Environmental Science Resources
Click one of the links below or scroll down the page to see:
- Considering Bias
- The Hidden Costs of Fossil Fuels
- Hydraulic Fracturing (Fracking)
- Earthquakes and Environmental Risks
- Life Cycle Assessments (LCA)
- Staggering Statistics
- Meaningful Metrics
- Life Cycle Assessments (LCAs) in Action
- Investigating Our Own “Life Cycle”
- Reporting on Ecological Innovation
- Seeing Sustainability in Your World
- Biodiversity Exercise
- Environmental Worldview Scale
- Visioning Exercise
- The Power of One: Book Report/Research Project
- PINEMAP: Project Learning Tree – Climate impacts on forest ecosystems
Background Statistics and General Information
- Website: U.S. Population Clock
- Website: World Population Ticker
- Website: International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme
- Website: Vital Signs of the Planet
- Website: The WorldWatch Institute
- Website: Global Footprint Network
- Website: Climate Opinion Map
- Website: Superfund Sites
- Website and Videos: The Story of Stuff
- Website and Videos: Alaska Outdoor Science School
- Website: Transformational Resilience
- Website: The Ultimate Guide to Cheap Green Living
- Website: The Natural Step
- Website: The Consensus Research Project
- Website and TED Talk: The Ocean Cleanup
- Website and TED Talk: Our Children’s Trust
- TED Talk: William McDonough
- Website: Permaculture
- Website: Will Allen
- Website and TED Talk: Ron Finley
- Film: The Third Industrial Revolution: A Radical New Sharing Economy (2018, 105 min)
- Film: Merchants of Doubt (2014, 96 min)
- Film: Plastic Paradise: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch (2014, 57 min)
- Film: Welcome to the Anthropocene (2012, 3.5 min)
- Films About the Plight of Bees
- Films Providing an Overview of the Environmental Crisis
- Films About Environmental History
- Films About Food
Suggested Readings for Students
References Cited in this Section
Bigelow and Swinehart (2014) distinguished between biased and partisan teaching: Bias refers to an unwillingness to “examine or express one’s own premises; a failure to consider root causes and ask critical questions.” Partisan represents an evidence-based approach. The authors went on to state that “the possibility of a habitable earth is fundamentally incompatible with the business plan of the fossil fuel industry,” and argued for teaching against a system that prioritizes monetary gain over public health, indigenous communities, other species of life, and future generations. What do students think about these statements?
Instructors may wish to reveal their own perspective, and/or ask students to consider theirs. Discuss whether the mainstream media is generally “biased” or “partisan.” For instance, when news programs strive to give “equal time” to climate change deniers — should the amount of time given actually be proportionate to the weight of empirical evidence?
The Hidden Costs of Fossil Fuels
Oil, natural gas, and coal are the three main sources of energy in the U.S. There are significant environmental and public health costs (i.e., externalities) at all levels of production: extraction/mining, transportation, as well as combustion. Instructors could either review these costs (oil and coal are outlined briefly, below), or have students conduct research and present, for instance, as follows: Form groups of students, with each group assigned to a particular fossil fuel. Each student within the group (or a pair of students, in larger classes) is responsible for investigating a specific process and bringing that information back to share with their group, which then collectively develops a presentation on the substance and its costs for the rest of the class.
This growing technology for extracting natural gas from shale deposits poses many risks, including ground-water and soil contamination and possibly earthquakes (Ellsworth & Robertson, 2014). Although the industry has been growing more quickly than scientific evidence (e.g., Schrope, 2012), recent work suggests the potential for radioactive wastes and their associated public health risks (Konkel, 2015). Fracking also represents an example of environmental injustice, as it often occurs in rural and less prosperous regions (e.g., Fry, Briggle & Kincaid, 2015).
Recent popular press has described the looming potential for “The really big one” (Schulz, 2015) – an earthquake that could destroy large sections of the Pacific Northwest. California is also at risk for a “big one,” although the maximum potential for an earthquake involving the San Andreas fault is 8.2, compared to as high as 9.2 if the entire Cascadia subduction zone buckles. The earthquake in Japan that unleashed the nuclear disaster at Fukushima was magnitude 9.0.
