Flashcards in Sustainability Deck (69)
Define the terms “conservation” and “preservation”, and explain the difference between the two.
Conservation = the maintenance of biodiversity through human action or management.
Preservation = the protection of an area by restricting or banning human interference.
Preservation is when humans try to leave an area alone whereas conservation is when humans actively do things to support the biodiversity of an area.
Give 3 examples of conservation and 3 examples of preservation.
Examples of conservation could include:
1. Using grazing to keen Fenland from becoming woodland
2. Removal of invasive species such as rats from islands
3. Legal hunting of animals in nature reserves to reduce the population from potentially damaging levels
Examples of preservation could include:
1. International agreement to prevent large scale human activity in Antarctica
2. Gating pristine caves to prevent people entering in order to protect the fragile ecosystem and geology
3. Preventing access to some Galapagos islands or some parts of some islands
Reclamation = a form of conservation in which ecosystems which have been damaged or destroyed are restored.
Define “ecological” when referring to reasons for maintaining biodiversity.
Ecological = reasons concerning the potential impact on other species (and whole ecosystems)
Define economic when referring to reasons for maintaining biodiversity.
Economic = reasons involving people, communities, or companies earning a living or making more money from the biodiversity in a sustainable way
Define “aesthetic” when referring to reasons for maintaining biodiversity.
Aesthetic = reasons based around the beauty of nature and its ability to enrich lives and inspire people.
Describe 3 aesthetic reasons for maintaining biodiversity.
1. Inspiration for musicians, artists, writers and poets
2. People enjoy the beauty in wildlife and landscape photography
3. People get enjoyment from being out in “nature” due to the beauty of it
Describe 8 economic reasons for maintaining biodiversity.
1. Biodiversity attracts tourism and so brings money into an area
2. Biodiversity maintains the soil and so farmers can make money in a sustainable way
3. Biodiversity protects against natural disasters and so less money will be spent rebuilding
4. There is financial gain to be had from marketing a product as sustainably managed (e.g. timber or fish)
5. Potential economic value of cross-breeding crops with wild species to improve yield.
6. Potential, as yet undiscovered, economic value of known species.
7. Potential economic value of unknown species
8. Sustainable management allows money to be made in a trade by subsequent generations
Describe 2 ecological reasons for maintaining biodiversity.
1. Due to the great interdependence of organisms it is impossible to predict the consequences of losing one species in an ecosystem
2. Keystone species are likely to have a major impact on a whole ecosystem if they are lost
3. Maintaining ecosystems (and their whole biodiversity) protects all species, even those without the conservation “draw”
Define the term “social” when referring to reasons for conservation of biological resources and give two examples.
Social = reasons that are for the benefit of society, providing areas for relaxation, exercise and hobbies.
e.g. more jobs and less unemployment through ecotourism, less homelessness if there are fewer natural disasters, maintenance of jobs and culture through sustainable management of fishing, bird watching, wild camping, nature walking
Define the term “ethical” when referring to reasons for conservation of biological resources and give two examples.
Ethical = reasons based on the rights given to organisms (or the environment) by some people, or on the moral responsibility we have to future generations
e.g. species have the right to life and so we shouldn’t let them go extinct, we have the responsibility to look after the natural habitat so that future generations can get the same aesthetic, social and economic benefits that we have gained from it.
Define the term “sustainability” and “sustainable resource”.
Sustainability = the ability to continue a particular action indefinitely without using resources in a way that could eventually make them run out and without leading to irreversible damage to the environment.
Sustainable resource = something that is exploited economically so that it will not diminish or run out.
Describe 5 aims of sustainability.
1. Preserve the environment
2. Ensure resources are available to future generations
3. Allow humans in all societies to live comfortably
4. Enable less economically developed countries (LEDCs) to develop, through exploiting their natural resources
5. Create a more even balance in the consumption of these resources between more economically developed countries (MEDCs) and LEDCs
Describe 3 things that can be done to reduce the demand for a resource and therefore make it easier to manage sustainably.
