Planetary Challenge winter 2018

About this class

This course helps students understand our physical environment, and the impact we have on our environment.

Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by kristen on May 3, 2018
In the article “ China’s appetite pushes fisheries to the brink” it talks about fisheries and how they are affecting the oceans”. Decades ago, the oceans were crawling with billions  of sea creatures, there was an abundance of everything, it was a fisherman's dream. But these days, fishermen's nets are coming up empty. Overfishing has caused many fisheries to collapse and fully exploit their resources. China, with over 1 billion inhabitants, is a major market place for seafood.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by kristen on May 3, 2018
In the news article “Bull sharks and bottlenose dolphins are moving north as the ocean warms

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by kristen on May 3, 2018
In the news article, “Heat waves are roasting reefs, but some corals may be resilient”, it touches the subject of an important ecosystem change. Over the span of a couple years, many coral reefs are being destroyed due to the change in water temperature. For example, there was a heat wave back in 2016 that killed 30 percent of coral in the great barrier reef, a home to many creatures and a must for keeping the ecosystem in tact.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by kristen on May 3, 2018
In the news article, “Heat waves are roasting reefs, but some corals may be resilient”, it touches the subject of an important ecosystem change. Over the span of a couple years, many coral reefs are being destroyed due to the change in water temperature. For example, there was a heat wave back in 2016 that killed 30 percent of coral in the great barrier reef, a home to many creatures and a must for keeping the ecosystem in tact.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by alexandrapounder on May 1, 2018
In the article “Fisheries impacts on China's coastal ecosystems: Unmasking a pervasive ‘fishing down’ effect” by Cui Liang and Daniel Pauly, the authors explain how the intensive fishing can greatly impact the marine ecosystems and a lot of other aspects. This indicates that the trophic level of the catches to decrease, and it’s a signal of the existence of the ‘fishing down’ (FD) occurrence.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by megmeg019 on April 30, 2018
The article entitled, "Our growing taste for shrimp is bad news for climate change" by the author Erik Stokstad is about the fact that the demand of seafood is increasing just like the level of carbon dioxide emitted in the atmosphere and the oceans. Crustaceans, shrimp and lobsters are in constant demand for seafood restaurants, grocery stores and markets. The economy is doing well for this part, but it is not the same situation for the aquatic species and for the health of our planet.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by tatyana.borshchyov on April 30, 2018
According to the article “Future fisheries can expect $10 billion revenue loss due to climate change” climate change has an influence on many high points. Global fisheries stand to lose approximately $10 billion of their annual revenue by 2050 if climate change continues unchecked, and countries that are most dependent on fisheries for food will be the hardest hit, finds new UBC research. A vast percentage of the globe is consuming fish everyday. Once again, if we will not control our consumption, with the help of the climate change, there are major chances more species will be instinct.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by tatyana.borshchyov on April 30, 2018
According to the article “Even small changes within an ecosystem can have detrimental effects”, the relationships between all species may lead to the collapse of the entire ecosystem, if there is a poor connection. One of the research was based on Acacia tree from East Africa Savanna and the interaction with ants that inhabit them.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Beatrice Manning on April 29, 2018
In the article “Sharks at risk of extinction from overfishing, say scientists.” I realized that over fishing was a big issue to many species. In Asia, sharks are fish for their fins to make a shark fin soup. When they fish the sharks, they cut their fins and they put the rest of the dead shark back in the water. The problem is that more than 100 millions of sharks are fished each years and sharks take a lot of time to reproduce and they take time to be full developed. Because of overfishing we became their #1 predators.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Nicholastank2 on April 27, 2018
Asutralia has one of the world largest reserve marine zones in the world (Which means they are not allowed to be used for fishing at all) This will have a huge impact on the species as these environment have never faced such high levels of human activity. The reason for opening up all of this new fishing area is in an attempt to help local fishing economies and help employment. But doing this is threating a whole bunch of marine life that we haven’t even seen or documented. But the scirenticfic community and environmentalist are fighting to save these zones.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Dleneveu on April 27, 2018
In the article "Fishing problems: poor fisheries management," it explains the problems that are going on in oceans and fisheries and what their main causes and affects are. Oceans are also threatened by marine plastic pollution and each year, an estimated 8 million tons of plastic enter the oceans, with microplastics becoming part of the food chain. Scientists estimate that without urgent action, there could be more plastic than fish in the ocean by 2050.  While complex, the issue of ocean plastic waste is a solvable challenge.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Dleneveu on April 27, 2018
