Geograpy case studies + definitions

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Orbital geometry- Earths cold glacial periods occur when the earths orbit is circular and warmer periods when it is more elliptical.
The tilt of the axis varies from 21.5° and 24.5° which occurs over a 41,000 year timespan. The greater the tilt hotter summers & colder winters, generally greater tilt=warmer periods
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Solar out put
- a 1% change in solar output could make the temperature rise or fall by between 0.5-1°C
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Volcanic activity
Release sulphur dioxide and ash into atmosphere which act as cloak, reduce the amount of solar radiation reaching the earths surface. 1815 mt Tambora errupted, following year heavy snow & frost in Europe throughout the summer
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Surface reflection
Larger amount of snow & ice on earth , global temp will drop as they reflect the sunlight back to space. If planet warms up less snow & ice so earth continue to get warmer
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Atmospheric gas
CO2 responsible for greenhouse effect, keeps heat within earths atmosphere by absorbing long wave radiation, without this, average global temp would be -18°C rather than 15°C
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Tectonic activity
Movement of continents caused by plate tectonics affects global pattern of atmospheric and ocean circulation and changes the wind and ocean currents to change
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Causes of current climate change on local & global scale. Methane one of them- comes from wetlands (marshes/swamps), growing of rice, burning vegetation, bowels of animals etc
Burning of fossil fuels & increase of methane in atmosphere. China 75% of energy produced by coal. Generation of power accounts for 25% of global CO2 emissions. Methane makes up 20% of greenhouse gases in atmosphere & is 20 X more potent than CO2.
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Changing of crop yields
countries closest to equator likely to have crop yields decreasing the most. E.g Tanzania and Mozambique will have longer periods of drought and shorter growing seasons, they could lose almost 1/3 of their maize crop.
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Rising sea levels- between 1993-1006 sea levels rose by 3.3mm a year
This will threaten areas of low lying coastal land including London, New York and Tokyo. Islands in Pacific ocean -2 of Kiribati islands now covered with sea water.- People leaving other pacific atolls.
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Reteating glaciers - vast majority of world's glaciers retreating due to increasing temps
90% of glaciers in Antarctica are retreating . Melting ice in arctic could cause Gulf stream to be diverted further south leading to colder temps in Western Europe
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Global responses ( GHG- greenhouse gas(es) )
1992 Earth Summit in Rio De Janiero, result- first international environmental treaty aimed to stabilise GHG emissions. Lead to Kyoto Proticol in Dec 1997, countries agreed to cut GHG emissions by 5.2%. Countries traded carbon credits e.g Iceland
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Local resonses- Schools - walking bus schemes. Local interest- groups campaigning.
Local councils e.g City of London & Middlesbrough given £4 mill to cut emissions eg giving out free low energy lightbulbs
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Asda. The distibution centre in Oxfordshire used to fill a skip four times a week with packaging and was sent to landfill
Company called Mil-Teck made machines to bale plastic, placed in the Oxfordshire centre, plastic crushed to 10% its orig size, bales collected & recycles them
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Nokia- more than 50% of mobile phone users change their phone every year
100% of phones can be recycled. If every mobile phone user recycled, it would save 240,000 tonnes of raw materials. Promoting a campaign encouraging people to recycle old mobiles & giving info on recycling points
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Coal fired power stations- release many gases which contribute to acid rain and climate change
CO2- making power plants more efficient, most are 36% efficient, if raised to 40% CO2 emissions drop by 25%. Also amine scrubbers can remove 98% of CO2 from waste gases
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Coal fired power stations- release many gases which contribute to acid rain and climate change
Sulhur dioxide- Power stations have systems operating in boilers, remove SO2 emissions by 60%. If scrubbers used then rises to 95%. Nitrous oxide- Systems fitted that remove up to 70% of nitrogen emissions
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Congestion charging- making motorists pay to travel into large urban areas. London introduced it in 2003 by 2008: pto
Traffic levels reduced by 21%, 12% increase on cycle journeys, 12% reduction in emissions of nitrous oxide and fine particulates, 65000 fewer car journeys a day.
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Park and ride
Cambridge- 5 sites covering all main routes in. 4500 parking spaces available, buses carrying 70 passengers leave every 10 mins mon-sat, costs £2.20 to catch bus, have facilities like toilets, waiting rooms etc
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Other schemes
Car sharing, designated cycle and walking paths e.g Milton Keynes has 273km of cycle paths, pedestrianised areas, bus lanes etc
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Mining in Brazil
Carajas iron ore project chops down 6100km2 annually, mercury used in gold mining is contaminating 90% of fish causing cancer or miscarriges if eaten.
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Oil extraction in Ecuador
Toxic waste water + crude oil seeps out of 600 unlined pits into soil polluting freshwater and farmland. Concentrated hydrocarbons in water 200-300 X more than safe to drink,stomach cancer 5X more frequent in oil exploitation areas. Plants endangered
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French Guiana in South America (controlled by french government)
Refused to allow a gold mine in Kaw mountain area. This is close to a rainforest reserve and a Ramsar-listed wetland- Kaw swamp- and is home to 700 plant species, 100 animal and 254 bird species.
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Costa Rica
Developing rainforest sustainably, ecotourism like zip wires and trails through forest & recieve share of profits from ameican company - Merck who are looking for plants that can be used for medicines or fragrances
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Card 2


Solar out put


- a 1% change in solar output could make the temperature rise or fall by between 0.5-1°C

Card 3


Volcanic activity


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


Surface reflection


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


Atmospheric gas


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