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BIOL 3999: Issues in Biological Science GLOBAL CHANGE BIOLOGY Dr. Tyler Evans Phone: 510-885-3475.

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Presentation on theme: "BIOL 3999: Issues in Biological Science GLOBAL CHANGE BIOLOGY Dr. Tyler Evans Phone: 510-885-3475."— Presentation transcript:

1 BIOL 3999: Issues in Biological Science GLOBAL CHANGE BIOLOGY Dr. Tyler Evans Phone: Office Hours: M,W 10:30-12:00 or by appointment Website:

2 WHAT IS GLOBAL CHANGE BIOLOGY? scientific study aimed at understanding of the interface between current environmental change that affects a substantial part of the globe and Earths biological systems. In simpler terms, how human activities influence the biosphere socio-economic development production and consumption resource use ecosystems climate geochemical cycles HUMAN SYSTEMSEARTH SYSTEMS

3 COURSE DESCRIPTION the course will focus on understanding how anthropogenic (i.e. human) changes to the global environment impact organisms. We will evaluate responses to global change in a wide diversity of organisms and ecosystems lectures will draw heavily on primary research and case studies. Global Change Molecular Biochemical Physiological Organismal Population Ecosystem An important theme of the course will be to describe how environmental phenomena affect biological systems across levels of organization

4 LEARNING OUTCOMES (What I hope you will gain from this course) acquire a broad understanding of the connection between human activities and the structure and function of biological systems enhance your ability to engage primary research and synthesize data presented within journal articles achieve a higher level of critical thinking that enables proper evaluation and educated decision- making regarding issues in global change

5 WHAT THIS COURSE IS NOT Global change is an important and pressing political issue… However, this course will not be focused on policy, ethics or economics

6 Global change is an important and pressing social issue… However, this is not a course in environmental activism WHAT THIS COURSE IS NOT

7 I am a biologist that studies the impacts of climate change and that is what this course is focused on This is GLOBAL CHANGE BIOLOGY

8 GRADING Midterm Exam #1………..25% (FEB 1) Midterm Exam #2………..25% (FEB 22) Final Exam…………………..30% (Mar 18) Writing Assignment.…….20% (Mar 15) Your final grade will be determined by three exams and one written assignment: exams will focus on lecture materials exams will be a combination of multiple choice, matching, short and long answer scores will be posted on Blackboard (INSERT LINK)

9 TEXTBOOK AND READINGS No textbook too expensive a suitable text hasnt been published yet Rely heavily on research articles more interesting gain experience in synthesizing data from these sources all materials are available on website and Blackboard

10 COURSE POLICIES (in accordance with CSUEB guidelines) Academic Dishonesty please review CSUEBs policies and understand what is considered academic dishonesty: Missed Exams make every effort to avoid missing scheduled exams. In case of an emergency or legitimate conflict, you may be eligible to take a specially scheduled make-up exam. However, you must provide verifiable, written documentation for your absence. Any unexcused absence from an exam will result in a score of 0 for that exam. Special Academic Accommodations: if you have a documented disability, accommodations can be arranged for exams and other activities. For more information please visit: Courtesy: Please turn off all audible sounds to any electronic devices (phones, PDAs, etc.) while in lecture and refrain from using your laptops for activities not related to lecture during class time Use of these items is strictly prohibited during all exams, unless special accommodations have been arranged.

11 KEYS TO SUCCESS Attend lectures Take thorough notes Study those notes Ask questions

12 QUESTIONS?

13 WHAT IS AT STAKE? ASSIGNING VALUE TO EARTHS ECOSYSTEMS humans typically see themselves as separate from natural Earth systems In reality, humans are dependent on natural environment for much of their well-being misconception causes a vast under-estimation of the value of Earths ecosystems PERSPECTIVES ON GLOBAL CHANGE BIOLOGY:

14 flows of value to human societies as a result of the state and quantity of natural capital. ECOSYSTEM SERVICES e.g. Tuna Fishery ocean provides tuna humans catch tuna humans sell tuna for money

15 quantifying ecosystems services will assist humans in recognizing their dependency on biological systems and the important services they provide ECOLOGICAL ECONOMICS attaching dollar values may be valuable in illustrating the potential consequences of global change, should valuable ecosystem services be diminished or lost all together

16 SO WHAT IS THE VALUE OF EARTHS ECOSYSTEM SERVICES? CASE STUDY Costanza et al The value of the worlds ecosystem services and natural capital. Nature. 387:

17 Identified 17 ecosystem services (excluding non-renewable, one time use resources such as gas and minerals) 1.) Gas regulation regulate chemical composition of atmosphere 2.) Climate regulation regulate global temp, precipitation, etc. 3.) Disturbance regulation Reduce damage caused storms, etc. 4.) Water regulation For agriculture, industry or transportation

18 5.) Water supply storage and retention of water 6.) Erosion Prevention of soil loss 7.) Soil formation weathering of rock provides soil for crops 8.) Nutrient cycling processing and recycling of nutrients Identified 17 ecosystem services…continued (excluding non-renewable, one time use resources such as gas and minerals)

19 Identified 17 ecosystem services…continued (excluding non-renewable, one time use resources such as gas and minerals) 9.) Waste treatment detoxification 10.) Pollination healthy plant populations 11.) Biological control balancing ecosystems by predation 12.) Refugia spaces for migration

20 Identified 17 ecosystem services…continued (excluding non-renewable, one time use resources such as gas and minerals) 13.) Food production fish, game, crops, nuts, fruit 14.) Raw materials wood 15.) Genetic resources medicine, pets, gardens 16.) Recreation Eco-tourism, sport fishing

21 Identified 17 ecosystem services…continued (excluding non-renewable, one time use resources such as gas and minerals) 17.) Cultural art, religion, education, science

22 Valuation methods (i.e. how did authors calculate value?) based mostly on attempts to estimate the willingness to pay of individuals for ecosystem services 17.) Cultural art, religion, education, science 12.) Refugia spaces for migration pay an entrance fee for National Parks $736,000 paid for a tuna in 2012

23 calculated the value per unit area for services for 17 ecosystems multiplied that value by the total global area of that ecosystem Valuation methods (i.e. how did authors calculate value?)

24 Economic value of Earths ecosystems: Some important trends $20.9 trillion USD (63%) was accounted for by marine ecosystems: continental shelf was most valuable ecosystem: $4.3 trillion USD primarily from nutrient cycling $12.3 trillion USD (37%) was accounted for by terrestrial ecosystems wetlands were most valuable ecosystem : $4.9 trillion USD primarily from disturbance regulation, water supply, waste management TOTAL: $33 trillion USD per year Nutrient cycling was most valuable ecosystem service Data was not available for tundra, deserts, ice caps

25 More examples: Hawaiis coral reefs are worth $360 million USD annually

26 More examples: Bee keeping generates $213 million USD annually in Switzerland Single bee colony provides $215 in direct products (honey, wax, pollen) but $1,050 through pollination of agricultural fruits and berries

27 More examples: Climate regulation by forests in Cameroon worth $ USD per year

28 LIMITATIONS OF ECOLOGICAL ECONOMICS MAJOR CRITICISM : The economies of the Earth would grind to a halt without the services of ecological life-support systems, so in one sense their total value to the economy is infinite. RESPONSE : It is meaningful to ask how changes in the quantity or quality of various types of natural capital and ecosystem services may have an impact on human welfare. Improve decision makingEstablish directions of change value of forests to regulate climate minimum price for logging $$$$ TIME

29 THOUGHTS? Is this an effective strategy to reverse misconceptions regarding the value of biodiversity?

30 If we actually lived in a world that was ecologically sustainable, socially fair and where everyone had perfect knowledge of their connection to ecosystem services, both market prices and surveys of willingness-to-pay would yield very different results than they currently do, and the value of ecosystem services would probably increase. CLOSING REMARKS FROM COSTANZA ET AL.

31 LECTURE SUMMARY quantifying ecosystems services will assist humans in recognizing their dependency on biological systems and the important services they provide total values of Earths ecosystem services estimated at $33 trillion USD per year $20.9 trillion USD (63%) was accounted for by marine ecosystems continental shelf was most valuable ecosystem: $4.3 trillion USD nutrient cycling was most valuable service wetlands were most valuable terrestrial ecosystem : $4.9 trillion USD primarily from disturbance regulation, water supply, waste management While value may be infinite, still meaningful to a establish baseline in order to monitor trajectories of change in the future

32 MORE INFORMATION Costanza et al The value of the worlds ecosystem services and natural capital. Nature. 387: TEEB (2010) The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity: Mainstreaming the Economics of Nature: A synthesis of the approach, conclusions and recommendations of TEEB.

33 NEXT LECTURE: DRIVERS OF GLOBAL CHANGE


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