In the article "Evaluation of climate models using paleoclimactic data" it explains how in this period it is the warmest periord in modern civilization, and this trend is expected to continue over time. The climate over the last few years have been record breaking, the last 3 years have been the warmest years on record for the globe. Evidece has shown that it is most likely due to human activities, such as emissions of greenhouse gases. They have susposedly been the number one cause of climate arding since the mid 20th century.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by audreyannlemieux on April 27, 2018
In this article, “Getting Serious about Overfishing” by the Economist, it is implied that our oceans are in more trouble than they have ever been. According to the article, we consume the most fish we have ever consumed. It is shown that in a study conducted in 2013, 32% of the world’s fish stocks were being exploited beyond their sustainable limit which is a lot and this is an increase of 10% since the 1970s. Although we overfish, other problems which affect the oceans are pollution and fertilizer run-off which causes big damage to the fish since it ruins their ecosystems.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by beatricegiguere on April 23, 2018
The present article is exploring 7 issues that our oceans are facing. It is important to raise awareness about the destructive impacts humans have on them. It also states that we use all the good resources it gives us and we use it as a dump afterwards by dropping all our waste in it. The first problem humans cause is overfishing. We do not think about all the other species that are killed while fishing in the ocean with our big nets, causing troubles in the aquatic life.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by krysisidore on April 23, 2018
This article is written by Deborah Cramer and has as a goal to explain to the readers the negative effects fishermen have on Right whales when they leave their fishing nets laying anywhere around in the oceans. The effects dealt on the Right whales are critical injuries that can lead to possible death, decline in the Right whale population, decrease in Right whale infants and negative psychological effects. Deborah uses a lot of statistics to explain her main point in her article.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Simon-Karl on April 20, 2018
The objective of the Pacific North Coast Integrated Management Areas (PNCIMA)’s article is to raise awareness to the public about the effects of pollution. In the article, the researchers talks about the way the contaminants enters the animals and plants. It also describes the type of contaminants. It reveals the correlation between the contaminants and the death of many animals who was in contact with those contaminants, it finishes with a positive note by enumerating the laws and projects that where made in order to restrain the level of contamination in water.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by harshm on April 20, 2018
It is said that humankind’s population will increase by 2 billion, which will require us to increase our actual production of food by 50% to 70% to feed everyone on the planet. With that said, we must consider that south America is one of the most resourceful areas on the planet, offering agriculture, meat production, water and forests for the world to trade with. Yet, climatologist claim that due to the upcoming waves of climate changes in south America, 90% of the land will be affected and have possibilities of drought.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by danchelariu on April 20, 2018
In the article "Sustainable seafood farms can help Asia's oceans" by Mata Press Service, the main purpose is to show how overfishing and destructive fishing in Southeast Asia puts its sustained existence at risk, despite the diversity of the marine ecosystem. The resource base of fisheries is at a medium to high risk of overfishing in the future, as the UN reports the extinction of exploitable fish stocks by year 2048 which is an economical consequence that also affects seafood production and needs.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by A.B on April 20, 2018
  Summary 4(Oceans and Fisheries/Agriculture)  

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A.B
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3 weeks 1 day ago

The article you chose and your summary are very interesting, you did a nice work. There a many reasons on why Climate Change is always increasing, that our planet is warmer. It is interesting when you are saying that some of the studies predict that the planet will be warmer by 4 degrees by the end of the century, which is monstruous. It is sad because all problems have their solution, but in this case, it is maybe to late for help. The Earth is sick and the situation never improves. Climate Change has too much bad consequences. Melting of the glaciers, the large number of carbon dioxide present in the atmoshere, the death of many animals and humans, etc. Human activities take too much place on this planet, it mostly because of it that the Global Warming is present and that it affects a lot around it. I hope that with all the solutions that can be make (eating vegetarian, buy used clothes, take shorter showers, etc.) one day it will be better. But it can't change if not everybody on this planet is giving, learning and changing for the good cause.

