Humans and the Environment, 1750-1900 Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Humans and the Environment, 1750-1900 Deck (25)
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~Little Ice Age

● Persisted since around 1500
● Steady cooling trend
● Finally ended during the mid-1800s


~Population growth and urbanization

● Caused by industrialization
● Placed greater strains on laocal ecosystems
● Higher concentration of human beings in a given area leads to greater resource consumption and worsening environmental stress



● Arose as a growing problem in many parts of the work during this era
● Forests were cleared to make room for farms, factories, and settlements
● Timble became a much-needed commodity for fuel, construction, and the manufacture of paper


~Earth-shaping capacity

● Technology multiplied it of industrialized societies


~Road networks and railroads

● Quickly expanded over great distances during the industrial era


~Growig cities

● Along with the ever-larger buildings that appeared in them--such as factories and skyscrapers--spread across more of hte landscpe


~Large-scale agricultural enterprises

● In the form of plantations and similarly sized farming units
● Allowed major manipulations of the environment


~Construction of dams and canals

● Wished to facilitate shipping and transport
● Erie Canal (1825) in the US
● Suez Canal (1869) in Egypt which linked the Mediterranean with the Indian Ocean basin via the Red Sea
● Panama Canal (1914)


~Panama Canal

● A project pursued by several nations since the late 1800s
● Was completed in 1914 by the US and revolutionized global shipping by connecting the Atlantic and Pacific oceans


~Resource extraction

● Dramatically increased during the industrial era
● Severely depleting resoruces and cuasing higher levels of environemntal damage than ever before


~Cash-crop monoculture

● Intensified both in colonies governed by Western nations and in countries where Western nations and corporations invested heavily
● Crops included cotton, silk (China), coffee (Latin America, Africa, South Asia), tea (China and India), fruit (Africa and Latin America), and rubber (extracted from tress in Africa and Southeast Asia)



● As textile industries expanded during the era, growing and harvesting cotton in US South, Egypt, Central Asia and India expanded


~Coerced/semi-coerced labor practices

● Including the wrost forms of slavery
● Caused by cash-crop and plantation monoculture



● Industrializing nations developed a voracious appetite for coal and iron, and a host of other metals besides iron because crucial as well
● Gold and diamonds were considered precious for luxury purposes, but also because of their industrial uses, and they were avidly sought wherever possible, from Africa to Arctic regions like the Yukon, Alaska, and northeastern Siberia


~Fossil-fuel extraction

● Already in the late 1800s, and definitely after 1900, the quest for petholeum began, both as a manufacturing lubricant and increasingly as a source of energy
● Dposits were discovered initially in the Americas and in the Middle East and also in parts of Southeast Asia



● Of skies and waters
● Reached unrpecedneted levels
● Few laws to combat pollution


~Human-cuased climate change/global warming

● Thought by most scientists to have begun with the carbon-based, fossil-fuel emissions of the early industrial era


~Endangerment/extinction of species

● Due to overhunting and the destruction of habitats became more common
● Population of fur-bearing creatures like sables, otters, and fur seals dwindled dangerously, as did North America's once-massive herds of bison
● Oil from whales and certain species of seals served as lamp fuel and as lubricants for industrial production until the shift to petroleum and they hovered perilously close to extinction, as did walruses who were hutned for ivory
● Extinctions includd great auk, the Carolina parakeet, the passenger pigeon, and in the North pacific, the Steller's sea cow



● Fueled my imperialism and industrialization, both permanent and seasonal
● Had the long-term environmental effect of transferring large numbers of people to regions that had previously been sparsely populated
● New arrival stypically brought with them industrial-era economic practices that burdened local ecosystems far more heavily than the pre-industrial modes of production pursued by indigenous peoples



● Experiments during the late 1700s proved effective in the treatment and prevention of smallpox
● The practice spread during the 1800s and 1900s, slowly but eventually leading to the complete eradication fo many diseases


~Germn theory and medical sterilization

● Achieved in Europe and North America during the mid- to late 1800s
● Aided not just medical procedure but the handling of processing of food
● By Louis Pasteur


~Tropical disease

● Also by the mid-1800s, European and Americans grew adept at developing cures or symptom-relieving treatments for tropical diseases
● Malaria, yellow fever, and sleeping sickness
● Enabled the exploration and colonization of previously difficult-to-access parts of Africa and Asia


~What largely resulted in population growth int eh era?

● Improvments in medical technology


~Why was disease not entirely conquereed?

● Certain illnesses proved resistant to vaccines or adaptable to them
● Where treatment was lacking or too expensive to afford, disease continued to kill large numbers of people


~How did industrializtaion help prevent disease and also create disease?

● Industrial-era science helped medical advancements
● Industrial-era living conditions, overcrrowding, air pollutiona nd protected water supplies, helped to worsen the severity of certian diseases
● Smallpox, wehre untreated, remained deadly, but the infamous of the industrial-era maladies were cholera and tuberculosis