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In 1948 in Donora, Pennsylvania, the routine release of toxins into the air became a deadly fog because of
a thermal inversion and stagnant weather conditions.
Which of the following would have most likely prevented the deadly 1948 smog in Donora, PA?
shift industrial production from the day to evening hours
The air you breathe into your lungs on a daily basis mostly consists of
When you exhale, the major components of your breath include all of the following except
Nearly 300 million years ago, dragonflies existed that were the size of large hawks today. Some scientists believe that these giants could fly then, but not today, because oxygen in the atmosphere was much higher. If oxygen levels 300 million years ago were 50% higher than today, what percentage of the atmosphere would have consisted of oxygen for these giant dragonflies?
Atmospheric scientists often measure gases in parts per million by weight (ppm). If CO2 is currently 0.04% of the atmosphere, the level expressed in ppm is
On May 18, 1980, a massive eruption of Mt. St. Helens in Washington State sent a huge plume of ash high into the air. Over the next two weeks, the ash traveled around the world. To move that far, the ash would have to
reach into the stratosphere.
Which of the following illustrates an anthropogenic form of pollution?
sulfur dioxide released from a coal burning power plant
Which one of the following generally increases natural sources of the pollution of the air?
gases released by a volcanic eruption
The formation of sea salt aerosols help to clean the air by promoting the formation of
The abundant formation of hydroxyl radicals in the atmosphere
removes many common pollutants from the troposphere.
Air pollution in a heavily industrialized region would be reduced and the air would be healthier if that region
received more rain.
This figure indicates that most airline travel occurs at
the lowest atmospheric temperatures.
Which of the following components of the atmosphere are most helpful in the cleansing of the air?
In which of the following regions would we most expect to find industrial smog?
around an industrial town that burns coal to generate electricity and make steel
Which one of the following would be the most practical way to reduce levels of photochemical smog in a city that frequently experiences this problem?
reducing the number of automobiles that burn gasoline and the amount of evaporated gasoline
Unlike industrial smog, photochemical smog occurs in regions that
have high levels of sunshine.
Which one of the following is most associated with an air-pollution disaster?
B) a temperature inversion OR.
C) increased industrial production
A temperature inversion occurs when
the air near the ground is cooler than the air directly above it.
The atmospheric brown cloud over much of China may be reduced by
reducing the reliance on biomass and fossil fuels for energy.
Unlike photochemical smog, the atmospheric brown cloud over much of south and central Asia
B) occurs year-round and includes black carbon and soot.
C) occurs only in coastal regions, where salt aerosols are most abundant.
The conditions represented in this figure illustrate
a temperature inversion.
Which of the following is a secondary pollutant?
Burning fossil fuels in a low oxygen environment will most likely produce
Atmospheric nitrogen is converted to nitrogen oxides
when fuels are burned at high combustion temperatures.
Secondary air pollutants are formed by
primary pollutants reacting with other compounds in the atmosphere.
The complete combustion of fossil fuels and refuse produces
carbon dioxide and water vapor.
The 1970 Clean Air Act and subsequent environmental regulations have resulted in
reductions in lead by about 89%.
Which of the following are primary pollutants that frequently occur undetected in homes?
radon and carbon monoxide
The greatest progress in reducing atmospheric levels of lead pollution resulted from
the elimination of leaded gas.
Acid rain concentrated in the eastern portions of the United States is primarily the result of
coal-burning power plants in the Midwest.
Rain with a pH of 4.6 is
B) typical of regions with very low pollution.
C) about 10 times more acidic than rain from non-polluted regions.
Which of the following is an anthropogenic source of acid deposition?
gasoline engine emissions from automobiles
Unlike naturally occurring sources of acid precipitation, anthropogenic sources of acid precipitation
are more concentrated in industrial and agricultural areas.
Which of the following is a secondary pollutant in the troposphere but a beneficial component in the stratosphere?
Most of the public health impacts from air pollution are the result of
chronic exposure to many pollutants.
Air pollutants most often lead to human health problems of the
circulatory and respiratory systems
Reading through the long list of health effects of smoking tobacco, a student is shocked to find that smokers are inhaling carbon monoxide. Which of the following symptoms is most related to this particular component of tobacco smoke?
shortness of breath
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is the fourth leading cause of death in the United States. This disease primarily affects
the heart, blood, and blood vessels throughout the body.
Asthma is a serious and widespread disease related to air pollution. Symptoms of asthma include impaired breathing resulting from constricted air passages, a disorder of the
Recent studies indicate that two of the most dangerous components of air pollution in and around major cities in the United States are
radon and carbon monoxide.
The most widespread negative health impact of air pollution is the
chronic stress that weakens many systems of the body.
