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Global Environmental Issues


Britannica Encyclopedia*

Multiple resources in one place.

Global Issues in Context*  Britannica Encyclopedia*

Global Issues in Context offers international viewpoints on a broad spectrum of global issues, topics, and current events. Featured are hundreds of continuously updated issue and country portals that bring together a variety of specially selected, highly relevant sources for analysis of social, political, military, economic, environmental, health, and cultural issues. Each of these gateway pages includes an overview, unique "perspectives" articles written by local experts, reference, periodical, primary source and statistical information. Rich multimedia - including podcasts, video, and interactive graphs - enhance each portal. Use Browse Issue

Science in Context*

Science in Context provides topic overviews, experiments, biographies, pictures and illustrations, as well as articles from over 200 magazines and academic journals and links to quality web sites. The database covers curriculum-related science topics, and offers teachers an easy-to-use tool to identify content directly correlated to state and national standards.

SIRS Issues Researcher

Outstanding research database covering a multitude of topics with included research and study tools included. Also, Top Ten Issues, That's Debatable, Today's News, and more.
Username: studentsnhs Password: sites

General websites

U.S. Department of State: Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs
Also link to Global Climate Change and to Environmental Health.

What is earth science? geology.com
Excellent website with terrific maps, graphs and photos.

Deforestation and Desertification

National Geographic Eye in the Sky Deforestation and Desertification
"The statistics paint a grim picture. According to the World Resources Institute, more than 80 percent of the Earth’s natural forests already have been destroyed."

Children of the Earth Deforestation: Causes, Important Facts, Environmental Facts, Prevention
A children's animated, colorful site that invites you to watch and participate. It's terrific.

National Geographic Environment: Deforestation
Examines how logging trees and unintentional deforestation effect the environment,
including climate change.

Kids Connected to Conservation and Culture - Deforestation
A blog that lists each step in deforestation. Scroll down for more information.

Google Deforestation Images
images: http://www.google.com/images?hl=en&q=deforestation+and+desertification+images&um=1&ie=UTF-8&source=univ&sa=X&ei=tnaTTcqGHuew0QGqvoHNBw&ved=0CCMQsAQ
Photos and charts that you won't forget. Remember to check the copyright if you want to
use an image in your presentation.

Global Warming

National Geographic What Is Global Warming? The Planet Is Heating Up - and Fast
From National Geographic an interactive website examines this international issue.

New York TImes Science: Global Warming
Updated on January 13, 2011 this topic is addressed from many angles, most specifically, politics and policy. Links to relevant blogs. Look at the Related Topics section, too.

Health Complications due to Exposure to Various Pollutants

Massachusetts Archives: PCB Exposure Assessment in Norwood, 1984
The original report. If you look at the local newspapers from back then, people wrote in letters describing how as children they had played on those now designated PCB sites.

Final Closeout Report: Norwood PCBs Superfund Site
The final Environmental Protection Agency report. If you scroll down,
you will find the surface and subsurface levels of PCBs.

Homefacts: Norwood Environmental Hazards
Pinpoints the neighborhoods with environmental hazards.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency: Waste Site Cleanup & Reuse in New England:
Description of the Norwood site, the contaminants, interactive map.

Ozone Depletion

National Geographic: Ozone Depletion: Losing Earth's Protective Covering
Facts, numbers, and explanation. Be sure to check out the scroll menu under Environment Topics

Google Ozone Depletion Images 
Charts. graphs, depictions. Most are copyrighted which means you need to request permission
to use in your presentations. Easy enough to do.

Water Pollution

City of Oceanside: Clean Water Program
Funny characters not withstanding, lots of excellent information.

Additional Websites from the Destiny Catalog

Global Warming 

Global Warming refers to the warming/heating of the planet Earth. This of course, begins with the sun. Absorption of some of the heat and solar energy is what makes life on Earth possible. However, human activity is changing our atmosphere. Read about global warming, climate change, carbon dioxide, and other greenhouse gases to learn about global warming.

Topic: Global warming

URL: http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov
Librarian's note: Maps are excellent.