Have students consider the various environmental risks that are created or compounded by earthquakes and other natural disasters (destruction of homes and other building structures that generates massive amounts of wasted resources and toxic pollution; nuclear plant melt-downs (e.g., the Hanford nuclear facility in Washington State); impacts on the health and habitats of both humans and wildlife species; etc.)
Introduce permaculture: “a design system that reconciles human communities with the ecological imperatives of a living planet… it provides an ethical and holistic foundation for sustainable culture. Its principles are derived from three basic ethics: Care for the earth. Care for people. Limit needs and reinvest in the future…. It is also a way of organizing knowledge, a connecting system that integrates science, art, politics, anthropology, sociology, and psychology, the diverse experiences and resources available in any community.*” Have students interrogate these statements in the discussion.
One method would be to create groups of students to represent each of the listed academic disciplines (e.g., one group would comprise students who have taken at least one course in chemistry or biology; another group’s focus would be politics, etc.). Ask them to investigate permaculture from the lens of that discipline. For example, you could have them read materials available at http://permacultureprinciples.com/ and consider how permaculture principles are relevant to or informed by aspects of their respective discipline. They could discuss their ideas in class or give class presentations.
LCAs provide an analysis of the environmental impacts of a given product from its components’ origin through disposal (see Cradle to Grave Graphic from the public domain). These reports are helpful to a) consumers in selecting the least environmentally impactful product; b) manufacturers in reducing the environmental impacts of their systems; and c) legislators in regulatory decisions with respect to minimizing environmental degradation (McIntosh & Pontius, 2017).
An LCA typically consists of four elements:
- Goal definition: Specify the context and scope of the evaluation.
- Inventory all processes, including raw material extraction and use, inputs of water and energy, wastewater treatment, and product disposal, as well as emissions and other waste products.
- Impact assessment: Translate processes into specific environmental impacts (e.g., resource use/degradation, global warming potential, human/wildlife toxicity, solid waste), and evaluate level of impact.
- Interpretation: Identify areas for improvement and re-evaluation.
Limitations of the process include the amount of time and effort involved; potential for errors; inconsistent methodology and resulting data; and inappropriate generalization.
“A child born in the U.S. will create thirteen times as much ecological damage over the course of his or her lifetime than a child born in Brazil… The average American will drain as many resources as 35 natives of India, and consume 53 times more goods and services than someone from China” (Tilford, quoted in Use It, 2012). Citizens of the U.S. comprise less than 5% of the world’s population, but use 21% of the world’s oil resources for gasoline and heating oil (about 76%), as well as asphalt, plastics, and synthetic materials in virtually all consumer and industrial products (U.S. Energy Information Administration, 2015).
The Kingdom of Bhutan instituted an Indicator to measure the Country’s Gross National Happiness (GNH) in the 1970s, recognizing that many aspects of well-being are not tied to economic development. It includes 33 indicators spanning nine domains: psychological wellbeing, health, education, time use, cultural diversity and resilience, good governance, community vitality, ecological diversity and resilience, and living standards (Centre for Bhutan Studies, 2015) These are identified as cultural values, comprising a “good life.” Ask students to discuss this approach as opposed to a focus on Gross Domestic Product. Instructors could also reference the Genuine Progress Indicator and other indices of Gross National Happiness.
LCAs involve measuring inputs (what is needed to make the product), such as energy, materials, land, and labor, and the outputs: the product itself (materials, goods, services, electricity), as well as wastes, emissions, and other resulting outcomes of the production process (i.e., co-products & by-products). Following a discussion of Life Cycle Assessments (see lecture material, above), have students conduct their own LCA for a commonly used item. They should respond to the following questions about the item and at least one alternative option (e.g., paper plate vs. china that is washed and re-used). (Adapted from Bell, et al., n.d.)
- What is the product’s function (or service provided)?
- What is the functional unit (a numerical value assigned to the function; allows comparison between products; e.g., holds x ounces of food)?
- What materials and resources are used to produce the product?
- What are the environmental impacts (e.g., waste)? (Does washing the china produce waste?)
- Is there potential for human or wildlife toxicity (consider potential exposures at all levels during the life cycle)?
- In addition to the environmental impacts, what are the social and economic impacts of the item?
- What additional information and types of data do you need?
- From the available information, can you determine which option is less impactful?