Assuming that these people do not use tobacco products, a person in which of the following professions would most likely have the highest exposure to benzene, a known carcinogen?
a truck driver or pharmaceutical company worker
Crop damage from ozone formation is most likely to occur
A) downwind of a large urban center in the summer. OR.
B) upwind of large polluting regions in the spring.
The negative impacts of ozone pollution on forests are expected to increase as
temperatures increase and precipitation becomes more unpredictable.
The deterioration of this stone sculpture reflects the damaging effects of
The aesthetic losses from polluted air are reflected in the
degradation of outdoor stone sculptures and masonry.
Lakes severely impacted by acidification will most likely
be clear and blue, but with few fish or other animals.
Lakes that suffer from environmental acidification typically have
fewer animals and higher levels of aluminum and heavy metals.
Which of the following is a natural soil buffer that is abundant in the midwestern United States and helps to reduce the amount of acidification of lakes in that region?
The recovery of acidic lakes in the northeastern United States and eastern Canada is largely the result of
reductions in sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide pollution.
Forests that experience high levels of acid precipitation expose trees to soil that has
less dissolved calcium and more dissolved aluminum
Lakes in the midwestern United States that have experienced sustained acid precipitation over many years have gradually
increased their pH because of the buffering effects of limestone.
According to the Clean Air Act and its amendments, very unsafe levels of air pollution will
include primary and secondary pollutants.
The 1970 Clean Air Act policy of command and control regulations of air pollution attempted to limit
the ambient level of air pollutants below the primary standard levels.
Which one of the following would release the lowest levels of particulates?
a nuclear power plant
Which of the following is responsible for about half of all air pollution in the United States?
cars, trucks, and buses
Over the past 40 years in the United States, the number of vehicles on the road has
increased, the number of vehicle miles has increased, but the pollution per car has decreased.
Because of catalytic converters on the exhaust systems of automobiles, you breathe air with lower levels of
carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides.
In general, between 1990 and 2010, the fuel efficiency of vehicles sold in the United States has
increased by about 50%.
Meeting the new 2010 higher CAFÉ standards in the United States will result in
better gas mileage and less air pollution.
Most of the increase in fuel efficiency of hybrid vehicles comes from
charging electric batteries when decelerating, idling or coasting.
Because of the main way that hybrid vehicles save fuel, hybrid electric vehicles
often have better mileage in cities than on highways.
As demonstrated during the high oil prices of 2008, when gasoline prices skyrocket, hybrid vehicle sales
increase and more people use public transportation.
The device in this image is responsible for decreased levels of
carbon monoxide, VOCs, and nitrogen oxides in the air you breathe.
Our most recent understanding of the formation of tropospheric ozone requires the reduction of atmospheric levels of
nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds.
CAIR and CASPR each attempted to regulate interstate air pollution using
a cap and trade method.
Further acidification of the environment could be prevented by policies that
greatly reduced the acid-producing emissions of coal-burning power plants.
During the 1980s, damaging acid precipitation in North America largely fell
on Canada and the New England States.
As a result of measures to control acid-deposition in North America, over the last 20 years emissions of sulfur dioxide have been
reduced by about 10%, at great cost to the power producing industry.
Although acid precipitation has been reduced over the past two decades, progress has been slowed by
the continuing and increasing impact of nitrogen deposition.
In central Iowa, which one of the following would yield the highest UV exposure on a sunny day, with a sky clear of all clouds and apparent pollution? Thirty minutes of direct exposure to the sun
at 1:00 PM on June 30.
Compared to 50 years ago, the thinning ozone layer has produced dramatic increases in cases of
cataracts and skin cancer.
Premature aging of the skin and cataracts are on the increase due to increased
exposure to ultraviolet light.
CFCs primarily contribute to the destruction of the ozone by
contributing free chlorine atoms, which act as a catalyst in the breakdown of ozone.
One of the greatest success stories of the positive impact of chemistry research and environmental policies and regulations relates to
CFCs and the destruction of the ozone.
Building on scientific research and careful measurements, the 1987 Montreal Protocol represented
global stewardship to limit the destruction of the ozone.
The most recently discovered air pollutant that is a stratospheric ozone destroying molecule is
Which one of the following global climate changes is most associated with increased hurricane activity?
The destruction of the ozone layer primarily occurs in the
Most of the weather of the world is based upon changes in the moisture, pressure, and/or temperature of the
The two highest levels of the atmosphere contain only small amounts of oxygen, nitrogen, and ozone. These layers are the
mesosphere and thermosphere.
