Wint14 Neal Driscoll’s Final (All midterm and final review Q’s included)

Question Answer
What is thermohaline circulation? Ocean circulation caused by density gradients which are created by surface heat, and freshwater fluxes.
How is thermohaline circulation an important regulator of earths temperature. Distributes and regulates heat around the plant. (Warm water is transported around the earth)
What causes trade winds? (Often referred to as the easterlies) Coriolis Effect.
They are named from where they came from. (Easterlies from east to west vice versa)
What is the theory of plate tectonics? That the earth is made up of 12 large plates that drift on top of magma.
What are three types of plate boundaries? 1) Divergent (Spreading) 2) Convergent (Subduction) 3) Transform (Sliding)
What is an artesian well? Water that lies beneath the earths surface that will naturally rise upwards due to artesian pressure.
What are two problems associated with pumping out ground water? 1) Shortage of water leads to higher water prices
2) Possible contaminants in our water

3) Excessive pumping leads to dying of wells, lakes, rivers, and worsening quality of water

What is the Orographic Effect? When an air mass meets a mountain and quickly travels upwards causing it to cool rapidly and causes precipitation.
What is El Nino? (Explain in terms of Oceanic and atmospheric circulation) El Nino is an irregular series of climatic changes that affects the equatorial Pacific region.

When the trade winds relax and warm water sloshes back against the west. This results in higher moisture and precipitation.

What is the percentage of ground water out of usable fresh water? 29.9%
What are two immediate concerns regarding groundwater? 1) Ground Sinking
2) Contamination of water
3) Depleting supply
What is fusion? When two or more nuclei form together to make a heavier single atom. (Causes starlight, sunlight)
How would you describe fusion in terms of atomic number and weight using H and He? H & He:
4 atoms of Hydrogen (Atomic #1 Weight 1 for each) fuse together to make Helium (Atomic #2 Weight 4) Emits 2 pairs of positrons and electrons to achieve this.
What is the main difference between elemental abundance in the solar system vs elemental abundance in the earth system? H and He are less abundant in the Earth System.
What is the Big Bang Theory? The theory that the universe was created by high density and temperature which caused an explosion to occur in which all matter was hurled in every direction.
What data supports the Big Bang Theory? The Red Shift.
Why are scientists interested in finding water on planets? If there is water then the planet can support life.
What are the eight planets and their compositions? Stony: Mercury, Venus, Mars, Earth (Magnesium, Iron, Silicon, Oxygen
Gas: Jupiter, Uranus, Saturn, Neptune ( Hydrogen, Helium, Water)
What formed the Earth's magnetic field and why is it important in early Earth history? The iron catastrophe; Important because it protected the earth from solar winds.
How did the Earths Atmosphere evolve and what were the four most common gases? 1)Primordial gases
2)Volcano Venting
3)Steady additions from volcanic activity
4)Addition of oxygen by plant/bacterial life

Common gases: Methane, Carbon Dioxide, Carbon Monoxide, Nitrogen

What are two lines of evidence for water on Mars? 1) Frozen Ice Caps
2) Ripple marks and salt deposits

(Basically geographical features that are similar to the Earths that point to erosion activity)

What is an Ionic bond and What is a Covalent bond? (Provide examples) An Ionic bond is the stealing of electrons (NaCl) while covalent bonds are the sharing of electrons (H2O)
What is a hydrogen bond and how does it compare to other bonds? Molecular bonds due to polar nature. (Lower strength than covalent and ionic but higher than Van Der Waals)
What is the composition in Earth's crust, mantle, and core? Crust: Granite and Basalt
Mantle: Silicate rocks rich in iron and magnesium
Core: Iron and Nickel
What is latent heat and sensible heat? Latent Heat: Amount of heat required to change phases
Sensible Heat: Amount of heat required to change temperature within the same phase
How does the density of water change in terms of temperature and what makes water so unique? Water is at its highest density at 4 degrees celsius. Decreases in density if heated or cooled.

Unique: Its solid phase is less dense than its liquid phase.

What is the water cycle? (indicate relative amounts transferred from different sources and sinks) Evaporation (Transpiration), Condensation, Precipitation, Infiltration (Percolation)

Evaporation: 90% from ocean and 10% from plant transpiration
Precipitation: 90% to Oceans 10% to Land

How does tectonic deformation affect circulation? It can affect gateways for circulation: Builds mountains, global distribution of oceans, earthquakes can divert streams
What are the two major types of rivers and what do they tell you about climate? Meandering River: Steady rainfall, surrounded by vegetation.

Braided Rivers: Found in mountains and glacier regions, alpine regions. Sporadic precipitation.

Can you describe Hadely cells and what it is driven by? Hadleys are controlled by temperature. Air moves towards the equator rises and and falls away from the equator
Can you describe Ferrel cells and what it is driven by? Ferrels are driven by Hadley and Polar cell. Air rises and moves towards the Tropics and then falls and returns to 30 degrees latitude.
Can you describe Polar cells and what it is driven by? Polars are driven by the Ferrel Cell. Air rises towards the tropics and then moves and falls towards the poles.
What is atmospheric circulation? Large scale movement of air.
What is Pacific Decadal Oscillation? Pacific Decadal Oscillation is a climate phenomenon that occurs over the Pacific Ocean.

How does PDO impact climate? Negative/Cold: High pressure, gradient moves in a clockwise flow. Higher surface water temp (warm water).

Positive/Warm: Low pressure, gradient moves counter clockwise. Lower surface water temp (cold water).

