REPLY(SCIENCE)

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1.  I decided to do my PowerPoint presentation on pesticides killing off honeybee populations and what various forms of mitigation exist, as well as what negative impacts this has in other areas of agriculture.

 One thing I found very interesting and surprising in “duh” sort of way, was how many other insects contribute to the pollination of so many different flowering plants around the planet [1]. For example, not all pollinators fly. Ants can conduct pollen exchange by simply walking from flower to flower.

This also correlated to some of the other plants that can be affected negatively by either the current pesticides being used or what substitute is introduced.



2.  I wrote about oil and gas in Alaska as it is one of our biggest sources of state income and is also a large contributor to the environment. Until Deep Water Horizon, the Exxon Valdez spill was the largest oil spill in history. It was so impactful to the pristine waters and shoreline of this state and affected animals, people, the environment and there are still aspects of the environment that are still recovering. 

One thing I found interesting while doing my research was that the price of oil in Alaska is consistently higher than places in the lower 48. Gas at the pumps is almost always at least $0.70 more than anywhere in the lower 48. Part of this is because there are different types of crude that get developed into different types of oil/gas. So Alaska doesn't produce enough to sustain the entire state, so we have to coordinate with other refineries and that can drive the price of gas at the pump up. There are tons of other factors and there is so much to determining the cost per barrel, and etc. so it was very eye opening to get a glimpse into the complex world of oil. 



3.  I did my presentation on the litter in WV and how we should address the problem.

I won't be presenting y power point presentation.  I will leave you with the thoughts and knowledge that I have gained through the course contents as well as the  professor and all of you.  The idea of sustainability now more than ever should be our goal as a society.  These times we are living are truly unpredictable and this can effect our resources as well.  More than ever we should be looking to wind and solar, renewable sources of energy that in times like these can be accessed by individuals.  If anything this should prove even more how important it is to relieve ourselves from certain forms of energy.  

I will now mere than ever begin to committ to a more earth friendly self sufficient life style.  The gardening the hunting and the search for a company to install solar panels.  We have decided to go all in with solar and look forward in seeing the benefits in the near future.

We are also committed to reducing our footprint by cutting our driving time and reducing our use of plastics.  Res usable sacks are going to be are main device when coming and going from the store.  

Most of all I enjoyed learning that there are people like me out there.  Concerned and hopeful for the future.  We can turn the tide if we all just do a little something.  Maybe our actions will become a contagion and others will also join in.


4.  I am not sure if my week 7 power point presentation was exactly what was required. I did mine about how the Military's lack of cleaning up their test sites in Alaska  has caused caused contaminated soil and water. Harming water quality, salmon habitats, and beluga whales populations. The left over bombs contaminated the ground with white phosphorus, lead, cobalt, chromium, beryllium, dinitrotolulene, RDX, and lindane killing wildlife and harming humans alike. What I learned from my research is that SUPERFUNDS doesn't have the money or resources to needed to clean up all the sites contaminated, however they do find the previous owners of the sites and force them to pay for the clean up. So why isn't the Military paying for the clean up of the sites they contaminated?  



5.  I did my power point presentation on the air quality in Fairbanks Alaska. I know we went over air pollution so it seems like I chose an easy topic but it goes way more in depth than what we talked about. Considering that the air quality is one of the worse in the world I figured it was a big enough deal to warrant going over again. The biggest controversy on it, that most people don't really see or consider, is that most of the pollution is caused by wood burning and that is what people use to heat their houses. So the solution seems pretty easy and right there it ends up coming down to letting people stay warm or  fixing the air quality. Since other heating sources are too expensive for a lot of people. Regulators are about to come in and just do whatever it takes to fix it despite that fact, since to them the state can't get it under control themselves and to them the most important thing is getting the air within the set regualtions. It gets a lot more interesting the more research you do on it. 



6.  While conducting my research on Eielson's power plant, I came across some interesting articles that discussed more of why burning coal is so damaging to the environment.  I understood before that coal came from biomass that had been buried for eons, keeping the carbon they were made from contained in the earth.  This carbon gets released back into the air when it's burned for energy.  What I did not understand, until this course what how long we are damaging that cycle. 

I grew up playing and working in the woods and could see the cycle of trees growing, dying, decaying and creating new growth.  This cycle moves at a pretty rapid pace compared to the creation of coal from plants dying and being buried before they can decay and release their carbon back into the cycle.  

I have seen drastic shifts in that cycle due to forest fires which makes the fact that we burn coal so much worse.  Forests can grow again, capturing some of that released carbon; however, it's hard to imagine the amount of forest that would have to grow, die and be buried in the earth for us to recapture the carbon that has been released from our burning of coal.  I hope that renewable energy sources continue to improve and we can stop using coal for energy production.  If we stop, we can at least give nature a chance to recapture some of the damage we have caused and return more carbon back into the ground.



7.  Is it just me or did these eight weeks fly by? To be honest I was very skeptical about taking this class since I personally never enjoyed Science and was never good at it but I am glad I took this class. This class was enjoyable and we learned something new every week in regards to our environment and how we are slowly destroying it and the things we can do to improve it. For my week seven assignment I decided to discuss the air pollution in Los Angeles, California in which is always in the top 10 for worst air quality cities in the United States.

During my research, I came across astonishing numbers that were a result of the poor air quality. Some of these numbers included over 3,000 premature deaths for those over the age of 30, over 140,000 asthma attacks, over 400,000 days of lost work and many other issues (Jacquot, 2018). This is a major issue that I was not aware of and I am glad I took this class to bring it to my attention as well as others that were not aware of. I will attach my PowerPoint presentation and feel free to critique it so I know what I need to do to improve my PowerPoint/research skills. It was a pleasure taking this class with all of you and I wish you the best of luck in your future.

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