Reply to: climate change
3 weeks 1 day ago

I chose this summary because it is unusual to see such a perspective on climate change.
We don’t usually associate climate change with the production of food, which is an interesting aspect when you come to think about it. It’s a totally different point of view from what we usually hear which is mostly about the quality of air and pollution. It’s astonishing knowing that countries who are already suffering from such food depletion will have even more trouble in the near future. According to the article that I’ve read “Climate Impacts on Agriculture and Food Supply”, it states that “climate change can disrupt food availability, reduce access to food as well as affect food quality”(EPA) which are distinguishing factors that are severely impacted by extreme weathers. Developing countries are the most at risk due to the fact that they don’t have the resources or equipment needed to manage crops that are supposed to sustain their villages. Everything becomes interrelated when it comes to food since it is a disturbance that occurs globally because of the import-exports that happen between continents.

Source:https://19january2017snapshot.epa.gov/climate-impacts/climate-impacts-ag...

Reply to: Ocean Management
3 weeks 1 day ago

I chose to comment on this summary since I find this issue affects me on a more personal level. Growing up, I used to live in Israel and the beach was 15 min away from our house. We used to take walk by the ocean every other day. And once in the ocean there is the biggest verity of fishes. I loved it! However, knowing that today, each year, there is around “8 million tons of plastic enter the oceans” is horrifying. Considering it involves not only the fish we are consuming but also the rest of the ocean. We must make sure to lower the percentage of plastic in the ocean by at least 20%.

University of British Columbia. (2016, September 7). Future fisheries can expect $10 billion revenue loss due to climate change. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2018 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/09/160907095451.htm

3 weeks 1 day ago

I chose to comment on your summary because I am very sensitive to climate change causing so many damages to the oceans and the fisheries. Fisheries are affected by ocean acidification, plastic and toxic pollution, overfishing. Climate change affects all of us, as occupants of the planet Earth. Flooding and storms show us just exactly how much weather and climate can affect our lives. We have nowhere to go for now and we have no choice than to preserve what we still have in order to survive. There is a reason to believe that some unknown amount of warming could cause a catastrophic release of methane currently locked in methane clathrates on the ocean bottom, greatly accelerating warming. The Oceans are slowly dying which in itself is a life ending event. Scientists have recently calculated that global warming has a significant probability of causing the mass extinction of the phytoplankton in the ocean that provides about 70% of the oxygen on earth. If this happens, it will lead to the extinction of all animal life on Earth, including humans. I am outraged that state fisheries management of basic human pollution of marine inshore habitat and loss of this habitat has been ignored in order to protect special fisheries interests. General overfishing of depleted fish stocks and shrimping bycatch are blatant abuses happening on fisheries.

https://www.newsecuritybeat.org/2017/02/ocean-fish-stocks-on-verge-colla...

3 weeks 2 days ago

I chose this article because of the rich detailing of the concerning issue. One piece of information that never accrued to me, is that our pollution will increase by a minimum of 6 billion by the end of this century. Estimating the fact that our resources are coming to an end, additionally, we will face issue that will slow the productivity of our resources. This may be the recipe to a disaster. Moreover, “Emissions, climate change, unemployment and regional instability due to resource insecurity are also consequences of population growth.” These aspects are the main issue seen in any subject cover at Planetary Challenge course. We must take seriously the sign given to us and start taking action where we can. For example, around 150 million Americans use nonrenewable ground water everyday (Population Growth Puts Dent in Natural Resources, 2008), instead of using filtering water, or uncleansed water in our bathroom.

