Geography / Year 10 / Geographical Knowledge and Understanding / Unit 1: Environmental change and management

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Curriculum content descriptions

Human-induced environmental changes that challenge sustainability (ACHGK070)

Elaborations
  • discussing the concept of sustainability in relation to environmental functions
  • identifying human-induced environmental changes (for example, water and atmospheric pollution; loss of biodiversity; degradation of land, inland and coastal aquatic environments) and discussing the challenges they pose for sustainability
  • evaluating the concept of ecosystem services and the importance of these services for sustainability of biodiversity
General capabilities
  • Critical and creative thinking Critical and creative thinking
  • Ethical understanding Ethical understanding
Cross-curriculum priorities
ScOT terms

Human impact,  Pollution,  Environmental sustainability,  Climate change,  Biogeochemical cycles,  Biodiversity

Video

Catalyst: E-waste, recycling, and sustainability

What happens to electronic waste (e-waste)? Watch this clip about the physics of recycling to find out the way that useful materials are captured from waste at a local materials recovery facility. Presenter Tanya Ha investigates e-waste, the products it comes from, and the sustainability challenges it poses.

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Catalyst: How will fire change the climate?

Considering the impact of a changing climate on the severity and frequency of fires is one thing, but how about the impact of fires on climate? Why does Professor David Bowman describe this scenario as a 'fire spiral'? What are the consequences of a world with fewer forests? As Professor Craig Allen explains, drought and ...

Video

Show me the water!

Where does the water in your tap come from? Fresh water accounts for only 3% of the earth's water supply and only 1% of that is available to us in lakes and rivers or in the atmosphere. But how much do we use for drinking water and what else do we use fresh water for? Watch this video to find out how NASA's Global Precipitation ...

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Magical Land of Oz: Join the Numbat Taskforce!

Numbats are native Australian marsupials that can be found in Western Australia and South Australia. Unfortunately, their numbers are declining rapidly. What are the causes? What can we do to combat this and protect these unique Australian animals? Find out what one community group, the Numbat Taskforce, is doing to help ...

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Foreign Correspondent: Dams and dolphins on the Mekong?

If the Lao Government's plans are realised, nine hydropower dams will be built across the Mekong River in Laos, and more across its tributaries. The government wants the country to become the 'battery of Asia'. With this dream comes a host of issues. Listen to reasons why the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) suggests hydro-dam ...

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Foreign Correspondent: The Mekong: A damming example

The government of Laos has plans for many revenue-raising dams along the Mekong River. Find out about a dam, the Nam Theun 2, which was completed in 2010 and lies across the Nam Theun river in the Nakai Plateau. This clip from the same year asks if the dam could be the flagship for others to be built along the Mekong. Discover ...

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Stateline: Proposed coal mine raises environmental issues

Explore the possible benefits and impacts to the environment and community of a proposed new coal mine, called the Wallarah 2 Coal Project. In this clip from late June 2013, find out some viewpoints that landowners, community members, mine representatives and politicians present about the proposed underground mine.

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Landline: Feeding soils to grow hungry crops

How do today's farmers improve their crop yields? One school of thought is to go high-tech and use agricultural technologies designed to improve efficiencies and yields. See the role that soil condition plays in gaining those high yields.

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Sciencey: Five things you need to know about climate change

Find out how carbon dioxide makes the Earth warmer, how oceans store heat and the way we can see climate history in ice. What are the consequences of changes in the global climate? What can we do as individuals and communities to stop these negative changes?

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Carbon dioxide and greenhouse gases

Have you heard of greenhouse gases? What do you think they are? (The word 'greenhouse' is a big clue!) The delicate balance of greenhouse gases has been affected by the addition of an unprecedented amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) to our atmosphere in the last 150 years. Watch this video to find out how CO2 is being added ...

Video

Catalyst: How high will sea levels rise?

Much of the world’s population will eventually have to deal with the consequences of sea-level rise, but the question is: how high will the water get? Dr Graham Phillips investigates how scientists are turning to the distant past to predict the impact of rising sea levels. Watch scientists explore 120,000-year-old coastlines, ...

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Foreign Correspondent: Damming the free and mighty Mekong

The Mekong has been a rare thing: a largely untouched and free-flowing river. Stretching for nearly 5,000 km from the mountains of Tibet to Vietnam's Mekong Delta, it has provided a way of life for millions of people and been an important trading route between south-western China and south-eastern Asia. In this clip from ...

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Magical Land of Oz: Koalas and climate change

The koala population in rural NSW has been declining over the years due to drought and heatwaves. What causes some of the temperature extremes experienced in this region? Dr Mella believes koalas normally get most of the moisture they need to stay hydrated from eucalyptus leaves. What has changed in recent years that means ...

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Foreign Correspondent: Spawning dams, not fish, on the Mekong?

The Mekong is the largest freshwater fishery in the world; however, this may be about to change. Discover in this 2010 clip how migration of fish species along the lower Mekong may be impeded by the proposed construction of dams along this mighty river. Do the economic benefits of the dam outweigh the potential loss of ...

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Understanding the causes of climate change

Did you know that climate change is not a recent phenomenon? In the past, natural events led to changes in the climate. Although natural events still affect climate, they're not enough to explain the big changes we've been seeing in the last 150 years. What changes on earth can account for such dramatic changes to our climate? ...

Interactive

Save our catchment – virtual excursion

This virtual excursion offers twelve video lessons that form a sample investigation of pest species invading Australian riparian zones. Filmed on Bundjalung Country, the excursion traverses mid north coast NSW Upper Clarence River Catchment, connecting each video to companion classroom and field learning tasks. The invasive, ...

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Climate science analysis from The Conversation

This is a collection of articles about climate science. It includes articles about modelling, explanations about heat trends, predictions about sea level rise, and why the science about climate change is clear. The articles are written in plain language and are authored by experts from universities in Australia and around ...

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Biodiversity and farming for a healthy planet

This is a digital resource containing information and resources, such as printable games, that relate to biodiversity and farming, and how food and materials can be produced while protecting the Earth's natural resources. It includes an extensive glossary of important terms, and external links to teacher and student resources ...

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Foreign Correspondent: Mesoamerican Reef threatened

The Mesoamerican Reef, just off the shore of Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula, is under major threat. Listen to oceanographer Roberto Iglesias-Prieto explain how untreated wastewater affects the underground river system and the reef.

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Bali and Sumba: Paradise versus poverty

We all know the idyllic paradise called Bali, but have you ever heard of its poorer neighbour, the Indonesian island of Sumba, where the people struggle to grow food to eat? Watch this clip to learn about environmental conditions and agricultural challenges there. Find out also what people in Sumba are doing to prepare ...