Reduce the requirements for the resource
Reuse the resource
Recycle the resource, or other things made of the same material to produce more of the resource.
State two methods of small scale timber production.
Coppicing and Pollarding
Define the terms “coppicing”,
Coppicing = cutting a tree trunk back close to ground level to allow new shoots to grow up from this stump, and then harvesting the shoots a regular intervals
Pollarding = cutting a tree trunk back to a few metres above ground level to allow new shoots to grow up from the top of this trunk, and then harvesting the shoots a regular intervals
Define “rotational coppicing”.
Rotational coppicing = dividing woodland up into sections, trees are only coppiced in one section each year. There are enough sections so that the first section has fully regrown by the time all other sections have been coppiced.
Explain the advantage of rotational coppicing.
- A tree trunk is cut back close to ground level in winter. The next spring new shoots start to rapidly grow. Eventually these shoots are large enough to have economic value and are harvested. The next spring new shoots start to grow and the process can be repeated. Rotational coppicing provides a continuous yield from a woodland every year.
- Rotational coppicing maximises biodiversity as there is always a part of the woodland at each stage of regrowth, providing a variety of habitats throughout he woodland. Animals that require fuller regrowth can easily move to a nearby area when their section is coppiced.
Explain an advantage of pollarding over coppicing.
Because the new growth is higher up in pollarded trees it is protected against damage from grazers such as deer. Also the tree trunks provide a habitat that is absent in coppiced trees.
Describe the difference between harvesting in large scale timber production and harvesting in small scale timber production.
In large scale timber production, large areas of forest are felled at a time and the felled trees are destroyed and will not regrow.
Describe 5 practices that can help large scale timber production to be sustainable.
1. Selective cutting only removes the largest trees
2. Replace trees through replanting
3. Plant trees an optimal distance apart to reduce competition – this maximises yield
4. Manage pests and pathogens to maximise quality and size of yield
5. Ensure that areas of forest remain for indigenous people
Describe the disadvantages of large scale timber production.
Destruction of habitats, soil minerals are reduced, bare soil is susceptible to erosion.
Name and describe an international agreement that aims to ensure fishing is sustainable in the EU.
Common fisheries policy – sets fishing quotas on the numbers of certain species of fish that are allowed to be caught in a particular area in order to maintain a natural population of these species that can reproduce sufficiently to maintain their population.
Describe 3 methods which can help fishing to be sustainable.
1. The use of nets with different mesh sizes – e.g. having a large mesh size allows immature fish to escape.
2. Allowing commercial and recreational fishing only at certain times of the year. This protects the breeding season of some fish species, allowing populations to increase back to a sustainable level.
3. The introduction of fish farming to reduce the number of wild caught fish needed to meet demand.
Explain why overfishing in one particular area is not likely to make a species extinct.
If a species has a wide range then overfishing in one area may make it locally extinct but the species itself will not go extinct as the fish still survives in other areas
State what MMNR stands for and where it is.
MMNR = Masai Mara National reserve
It is in southern Kenya
Describe the ecosystem of the Masai Mara.
It is a savannah ecosystem with rich grassland and woodland adjacent to the Mara river running through it. Away from the river it is mainly open plains with scattered shrubs and trees. A large zebra and wildebeest migration passes through it annually, and other large mammals living there include: buffalo, elephants, leopards, lions and black rhinos.
Describe the impact local human populations have had on the ecosystem of the Masai Mara.
The main impact has been the changes in livestock grazing. Initially the people had a semi-nomadic lifestyle moving from place to place. This allowed time for vegetation to recover from the grazing. Grazing is now limited to areas around the edge of the reserve and there are larger herds. There are also more people and so more trees are removed for fuel. Both of these mean that vegetation doesn’t have time to recover and there is a great risk of soil erosion. On top of this some of the land has been converted to crop land. This means nutrients are used up and there is then a reliance on fertilisers.