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Nicaragua's Controversial Canal

The proposed Nicaragua Canal could be one of the largest engineering projects in history and promises to bring thousands of jobs to the impoverished country. But the government’s secretive deal with a Chinese-led firm has some Nicaraguans raising the alarm about displacement and environmental destruction in the canal’s path.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, April 8, 2:52 PM

I'm fascinated by massive geo-engineering projects.  Usually, the proponents of the project will support it claiming that by reconfiguring the geographic settings it will lead to the economic growth of the country and strengthen their political situation.  Opponents cite that traditional land use patterns will get disrupted, the poor will be displaced, and the environment will be degraded. This canal is not so very different from many other geo-engineering projects in that respect.

 

Tags: transportation, Nicaragua, globalization, industry, economic, environment, political, resourcespolitical ecology.

Norka McAlister's curator insight, April 15, 10:04 PM

As globalization keeps expanding, the development of infrastructure in poor countries increases. This project of constructing a canal in Nicaragua comparable to the Panama Canal will impact communities and the environment. Also, it will claim some proprieties and relocate most of their communities. However, this project will have the most significant effect on the environment. Deforestation will be part of the project, displacing a huge part of wild animals. Local communities are concerned with the lake where part of the canal will be built and cause potential pollution to the lake. And to top it all off, it will reshape the look of natural beaches which is the essential natural resource for this communities. On the other hand, the project will create job opportunities for different communities. But, the project so far has created a lot of friction between the government and its communities. The severity of this clash has led to legal issues. These problems, however will not stop China, the major investor of the project, and globalization will continue to evolve.

Blake Joseph's curator insight, April 24, 4:38 PM

The Chinese government is seriously considering plans to build a new canal through Nicaragua that will rival the United States' Panama canal. The size of the planned canal will be much larger than the Panama canal, allowing much bigger freighters and cargo vessels to be able to pass through it to and from the Chinese mainland. While many Nicaraguans are enthusiastic about the potential jobs and money involved in the project, others can see through this and sense great problems for the country if completed. The canal would destroy many environments within Nicaragua such as Lake Nicaragua and the forest that are located nearby, displacing many people who live and depend on the area for food and work. China is fast becoming a world superpower, and is alarmingly similar to the old Soviet Union as far as a lack of environmental protection and the welfare of citizens. I fear the future environmental impact this will have on Nicaragua could be devastatingly similar to the fatal impacts of other old Soviet failures like the Aral Sea or Chernobyl (without the radioactive isotopes, of course). I think many Nicaraguans do as well.

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Over population, over consumption - in pictures

Over population, over consumption - in pictures | FCHS AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY | Scoop.it

"How do you raise awareness about population explosion? One group thought that the simplest way would be to show people in pictures the impact of population, pollution and consumption."


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Jorge Del Castillo Díaz's curator insight, April 9, 1:38 PM

An example (in pictures) of how we change our plannet 

SRA's curator insight, April 13, 2:43 PM

This is an article found on theguardian that talks about overpopulation in some regions, and overconsumption in others. There are very powerful pictures of various places around the world that really give you an idea about what is happening around the world. The one that gave me the chills is the picture of the dead bird that ingested too much plastic, thus killing it. Another powerful picture taken is the one of the surfer in Indonesia, surfing a wave of trash. 


-Jack Christensen


SRA's curator insight, April 14, 8:16 PM

Jordan Linhart


It is absolutely astounding to me how we are so continually growing and expanding as a human race. What's more astounding to me is how quickly we are depleting and wasting all of the resources we have been given. Don't get me wrong, I was aware there were 7 pushing 8 billion of us on the planet, but growing up in the suburbs I wasn't as aware of it as I could have been. Ignorance is bliss, right? It breaks my heart to see the clearing of beautiful forests, the once turquoise water of Haiti filled with trash, and the death of animals that accidentally stumbled upon our waste. If we as humans don't start taking care of our planet, there won't be any where left for us to over populate, or even populate for that matter.

