Short answer. Answer one of the following, giving at least 5 examples:
a. What would the temperature of the planet be like without greenhouse gasses? What is a more powerful greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide? Why are we concerned about anthropogenic increases in carbon dioxide?
b. Although both cities are coastal, New York City has a continental climate, while Seattle, Washington, has a maritime climate.Why? What difference does this make in terms of annual precipitation and temperature regimes for the two locations?
c. Hurricanes are among the most severe storms experienced on Earth. When a hurricane makes landfall in the southeastern United States, what impact might it have on coastal lands (geosphere), drainage networks (hydrosphere), and natural vegetation (biosphere)?
d. Winds and ocean currents change in the topical Pacific during an El Nino event. How might this impact the biosphere and geosphere in Peru and Ecuador? How about in Indonesia? (One useful Web site that deals with El Nino is NOAA’s El Nino Theme Page at http://www.pmel.noaa.gov/tao/elnino/nino-home.html).
As this is Thanksgiving week, I thought that we could take the opportunity to reflect on something we are thankful for, as it relates to our study of earth science. Perhaps it is something that you have recently learned about, or become aware of while in this course, or maybe it is something that you have always held in importance. The landscape where we live? Being able to go to the beach? mountains? the desert? A favorite place? Why is it that you are thankful for whatever you choose? Why should others appreciate it?
Please share something with the group, and then respond to at least one other person’s post.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving! (The Professor)
Instructor’s post (Note: I wrote this Sunday, November 11): I have many things that I am thankful for. I love being able to look at the mountains everyday, and I also love being able to go to the ocean, or the desert which are not too far away. We live in an amazing place! Having said that, we also have to contend with many local issues tied to our landscape that are not always easy to deal with: earthquakes, landslides, and most recently, wildfires.
I just got off of the phone with my friend, who was evacuated this past Thursday from her workplace in Malibu, because the Woolsey Fire was approaching. My friend is the director of an outdoor school (L.A. County Outdoor Science School), where 5th and 6th graders from local schools go for a week to learn about science. I worked as a naturalist for this program several years ago, and it was an amazing job (I worked at the Wrightwood site)! I got to take students out for the week into the woods and teach them hands on lessons about geology, plants, animals, earth science etc. I hope that some of you got to go to outdoor science school in elementary school….
At the time the evacuation was just precautionary, to make sure that the kids all got home safely (and they all did thankfully). And my friend had been evacuated many times before due to the threat of fire, but never before had the fire actually arrived at the site. She was just notified this morning (Nov. 11) that the site had completely burned to the ground. They lost all of their buildings and program materials: backpacks, teaching supplies, guitars, and personal things left in the staff rooms. Many of the naturalist staff are now without places to live, and nobody knows if they will keep their jobs…
It makes me think about what I would take if I had to be evacuated due to a fire (and had an hour to clear out). I am very thankful, that despite multiple wildfires in our area over the past years, I have not been in the direct line of fire. Wildfires will always be a concern in Southern California and we will always be at risk. It just really hit home today. May you all be safe and happy (and thankful) during the holidays. Best, Mary
END OF ASSIGNMENT