Global Climate Change

Acid Deposition
a deposit of water vapor formed in the atmosphere, e.g. dew, rain, snow, hail, or fog, that is high in acid content because of atmospheric pollution

change in pH levels

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caused by: nitrogen and sulfur oxides reacting with H20, OH

Box model
Box models are simplified versions of complex systems, reducing them to boxes (or reservoirs) linked by fluxes.
Tropospheric ozone
Ozone found in the troposphere
Usually harmful
(Ozone should be found in stratosphere)
Green house gases
Closed System
No outside sources react with things in a closed system
Nothing in or out
Deforestation
Clearance of trees from logging/burning
Erosion
the mechanical process of wearing or grinding something down (as by particles washing over it)
Flux
The action or process of flowing or flowing out.
Hydrosphere
All the waters on the earth’s surface, such as lakes and seas, and sometimes including water over the earth’s surface, such as clouds
Troposphere
Lowest region of Earth’s atmosphere
VOC
Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) refers to organic chemical compounds which have significant vapor pressures and which can affect the environment and human healt
Afforestation
The conversion (of land) into forest, esp. for commercial use
Uniformitarianism
1.The theory that changes in the earth’s crust during geological history have resulted from the action of continuous and uniform processes
Reservoir
Where things are kept in the box model
ex. lakes, soil, ocean, rocks, air
Life Expectancies
The average period that a person may expect to live
ex. high in United States
low in India
Salinization
The condition in which the salt content of soil accumulates over time to above normal levels; occurs in some parts of the world where water containing high salt concentration evaporates from fields irrigated with standing water
Water Consumption
refers to the water resources that are consumed or used
Non-Point Source
source of pollution that issues from widely distributed or pervasive environmental elements
-source not identifiable
Dry Deposition
When water sources are not available, acid seeps into other resources. ex. soil
Land cover change
Change in land structures on Earth including soil, rocks, water, man-made objects
Reasons to study GEC
1. The environment is constantly changing
– natural changes
– anthropogenic changes
2. Changes can impact habitability of the planet
3. To understand current conditions have to look at the history of changes
4. Humans have the potential to rival natural controls of environmental change
5. Want to be able to predict future changes
Biogeochemical Cycle
Natural processes that recycle nutrients in various chemical forms from the environment, to organisms, and then back to the environment. Examples are the carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, phosphorus, and hydrologic cycles.
Chemical Weathering
1.The erosion or disintegration of rocks, building materials, etc., caused by chemical reactions (chiefly with water and substances dissolved in it) rather than by mechanical processes
Photochemical Smog
Combination of pollutants (volatile organic carbons, nitric oxide, carbon monoxide) which react in sunlight causing a layer of ozone and other gases which reduce visibility and are toxic to plants and animals.
Cultural Eutrophication
Eutrophication caused by excess nutrients (in particular nitrogen and phosphorus) from anthropogenic sources, or sources that result from human activities.
Eutrophication
1.Excessive richness of nutrients in a lake or other body of water, frequently due to runoff from the land, which causes a dense growth of plant life and death of animal life from lack of oxygen
Proximate Cause
The first cause in an unbroken chain of events leading to a loss. The cause without which the loss would not have occurred.
Atmospheric Window
Infrared wavelength bands within which there is little or no absorption by the major greenhouse gases
Stratosphere
Layer of Earth’s atmosphere that lies above the troposphere
Where ozone is found
Photochemical Reaction
a chemical reaction produced by the action of light
Technosphere
Refers to the human system as a sub-system within the biosphere, in which materials, industries and their products interrelate and interact.
Photosynthesis
1.The process by which green plants and some other organisms use sunlight to synthesize foods from carbon dioxide and water. Photosynthesis in plants generally involves the green pigment chlorophyll and generates oxygen as a byproduct
Systemic Global Change
Direct impact on globally functioning system
ex. industries causing green house gases
Decay
The state or process of rotting or decomposition
LUCC
Land-Use and Land-Cover Change
Desertification
1.The process by which fertile land becomes desert, typically as a result of drought, deforestation, or inappropriate agriculture
Minimata Disease
Mercury poisoning from eating contaminated seafood

Impairment of brain functions such as speech, sight, and muscular coordination

Clean Air Act
A Clean Air Act is one of a number of pieces of legislation relating to the reduction of smog and air pollution in general.
Land Use Change
ex. deforestation, desertification
Birth Rate
The number of live births per thousand of population per year
Infant Mortality
The death of children under the age of one year
SOx
Sulfur Oxides
Reacts with H20 and OH during acid deposition (acid rain)
NOx
Nitrogen Oxides
Reacts with H20 and OH during acid deposition (acid rain)
Ecosphere
The biosphere is the global sum of all ecosystems
Fertility Rate
A computation of how many births per lifetime the average woman will have.
Hydrocarbon
1.A compound of hydrogen and carbon, such as any of those that are the chief components of petroleum and natural gas
O3
Ozone (O3) is a trioxygen, a triatomic molecule, consisting of three oxygen atoms
Tropopause
The interface between the troposphere and the stratosphere
Reforestation
the restoration (replanting) of a forest that had been reduced by fire or cutting
Trace Gas
A trace gas is a gas which makes up less than 1% by volume of the Earth’s atmosphere, and it includes all gases except nitrogen (78.1%) and oxygen (20.9%)
Respiration
3.A process in living organisms involving the production of energy, typically with the intake of oxygen and the release of carbon dioxide from the oxidation of complex organic substances
Cumulative Global Change
Impact through worldwide distribution
of change
ex. Groundwater pollution and
depletion
Impact through magnitude of change
(share of global resources)
ex. Deforestation
Demographic Transition
The transition from high birth and death rates to low birth and death rates as a country develops from a pre-industrial to an industrialized economic system
Metapedogenesis
Human activities began to affect substantial global soil changes
Fuelwood gathering
Gathering wood to be used as fuel
Point Source
A localized and stationary pollution source
Wet Deposition
Particulate air pollutants from the atmosphere carried to the earth’s surface by some form of precipitation
ex. acid rain
Gray-Air Cities
Gray-air cities are generally located in cold, moist climates. The major pollutants are sulfur oxides and particulates. These pollutants combine with atmospheric moisture to form the grayish haze called smog
Soil Carbon Sequestration
Soil carbon sequestration is the process of transferring
carbon dioxide from the atmosphere into the soil through crop
residues and other organic solids