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Too rich for its own good

Too rich for its own good | FCHS AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY | Scoop.it
The Democratic Republic of Congo is potentially one of the richest countries on earth, but colonialism, slavery and corruption have turned it into one of the poorest

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Brian Wilk's curator insight, March 22, 8:04 PM

I read this article on the Congo and was blown away at the greed of man and by the frequency of the absolute raping of the country by Portugal and Belgium. this country, so rich in natural resources has been forced into poverty and deplorable living conditions by the greed of men. The rubber trees that The Congo has led to the exportation of rubber and other products to the US and Europe as the car industry was in its infancy. Congo should have profited from this handsomely but instead its leaders decided to make the treasury their own little bank account. Instead of investing in infrastructure, services for their citizens, and education, monies went to personal bank accounts and 100 million dollar palaces.

Congo has among its natural resources, Coltan, found in all cell phones, that should bring in enough revenue to bring this country to prosperity. I hope the leaders do the right thing and build for the people the promise that has been waiting for them for over six centuries.

Bob Beaven's curator insight, March 26, 3:16 PM

It is sad that the Congo is in the current state it is in, the country is very rich in material resources but remains strikingly poor.  The country has been subjugated by poor treatment from the powers of Europe for centuries.  The Portuguese, English, and Belgians all destroyed the country over the years.  The Portuguese were the first to do so, as they wanted the man power to work in the new world, and this also helped the English who had their own new world colonies, the two European groups worked well with each other to plunder the country, which was once a thriving kingdom of manpower.  Things really started going bad for the Congo once the Belgians stepped in and made it their own colony during the African Land Grab.  As the article explains, all its goods were used by the West for years to come (for bullets in WWI, for components of the Atom Bomb in WWII, and even for Cell Phone Components).  Even once the Belgians left, the country was no better off, due to the fact that the indigenous people did not know how to run their own country, how could they after years of domination.  So what happened logically, is that a strong man took over and ran the country as a dictatorship.  Even today, the country remains unstable because after he was thrown out of power the country destabilized and fought Civil Wars in which its neighbors would pick sides.  This article shows that resources can be a dangerous thing for countries to have, outsiders will invade and destabilize them in order to advance their own agendas.  Europe has certainly left a great deal of scars across Africa.

 

Jared Medeiros's curator insight, March 29, 5:02 PM

It is a shame and extremely sad that the people of the Congo can not capitalize on their natural resources to make better lives for themselves.  This country has been ravaged and taken advantage of by outsiders for hundreds of years.  During this time these countries have gotten rich while these people live in poverty.  

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This Map Shows Why The Battle For 'Ukraine's Soul' Is So Pivotal

This Map Shows Why The Battle For 'Ukraine's Soul' Is So Pivotal | FCHS AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY | Scoop.it
The tug-of-war for Ukraine.

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Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, February 18, 2014 3:04 PM

With gas being the key factor to the Russia-Eu tug of war over Ukraine, Russia fights hard to win this battle. Russia needs Ukraine as their own due to all the pipelines that transport the gas to Europe. Who will win this tug-of-war?

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, March 1, 2014 12:26 AM

This infographic gives an idea of why Russia is so invested in Ukraine. The energy infrastructure built during the Soviet era runs almost entirely through Ukraine. A significant amount of gasoline consumed in Europe comes from Russia via Ukraine, while over 2/3rds of all the gas Russia exports to the EU goes through Ukraine. This puts Ukraine in a position of power, but the country itself is divided between the East and West making siding with the EU or Russia difficult. These are lasting effects of the Soviet era.

Paige Therien's curator insight, May 4, 2014 11:28 AM

Besides the very intense cultural and political split that exists in Ukraine and the conflict as a whole, one of the key factors in this situation is gas.  This infographic shows that both Ukraine and the EU gets their gas from Russia, and Ukraine is the area which the gas lines flow through.  As soon as many people in Ukraine showed interest in joining the EU, Russia reminded Ukrainians and the world of this fact

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Hot Commodities

Hot Commodities | FCHS AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY | Scoop.it

"77 Photos of the mass production of the Earth's natural resources.  In the picture above, a Tibetan villager works in a salt field. Salt has been the most common food preservative, especially for meat, for thousands of years." 

