There are two versions of each lab, one with a ten-question conclusion and one with directions for a full lab report. This way the teacher has the option! Each lab is two pages to allow for one two-sided handout.
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I teach high school chemistry and this is exactly what I was looking for. Labs included simple household chemicals that could be easily found. Nice format, easy to follow along procedures, and touches on every topic of our chemistry curriculum.”
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*Some of you have already purchased my lab book – be sure to check out Page 141 !
“ ‘…[T]he CO2 that humans are pumping into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels gets absorbed by the ocean and favours weedy turfs, which replace kelp forests that support higher coastal productivity and biodiversity,‘ project leader professor Sean Connell said in a University of Adelaide press release.
In order to compare current ocean carbon dioxide levels with those projected for the end of the century, researchers looked at volcanic seeps of carbon dioxide in the ocean.
They found that more carbon dioxide caused the weeds' natural predator, the sea urchins, to eat fewer of the plants, enabling the weeds to take over coastal ecosystems.
A weedier ocean is yet another consequence of ocean acidification, the process by which the carbon dioxide absorbed by the oceans forms carbonic acid and lowers the water's PH level. …
Acidification also poses a problem for hard-shelled animals like mollusks or coral, since it raises the level of hydrogen relative to carbonate ions in the water. Marine life uses carbonate ions to build shells and skeletons out of calcium carbonate, the BBC explained. This could lead to a 60 percent reduction in warm water coral reef calcification, which could weaken reef structure and make reefs, already vulnerable to coral bleaching due to warmer ocean temperatures, also more vulnerable to erosion.
Now, kelp forests have been added to acidification's hit list.
While they get less media attention than coral reefs, kelp forests provide important habitats for many species. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), kelp forests are home to more biodiversity than almost any other ocean ecosystem."
“A steady increase in ocean temperatures — nearly 3 degrees Fahrenheit in recent decades — was all it took to doom the once-luxuriant giant kelp forests of eastern Australia and Tasmania: Thick canopies that once covered much of the region’s coastal sea surface have wilted in intolerably warm and nutrient-poor water. Then, a warm-water sea urchin species moved in. Voracious grazers, the invaders have mowed down much of the remaining vegetation and, over vast areas, have formed what scientists call urchin barrens, bleak marine environments largely devoid of life.
Today, more than 95 percent of eastern Tasmania’s kelp forests — luxuriant marine environments that provide food and shelter for species at all levels of the food web — are gone. With the water still warming rapidly and the long-spine urchin spreading southward in the favorable conditions, researchers see little hope of saving the vanishing ecosystem.“
“The Tasmanian saga is just one of many examples of how climate change and other environmental shifts are driving worldwide losses of giant kelp, a brown algae whose strands can grow to 100 feet. In western Australia, increases in ocean temperatures, accentuated by an extreme spike in 2011, have killed vast beds of an important native kelp, Ecklonia radiata. In southern Norway, ocean temperatures have exceeded the threshold for sugar kelp — Saccharina latissima — which has died en masse since the late 1990s and largely been replaced by thick mats of turf algae, which stifles kelp recovery.” https://e360.yale.edu/features/as-oceans-warm-the-worlds-giant-kelp-forests-begin-to-disappear
“Kelp forests are an at risk temperate marine eco-system. These forests grow worldwide in clear, relatively shallow, and nutrient-rich water whose temperatures are between 42–72 degrees… Sea Urchins are not the only species that is a threat to marine temperate environments. Migrating tropical fish can also cause enormous destruction to seaweed beds and kelp forests.”
“Environmentalists in many places are trying to take action to reverse this trend. In Tasmania, the best strategy is to boost populations of predatory rock lobsters, which prey on sea urchins. But once the urchin barrens form, there is basically no way back.
In California, sea otters are voracious predators of urchins, so there is more hope for the kelp in that area.
The concern about kelp is not just about the giant underwater algae itself. There are many marine animals that depend on kelp including abalone, commercially valuable urchin species and many kinds of fish. The destruction of the kelp forests is a major disruption of marine ecosystems that will have far-ranging impacts.”
“Kelp forests, where otters hang out, are some of the most efficient absorbers of carbon dioxide known. Like any land-based forest, kelp forests sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere through photosynthesis, transforming it into the energy they need to build their leafy structure.
But these kelp forests are at risk from sea urchins: small, spiky marine animals that love munching on kelp. With no predators around, sea urchin populations can multiply, forming herds that sweep across the ocean floor devouring entire stands of kelp.
Fortunately, sea otters have an appetite for urchins. The otters help keep urchin populations in check, allowing kelp to flourish and capture more CO2. According to a recent study, otter-supported kelp forests can absorb up to 12 times more CO2 from the atmosphere than if they were just left to the urchins.”
Past blog posts about similar subjects include:
01/27/2017 2016 Warmest Year on Record
06/23/2017 Antarctica Melting
10/13/2017 Overview of Global Climate Change
*This Blog contains several entries that would be helpful to your chemistry classroom. Check out the Topic List to help you to find past Blog entries.
Also, Write To Me about your successes, challenges, or questions in the Chemistry Classroom.
Remember, buying a copy of the lab book Chemistry on a Budget can be very useful to your Chemistry classroom with labs and class article ideas.
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