A university in Florida wishes to investigate the feasibility of using a large wind turbine on campus to power several buildings. Wind speeds throughout the year and potential storms and hurricanes must be considered to determine if and where a wind turbine might be installed. To consider these many factors, the university would most benefit from the work of
a meteorologist to study the regional climate.
Every day, tremendous amounts of the sun's energy strikes the Earth. Why doesn't the Earth overheat?
The energy is ultimately radiated back to space.
If the Earth had no atmosphere,
B) shifting of the continental plates due to plate tectonics.
D) the number of clouds in the mesosphere and thermosphere.
In a Hadley cell,
warm air rises and cool air falls
Winds we experience in our daily lives are mainly the result of
the movement of air between lower pressure and higher pressure regions.
In the United States, summers are warmer than winters because
B) the northern hemisphere is closer to the sun. C) the sun's rays shine more directly onto these regions in summer.
Examining your flight plans for a trip from Atlanta, Georgia, to Seattle, Washington, and back, you notice that the total time in the air for the flight to Seattle is much longer than the flight back to Atlanta. Then it occurs to you that this is probably because of the impact of
the jet stream.
The jet streams in the United States generally flow from west to east because of
rotation of the Earth.
While enjoying a spring day off, a storm is expected. As the storm arrives and the rain begins to fall, you notice that the temperatures drop dramatically. Most likely, you have just experienced the arrival of a
If you rode a helium balloon from the earth's surface to the top of the stratosphere, you would notice that the temperatures
B) increased steadily as you increased your altitude.
C) dropped and then started to rise in the stratosphere about halfway up your trip.
Most of the air pollution that we experience is located in the
Hurricanes and tornadoes are events taking place in the
Biomes are primarily identified by their
precipitation and temperature patterns
If global climate change causes rain and temperature patterns to shift dramatically in a region,
the region's biomes may shift to other types.
The 2007 Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reported that global climate change is
certain and it is very likely that humans are to blame.
Which of the following gases by virtue of its enormous amount in the atmosphere has the greatest impact on global climate change?
Which of the following activities have contributed the greatest amount of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere over the past 100 years?
increased reliance upon coal, oil, and natural gas
Which one of the following best illustrates a type of mitigation in response to global climate change?
constructing and using wind turbines to generate electricity
Which one of the following best illustrates a type of adaptation to global climate change?
using solar and nuclear power to generate electricity instead of burning coal
Which of the following illustrates a risk assessment of climate system change?
measuring the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere
The global temperature pattern seen in this figure
B) suggests that mitigation of carbon dioxide is urgently needed. OR.
C) reveals a year-by-year increase in temperature every year since 1980.
The general pattern in this figure reveals increasing levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere over the past fifty years. Why is the red line wavy and the blue line steadily increasing?
A) The red line drops in the winter when photosynthesis decreases. OR.
C) The blue line reflects changes in temperature while the red line represents changes in carbon dioxide levels.
Scientists use proxies to study climate to measure
climates hundreds and thousands of years ago.
Using ice core samples and analyses, researchers have discovered that over the past 800,000 years
there is a strong correlation between global temperatures and greenhouse gases.
You examine an ice core sample from 10,000 years ago when global temperatures were unusually high. Based upon past studies and insights from current GHG levels, we expect that atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide
In his movie, An Inconvenient Truth, Al Gore warns of increasing levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere which suggest that
global temperatures will also continue to rise.
Evidence from proxies indicate eight major oscillations in global temperatures over the past 800,000 years, most likely the result of
Milankovitch cycles of periodic variations in Earth's orbits around the sun.
In general, temperatures along an ocean coastline vary less than temperatures 100 miles inland. This moderation of temperatures along coastlines is because
A) as the oceans evaporate it cools off the coastlines.
D) ocean temperatures do not change as quickly as air temperatures.
In our world, something with the greatest heat capacity is able to
retain its heat the longest.
If the sun suddenly stopped shining, where would be the best outdoor location to stay warm with the least change in ambient temperature?
the center of Brazil
London is located farther north than Toronto, yet average temperatures in January are higher in London than Toronto. London tends to be warmer in January because
warm ocean currents flow past London.
If you traveled along the North Atlantic Deep Water Current, you would most likely flow from waters near
South Africa to Iceland.
Which of the following would most likely have the greatest impact on the ocean conveyor system in the Atlantic Ocean?
complete melting of the polar ice cap
Natural climate variability ranging over months to decades is primarily the result of
ocean-atmospheric interactions, especially the La Niña/El Niño southern oscillation (ENSO).
The inside of a car or greenhouse would not heat up as much in the presence of sunshine if
A) air was circulated within the car or within the greenhouse.
C) infrared radiation could not pass through glass as easily as sunlight.
