You are on page 1of 24

CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION TO ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES

What do we mean by Environment ????

Environment is what surrounds us !!

It is the sum total of all social, economical , biological , physical and


chemical factors which constitute the surroundings of humans, who are both the creators and moulders of the environment.

Environment is of two types:

Natural Environment

Man - Made Environment

Components such as air, water, soil, land, forest, wildlife, flora , fauna, etc. constitute the Natural Environment

Alteration of the natural environment to serve specific uses by the human beings is termed as Anthropogenic Environment. For eg agricultural field is an anthropogenic environment and so are the gardens and aquaculture farms.

Segments of Environment
There are four segments of Environment: Lithosphere Atmosphere

Hydrosphere
Biosphere

What does each type of environment comprise of ?


There are two main components of Environment

Biotic Components 1. Autotrophs or producers 2. Heterotrophs or Consumers


Abiotic Components

Biotic Components

Abiotic Components

How does Environment differ from Ecology

Ecology
Branch of science that deals with the scientific study of the
interrelationships between living organisms with respect to each other and to their surroundings.

Common terms used in Ecology


Species
Biomass

Population

Biome

Community

Vegetation

Habitat

Why do we study Ecology ?


To know about the local and geographic distribution and abundance of organisms. To record the temporal changes in the occurrence, abundance, and activities of organisms . To understand the interrelationships between organisms in populations and communities.

To understand the behaviour of organisms under natural conditions.

Ecology and Man Environment Relationship : Physical, biological and socio cultural adaptations

Factors responsible for changing human-nature relationships


Growing Human Population Economic Development Consumption of natural resources Health hazards

Do the terms Ecology and Environmental Studies mean the same ? The two terms are used commonly but differ with respect to their scope and objectives Environmental Studies refers to the study of environment. There are a

number of programs under Environmental Studies

Environmental Studies It is a broad interdisciplinary field of study which studies the interaction of human beings with the environment.

Environmental Science It is an interdisciplinary academic field that integrates physical and biological sciences to address the environmental problems.

Environmental Engineering It is the application of science and engineering principles to improve

the quality of environment to provide healthy living conditions.

Multidisciplinary nature of Environmental Studies Environmental Studies is a multidisciplinary subject that includes all other disciplines such as humanities, commerce, metrology, climatology, geography and other disciplines.

Why it is important to study Environmental Studies To get basic knowledge of our surroundings. To develop skills for identifying and solving environmental problems in our surroundings. To maintain ecological balance and to strive to achieve sustainable development. To educate people for their duties towards environmental protection.

In which areas the Environmental studies finds scope ? Environmental Management

Research and Development

Ecosystem Structure and Function

Environmental Pollution Control

Natural resource conservation

Methods to generate public awareness The methods to generate environmental awareness generally falls in two categories : Formal Method Introduction of Environmental Studies as a course in schools and colleges Non Formal Method Mass media such as newspapers, magazine, radio, T.V., etc Organizing meetings, seminars and conferences Organizing various competitions Through folk songs, street plays, TV serials, etc.

People in Environment

Rajendra Kumar Pachauri has been serving as the chairperson of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) since 2002. To acknowledge his immense contribution to the field of environment, he has been awarded the Padma Bhushan in 2008.

Sunita Narain is an Indian environmentalist and political activist. Currently she is serving as the Director, Centre for Science and Environment.

Anil Agarwal was a prominent Indian environmentalist who redefined environmental problems through the eyes of poor people.

Medha Patkar is an Indian social activist. She is known for her role in Narmada Bachao Andolan. Vandana Shiva is a philosopher, environmental activist, and feminist. Through her active Campaigns she has contributed in the areas of biodiversity, biotechnology, genetic engineering, etc.

Sunderlal Bahuguna is a noted environmentalist, Chipko movement leader and a follower of Mahatma Gandhi's philosophy of Non-violence and Satyagraha.

Maneka Gandhi, is an Indian politician, animal rights activist and environmentalist.