Ask students to read about “natural burials” and composting human corpses, or about humanure (e.g., composting toilets). They could then participate in a class debate or write a reaction paper. Have them consider the history and social norms surrounding burial and human waste, including the “repugnance” described in Einhorn’s (2015) article.
For this assignment, students will peruse local, national, and global news sources and find one example at each of the three news levels of a current ecological innovation related to energy, water, food, or material goods. For example, in the realm of energy, one might search for news reports of biomass or biodiesel in local, national, and global sources.
Arrange for a class trip or ask students to independently take a field trip to a farmer’s market, a second-hand store, an eco-industrial park, or a local farm engaging in organic, permaculture, “guerilla gardening,” aquaponics, or other sustainable practices. You could also ask them find examples of sharing programs in your community, and brainstorm ideas for more. Ask students to write up their observations, particularly as they relate to the concept of developing an “ecological worldview” and/or give a class presentation. Ask them to envision ways they could reduce and reuse, share and repair, re-purpose and recycle, in their own lives.
Many college and organizational campuses are establishing practices to encourage native species (e.g., no-mow, prairie, or rain garden areas), and banning chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Have groups of 2-3 students pick a 3-foot diameter area in several “zones” on your campus (e.g., Main Quad; Psychology Building Lawn; Environmental Sciences Dept. Garden; Weedy Patch behind building X), and document every species of plant or animal they see in that study area.
Emphasize that students don’t need to count every insect or leaf or blade of grass; just the variety of species; they also don’t need to know the formal names, but can just provide a simple description (“furry black and red caterpillar” or “dark green plant with white striations”). Students can then create a biodiversity exercise chart that documents the different species seen in each of the study regions. It is likely that the most species are seen in the “weediest” areas, with relatively few seen in groomed (mowed and fertilized) zones. Class discussion could include “the impact of untended vs. manicured areas on student recruitment, retention, and alumni loyalty” (Bell, et al., 2012).
As a companion exercise, instructors could assign the brief article, Biodiversity is our life (Marton-Lefèvre, 2010), and discuss it, including how it relates to the results of their campus biodiversity project.
Ask students to complete the Environmental Worldview Scale (Nooney, et al., 2003) using a 5 point scale: 1 (strongly disagree) to 5 (strongly agree). Note that items 7-10 are reverse scored; instructors can vary the presentation of the items to intersperse those that are reverse scored. Higher scores are associated with greater pro-environmental attitudes.
- The balance of nature is very delicate and easily upset.
- When humans interfere with nature it often produces disastrous consequences.
- Humans have an ethical obligation to protect the environment.
- We are approaching the limit of the number of people the earth can support.
- There are limits to growth beyond which our industrialized society cannot expand.
- Protecting the environment is so important that requirements and standards cannot be too high and continuing environmental improvements must be made regardless of cost.
- Humans have the right to modify the natural environment to suit their own needs.
- Mankind was created to rule over the rest of nature.
- Plants and animals exist primarily to be used by humans.
- Humans need not adapt to the environment because they can make it to suit their needs.
Ask students to respond to the following prompts (adapted from Wheeler, et al., 2002) in their course journal or in a response paper.
- What do you think the future will look like in 20 years?
- What do you want the future to look like in 20 years, for yourselves as well as future generations?
- Consider the difference(s) between think and want?
- Reflect on human needs and quality-of-life issues you might address in your desired future.
- If this is really the future you want, how can you help to make it happen?
Have students share responses with the full class or in small groups.
- What are you good at? (skills, talents)
- What do you enjoy doing? (what makes your heart sing?)
- What does a “sustainable” world look like?
- How can (1) & (2) connect to (3) – i.e., what’s your part in healing the world?
Countless individuals have made significant contributions to the environmental movement. Some have biographies or autobiographies available, others have written exposés. This assignment involves reading about one such individual or his/her cause, writing a report (5-7 pages), and preparing a brief (8-10 min.) presentation, including:
– background on the specific issue;
– why the issue is important to you;
– what the person/people did;
– your reactions to reading about the person/people;
– a list of the references you used for your research (using APA style citations and reference list). If you chose to do a book report, simply identify the book you read in the Reference section.