Tags: consumption, agriculture, resources, labor, industry, economic, unit 6 industry.


Via Seth Dixon
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, February 24, 2013 6:55 PM

Coal, steel, gold, iron, copper, aluminum and oil are all incredibly important commodities.  Agricultural products such as rice, cotton, corn, wheat and coffee all travel far beyond their area of origin.   Where do these resources come from?  How are they produced?  This gallery of 77 pictures is a fantastic tour of the resources that are key cogs in the global economy.  

Lauren Jacquez's curator insight, February 24, 2013 10:55 PM

Just in time for Industry!

Adrian Bahan (MNPS)'s curator insight, March 7, 2013 8:52 PM

intensive or extensive agriculture? Why?

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What Would Happen If The Entire World Lived Like Americans?

What Would Happen If The Entire World Lived Like Americans? | FCHS AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY | Scoop.it

After making an infographic depicting how much space would be needed to house the entire world’s population based on the densities of various global cities, Tim De Chant of Per Square Mile got to thinking about the land resources it takes to support those same cities.


Tags: consumption, development, resources, energy, density, sustainability.


Via Seth Dixon
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Michelle Carvajal's comment, September 18, 2012 6:23 PM
Its very interesting that the United Arab Emirates would need more land mass than lets say China and the US. I guess what I'm trying to say is that the common misconception of people is that China has the greatest population. I definetely will rescoop this because people could actually see how hard it must be to house people who in essence would need all this land mass to live comfortably.
Thomas D's comment, April 22, 2013 4:13 PM
I thought that this was a very interesting graph and article to read. It shows that if the rest of the world lived like us Americans we would need four times the world’s surface, which is pretty substantial to think about. Although the United Arab Emirates is the leading this graph it’s hard to believe that America is in second. This goes to show that our way of living is out of hand, that the only reason we haven’t consumed everything is because the rest of the world is living of more reasonable amounts of resources or no resources at all. That we need to be as a country more conservative of our resources before we have to rely even more heavily than we already do on other countries. I was surprised to see that India has such a small percentage of resource consummation considering it is such a highly populated country.
Brianna Simao's comment, April 30, 2013 10:23 PM
Countries with a more advanced and urbanized way of life clearly would need more space to survive but if everyone lived like these more developed countries then natural selection dies and survival of the fittest takes over. Eventually all the natural resources would be used up. If they all continued to use the same amount and reproduce then the fertility rate would rapidly increase making the area overpopulated and the quality of life decreased. It is a good thing the entire world lives differently and has a diverse ecological footprint because it creates a balance in the world. As one country’s consumption is out of control another is holding down the fort because they lice more reasonably. It is interesting to see that even though China and India have the largest populations they don’t consume as many resources as the United States and the United Arab Emirates.
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Recycling Steel

Steel is strong, versatile and 100% recyclable. Learn how old steel shipping containers are given a new lease on life as liveable spaces.

 

Reusing resources is a critical part of sustainability.  This video looks at the recycling of steel including the creating of container homes.


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California Drought Tests History of Endless Growth

California Drought Tests History of Endless Growth | FCHS AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY | Scoop.it
A punishing drought is forcing a reconsideration of whether the aspiration of untrammeled growth that has for so long been the state’s engine has run against the limits of nature.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, April 6, 8:30 PM

Major urban areas in California have limited local water resources so they draw water from large area to bring in sufficient water for these burgeoning metropolitan regions.  With this current drought getting worse, California has ordered emergency water restrictions on residents while companies and large farms have been granted exemptions even though they account for 82% of the state's annual water consumption (residential accounts for 12%). Almond farms alone consume 10% of the state's water, and many agricultural crops are incredibly water intensive land uses.  A better way to think of it isn't just about raw water usage though.  A better question to ask would be this--how does one gallon of water translate into calories that most efficiently feed people?


