Western Desert, USA Flashcards

You may prefer our related Brainscape-certified flashcards:
1
Q

What 3 smaller deserts is the western desert made up of?

A
  • Mojave
  • Sonoran
  • Chihuahuan
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
2
Q

What states does the Western Desert cover?

A
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Texas
  • New Mexico
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
3
Q

What is tourism like in the western desert?

A
  • Lake Mead and Lake Powell are popular for water sports.
  • Las Vegas is an entertainment centre, attracting 40 million visitors per year.
  • Many people visit the national parks and wilderness areas (e.g. Joshua Tree and Grand Canyon) to enjoy landscape, peace and solitude.
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
4
Q

How many people visit Las Vegas each year?

A

40 million people.

How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
5
Q

What is the farming like in the western desert?

A
  • Irrigation enables commercial farming to thrive in sunny and hot conditions, e.g. Coachella Valley (California) produces vegetables, peppers and grapes (for wine) using water extracted from underground aquifers.
    Elsewhere, irrigation canals are used for large-scale industrial farming.
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
6
Q

What are the energy resources in the western Dessert?

A
  • solar energy being developed extensively, e.g. Sonoran Solar project in Arizona, which will supply electricity to 100,000 homes.
  • oil in Arizona, owned and operated by indigenous Navajo people.
  • HEP (hydroelectric energy) generated from Lake Mead.
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
7
Q

What is the mineral extraction like in the Western Desert?

A
  • Rich reserves of copper, uranium and coal.
  • Copper is mined in the Sonoran desert near Ajo, Arizona.
  • Elsewhere developments have been limited due to environmental concerns, including the possibility of mining uranium (raw material for nuclear power) in the Grand Canyon.
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
8
Q

Why is water supply a challenge of developing the Western Desert?

A
  • Water transfer, particularly from the Colorado river has supplied drinking water and irrigation since the Hoover Dam was constructed in 1935.
  • Piped water now supplies homes, farms and even golf courses.
  • Water supply could be a major problem in the future as demands soar in cities such as Phoenix, Arizona.
  • Temperatures are forecast to rise as a result of climate change.
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
9
Q

Why is inaccessibility a challenge of developing the Western desert?

A
  • In the Western desert, the relatively low density population has resulted in a lack of surfaced roads through the desert.
  • Access is limited away from the main cities.
  • Some major highways have been constructed linking the major cities, such as route 70 through Utah, and Route 66, which connects Chicago with California through the Western Desert.
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
10
Q

Why is extreme temperatures a challenge of developing the Western Desert?

A
  • average temp of 27 degrees.
  • In summer temperature can soar above 50 degrees.
  • This means that work is very hard, especially for farmers who have to work during the day.
  • High temperatures also lead to high rates of evaporation and water shortages.
  • Plants and animals have to adapt to cope with the high temperatures, or shelter, for example by burrowing underground.
  • Traditional houses in the Western desert have thick earth walls to keep homes cool during the day but warm at night. Whitewashed walls reflect sunlight.
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
11
Q

What do Lake Powell and Lake Mead do?

A
  • 2 major lakes that have been created as part of water management projects.
  • Combined the Lakes attract 2 million visitors a year.
  • They offer sailing, power boating, water skiing and fishing.
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
12
Q

Why is the lack of accessibility in the Western desert dangerous?

A

-Tourists and explorers must find their own way.
- Even where roads and rough tracks have been provided, the extreme temperatures make it a dangerous place if your car breaks down.
- 2015 an elderly tourist died of dehydration in the Los Coyotes Reservation near the edge of the Mojave Desert. He had become lost after attempting to drive off road.

How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly
13
Q
A
How well did you know this?
1
Not at all
2
3
4
5
Perfectly