erat
ures,
so
mo st
l
ivi
ng
organisms
a r
e f
ound wi
thi
n t
he range
of
0C t
o 40C.
So me
organi
sms ,
such
as
ther
mo phi
li
c
b act
eri
a,
can
w i
thst
and much hi
gher
tempe r
atur
es,
some t
imes over
80C .
c) S ui
tabl
e ambient
gases
for
devel
oping
and sust
aini
ng l
if
e ar
e car
bon di
oxi
d e,
f
or
photosynt
hesis
and
cli
mate
cont
rol
,
and ni
tr
ogen,
for
pr
otei
n
synthesi
s.
d)
Sunl
ight
­
provi
des t
he ener
gy f
or
p hot
osynt
h esi
s
Heat
pr
oduct
ion
w hen
absor
bed
­ t
he
sour
ce
of
ener
gy
for
t
he
w at
er
cycl
e and
w ar
ming
of
the
ear
th.
Li
tt
le
har
mful
ul
tr
avi
olet
(
U V)
and
ioni
si
ng
radi
ati
on
Some
of
these
condi
ti
ons
are
the
resul
t
of t
he
posit
ion
of
the
eart
h i
n t
he
sol
ar
syst
em,
whi
le
other
s ar
e t
he
resul
t
of
feat
ures
of
the
ear
th
it
sel
f
D i
stance
fr
om the
sun
­ cont
rol
s l
i
g ht
l
evel
s and
temperat
ures.
Dai
ly
rot
ati
on
­ cont
rol
s t
he
dur
ati
on
of
day
and
night
,
and
ther
efor
e t
he
range
of
temper
atur
es.
Ti
lt
ed
axi
s ­
produces
seasonal
var
iat
ions.
Mol
ten
layer
s beneat
h t
he
crust
­
produce
the
ear
th'
s magnet
ic
fi
eld,
whi
ch
def
lect
s har
mful
r
adi
ati
on
comi
ng
fr
om
the
sun.

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