Questions to Ponder: How does the concept of carrying capacity relate to California urban growth/drought issues?  California passed its carrying capacity?  How are demographics, economics, politics and the environment intertwined in California?  What are the environmental limits on urban growth and development? 


Tags: physical, weather and climate, consumptionCalifornia, water, environment, resources, environment dependurban ecology.

LEONARDO WILD's curator insight, April 9, 8:49 AM

The mathematics of endless growth due to economic monetary rules has a clear outcome.

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Who Owns The North Pole?

"Though uninhabited and full of melting ice caps, the Arctic is surprisingly an appealing piece of real estate. Many countries have already claimed parts of the region. So who technically owns the North Pole? And why do these nations want it so bad?"


Via Seth Dixon
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Rich Schultz's curator insight, January 2, 5:52 PM

Great question!  I think we all know the answer...Santa Claus!! ;)

Sammy Shershevsky's curator insight, January 17, 4:57 PM

The video discusses a big topic in discussion today - Who really owns the North Pole? Although the North Pole is uninhabited, many countries have claimed to take ownership of the vast majority of land (or, ice). Canada has already claimed that the North Pole is part of its nation. Russia has put up Russian flags on the North Pole (such as underwater) but does that really make North Pole a Russian territory? The media plays a role in this by offering different opinions on who should and who deserves the right to own the North Pole. You might read a Canadian article that lists all the outright reasons why the North Pole is or deserves to be a Canadian territory. 

Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, March 6, 7:26 PM

In my opinion, I don't understand how the United nations can be seen as an entity that, essentially, controls who would have rights to a place like the North Pole(technically, not owned by anyone).  I, naively, understand the basics of the U.N.  In short, it is an organization that was formed, post-WW I or II, as a governing board for world-issues.

 

 With that being said, how can they believe that their "law" is the all-powerful one?  If I'm a leader of a country who is not a member of the U.N., do I really care what they say?   I just find it odd that this narrator speaks about the issue while holding the U.N. as a supreme authority.  I know that this video is just a quick fun type of video but it leaves me with wanting to hear the perspective of a non-U.N. member.  But a very interesting topic, none the less.

 

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The Strategic Importance of the Caspian Sea

"Stratfor Eurasia Analyst Eugene Chausovsky examines the Caspian Sea's large energy reserves and its conflicting maritime boundaries."


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Megan Becker's curator insight, March 23, 11:12 PM

Summery: This video shows the battle for land ownership of the Caspian sea, and the resources surrounding it. Russia, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, and Kazakhstan all surround it, creating an issue of territoriality.

 

Insight: I thought this video had an interesting view on the battle for resources in the Caspian Sea, although I don't understand how territoriality plays a part in the issue, considering land boundaries and the actual geographic position of the Caspian. 

Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, April 15, 9:37 AM

Here is another example of a relatively small body of water that has multiple countries disputing over it.  Of course this is mainly due to the natural resources that lie under the Caspian Sea.  And again Russia is in the middle of another situation that has to deal with a small part of the world.  I find it fascinating what countries will do for otherwise meaningless areas of the world.

Kendra King's curator insight, Today, 1:17 PM

This video does a great job depicting how neighbors complicate a situation anytime oil is involved.  As mentioned in class, these borders did not always exits. Prior to the collapse of the Soviet Union it was just the SU and Iran who had to fight over the Caspian. Now there are 5 neighbors with conflicting ideas. Agreeing over oil would never be easy between neighbors. However as least, Iran and Russia seem to be on the same page when it comes to keeping the project and the oil away from Europe benefit. With just those two as neighbor, a deal might have been possible due to there slightly common interests. Now though, I think there are too many competing ideas so any headway on a deal will be next to impossible.  

