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ES10 Midterm 1


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What did volcanoes emit? Then what happened to all of that?
They emitted H2O, CO2, and N2. Earth cooled, H2O condensed to form rain, the rain formed oceans, oceans absorbed CO2.
When and why did Earth reach steady state?
400 million years ago, when oxygen from photosynthesis equaled weathering and demposition/respiration.
What is teh formula for ozone?
atomic oxygen O + oxygen O2 + M --> ozone O3 + M
How does ozone make life possible?
Ozone protects from UV rays.
Draw graph showing atmospheric temperature as altitude increases.
Troposphere, tropopause, stratosphere, stratopause, mesosphere, inversion layer. 15 and 50 km. 200, 240, and 280 K.
What is the greenhouse effect?
When longwave radiation is absorbed by and excites greenhouse gases (like CO2, CH4, N2O, and CFCs), who re-radiate it upwards and downwards.
What is albedo?
Reflected energy / incident energy. The whiteness of a surface.
Describe the forces of atmospheric circulation.
Pressure gradient forces: air moving from high to low pressure. Coriolis force: Earth is rotating, so air moves to the right in the Northern hemisphere and to the left in the Southern. Friction: air moves differently around obstacles. (Use these to draw weather map things.)
Draw the three air circulation systems.
Polar ^ ------> ^ Ferrel

Low pressure at equator and 60 degrees, high pressure at 30 degrees.
How long does it take for air to travel around the globe?
One year to opposite hemisphere.
1-2 months North or South in same hemisphere.
2 weeks East or West in same hemisphere.

What is thermohaline circulation?
Process of warmer water moving toward the poles and rising while the colder, saltier, polar water sinks (and goes to the equator for upwelling).
What is a source?
The rate of creation in a reservoir.
What is a sink?
The rate of destruction in a reservoir.
How do you calculate residence time?
Reservoir mass / flux out.
How do you calculate replacement time?
Reservoir mass / flux in.
How does the saw-tooth CO2 pattern differ with latitude?
CO2 levels are more consistent at the equator (Samoa), and more extreme the further away from the equator (Barrows, Alaska).
What are sources of current CO2 increases?
Fossil fuel carbon emissions and deforestation.
Draw the terrestrial carbon cycle.
CO2, plants, living organisms, CH4, soil/organic matter.
Photosynthesis, respiration.
Draw teh major H2O reservoirs and the fluxes between them.
Atmosphere, glaciers/ice caps, lakes, rivers, groundwater, oceans.
Precipitation, evaporation, melting, runoff.
How does air temperature relate to water?
Temperature determines how much H2o the air can hold: warmer air can hold more moisture.
What are the two major freshwater reservoirs?
Glaciers/ice caps (70% of fresh water) and ground water/aquifer (30%).
What are positive and negative feedbacks? Give examples.
Positive feedback increases the factor in question, while negative feedback decreases it. For global warming: positive: increase in atmospheric H2O and decreased snow cover/surface albedo; negative: inreased cloud cover.
Draw teh soil moisture cycle.
Soil, atmosphere, plant.
Precipitation, evaporation, infiltration, transpiration.
What are some anthropogenic contributors to climate forcing?
CO2, CH4, CFCs, other tropospheric ozone, N2O, tropospheric aerosols, forced cloud changes, land cover alterations.
What are some results of climate change?
Rising sea levels, rapid glacial melting, rising intensity of storms, forest fires, droughts, flooding, & heat waves, pest infestation, and threats to coral reefs.
What is a climate model?
A synthesis of climate theory and data that can be used to predict the future and understand the past of the area being modeled.
What are three possible causes for the observed increase in global temperature?
Volcanic eruptions (puts GHGs in the atmosphere), solar variability (increased solar radiation), and human pollution (increased GHGs from deforestation and the burning of fossil fuels).

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