GEO 702 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Water Scarcity, Geopolitics, Neoliberalism

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8 May 2019
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GEO 702 Lecture Notes
Lecture 1:
- Class will start at 9:30 all the time
- Can attend the other section's lectures or write exams then
- If you miss half a class, you miss 2 weeks worth of material
- Do the readings but it's ok if u can't get them all done, as they just cover what she goes
over what's in the lectures
- Don't be afraid to have discussion or ask questions or repeat
- The two term tests will be multiple choice and short answer (explain your answer) a
little blurb will get 1.5 hrs
- For the second term test we will be tested on the stuff we learn in the morning
- Can work with a team to do research for the research part of the final exam
- Can write whatever we want on the cheat sheet
- People are successful in this course
- Tests: 30, 30, 40
- We don't need to do the recommended readings !
- The final exam:
o Takes care of the final exam
o It also takes care of the "writing component"
o So we need to bring in research (we bring in a cheat sheet about our research
and write it as an exam)
o Regular paper can put one side with cheat notes and then the other side you
put a list of resources (she uses this to partially evaluate us)
- The U.S. will run out of water in the next 10-15 years
- Geo-politically there are issues
- It's about water
o Water scarcity
- We can't manage nature it is way too complex
- Know the concepts not the numbers
Course themes:
- We have to help the eco-system
- Environmental sustainability
- "thinking globally, and acting locally"
- We need global AND local solutions
- Supporting the UN is incredibly important we should support the world
- One global ecosystem
- Natural resource consumption and technological change
- Human attitudes and values: we need to listen to others and listen to their opinions
- Polluters and stakeholders
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- Managing natural resources and managing nature
- Maintaining biological diversity
- Appropriate and redemptive technologies
- We use so many pesticides on our foods, and it's killing our ecosystems and biodiversity
- Ecological monitoring is always one of the first things to be cut
- You need to be aware of what you're doing in terms of your carbon footprint
Natural resources:
- "Resources are NOT, they BECOME; they are not static but expand
and contract in response to human needs and human actions" (Zimmerman 1951:15)
- Natural resources are considered renewable (flow) or non-renewable (stock)
- Natural resources are defined in terms of:
o Human perceptions, wants and needs
o Technological skills
o Location and accessibility
o Legal limits such as property rights and environmental laws
o Financial and institutional arrangements
o Political, cultural and religious customs
Some basic ecological principles:
- An ecosystem:
o The way we understand the way the environment works !!!
o An ecosystem can be anything from a puddle to the whole world and how you
define those borders
o It can be anything as long as you identify what that is
o Ecosystems have to have structure structure is really important to ecosystems
o A term which describes discrete unit that consists of living and non-living parts,
interacting to form a stable system
o Fundamental concepts include:
Energy flows via food webs
Applications at all geographical scales
The inclusion of human/land relationships
o We can figure out the outline of water because of hydrological??
o Everything on the green (land) aka fertilizers are going to end up in the great
lakes
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