A Paleo Perspective on Global Warming 

Paleoclimatology may sound like is has something to do with the dinosaurs, but it is actually the study of the weather and how it affects our planet. On this brief web site sponsored by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, you can read some details of global warming in the twentieth century. Follow the N.O.A.A. link to see more of what this administration is researching, and how it can affect our planet and our lives.

Topic: Global warming, Paleoclimatology

URL: http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov
Librarian's note: The links are key. Check out the charts.

Airborne Pollutants and Asthma 

Air pollution has been the cause of many health issues, and has worsened many afflictions that it did not cause. Asthma is one of the diseases that was not caused by air pollution but has certainly been affected by it. On this web site you can read about asthma and how this disease has changed over the years in the face of air pollution. There are many links here that you can follow if you would like more asthma related information.

Topic: Asthma, Pollutants

URL: http://www.agius.com


Global Warming to Change Day's Length 

Global warming could change the length of a day. Rising seawater caused by global warming would likely pool at the North Pole, which would bring the mass of Earth closer to its axis. Like a figure skater who pulls in her arms, it would cause the Earth to spin faster. However, a warmer atmosphere could also create more powerful winds that could slow the Earth's rotation. Follow links to find out how moon mechanics or earthquakes could affect the length of a day.

Topic: Day, Global warming

URL: http://www.livescience.com

The Great Smog of London:

London has had a reputation for fog and mist throughout history, but in 1952 a deadly smog killed thousands. Read about the dense, smoky fog that brought the city to a standstill. Shrouded in smog caused by burning coal, vehicles and public places were abandoned, schools were closed, and people died of respiratory problems. Discover the factors that brought the smog to such high levels, and find out what public officials did to prevent it from happening again.

Topic: Air pollution, Pollution control industry, Public health, Smog

URL: http://news.bbc.co.uk


Tox Town 

Tox Town is a place where you can learn about toxic chemicals and other environmental health risks that you may find in everyday places. The different places you can visit are a town, a city, the U.S.-Mexico border, farm or port. At each location you will learn which chemicals and health risks might be there. Discover the health and environmental concerns in drinking water, factories, homes, offices, landfills and many other places. Specific information is provided about many chemicals and an A to Z index allows you to locate a chemical within the site.

Topic: Environmental health, Toxins

URL: http://toxtown.nlm.nih.gov



Are you concerned about the effects that the tons of garbage created by humans will have on the environment? The Environmental Literacy Council has created this web site to inform people about landfills and what their uses are. Here you will be able to discover the history behind landfills, how they are constructed, and what actually gets put into landfills. There are also some great links here for you if you would like more landfill information as well.

Topic: Fills (Earthwork), Landfills

URL: http://www.enviroliteracy.org


O.C. Ocean Pollution Costs Millions in Health Care 

"Thanks to pollution, a day at the beach can be an expensive affair. A study of two California beaches indicates that illnesses associated with swimming in contaminated waters cost the public more than $3 million annually." This article presented by Scientific America.com summarizes the impact on the health care system that marine pollution has. The scientific report cited is summarized. "According to the report, the two main sources of pollution for the California beaches are urban runoff and sewage treatment."

Topic: Marine pollution

URL: http://www.scientificamerican.com


Solid Waste Landfills 

Waste disposal is getting to be a big issue in America, as so many people now live here and therefore generate garbage. Do you know where the landfills that hold all of your garbage can be found? On this web site created by the Environmental Protection Agency, you can get the inside scoop on landfills. You will see why they are necessary, what regulations surround them, and what actions can be taken if there is a problem with a landfill.

Topic: Fills (Earthwork), Landfills

URL: http://www.epa.gov


Fact Sheet: Ventilation and Air Quality in Offices 

The EPA has published an article on the ventilation and air quality in offices. The interactive table of contents allows visitors to quickly view the topics covered in the article and access selected topics just as fast. The article addresses the sources of indoor air pollution, health problems related to poor ventilation, controlling indoor air pollution, ventilation standards, system problems and solutions, designs, maintenance, air cleaners, and economic considerations of air quality. Links to many related articles are easily accessible as well.

