Environment & Ecology. 001 Introduction. Environment – the natural world that we live in and interact with. Environment. Ecology – the study of the interaction of organisms with their environments. Ecology.
It involves understanding biotic and abiotic factors influencing the distribution and abundance of living things.
Biotic factorsare all the living things or their materials that directly or indirectly affect an organism in its environment.
Some Biotic Factors
Abiotic factorsare the nonliving things in an environment.
Some Abiotic Factors
Example - All the green turtles in Kaneohe Bay
What niche does the Hawaiian Cleaner Wrasse fill?
What niche does the Ewa blenny fill?
No two animals can occupy the same niche at the same time.
Result = competition
An interdisciplinary academic field that integrates physical and biological sciences, (including physics, chemistry, biology, soil science, geology, and geography) to the study of the environment, and the solution of environmental problems.
A social movement dedicated to protecting the natural world from undesirable changes brought about by human actions.
A process of applying a set of ethical standards to the relationships between human and nonhuman entities.
Nature has moral consideration
because it has intrinsic value, value aside from its usefulness to humans.
Voluntary Human Extinction Movement
Alfred Leopold- wildlife ecology
Chico Mendes- Brazil
Wangari Maathai- green belt S. Africa
Fair and equitable treatment of all people with respect to environmental policy and practice, regardless of their income, race or ethnicity.
How would you address the following concerns?
Yangtze river dolphin
Tasmanian Tiger 1936
Golden toad 2007
West African Black Rhino
Steller’s sea cow
Hurricane Katrina (2005)
The islanders carried out for us the experiment of permitting unrestricted population growth, profligate use of resources, destruction of the environment and boundless confidence in their religion to take care of the future. The result was an ecological disaster leading to a population crash … Do we have to repeat the experiment on a grand scale? … Is the human personality always the same as that of the person who felled the last tree?
Paul Bahn and John Flenley,
Easter Island, Easter Island 1992
The term “environment” includes:
Living things, such as animals and plants
Non-living things, such as rivers and soil
Buildings and cities
All of the above are included in this term
A Neo-Malthusian would say that predicted massive human starvation has not yet occurred because:
Diseases have been eradicated
Enough people are dying from war and conflict
Agriculture has postponed massive starvation
People are too dumb to limit their population growth
Which of the following is correct about the term “environmentalism”?
It involves pursuing knowledge to understand the natural world.
It is a social movement to protect the environment.
It usually does not include advocacy for the environment.
It requires trying to remain objective.
An anthropocentric worldview would consider the impact of an action on:
a) Plants only
b) Animals only
c) Humans only
d) All living things
e) All non-living things
Which ethic holds that resources should be wisely used?
a) Preservation ethic
b) Land ethic
c) Conservation ethic
d) Deep ecology
What is the definition of “sustainable development”?
Using resources to benefit future generations, even if it means lower availability now
Letting future generations figure out their own problems
Letting each country decide what is its best interest
Using resources to satisfy current needs without compromising future availability
Which do you think is the best way to protect commonly owned resources (i.e., air, water, fisheries)?
Sell the resource to a private entity
Let organizations themselves decide if they want to participate in protecting the resource
Enact governmental regulations
Do nothing and see what happens
Do you think the rest of the world can have an ecological footprint as large as the footprint of the United States?
Yes, because we will find new technologies and resources to overcome environmental problems.
Yes, because the footprint of the United States is not really that large compared to other countries.
Definitely not. The world does not have that many resources.
It does not matter. It’s not that important.
According to this graph, what has happened to the population over the last 500 years?
a) It has grown enormously.
b) It has grown slower than food production.
c) It has decreased.
d) It has slowed down recently.