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EESA06H3 (566)
Nick Eyles (498)
Lecture 11

Lecture 11

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Environmental Science
Nick Eyles

EESA LECTURE 11 Environmental geoscience is really all about protecting human society from natural hazards. Urban development and urban sprawl are also big issues, we have these cities with 20-30 million people, they are all creating waste, we have to get power to all of them. We have an urban shadow which is an economic influence in that city. Ex. Toronto needs cement, to have cement you need gravel, they have run out of their own and must get it from Manatoulin Island. What is the main issue with using lakes and ponds as drinking water? Many of them are already polluted or are very susceptible to pollution. Ground water that comes up through fractured rocks, to understand the basic resource you need to know how much and where it is, use basic geological forces to figure this out. Water sheds are impacted by urban development, rivers are what we call hardened. Ex. Highland creek in the early days it was a meandering river, big bends. With urbanization less water goesinto the ground, so the discharge in the water becomes much more flashy it goesup and down. What once was a meandering river now wants to straighten itself, lot of erosion and flooding. Same for all of the creeks in urban areas. Wastes: a lot of different sources of wastes have to be moved around and stored properly. Must be put in landfills, holes in ground that you put the waste in. classically out of sight out of mind. When it rains the water goesthrough the garbage and produces something called leachate. Leachate moves out from the bottom of the pit as a plume, like smoke wafting away and the shape of these plumes is exactly the same, must look at the shape and velocity that they are moving. Modern landfills have to have thick liners to collect the leachate, but there are about 1200 old landfills out there (southern Ontario) that dont have this. Remediation of contaminated sites: theres a lot of opposition now to building on farmland, the way the city has developed now is just to develop green fields but this is no good. If you contaminate the ground water underneath then youre taking valuable farm areas out of the equation for the next hundred years. People are no cleaning up ground field sites, sites that were used about 50-100 years ago, tear down the building and rebuild. Geology, chemistry, and biology are sometimes need to clean up these sites. Radon gas is a product of the breakdown of uranium. Weve talked about this in the breakdown from uranium to lead. Its colourless, odourless, invisible gas; but it does breakdown into things like polonium which are solid people breathe that in and its
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