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GPHY 102 - Exhaustive Exam Bank Short Answer Questions Compilation (2006 - 2014)

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GPHY 102
Paul M Treitz

Part G: SHORT ANWERS (55 in total) Can use examples and illustrations when applicable. 1. In four sentences or less, describe why maps of the Earth’s major biomes closely resemble maps of the Earth’s major climate regions? (2 points) 2. Identify two of the three variations in the Earth’s orbit associated with Milankovitch Cycling. Briefly describe how each of the variations would contribute to planetary-scale glaciations. (4 points) 3. Describe the two main factors that control the morphology of stream channels (2 points) 4. Coastal temperate rainforests occur along the west coast of NA from southern Alaska to northern California. Use your knowledge of the variables that influence gloval scale climate and regional weather patterns, your knowledge of the physiography of western NA, as well as your knowledge of the variables which influence the distribution of species, to explain the existence of this biome subtype. 5. Describe how the concept of continental drift and the theory of plate tectonics have aided in the growh of historical biogeography 6. Describe the rock cycle, including the processes of transformation and the various energy sources that power the cycle. 7. Temperature and precipitation are the two most important variables controlling the distribution of plants worldwide. Why then is there a relationship between the distribution of the world’s major biomes and seasonal and annual insolation regimes? (2) 8. Describe the difference between shield volcanoes and stratovolcanoes including their eruptive properties (4). 9. Identify and describe the primaray atmospheric “effect” that is generally accepted as giving rise to a global temperature rise. Explain how this phenomenon operates to increase the temperature of the atmosphere. Be su re to explain the role of carbon cycling in this process (3 marks) 10. Differentiate between sensible and latent heat. Explain how latent heat release aids in the distribution of energy throughout the earth system (3 marks) 11. Compare and contrast environmental lapse rate, dry adiabatic lapse rate and wet adiabatic lapse rate (3 marks) 12. Define the term “radiation balance”. Explain how this balance is chieved using the diagram below depicting the global Energy Budget. (3 marks) 13. Examine the climograph below for a city in NA. Describe the type of climate for which this climograph is representative. Suggest where in NA this city might occur and explain why. (3) 14. Describe the soil class that typically forms in the boreal forest. Include the relationship of this soil to climate and vegetation (i.e. what processes give rise to this soil type?) (3) 15. Explain the concept of “bioclimatic frontiers” and how climatic factors can act to limit the distribution of plant and animal species. Use an example to illustrate your answer. (3) 16:. Explain the term succession within an ecological and plant community context. Use an example of primary OR secondary succession to support your answer (3) 17. Equilibrium with respect to a river is defined as (3) 18. With respect to continental glaciation, isostatic adjustment refers to (3) 19. A hydrograph is… One example of how it may be used to guide the relation of human activities to the environment is (3) 20. An aquifer is One example of an earth material that forms a good aquifer is (3) 21. Thermokarst refers to It is likely to develop more extensively in a globally warming environment because (3) 22. The relation between the arrival of the first humans in NA and the occurrence of continental glaciation is probably the following (3): 23. A metamorphic rock is formed in the following manner a physical region of Canada where hetamorphic rocks are common is (3): 24. Describe the difference between soil porosity and permeability. How does soil texture influence both of these properties? 25. Define a biome and a Biogeographical realm. How are these two concepts different from each other? Biogeographic realms are large spatial regions within which ecosystems share a broadly similar biological evolutionary history. Eight terrestrial biogeographic realms are typically recognized, corresponding roughly to continents. Although similar ecosystems (such as tropical moist forests) share similar processes and major vegetation types wherever they are found, their species composition varies markedly depending on the biogeographic realm in which they are found. Assessing biodi versity at the level of biogeographic realms is important because the realms display substantial variation in the extent of change, they face different drivers of change, and there may be differences in the options for mitigating or managing the drivers. T errestrial biogeographic realms reflect freshwater biodiversity patterns reasonably well, but marine biogeographic realms are poorly known and largely undefined (C4.2.1). 26. Define “Albedo”. Explain how a decrease in snow and ice cover in the arctic would affect albedo. Is this a positive or negative feedback with respect to climate change? 27. Identify and describe the three forces that affect wind direction and speed. Which of these forces is missing at high altitude giving rise to Geostrophic winds? 28. discuss the atmospheric conditions that give rise to a thunderstorm. Explain the flow of energy within a thunderstorm event. (3) 29. Identify and describe the nature of the soil class that typically forms in a tundra climate. Explain the rel
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