Many instructor resources and activities are available on a website developed by Project Learning Tree and the University of Florida. While its focus is climate change impacts on southeastern U.S. forest ecosystems, many of the activities (e.g., section 4 on Life Cycle Assessment including environmental externalities) could be useful to instructors in any region.
Background Statistics and General Information
The United States Census Bureau provides an easy access webpage to review current population statistics for the U.S. and the world. Also included are estimates and projections for future population size.
Worldometer provides real-time statistics on world population.
International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme includes a wealth of resources, including the so-called “hockey-stick graphs” of human impact indicators (e.g., population, energy consumption, transportation and water use, and indicators of changes in major environmental components of the Earth System (e.g., carbon cycle, nitrogen cycle and biodiversity).
NASA’s Vital Signs of the Planet provides excellent information on current condition of the Earth’s carbon dioxide levels, global temperature, land ice, and many more.
The WorldWatch Institute “works to accelerate the transition to a sustainable world that meets human needs” via research and action-inspiring outreach.
Global Footprint Network is a great resource both in and out of the classroom, providing data and resources to understand your ecological impact on the world, including an Ecological Footprint calculator.
The Yale Program on Climate Communication provides a Climate Opinion Map that serves to “visualize and explore differences in public opinion about global warming in the United States in unprecedented geographic detail.”
“The Story of Stuff Project’s journey began with a 20-minute online movie about the way we make, use and throw away all the Stuff in our lives…. [Now it’s a] community of more than a million changemakers worldwide, working to build a more healthy and just planet.” View more of their timely and provocative videos here.
“Located at the end of North America’s longest glacial fjord lies Haines, Alaska and the Alaska Outdoor Science School (AOSS). Surrounded by majestic mountains and wild rivers that are teaming with wildlife, this is truly an amazing living classroom. It is here that our experienced guides and instructors will lead you in learning about the wonders of nature and its interconnectedness. AOSS focuses on combining lectures with experiential learning opportunities to ground the experience and to help root understanding. There is no better way to learn about glaciers than to walk on them and experience their unique characteristics. This combination of learning, in this dynamic location, produces once in a lifetime educational experiences that can transform students.” This 6:50 video provides an overview of the course.
Widespread social disruption and trauma are already occurring as a result of the changing global climate (extreme weather events, drought, rising sea levels, increased illness, water and food shortages, forced migration, etc.), and are only expected to worsen, unless aggressive emission reduction efforts are rapidly employed. The Resource Innovation Group, led by Psychologist and Environmental Scientist, Bob Doppelt, encourages the Transformational Resilience program to help individuals and organizations “learn neuroscience-based preventative resilience skills.” The goal is to foster the ability “to constructively cope with and use climate-enhanced adversities as catalysts to learn, grow, and enhance personal, collective, and ecological well-being.”
This Guide, written by an eco-consultant and clean energy expert, provides the reasoning, and practical suggestions, for living green.
The Natural Step is a non-profit, “dedicated to education, advisory work, system change initiatives, innovation and research in sustainable development.”
This Ireland-based organization “uses social science and collaborative research methods to explore innovative policy, technology and educational initiatives for sustainable household consumption practices relating to food, water, energy and mobility.“ See their short trailer (2013, 1:53) about transitions to sustainable consumption.
Boyan Slat is a young man who conceived of a technology to clean up the Pacific Garbage Gyre. His vision of how the oceans can clean themselves is described in this 30 minute (2017) video and at The Ocean Cleanup.
Our Children’s Trust is a non-profit organization that is initiating lawsuits based on The Doctrine of Public Trust, which holds the government accountable to protect natural resources including a stable climate. Bill Moyers did several segments on these activities, including interviews with the environmental lawyer and author of the book, Nature’s Trust, Mary Christina Wood (2015, 26 min) and the young Oregonian activist, Kelsey Juliana (2014, 26 min). Kelsey also has an inspiring (2017, 11:42 min) Tedx Talk entitled Youth as solutionaries: Active Hope Against Climate Catastrophe.
Sustainable building architect William McDonough describes components of The Next Industrial Revolution, including a cradle to cradle perspective on manufacturing goods (21:56). There’s also a 10 min version.
Permaculture offers a wealth of information, resources, and video clips.
Urban Aquaponic Gardener Will Allen’s website.
