Environmental Studies

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Environmental Studies:
Air pollution:
Human Influences:
Pollution-Upsetting balance in natural ecosystems in these elements:
Air pollution: (Abiotic Factors)
Made up of: Oxygen (21%)
Nitrogen (78%)
Air pollutants are made up of gases, liquids and solids in the atmosphere.
Chemicals that are released into the atmosphere:
1. Natural: (volcanic)
2. Activities of humans:
Pollutants may be:
1. Primary pollutants: Substances given off directly. Carbon
dioxide from fossil fuels. (S02, C0, N0, N02)
2. Secondary Pollutants: Substances formed in the air. These
are from the reaction of Primary Pollutants (Sulfuric acid).
(S03, 03, H204, HN04, H202)
Why is air pollution increasing?
High population density (more electricity needed)
Industry (Therefore increase in amount of energy needed)
To release energy- More fossil fuels are being burnt and wood.
CO2 Burning fossil fuels
C0 (carbon monoxide) Incomplete combustion of fuel
exhaust fumes
So2 (Sulphur dioxide) Coal burning PowerStation's
N0x (nitrous oxide) Combustion of fuel (exhaust fumes)
Lead Vapour Combustion of fuel (exhaust fumes)
CFC'S Aerosal spray cans, coolants in fridges
PM (particular matter) Variety of sources
Hydrocarbons Exhaust fumes industry
There are more:
Coal fired power stations
Petrol and diesel are being burnt by vehicles = exhaust fumes
Wood burnt (cooking, heating) = smoke
Grass and forest fires = smoke
PM: Complex mixture of very small solid and liquid particles suspended in the

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Smoke, spores, sulfuric acid)
Green house effect and global warming:
Increased temperature - change in climatic conditions.
Flooding: polar ice caps melt.
Salinized water: rising oceans wash inland, fresh water tables become
salinized and therefore is undrinkable.
Air pressure changes: effect rainfall patterns, winds, storms = natural
Leaching and destruction of coral reefs.
Food shortage = droughts, desertification, poor harvests.
Floods: Crop failures = food shortage.
More climate related disasters (malaria).
More pests.…read more

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Rays are partly absorbed by ground. (Earth warmed)
LONGWAVE given off from earth ­ become trapped in
atmosphere then reflected back to earth.
Therefore atmosphere heats = green house effect.
Enhanced green house effect- increase in earth's temperature = global
These increased temperatures bring dramatic changes in our climate.
Should concentrate on reducing amount of carbon dioxide released and on
developing alternative sources of energy.
Carbon trading, Argo-fuels, Geo- engineering.…read more

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Reduce oxygen levels
Increase carbon dioxide levels, therefore an increase in global warming
Change in the weather patterns (rainfall and wind)
Weakening the immune system (increasing spread of infectious disease)
Acid rain:
Invisible, highly destructive, dangerous
Caused by release of sulphur dioxide and nitrous oxide
Reactions speeded up by sunlight.
Normal rain- pH5.6
Effects on environment: *rise*
Increases acidity of lakes etc. Cant support frogs, fish etc. will disrupt
food chain in ecosystems.…read more

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Environmental Studies:
Water pollution:
Water pollution:
3400 per person a day
River and underground water (aquifers)- two main fresh water sources
Alters physical state of water
(Increased temperature)
Toxins in waterways from agriculture and industry
Pathogens in sewage
Eutrophication ­ accelerated
Pollutants discharged into the sea
And washing in rivers with soap
Toxins in water:
1. Pesticides: used in agriculture
2. Heavy metals: from industry
3. Mining activity
1: pesticides
Toxic insecticides- pest herbivores- destroy weeds.…read more

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What happens to sewage?
Treated first. (Settlement tanks)- then treat in many ways. Activated
sludge method ­ produces methane (used as fuel) and sludge (used as
All methods rely on micro-organisms to decompose organic matter to
simple harmless substances.
What about developing countries?
No ways of treating therefore pollutes water.
Affect on humans?
Eating food contaminated/ drinking water with untreated sewage can
cause gastrointestinal disease. (Dysentery, cholera, typhoid)
Dysentery: caused by bacteria, viruses, protozoa, intestinal worms living
in faeces. Diarrhea .. Dehydration.…read more

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It contaminates soil
Poisons underground water with excessive release of sulfates and heavy
Releases pollutants into air
Impacts cultural and visual environment
Rehabilitate mine areas when closed down.…read more


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