People, Science and the Environment Essay Sample

People, Science and the Environment Pages
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“The human history of the Yellowstone region goes back more than 11,000 years. From then until to the very recent past, many groups of Native Americans used the park as their homes, hunting grounds, and transportation routes. These traditional uses of Yellowstone lands continued until a little over 200 years ago when the first people of European descent found their way into the park. In 1872 a country that had not yet seen its first centennial, established Yellowstone as the first national park in the world. A new concept was born and with it a new way for people to preserve and protect the best of what they had for the benefit and enjoyment of future generations.” (“Yellowstone National Park Service”, 2013) In the following paragraphs, the author will discuss the major structural and functional dynamics (processes) of that ecosystem including change over time, also, how humans may have affected biogeochemical cycles in that ecosystem, including impacts to the nitrogen, phosphorus, or carbon cycle.

The author will also discuss how knowledge about that ecosystem’s structure and function can help or has helped to develop plans for its management and restoration plus the implication of species interactions in ecosystem management and restoration. Yellow stone national park has the most active volcanic opportunity in the US. Geologist is consistently monitoring it on a daily basis to understand how it came to be. Geologist wants to know the past so it can prepare for the future. With all the data that geologist have collected over the years, it can be determined that Yellowstone has been highly affected by human contact within its own ecosystem. Before Yellowstone became national landmark, it was used by humans for lodging, food, and lumber. The natives would utilize these resources to preserve their ways of living. As time went on, the national resources started to deplete which gave many animals no opportunity to evolve. “Restoring an ecologically complete ecosystem in Yellowstone requires the return of willows–and with them, beavers.

There’s a clear threshold for ecosystem recovery. Willow stands must be more than 6 feet tall, the scientists found. That height is important, says Marshall. Then willows are beyond the reach of browsing elk, and can serve as seed sources for new young willows. Once willows have returned, beavers will gnaw down a certain number of them to build dams. The dams will further slow stream flow, allowing yet more willows to grow. The results offer new insights on the role of wolf-driven trophic cascades in the Yellowstone ecosystem, says Hobbs. Trophic cascades like that in Yellowstone occur when predators–or the lack thereof–in an ecosystem change the abundance or alter traits of their prey, in turn affecting the next lower trophic level.” (“National Science Foundation”, 2013)

Climate change will have a direct impact in the future of the park. Summer heat levels will become a norm that could be damaging to the Yellowstone environment. “All of natuires resources can be leveled with the astronomical amount of heat that will be produced based on climate change. the first evaluation of how climate change will affect the greater Yellowstone ecosystem, is a joint project of the Rocky Mountain Climate Organization, a nonprofit that advocates for carbon emission reductions by drawing attention to the likely consequences of climate change, and the Greater Yellowstone Coalition, a conservation organization concerned with the park and the land around it.” (“The New York Times”, 2011) The glacier caps that keep melting will cause an effect to the climate that will make it harder for the animals and nature to survive in the park and the surrounding areas..

In summary, Yellowstone National Park needs to continue to be preserved for the benefit of its resources and beauty. Then ecosystem that has been established is one vital for the continuation for the park to ensure for future generations that it would be preserved and not destroyed especially by the climate. Since the polar ice caps are melting and causing multiple heats weaves currently, it is that much more important to sustain the ecosystem in the park for future generations.

References
Yellowstone national park service. (2013). Retrieved from
http://www.nps.gov/yell/historyculture/index.htm
National Science Foundation. (2013). Retrieved from
http://www.nsf.gov/discoveries/disc_summ.jsp?cntn_id=126853 The NewYork Times. (2011). Retrieved from http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/09/27/how-
climate-change-could-hurt-yellowstone-national-park/?_r=0

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