Introduction to Environmental Science ENV SCI-102

Kevin Fermanich, LS466, 465-2240,


3/30/06 Study Outline III, Spring 2006 (updated 4/11/06)



Chapter 15: Atmosphere, Weather, Climate, Climate Change

††††††††††††††† (also see Key Concepts on page 318 of text 8 th ed.)

1.       Components of the atmosphere: gases and aerosols

2.       Significance of CO2

3.       Thermal structure of atmosphere, Troposphere vs. stratosphere: how differ?

4.       Electromagnetic spectrum Ė short wave vs. long wave; importance for life

5.       Interactions of solar radiation with atmosphere and Earth's surface

6.       Solar radiation vs. infrared radiation: how similar? how differ?

7.       Radiational heating vs. radiational cooling

8.       Greenhouse effect: causes and implications

9.       Heat balance: vertical (earth surface vs. atmosphere) and latitudinal (horizontal) variations

10.   Sensible heat(convection) vs. latent heat (change state of water) transport: similarities? Differences?

11.   Convectional currents, warm fronts, and cold fronts: differences?

12.   Differential heating and atmospheric circulation

13.   Steering winds: jet streams

14.   El Nino: what is it?Where does it occur? Impacts?

15.   How do current climate trends relate to past trends?

16.   "Cultural" greenhouse effect and gases

17.   Global Climate Change: causes and implications

18.  Reducing greenhouse gases


Air Quality: Chapter 16

19.   Define: Air pollution

20.   Primary and secondary air pollutants

21.   Types of Air pollutants and sources

22.   Impacts of Air pollution

23.   Air-pollution potential and distribution: weather (thermal inversions, dry vs. rainy, long-range transport)

24.   Acid Deposition: how forms and nature of impact?

25.   Thinning of Ozone Shield: evidence, causes, progress

26.   Air quality standards,

27.   Air quality control (prevention vs. cleanup)

28.   Current conditions and future prospects

Water Cycle and Water Resources: Chapter 17

29.   Significance of water and major reservoirs

30.   Relative humidity:how determined? significance?

31.   How is saturation actually achieved?

32.   Rain shadow

33.   How is expansional cooling achieved? (4 ways)

34.   Water Cycle: major pathways (evaporation, condensation, precipitation, infiltration, runoff, groundwater flow)

35.   Global water budget? Compare and contrast oceans and continents

36.   Relative size and importance of global reservoirs of the water cycle

37.   Infiltration

38.   Groundwater flow, water table, recharge, aquifers

39.   Characteristics of a good aquifer or poor aquifer

40.   Groundwater mining and its consequences; cone of depression

41.   Brown County case study

42.   Power of Water video handout. (tentative)

43.   Watershed/drainage basin

44.   Water use and conservation


Water Quality: Chapter 18

45.   What is meant by water quality?

46.   Drainage basin activities: how each affects water quality

47.   Point vs. nonpoint sources of water pollution

48.   Waterborne pathogens:sources? how controlled?

49.   Coliform bacteria:index of what? significance?

50.   Oxygen-demanding wastes (BOD); examples and sources

51.   Importance and source of dissolved oxygen (DO)

52.   Oxygen sag curve: what is it? What causes it? What are the consequences?

53.   Aerobic vs. anaerobic decomposition:differences in decay products?

54.   Nutrients sources and consequences

55.   Causes and consequences of eutrophication

56.   Oligotrophic vs. eutrophic lakes: how similar? how different?

57.   Natural vs. cultural eutrophication

58.   Sediments and turbidity of surface waters

59.   Toxic chemicals: types and reasons for concern?

60.   Green Bayís AOC, Fox River PCB basics

61.   Wisconsin fish consumption advisories: limit dose based on size and type of fish;

1.       Is risk based on adults or children?

2.       FYI:

62.   Groundwater pollution: conditions where itís more likely

63.   Groundwater Pollution: causes, types, and relative significance

64.     Pollution control strategies

65.     Goals of the Clean Water Act


Chapter 8: Environmental Health and Toxicology (some of these may be excluded)

66.   Hazardous vs. toxic

67.   Solubility (water vs fat or oil soluble)

68.   Bioaccumulation, biomagnification (on exam 2)

69.   Persistence

70.   Exposure factors; dose, acute vs. chronic

71.   What factors influence sensitivity of organisms to toxins?

72.   Basic types of health responses to toxins/pollutants

73.   Dose - response

74.   LD50

75.   Why is it difficult to predict chronic effects?

76.   Risk and risk policy: important factors to consider  

77.   Endocrine disrupters (see pages 202 and 204; or (167 9th ed))