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Environmental History: An Overview Chapter 2. Key Concepts  Four Major “Revolutions” in Human Culture U.S. Environmental History  Tribal and Frontier.

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Presentation on theme: "Environmental History: An Overview Chapter 2. Key Concepts  Four Major “Revolutions” in Human Culture U.S. Environmental History  Tribal and Frontier."— Presentation transcript:

1 Environmental History: An Overview Chapter 2

2 Key Concepts  Four Major “Revolutions” in Human Culture U.S. Environmental History  Tribal and Frontier Era  Early Conservation Era  The Environmental Era  Aldo Leopold’s Land Ethic

3 Cultural Changes and the Environment: Hunter-Gatherer Culture  Hunter-gatherers  Limited and local environmental impact  Generally work with natural processes  Nomadic: seasonal movement

4 Cultural Changes and the Environment: The Agricultural Revolution  Agriculture Refer to Connections on p. 26  Slash and burn/ shifting cultivation (See Fig. 2-3 p. 25)  Essentially sustainable resource use  Increased environmental impact

5 Cultural Changes and the Environment: The Industrial Revolution  Industrial Revolution (mid-1700’s)  Shift to dependence on non-renewable resources  Dramatic increase in environmental impact Refer to Connections on p. 27

6 Cultural Changes and the Environment: The Information Revolution/Globalization  Information Revolution  Rate of information increase and speed of communication  Globalization  Decrease in cultural diversity

7 Effect of Cultural Changes on Human Population Size Number of Humans ? Continued growth Population stabilization ? Population crash ? (10,000 years) (100,000 years) (1 million years) Tool-making revolution Agricultural revolution Industrial and information revolutions Time Fig. 2.2, p. 24

8 Environmental History of the United States: The Tribal and Frontier Eras  Tribal Era: Native Americans  Native Americans generally low-impact hunter-gather or agricultural societies  Frontier Environmental Worldview: European Settlement ( )  Significant impact as wilderness frontier was “tamed”

9 Environmental History of the United States: The Early Conservation Era  Period:  Concern over resource use  Preservation of public lands  Public health initiatives  Environmental restoration projects

10 Important Figures During The Early Conservation Era  Henry David Thoreau  George Perkins Marsh  John Muir  Theodore Roosevelt  Alice Hamilton  Franklin Roosevelt

11 Henry David Thoreau American author, poet, abolitionist, naturalist. his book Walden – simple living in natural surroundings

12 George Perkins Marsh America's first environmentalist Man and Nature - constituted an early work of ecology Deforestation could lead to desertification.

13 John Muir Scottish-born American naturalist Advocated preservation of wilderness in the US He petitioned the U.S. Congress for the National Park Bill that was passed in 1899

14 First woman appointed to the faculty of Harvard University Pioneer in toxicology Critic of adding tetraethyl lead to gasoline.

15 Environmental History of the United States: The Environmental Era  Period:  The environmental movement  The science of ecology  Spaceship Earth worldview  1980’s: anti-environmental movement  1990’s: environmental awareness

16 Important Figures During The Environmental Era  Rachel Carson: Silent Spring (1962) (See Individuals Matter on p. 36)  Richard Nixon: EPA; ESA  Jimmy Carter: DOE, Superfund  Ronald Reagan: anti-environmentalist  Bill Clinton: environmental concerns a priority

17 Case Study: Aldo Leopold and His Land Ethic  Individuals are interdependent  Ethics: respect for land  Shift from conqueror to member  Problems arise when land viewed as a commodity  Preservation of the integrity, stability, and beauty of land is right


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