GULF OF MEXICO OIL SPILL


1.1 Biomes

Biomes are the largest divisions of the biosphere. Within biomes there are similar biotic and abiotic components. Latitude, elevation, ocean currents, temperature, and precipitation are all abiotic factors that can influence the characteristics of biomes. These are the nine biomes , and seven of them are found in Canada: tundra, boreal forest, temperate decidious forest, temperate rainforest, grassland, desert, permanent ice, tropical rainforest, and aquatic. Adaptions are also required to enable an organism's survival and reproduction.The three types of adaptions are structural, physiological, and behavioural.The oil spill obviously has caused a major destruction of wildlife and plantlife. It pollutes the air with chemicals, which is very dangerous.


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1.2 Ecosystems

In this section, we learn about what an ecosystem is , the different parts of it, and the biotic/abiotic interactions within it. For example, how abiotic components such as oxygen, water, and nutrients interact with biotic components such as plants and animals.Symbiotic relationships are also reffered to, and are the interactions between members of two different species that live together. Examples of symbiotic relationships are commensalism, mutualism, and parasitism. The oil spill has an enormous affect on ecosystems. It can get into the bodies of animals, which can lead to their death. Many birds when they try to clean themselves swallow oil, which can poison them. To summarize the affect, it is that all the living things that come in contact with the oil, can get poisoned.


Chapter 2 : Energy flow and nutrient cycles support life in ecosystems

2.1 Energy Flow In Ecosystems

In this section, we learned about energy flow. How it flows from producers to primary consumers to secondary and tertiary consumers. How each step in a food chain represents a different trophic level, and how food chains are different then food pyramids. In detail, the roles of all of the parts in the food chain are discussed and the trophic level they belong to. For example, how secondary consumers obtain their energy from eating primary consumers and belong to the third trophic level. The oil spill will be destroying certain animals that belong to a food pyramid. They themselves are food to other animals, and are predators to the rest. It messes up the foodchain and makes animals who would hunt them down, left with no food. external image ecosystem.jpg




2.2 Nutrient Cycles in Ecosystems

In this section, we learn how nutrients are cycled in the biosphere. How continious flows of nutrients in and out of stores are called nutrient cycles. The three different nutrient cycles: Carbon,Nitrogen, and Phosphorus are also discussed. How each of them are stored and cycled. We also learn how changes in nutrient cycles affect biodiversity. For example, changes in the carbon cycle are contributing to climate change.

2.3 Effects Of Bioaccumulation on Ecosystems

In this section, we learn how pollutants climb the food chain and how human activities can make natural disturbances worse. Bioaccumulation is the gradual build- up of chemicals in living organisms. Biomagnification is the process in which chemicals not only accumulate but become more concentrated. Ways of reducing effects of chemical pollution are also discussed. We learn about the different POP'S (Persistent organic pollutants). They are carbon-containing compounds that remain in water and soil for many years. Such as heavy metals, lead, cadmium, and mercury.


Wikispace Commentary:

I do enjoy doing projects on wikispaces, because it lets you be artistic. Instead of a project where you have to cut and paste, this is much simpler because most of us are on computers a majority of the time anyways. It's also much better then doing a test, because you don't have to stress out and cram about it. It's much better then havign to memorize terms or doing worksheets!


Bibliography:


By: S.F Heron
"How Do oil spills affect the enviroment?"
http://www.ehow.com/how-does_4616883_oil-spill-affect-environment.html
June.25/10

By:Hamza A
"How Do Oil Spills Affect ecosystems?"
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20080209174726AAPgcZW
June.25/10

Is Weather Becoming More Extreme?


* Are major storms becoming more frequent and intense?

Yes, major storms such as hurricanes, droughts, and windstorms are unfortunately becoming more frequent. Scientists believe that it is due to climate change and global warming. It's also claimed that the warmer oceans are and the increasing moisture , it could intensify hurricanes. Global warming doesn't seem to be getting any better, nor does it seem to be coming to a stop. It's a major contribution for the severity and intensity of storms such as hurricanes. A new study in the journal "Nature" , shows that storms such as hurricanes and typhoons have become deadlier, and stronger over the past thirty years. Apparently, ever 1ยบ rise in sea surface temperature will increase the intensity of hurricanes. Another possibility may be that ocean temperatures are increasing more quickly then atmospheric temperatures, which is also a great factor.

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*Are there more episodes of droughts and flooding around the world then there were in the past?

It may seem like there is more flooding now then in the past for many reasons.
Such as:


  • The better media coverage we get now , which is how we hear about the damage.
  • The changes made in landscapes, making it severe
  • Structures built in flood-prone areas.

* Are temperature extremes greater then they've been historically?

It is said that 1998 is the warmest year , but 2006 is also marked as the second warmest year. So you can say the temperatures are increasing periodically. The last nine years have earned a spot in the rankings of the 25 warmest years on record.


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BIBLIOGRAPHY:

By: Freeman, Paul K.

"Being prepared: natural disasters are becoming more frequent, more destructive, and deadlier, and poor countries are being hit the hardest."

April 25th,2010

http://www.allbusiness.com/operations/disaster-preparedness/671298-1.html



By: Michael Schirber

"Will global warming make hurricanes stronger?"

April 25th,2010

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/8245668/



"Extreme weather"

April 25th,2010

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extreme_weather


By:John Roach

"Is Global Warming Making Hurricanes Worse?"

April 25th,2010
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/08/0804_050804_hurricanewarming.html