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Human impact on the environment

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Introduction

Human impact on the environment Introduction In this project I aim to explain the contributes to the environment by the actions of humans and display the consequences. I am going to divide the project into different sections and then sub sections to make the project easier to navigate around and keep the information in relevant sections. * Section 1: HABITAT REDUCTION BY HUMANS. * The building of houses and roads * Quarrying * Farming * The draining of wetland areas * Recreational uses * Section 2: POLLUTION. * WATER POLLUTION- sewage, fertilisers, chemicals and eutrophication. * AIR POLLUTION- Sulphur dioxide from burning fossil fuels leading to acid rain, carbon dioxide from burning of fossil fuels and methane from cattle and rice fields leading to greenhouse effect and global warming. * LAND POLLUTION - pesticides, herbicides, and nitrates wash into rivers and lakes affecting food chains. Habitat reduction by Humans Human beings are dependent on the Earth's diversity of species for our survival. Wild species play a vital role in the maintenance of the planets ecological functions, yet everyday on the planet 40-100 species become extinct. ...read more.

Middle

Eutrophication is when nitrates and phosphates used on farmland and sewage escape into rivers they causer excessive growth of microscopic green plants. As the rate of increasing is so rapid the microscopic animals that feed on them can't keep them in check. This causes them to die and sink to the bottom of the river or lake. This is where there bodies are broken down by bacteria which needs oxygen to break them down which is taken from the water. The water becomes deoxygenated and can no longer support the animal life, the fish and other organisms die of suffocation. It is simplified in the diagram below Here is an example of the water surface in eutrophication. Coal and oil contain sulfur, when these fuels are burned sulfur dioxide is given off into the air. Although tall chimneys of factories send sulfur dioxide into the air some of it still dissolves in rain water and forms an acid, this is what's known as acid rain it can reduce tree/plant growth and damage leaves, it also slowly dissolves limestone and mortar on buildings. This form of pollution has been going on for many years and getting worse, in some places it is destroying forests and contributing to the death of fish. ...read more.

Conclusion

Pesticides are chemicals that destroy pest's weeds and diseases, when these are used the yield (amount produced) of a crop can be dramatically increased. Herbicides are chemicals, which can be specific to destroying a species of plant or part of a plant or just to kill all plants. When an excess of pesticide/ herbicide is produced then it can badly disrupt food chains and bioaccumulation occurs. This is when insecticides are not broken down and become concentrated from one level in the food chain (Trophic level) to another in fatty deposits of top carnivores such as birds of prey. E.g. in the late 1950's sparrow hawk and peregrine populations fell dramatically due to the introduction of insecticides, this is because particular insecticides caused shell thinning and circumstantially break during laying. Insecticides also took effect on animals living in soils and on the plants etc. Conclusion Personally I fell these are all problems that should be improved on, but I fell most strongly about global warming. Although precautions have been taken to prevent this problem worsening, something need to be done as temperature increases and sea level increase are currently at a quite alarming rate and are proven to get worse and worse. Dan Bacon Biology Y10 Mr. Pockson ...read more.

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