When an automobile heats up in bright sunlight with windows rolled up, the glass in the car functions most like
carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
In the summer, some people place a windshield reflector in the front of their cars to reduce the buildup of heat inside the car. In the greenhouse effect, this would be most like
increasing sulfate aerosol and high clouds in the sky.
Which one of the following has a net negative forcing effect on global climate?
C) carbon dioxide in the troposphere
D) low clouds in the troposphere
Which of the following has the highest albedo?
snow on top of ice on a pond
Current data from satellite measurements of temperature in the troposphere, despite errors in early data, reveal
remarkable agreement with surface temperatures.
Global warming is raising sea levels because of
melting ice and thermal expansion.
The most dramatic temperature shifts in the past few decades have been
B) in the oceans nearest the equator.
D) in the innermost regions of the North American and African continents.
Increasing levels of greenhouse gases have caused a
rise in ocean temperatures but a decrease in ocean pH.
Current levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide are
nearly 400 ppm, higher than they have been in 800,000 years.
Which of the following represents an alarming positive feedback loop of global warming?
Decreased pH of the ocean increases the rate at which carbon dioxide is absorbed by the oceans from the atmosphere.
Which one of the following has been declining globally over the past several decades?
pH of the world's oceans
Rising GHGs in the 21st century most confidently predict
increases in global temperatures and sea levels.
The best computer models of global climate change indicate that in the next 50 years
the world will warm up by 2-3°C.
In North America, Halifax, Nova Scotia, will likely experience the least warming in the next 50 years due to global climate change because of
ocean thermal buffering.
Farmers in North America in the next 50 years will likely experience
less predictability in the weather and more extreme weather events.
If the world cooperated and stabilized the atmospheric levels of GHGs,
global temperatures would quickly level off within a year.
Which of the following U.S. national parks would be mostly eliminated by a 1-meter rise in sea level?
Everglades National Park
Additional increases in ocean levels beyond those already expected may be most affected by
greater than expected melting of ice sheets on Greenland and Antarctica
Which of the following states will most likely experience the greatest warming in the next 50 years?
The steep increase in global carbon emissions since 1950, shown in the figure above, most closely parallels the
global surface temperatures over this same period.
According to the latest government predictions shown in the figure above, in 40 years the Chicago, Illinois, climate will change to be most like the current climate in
St. Louis, Missouri.
Discussing the consequences of global climate change at a conference, representatives of a developing nation suggest that those nations that contribute the most greenhouse gases (GHGs) to the atmosphere should contribute the most to paying for adaptive responses worldwide. Further, this representative pointed out that her poor country contributes less than 1% of the annual GHGs and has less than 0.1% of the world's wealth. This representative's appeal represents
the polluter pays and equity principles.
If the precautionary principle had been applied to the evidence of the dangerous health effects of smoking tobacco from the 1950s to the 1970s,
cigarette manufacturers would have been required to demonstrate by acceptable scientific procedures that smoking was safe and government regulations would have come much earlier.
At an international conference on global climate change, a representative of a developing country admits that each year, his country contributes the same amount of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere as the United States. However, he argues that because his country has only 10% of the wealth of the United States, the United States should pay much more of the costs of adaptation. This representative's arguments illustrate the
Climatologists warn of a tipping point when global temperatures trigger catastrophic events and sea levels rise more than 50 feet. About how much warmer does the world need to get for this tipping point to happen?
Climatologists warn of a tipping point when global temperatures trigger unavoidable catastrophic events and sea levels rise more than 50 feet. What single event would cause the sea level to rise so greatly?
melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet
To prevent the tipping point after which catastrophic environmental change will happen, what needs to be done?
Global greenhouse gas levels must peak no higher than 450 ppm and start declining by 2015.
In a cap-and-trade program,
a company that does not reach its cap can sell credits to companies that exceed the caps.
only apply to non-GHG emitting forms of electrical generation.
The most effective way to reduce GHG emissions is to increase
energy efficiency and renewable energy.
For more than 20 years, scientists have been analyzing expected climate change and the impact on crops grown in particular regions. For example, states that typically plant corn and soybeans may need to switch to growing cotton. Such a change is an example of
Which one of the following is not an example of geoengineering?
erecting large carbon dioxide scrubbers to sequester carbon dioxide in deep reservoirs
As climate change continues, we expect that the countries with the
fewest resources will experience the greatest impacts.
The developed countries of the world have contributed the most to global climate change. By applying the polluter pays and equity principles, we would expect that the
developing countries will provide funds for adaptations in the developed countries.
The precautionary principle, the polluter pays principle, and the equity principle are all reflections of
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