“The global economy is in crisis. The exponential exhaustion of natural resources, declining productivity, slow growth, rising unemployment, and steep inequality, forces us to rethink our economic models. Where do we go from here? In this feature-length documentary, social and economic theorist Jeremy Rifkin lays out a road map to usher in a new economic system.” Film can be found at Third Industrial Revolution.
“Spin doctors spread misinformation and confusion among American citizens to delay progress on such important issues as global climate change.” Documentary directed by Robert Kenner. Film can be found at Merchants of Doubt
The effects of our plastic consumption is invesigated in this film directed by Angela Sun. Film can be found at Plastic Paradise: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch
This film offers a brief journey through the last 250 years from the start of the Industrial Revolution to today. This film opened the UN’s Rio+20 summit, the largest event in the UN’s history. Film can be found at Welcome to the Anthropocene.
- Vanishing of the Bees (2011; 90 min) narrated by Ellen Page, “examines the alarming disappearance of honeybees and [its] greater meaning about the relationship between mankind and mother earth.”
- Dance of the Honey Bee (2013; 6:41) Narrated by Bill McKibben, this short film reviews the “determined, beautiful and vital role honey bees play in preserving life, as well as the threats bees face from a rapidly changing landscape.”
Before the Flood (2016, 96 min)
Narrator and Producer Leonardo DiCaprio’s film documents climate change impacts that are already occurring, and questions “humanity’s ability to reverse what may be the most catastrophic problem mankind has ever faced.”
An Inconvenient Truth (2006) and An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power (2017).
Al Gore’s 2006 film made “the compelling case that global warming is real, man-made, and its effects will be cataclysmic” [from the film website]. The 2017 sequel shows “just how close we are to a real energy revolution” [from the film website].
Blind Spot (2008)
This documentary by Adolpho Doring,
establishes the inextricable link between the energy we use, the way we run our economy and the effect it has had on our environment. It takes as a starting point the inevitable energy depletion scenario know as Peak Oil to inform us that by whatever measure of greed, wishful thinking, neglect or ignorance, we are at a crossroad which offers two paths, both with dire consequences. If we continue to burn fossil fuels our ecology will collapse and if we don’t, our economy will. Either path we choose to take will have a profound effect on our way of life. [from the film website]
Bill Moyers Reports: Earth on Edge (2001)
While nearly 20 years old, this two hour film is an engaging and alarming introduction to the impact of human activities on the planet. Moyers reports from Mongolia, British Columbia, Brazil, South Africa, and Kansas. A discussion guide, classroom materials, and other resources are available at the PBS website. See a description and view a clip of the film at the Films for Humanities & Sciences website here.
A Fierce Green Fire: The Battle for a Living Planet (2014, 53 min.)
Wrenched (2014, 93 min.)
Green Fire: Aldo Leopold and a Land Ethic for our Time (2011, 57 min.)
Earth Days (2009, 102 min.)
Monumental: David Brower’s Fight for Wild America (2004, 77 min.)
In our Own Backyard: The First Love Canal (1983, 59 min.)
Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret (2014, 90 min) “Animal agriculture is the leading cause of deforestation, water consumption and pollution, is responsible for more greenhouse gases than the transportation industry, and is a primary driver of rainforest destruction, species extinction, habitat loss, topsoil erosion, ocean ‘dead zones,’ and virtually every other environmental ill. [Yet there] appears to be an intentional refusal to discuss the issue of animal agriculture by leaders in the environmental movement” (excerpt from website).
Farmageddon (2011, 86 min)
Americans’ right to access fresh, healthy foods of their choice is under attack. Farmageddon tells the story of farms that were providing safe, healthy foods to their communities and were forced to stop, sometimes through violent action.
DIVE! (2010, 55 min)
Digging into the hidden recesses of the American food industry, this eye-opening documentary reveals the appalling amount of edible, nutritious goods that are thrown away — wasted — every day in a nation where millions of citizens still go hungry.
King Corn (2009, 50 min) and The companion film, Big River(2010, 27 min) offer insight on the ecological consequences of industrial agriculture. In King Corn, friends Ian Cheney and Curt Ellis move back to America’s Corn Belt to plant an acre of the nation’s most-grown and most-subsidized grain and follow their crop into the U.S. food supply. Big River continues their investigation into the environmental impact their acre of corn has had on the people and places downstream. Is industrial agriculture worth its hidden costs?
