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Environmental conditions do change in the oceans, but the terms climate and weather are not usually applied.


In the atmosphere, climate is longer-term changes in rainfall, temperatures, humidity, pressure, winds, etc., while weather is short-term changes (days to weeks) changes in the same factors.

in the ocean environments, temperature and pressure play important roles, but pH and salinity are also important factors. Needless to say that humidly in the oceans is not a factor as it's 100% water!

Every marine or lake organism evolves over million of years to fit into a given environmental niche. If the environment is fairly stable, the environment will continue to thrive. You can think of long-term marine environments as roughly the same as "climate" on the land. If environmental changes happen rapidly, like say El Nino, this might be analogous to weather.

During El Nino or La Nina events, vast schools of fish migrate to areas of the oceans that have the right temperature for them to thrive in. When things settle down again, they migrate back. A hurricane on land/surface of the ocean can also have big short-term impacts to the shelf regions of the oceans too - you could argue this is "oceanic weather."

Organism evolve in certain temperature/pressure/salinity conditions but when those conditions changes (like they are now with global warming) species are challenged to adapt or die out. Right now corals are struggling to adapt to longer-term changes in the ocean temperature and ph conditions, brought on by atmospheric above land climate change.


Removing wolves affected much of Yellowstone because wolves are top predators and arguably keystone species.


Removing wolves from the park affected much of Yellowstone because wolves are top predators and arguably keystone species.

Predators are often very important to an ecosystem because they control population numbers of other species, mainly their prey. Think of a very simple food web where birds eat insects which feed on plants. If there are no more birds, no insects will be consumed, leaving more insects alive in the food web. With more insects alive, they will eat more of the plants.

This same concept applies to wolves and Yellowstone, except the food web and effects of wolves are far more complex. Wolves feed on elk, and without the wolves, the elk population exploded. The elk fed on young aspen trees, so the park had very few young aspen trees.

Without the predation of wolves, the elk remained in one place and fed on vegetation by the rivers, which had tremendous effects. With significantly less vegetation, the riverbanks began to erode and the rivers widened. The temperature of the river warmed because there was no shade cooling the river, so the abundance and distribution of fish species changed. Birds that nested by the river no longer had a riverbank to build their nests on. Beavers used willow trees on the banks of the river for their dams, but there were no more willow trees by the river because of the elk, so the beavers disappeared.

Before removal(simplified):
Image: KM
Once wolves had been removed(simplified):
Image: KM

To read more about the effects of removing the wolves, see this link from Yellowstone National Park on reintroduction, this article on the controversy surrounding the reintroduction of wolves and if this has saved Yellowstone, or this link on the beaver-willow lack of recovery.


I have chosen antelope of east Africa, named Wildebeest.


Wildebeests are antelopes of savannah. They follow the rain throughout the year and migrate in large herds. They feed mainly on short grass of east African savannah and are thus strictly grazers.


The migratory route of wildebeests across moist grasslands, through different time of the year, can be seen here:-


In Maasai Mara reserve of Kenya, wildebeests live with another herbivore, the rhinoceros. But rhinos are solitary, they never migrate, generally remain within a large territory though they are not strictly territorial, and rhinos are browsers(not grazers) feeding on leaves, shoots, etc.

Then there are Maasai giraffes, anither herbivore but they are occupying woodlands rather than the grasslands occupied by wildebeests. This is because giraffes feed from tree top.



The nitrogen cycle affects humans in multiple ways.


The nitrogen cycle affects humans in multiple ways.

All living organisms require nitrogen. It is an essential part of plants, nitrogen makes up amino acids, and amino acids are what create proteins, and nitrogen is a crucial component of nucleic acids also. The images below show the chemical composition of nucleic acids:



Thus, how nitrogen is stored and cycled through the environment directly impacts humans. Without nitrogen, plants and animals would not exist. Plants that don't have enough nitrogen suffer, as nitrogen is needed for their growth. This in turn affects the humans and other animals that consume these nitrogen-deficient plants.


The plant on the left is nitrogen deficient:

Humans have disrupted the natural nitrogen system through the burning of fossil fuels and through agricultural practices. The excess nitrogen present in our waterways has lead to dead zones where aquatic life cannot survive. This could, in turn, affect humans who rely on these aquatic systems.

In the image below, nitrogen in fertilizers contribute to dead zones:

Read more about ocean dead zones here.
Read more about nitrogen and agriculture here.


According to the World Database on Protected Areas' 2016 report, less than 15% of the world's land and inland waters are protected.


According to the World Database on Protected Areas' 2016 report, less than 15% of the world's land and inland waters are protected in some shape or form (see report here). This includes national parks, wildlife reserves, biological refuges, and other protected areas that may be managed and owned by governments, indigenous groups, or private companies.

The amount of protected area varies greatly by country. For example, 12.3% of land is protected in Pakistan. Protected area is shown in green in the image below.


Only 6.5% of land in Paraguay is protected.


While solar panels can be used in multiple locations, areas with low cloud coverage and that receive large amounts of solar energy are best for solar panels.


Areas with low cloud coverage and that receive large amounts of solar energy are best for solar panels.

Solar panels can still produce energy on cloudy days, but they don't provide as much energy when compared to sunny days. Thus, areas with few cloudy days are best for solar panels.

The northwestern United States is typically known for it's rainy climate, and it does receive a lot of run. However, Portland, Oregon doesn't have that many more cloudy days than Miami, Florida (68 sunny days on average per year compared to 74 days-see here).

The amount of solar energy that reaches the solar panel is also going to effect how efficient it is and this varies across the globe. As you can see in the map below, light intensity is greater at the equator.


However, it is important to note that solar panels have limits in terms of their efficiency when it comes to sunlight intensity. After a certain temperature, the solar panel actually becomes less efficient (see image below). This is typically only an issue under very warm temperatures. For example, this might be a concern if you live in a desert.


Remember that solar panels work by using excited electrons that are knocked free from photons or light. As temperature increases, it takes less and less energy to knock these electrons free and thus less energy is transferred when the photon knocks the electron free.

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