 

I wouldn't be surprised if Russia took over Azerbaijan (or tries to take over the country) in the future. Since the lines were re-drawn, Azerbaijan has made out pretty well because they have all of the drilling tools and money that comes with it. When someone figures out how to move the oil of the Caspian, Russia is going to want the old equipment of theirs back. Furthermore, Azerbaijan was one of the countries who wanted to use the oil to benefit Europe. As mentioned in class,when the Ukraine thought about selling oil to Europe, Russia was none to pleased. In fact, oil was a major reason for why Russia invaded in the first place. Plus, with one less annoying neighbor, Russia would be closer to the oil in their hands. 

 

Given the complications excess and unagreeable neighbors, Azerbaijan might want to invest a little more in its defense budget and a little less on the extravagant buildings they keep making. 

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Out of Africa – Did the Colonial Powers ever Really Leave?

Out of Africa – Did the Colonial Powers ever Really Leave? | FCHS AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY | Scoop.it
Africa may have achieved independence, but the old colonial ties are still important as France’s decision to send troops to Mali to fight Islamist extremists shows.

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Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 4:04 PM

Colony powers are still located within Africa. Just because Africa is technically independent doesn't mean that British Colonial power isn't still in place.

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, September 11, 2014 2:11 PM

unit 4

Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, March 26, 11:08 AM

This article reminds us all of the growth-stunt that colonialism in Africa brought to the continent.  It is not surprising to see that most African countries still depend heavily on their old colonial masters for survival.  People who may casually follow African politics might think that colonialism started with the Berlin Conference and ended in 1990 or so, but one could argue that it hasn't ended due to the urgent dependency African countries still have on their old colonizers.  Africa might be the most beautiful continent in the world but has the worst story of any in the world.

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What Would Happen If The Entire World Lived Like Americans?

What Would Happen If The Entire World Lived Like Americans? | FCHS AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY | Scoop.it

After making an infographic depicting how much space would be needed to house the entire world’s population based on the densities of various global cities, Tim De Chant of Per Square Mile got to thinking about the land resources it takes to support those same cities.


Tags: consumption, development, resources, energy, density, sustainability.


Via Seth Dixon
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Michelle Carvajal's comment, September 18, 2012 6:23 PM
Its very interesting that the United Arab Emirates would need more land mass than lets say China and the US. I guess what I'm trying to say is that the common misconception of people is that China has the greatest population. I definetely will rescoop this because people could actually see how hard it must be to house people who in essence would need all this land mass to live comfortably.
Thomas D's comment, April 22, 2013 4:13 PM
I thought that this was a very interesting graph and article to read. It shows that if the rest of the world lived like us Americans we would need four times the world’s surface, which is pretty substantial to think about. Although the United Arab Emirates is the leading this graph it’s hard to believe that America is in second. This goes to show that our way of living is out of hand, that the only reason we haven’t consumed everything is because the rest of the world is living of more reasonable amounts of resources or no resources at all. That we need to be as a country more conservative of our resources before we have to rely even more heavily than we already do on other countries. I was surprised to see that India has such a small percentage of resource consummation considering it is such a highly populated country.
Brianna Simao's comment, April 30, 2013 10:23 PM
Countries with a more advanced and urbanized way of life clearly would need more space to survive but if everyone lived like these more developed countries then natural selection dies and survival of the fittest takes over. Eventually all the natural resources would be used up. If they all continued to use the same amount and reproduce then the fertility rate would rapidly increase making the area overpopulated and the quality of life decreased. It is a good thing the entire world lives differently and has a diverse ecological footprint because it creates a balance in the world. As one country’s consumption is out of control another is holding down the fort because they lice more reasonably. It is interesting to see that even though China and India have the largest populations they don’t consume as many resources as the United States and the United Arab Emirates.
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Time zones: About time

Time zones: About time | FCHS AP HUMAN GEOGRAPHY | Scoop.it

As visitors have come to expect from the BBC, another excellent interactive resource that includes...
* text;
* video clips;
* interactive flash tools;
* Image of the Interactive Globe
* the science of time; and
* Personal experiences as case studies etc.


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