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This lesson will increase your knowledge of concepts covered in the following TEKS for biology:. 12.a – Analyze the flow of energy through various cycles including the carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, and water cycles.

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This lesson will increase your knowledge of concepts covered in the following TEKS for biology:

12.a – Analyze the flow of energy through various cycles including the carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, and water cycles.

12.c – Compare variations, tolerances, and adaptations of plants and animals in different biomes

12.d – Identify and illustrate that long-term survival of species is dependent on a resource based that may be limited.


Previous LessonPesticides and Organic Farming


QUESTION: What happened in Ireland when an agricultural crop failed and what are the implications about our dependence on pesticides?


Ireland suffered a famine because their crops were genetically uniform and they lacked pesticide technologyToday, farmers rely on pesticides to protect their crops

Based on: Population Reports, May 1992


QUESTION: Some people question the need for environmental legislation. Using the bald eagle, make a case that environmental legislation can help preserve natural ecosystems.


Once the eagle was protected by the Endangered Species Act and DDT was banned, eagle populations increased rapidly. The bald eagle is now listed as threatened.

From: Time, July 11, 1994


QUESTION: What practices can’t be used in the production of certified organic foods?


Organic Foods

Certified organic foods cannot be produced with hormones, antibiotics, herbicides, insecticides, chemical fertilizers, genetic modification or germ-killing radiation

From: Newsweek, September 30, 2002


Today’s LessonThe Water Cycle


Overview of Lesson

  • Humans and freshwater

  • Global water cycle

  • Biomes

  • Water availability in Texas

  • The future


The quality of human life is directly proportional to the amount of available freshwater per person


Humans are 55-60% water and can only live days without fresh water. Why is there so much water in the human body?


Circulatory System

Based on: Mader, S., Inquiry into Life, McGraw-Hill


Urinary System

Based on: Mader, S., Inquiry into Life, McGraw-Hill


Many of the agricultural systems that feed humans are dependent on irrigation with freshwater. Why do plants need water?

Photo courtesy of Texas Department of Transportation


All agricultural systems are based on plants converting the energy of the sun to the energy of sugar through the process of photosynthesis

energy of the sun + carbon dioxide + water

energy of sugar + oxygen


Overview of Lesson

  • Humans and freshwater

  • Global water cycle

  • Biomes

  • Water supply in Texas

  • The future


  • Less than 3% of Earth’s water is freshwater

  • The rest is too salty for human consumption or agriculture


Water Cycle

Based on: Goodenough, et al., Human Biology, Saunders College

Data from Jackson, et al., Ecological Applications, vol. 11, 2001


Overview of Lesson

  • Humans and freshwater

  • Global water cycle

  • Precipitation and biomes in U.S.

  • Water supply in Texas

  • The future


Biome Distribution

Based on: Mader, S., Inquiry into Life, McGraw-Hill


Air movement patterns across U.S.

Pacific Moisture

Based on: Transactions of the American Fisheries Society, November 1981


Mountains and Rain Shadows

Condensation occurs when air cools as it rises over mountains, resulting in precipitation on the western side of the mountain. As the air moves down from mountains, evaporation tends to occur.


Major Biomes of the U.S.

Based on: Mader, S., Inquiry into Life, Wm. C. Brown, Publishers


Photo courtesy of G. Kroh

Pacific Coast


Photo courtesy of G. Kroh

Photo courtesy of G. Kroh

California Redwoods


Photo courtesy of G. Kroh

Great Basin Desert in the

Rain Shadow of the Sierras


Photo courtesy of G. Kroh

Meadow in the Rocky Mountains


Photo courtesy of G. Kroh

High Plains of Texas Panhandle


Photo courtesy of G. Kroh

Deciduous Forest of East Texas


Overview of Lesson

  • Humans and freshwater

  • Global water cycle

  • Biomes

  • Water supply in Texas

  • The future


Typical paths of movement of the various cold and warm air masses that invade Texas

Based on: Texas Weather


Average annual precipitation (inches)

Based on: Texas Weather


Most of the surface water is in the eastern side of Texas

From: Texas Parks & Wildlife, July 2002


Texas rivers are one the State’s most important natural resources

Photo courtesy of R. Drenner

Brazos River near Mineral Wells


Texas rivers are now impounded by more than 200 major dams. All lakes but one (Caddo Lake) are formed by dams.

Photo courtesy of R. Drenner

Possum Kingdom Lake on Brazos River


Water Treatment Process, Fort Worth

From City of Fort Worth

1. Reservoirs provide water

2. Raw water pump station pumps water to treatment plant

3. Flash mix of chemicals to clump particles and increase settling

plus charcoal to absorb taste and odor from bluegreen algae

4. Coagulation basin where particles clump

5. Sedimentation basin where particles settle to bottom

6. Filters consisting of 4 ft of coal, sand and gravel

7. Disinfection using chlorine (ozone used in future)

8. Clearwell storage before water is pumped to the public

9. Distribution through 2,400 mile of pipelines to homes and

businesses


Overview of Lesson

  • Humans and freshwater

  • Global water cycle

  • Biomes

  • Water supply in Texas

  • The future


Water Fights

Based on: U.S. News & World Report, May 19, 2003


The population of Texas will double in the next 50 years

Based on: Texas Parks & Wildlife, July 2002


  • The Future?

  • Only eight more major dams will

  • be built in the next 50 years

  • Almost 900 Texas cities will not

  • have enough water from current

  • sources to meet their needs in

  • 2050


Texas cities are requiring water conservation measures such as low-volume toilets while promoting volunteer xeriscaping


Xeriscapingis a method of landscaping that uses plants that are well adapted to the local area and are drought-resistant


Water reuse is “reusing” treated wastewater for other purposes


Water Supply System for Fort Worth

Village Creek Sewage Treatment Plant

Trinity River

Wetland


From Texas Parks and Wildlife


Decline in Wetland Acreage

From Scientific American, June 1998


Next Lesson

Acid Rain and Fishless Lakes


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