Washington University in St. Louis. (2008, October 10). Population Growth Puts Dent in Natural Resources. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 23, 2018 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081008091127.htm

3 weeks 2 days ago

I found Simon-Karl’s summary very interesting, due to the fact that he is touching the main points of the ecosystem changes and their affect. When the author mentions that the climate change has negative affects on the food chain of ecosystem, I directly related this content to the article I was readying about. It proves how any catastrophe up coming in our century is bringing a chain of other issues with it. As for example, cutting down the Acacia tress, will affect ants that are living in it, considering that the ants have a big impact on the food chain. (“Even small changes within an ecosystem…”, 2018) Thus, the food chain may be directly related to our population in the long-term. Once again, climate change is a part of that issue chain. “It happens when an ecosystem can’t bounce back from a stressor. For example, great drought may evaporate all the water and it will not return afterwards.” Those are high point that the population should be focusing on.

Binghamton University. (2018, February 1). Even small changes within an ecosystem can have detrimental effects: Interactions between small organisms are 'keystone' interactions that scale up to shape whole ecosystems. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 15, 2018 from https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/02/180201173308.htm

Reply to: Climate Change
3 weeks 2 days ago

Due to the summary I chose, the author mention that “the last 3 years have been the warmest years on record for the globe.” However, I would have to argue against it, since many researches have proved how climate been unstable through the existence of the planet earth. And around the year 12 000 B.C. that the climate has stabilized and the development of the human kind had begun. In other words, they were major climate changes in the past centuries, to be exact a change of 2°C higher (“Climate change could raise food insecurity risk”, 2018) Yet, we must consider he whole history when mentioned the record of the globe. Overall, the content was really interesting, and was supporting the fact that climate change is bringing heavy changes to the future generation.

University of Exeter. (2018, April 2). Climate change could raise food insecurity risk. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 5, 2018 from https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/04/180402085901.htm

Reply to: Shark overfishing
3 weeks 2 days ago

Interesting summary, good job! I decided to comment this summary because this issue affects me particularly. Most of people are afraid of sharks because of the danger the represents. But they are not more dangerous than other species. It makes me very sad because a lot of them are killed for many reasons and are becoming endangered. I find interesting the part when you said that approximately 100 millions of sharks are fished each year, it is monstrous. And when we think of the time the make to reproduce themselves, it is even more monstrous. Sharks are fished all around the globe. I found an interesting map that shows where sharks are mostly fished around the world. It is fascinating because with it, we can see where most of fishermen should stopped for improving the situation and help the sharks to live longer.

https://www.futuretimeline.net/blog/2014/01/24-3.htm

Reply to: Ecosystems change
3 weeks 3 days ago

When reading your summary, the statement that human beings play a major role in negative impacts of worldwide ecosystems captured my interest, due to the over exploitation of wildlife and natural vegetation as you have mentioned, which creates a direct conflict between the humans and the ecosystems that I totally agree on being an important issue linked with us as human beings. There are in fact many factors to animal extinctions, but it is accurate to say that most of those factors are associated with human actions upon our own ecosystems such as pollution, abuse of resources the industry and many others. As for the fact that only creatures domesticated by humans will thrive in the future, I understand the claim, but we never know exactly how our ecosystems will develop to be in the future and which specific species will thrive. Also, I agree with the fact that our ecosystems are very fragile and vulnerable and the impacts of global warming on the future of our planet are an important issue.

3 weeks 3 days ago

After reading the summary, I decide to respond to it due to the worldwide problematic of climate change described by global warming and the occurrence of natural disasters, which is interesting to me since the issue has become larger over the years as we realized that solutions should be implemented and the case should be taken in consideration and also studied through the causes the consequences, as you have mentioned. I agree that in 50 years, the annual amount of carbon dioxide that was released in the air has increased importantly, having direct impacts on the globe's climate such as an increase in water retention within the atmosphere, which gives us a hint on one major cause of the issue. It is right that governments spend a lot of money on repairing the natural disaster's damages and so in my opinion, a lot of money should also be invested in the solutions and preventing the future dangers of global warming and global emissions, although it would not happen as fast as we imagine. In order to make an effective change with this issue, every individual should be aware of the impacts of pollution (which is also a big cause of climate change) and should adhere to reduce their pollution habits that slowly stack up and speeds up the climate change. Also, the reference of wealth being the mood to the planet's personality is totally accurate and well thought.

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