How does PDO impact rainfall in the western US? Negative/Cold: Dry weather

Positive/Warm: Wet weather

What is albedo and how does it affect sea ice and glaciers? Albedo is the reflecting power of a surface or the amount of light reflected.

Dirty Ice causes lower albedo and more melting.

What is ocean acidification and why is it a concern? The decrease in pH of the ocean due to intake of Carbon Dioxide. Affects the marine life and creatures with shells which affects other species. Also destroys coral reefs.
What is required to grow an ice sheet? Cold weather and built up snow piles that creates pressure to compress older layers.
What are two ways Sierra snow-pack affects river discharge? 1)Snow gradually melts and causes a delay of water release which keeps rivers high all through summer
2)Increases turbidity(cloudiness) of water and erosion.
What is the thermocline and how does it differ from the mixed layer? A very depth to temperature sensitive layer of water in between deep and mixed layers.

Mixed layer is more uniform in salinity and temperature.

What is Ekman Transport? (Describe total water transport direction in reference to wind direction and surface water transport direction) (How does it cause coastal upwelling) The transport in surface water.

Surface water flows 45 degree angle to the wind
90 deg. to the right in North Hem
90 deg. to the left in South Hem

Wind blows surface water away from coast allowing nutrient rich water to rise and replace it

What are ocean gyres and how do they form? A hill of water caused by wind circulation and the coriolis effect.
What causes lakes to overturn at high latitudes? Why is lake overturn important? In fall cooling lowers the density of surface water, once surface and deep water reaches similar densities it can overturn. Similarly with spring.

Allows oxygen and nutrients at the bottom of the lake to rise to the surface.

What processes control lake clarity? Preventing pollution, circulation, density, and nutrient/oxygen sat_flash_1.
What causes tides? The gravitational force of the sun & the moon as well as the centrifugal force from the earth.
What are the spring tides? Spring Tides: When the moon sun and earth align
(tidal bulging occurs horizontally (see diagram))
What are the neap tides? Neap Tides: When the moon is perpendicular to the positions of the sun and the earth.
(Tidal bulging occurs towards and away from the moons position (see diagram))
What are three different types of tides? What causes semi-diurnal tides? Diurnal – daily tides
Semidiurnal – 2 times a day
Mixed Semidiurnal- caused by 1 high tide, 1 low tide, and two in between tides.

All caused by Centrifugal force and gravity.

What are 3 processes that control sea level fluctuations? (explain them) Thermal Expansion: Water temp increases and water expands
Storage of water in ice and glaciers: Once melted sea level can rise
Changes in rate of sea floor spreading: can create mountain life structures on the sea floor that displaces water
What is the little ice age and what 3 mechanisms cause cooling? Cooling period of the earth 1550-1850

1)Low sunsport occurrences
2)Low carbon dioxide which leads to climatic cooling
3)More volcanic eruptions

What is the difference between climate and weather? Climate is long term average weather while weather is only occurrences from hour to hour
How does urbanization affect runoff? Urbanization minimizes lag between precipitation and discharge back into the ocean.
What are the urban sources of pollution? Chemicals like fertilizers
Animal Waste
Raw Sewage
What is the medieval warm period and what may have caused it? Warming period of the earth from 950 A.D.-1250 A.D. in North Atlantic and continental Europe.
Possibly caused by increase in solar radiation and decrease in volcanic activity.
Can volcanic eruptions affect climate? How? Eruptions release mixtures of gases and particles which reflect light and causes cooling.
How might snow pack affect river discharge? (Think of eel vs owen) Eel- Not affected by snow pack: More discharge in fall-winter

Owens- Affected by snow pack: More discharge in spring-summer

Why is the Colorado River discharge low for its drainage area? What are two problems facing San Diego with regard to their water supply from the Colorado River? Colorado River assists 30 million people, 7 states with modest flow and does not make it to the gulf.

1)Under severe stress causing decreasing water supply
2)Division of water rights in Colorado.

Why is California termed a "Virtual Watershed"? California brings 90% water from outside regions. (Uses more water than region produces means increase in importing water)
What is the Central Valley Project? The movement of water from Central Valley to SoCal (Managed through sierra snow-pack)85% for agricultural use
What is the State Water Project? Distributes water to watershed areas, controls spring flooding (70% water for urban and industrial, 30% agriculture)
What is the Colorado River Delivery Systems? Water for more than 24 million people. Used for municipal and industrial uses.
Why is California concerned about the Salton Sea? There is no outlet on the lake, volume is decreasing because of agriculture and there is evaporation, increasing salinity threatening eco system.
What are two alternative sources of water to help meet future demands? Desalination
Ground and Surface water
Why is there such debate over dams? What are 2 pros and 2 cons for building dams? Raise or Raze(Destroy)
Pros: Water and flood control
Cons: Alters environment downstream (extinction epicenters), sedimentation behind dams, seepage and evaporation
What are the pros and cons of desalination? Pros: Makes clean water 50 million liters of clean water per day
Cons: Very Costly and increases green house gas emissions
What are the two global hot spots for water and what problems do they encounter? China:Increases population growth exceeds the amount of water possible
Israel: Trying to resort to desalination due to scarcity of water (sharing of River of Jordan and a water aquifer in poor condition)
List four ways you could help conserve and estimate water conserved. 1)Flush Less (5 gallons saved per time you dont flush)
2)Turn off the faucet when you brush your teeth (.75 gallons saved)
3)Switch to low flow appliances (appxt 4-25 gallons saved each time appliance is used)
4)Wash dishes by hand (saves appxt 5 gallo