Topic: Air quality--Standards, Ventilation

URL: http://www.epa.gov


Biodegradable Definition 

Biodegradable products help the environment, because they break down into natural materials, such as soil enrichments and water. The actual practce of biodegrading, and its use in product labelling, is more complicated. This article begins with a simple explanation of how biodegrading works. Learn how some products biodegrade more efficiently than others, for reasons ranging from synthetic ingredients to landfill conditions. Then, learn the natural biodegrading rates of common products, from orange peels (6 months) to glass bottles (1 million years).

Topic: Biodegradable products

URL: http://www.cafecupsonline.com


Understanding: Water Quality 

Water quality problems affect our lakes and streams. This web site from Water on the Web will help you understand the principle types of water quality problems. Non-point pollution is explained. Find out about water quality parameters in both lakes and streams. You will learn why dissolved oxygen is important, and see what pollutants to do the concentrations of dissolved oxygen. Temperature and pH are also discussed. Get definitions for important terms by moving your curser over them.

Topic: Lakes, Pollutants, Water quality

URL: http://waterontheweb.org


Our Imprint Deepens as Consumption Accelerates 

More than any other species, humans have changed the face of the Earth. Over 80% of the Earth's surface has been transformed by humans in the last 10,000 years and the pace of human impact in accelerating with rising populations and expanding industries. No place on Earth is safe from human impact as air and water pollution reach around the world. View a map that depicts where human impact has affected our planet the most. Take a look at a chart that depicts how much forest, grazing land, and cropland is needed to sustain existing resource consumption levels.

Topic: Economic development--Environmental aspects, Human influence on nature, Nature--Effect of human beings on

URL: http://www.nationalgeographic.com


Troubled Waters 

From Canada's Saint Lawrence River to Australia's Great Barrier Reef, some species are disappearing while others are taking over. Is there something amiss with the waters of earth? From marshes and ponds to the sea, aquatic ecosystems are changing. The industrial products and chemicals that have changed our world may be threatening our supply of clean, safe water. Investigate some bizarre abnormalities scientists have found in frogs due to agricultural chemicals. Find out about the chemical cocktails that killed beluga whales, turning their bodies into hazardous waste. Visit the interactive house to discover how your choices impact the planet's waters.

Topic: Agriculture--Environmental aspects, Aquatic ecology, Groundwater--Pollution, Water pollution, Water--Pollution

URL: http://www.pbs.org


Nature: Habitat Destruction and Global Warming 

The natural habitat of our world is being destroyed every day, and the quality of our land, water, and air continues to decline. Earthplatform provides many articles about some of the things that are threatening the survival of forests, wetlands, the oceans, animal species, and plant species. Read about global warming, air pollution, and greenhouse gases. In these article, you will also learn how global warming is causing more hurricanes and how coral reefs are dying.

Topic: Environmental degradation, Global warming

URL: http://www.earthplatform.com

The Global Warming Survival Guide 

Time Magazine's Global Warming Survival Guide has 51 ideas! As you click through the web site you will learn ways in which we can slow global warming. The information is varied and interesting. Find out why we need to turn food into fuel and why geothermal heat is more efficient. You will see how what you live in has an impact on the earth, how changing light bulbs can make a difference and how the clothes you choose use energy. You will find out how something as simple as paying bills online can help the environment.

Topic: Global temperature changes, Global warming

URL: http://www.time.com


Ocean Pollution 

Until the 1970s it was legal to dump industrial, nuclear and other waste into the oceans. Although there are regulations in place, waste continues to be dumped into oceans and that waste creates many problems. This site describes the many types of waste that gets disposed of in oceans and tells what the pollution does to the water and the organisms in it. Learn how industrial waste, sewage sludge, radioactive waste, runoff and recreation can contribute to polluting the ocean.

Topic: Marine pollution, Waste disposal in rivers, lakes, etc.

URL: http://marinebio.org