Directions: Answer all four questions, which are weighted equally; the suggested time is about 22 minutes for answering each question. Write all your answers on the pages following the questions in this book. Where calculations are required, clearly show how you arrived at your answer. Where explanation or discussion is required, support your answers with relevant information and/or specific examples.
1. Read the following article from the Fremont Gazette and answer the questions that follow.
(a) Identify and describe TWO water-related environmental problems associated with fracking.
(b) Natural gas is considered to be a better fossil fuel for the environment than coal is. Discuss TWO environmental benefits of using natural gas as a fuel compared to using coal.
(c) Describe TWO environmental drawbacks, not related to water use, of using the fracking process to extract natural gas from shale.
(d) Describe one economic benefit to society of using fracking to obtain natural gas from shale.
(e) Nuclear power is an alternative to using natural gas or coal as a fuel for generating electricity. However, there are also problems associated with nuclear power plants. Describe TWO negative environmental impacts associated with nuclear power.
2. The Fremont School District uses oil to heat school buildings. Go Green! is a new project the district will implement. The superintendent has declared that the district will dedicate itself to reducing its carbon footprint.In addition to taking serious energy-conservation measures, the district is planning to help offset its carbon dioxide emissions by raising money to help conserve a portion of a large tract of forest land adjacent to the high school campus.
(a) Describe one alternative energy source that would reduce the carbon footprint of the school district. Discuss one environmental benefit (other than reduced CO2 emissions) and one environmental drawback of using the alternative source instead of fuel oil.
(b) Identify TWO ecological benefits provided by intact forest ecosystems (other than reducing CO2 levels in the atmosphere).
(c) Use the assumptions below to answer the questions that follow. For each calculation, show all work.
(i) Calculate the mass of carbon, in kg, that is accumulated and stored in 1.0 ha of forest in one year.
(ii) Calculate the mass of carbon, in kg, that is emitted by the school as a result of its fuel-oil consumption in one year.
(iii) Calculate the number of hectares of forest the school district needs to conserve in order to offset the carbon released in one year by the school burning its fuel oil.
(iv) Calculate the amount of money the school district must raise for the conservation project.