Fresh (2009, 72 min)
FRESH celebrates the farmers, thinkers and business people across America who are re-inventing our food system. Each has witnessed the rapid transformation of our agriculture into an industrial model and confronted the consequences: food contamination, environmental pollution, depletion of natural resources, and morbid obesity. Forging healthier, sustainable alternatives, they offer a practical vision for a future of our food and our planet. Among several main characters, FRESH features urban farmer and activist, Will Allen, the recipient of MacArthur’s 2008 Genius Award; sustainable farmer and entrepreneur, Joel Salatin, made famous by Michael Pollan’s book, The Omnivore’s Dilemma; and supermarket owner, David Ball, challenging our Wal-Mart dominated economy. [excerpt from website]
Ingredients (2009, 67 min)
Narrated by actress Bebe Neuwirth, this engaging documentary weighs the shortcomings of America’s industrialized food system against a rising local-growth movement, whose proponents are shrinking the gap between farmland and dinner table. With chefs Alice Waters and Greg Higgins as guiding lights, growers, restaurateurs and consumers around the country, from Oregon to Harlem, New York, discuss their methods for bringing food production back home.
Dirt! The Movie (2009, 80 min) is an astonishing, humorous, and substantial look at the glorious and unappreciated ground beneath our feet. Dirt feeds us and gives us shelter. Dirt holds and cleans our water. Dirt heals us and makes us beautiful. Dirt regulates the earth’s climate. Why do we humans ignore, abuse, and destroy our most precious living natural resource? Consider the results of such behavior: mass starvation, drought, floods, and global warming. Narrated by Jamie Lee Curtis, Dirt! The Movie tells the story of humans trying to reconnect to dirt- the living skin of the earth.
Food Fight—Revolution Never Tasted So Good (2008, 71 min). Discover the disturbing problems inherent in today’s food system with this insightful documentary, which profiles chef Alice Waters’s efforts to promote local, organic and sustainable agriculture as a delicious alternative to mass-produced fare.
Food, Inc. (2008, 94 min). Drawing on Eric Schlosser’s Fast Food Nation and Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma, director Robert Kenner’s provocative, Oscar-nominated documentary explores the food industry’s detrimental effects on our health and environment.
Bell, P.A., et al. (n.d.) Handouts for Exercises in Environmental Psychology, Colorado State University.
Bell, P. A., Romano, P. A., Benfield, J. A., et al., (2012). Classroom exercises and demonstrations on human and natural environment impact. Ecopsychology, 4, p. 152. DOI: 10.1089/ECO.2012.0013 Note that this article contains a variety of suggested class activities.
Bigelow, B. & Swinehart, T. (2014). A people’s curriculum for the earth: Teaching climate change and the environmental crisis. Milwaukee WI: Rethinking Schools.
Centre for Bhutan Studies (2015). Gross National Happiness Index. Retrieved 9/24/15 from http://www.grossnationalhappiness.com/articles/
Einhorn, C. (2015, April 13). A project to turn corpses into compost, New York Times, Retrieved 10/16/15 from http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/14/science/a-project-to-turn-corpses-into-compost.html?smid=pl-share&_r=0
Ellsworth, W. & Robertson, J. (2014). Man-made earthquakes update. Science Features; USGS.
Fry, M., Briggle, A., & Kincaid, J. (2015). Fracking and environmental (in)justice in a Texas city. Ecological Economics, 117, 97-107.
Konkel, L. (2015). What’s NORMal for fracking? Estimating total radioactivity of produced fluids. Environmental Health Perspectives, 123 (7), A 186. Available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.123-A186
Marton-Lefèvre, J. (2010). Biodiversity is our life, Science, 327(5970), p1179. Available at http://www.sciencemag.org/content/327/5970/1179.full
McIntosh, A. & Pontius, J. (2017). Science and the Global Environment: Case Studies for Integrating Science and the Global Environment. Cambridge, MA: Elsevier.
Nooney, J., Woodrum, E., Hoban, T., & Clifford, W. (2003). Environmental worldview and behavior: Consequences of dimensionality in a survey of North Carolinians . Environment & Behavior, 35(6), 763-783.
Schrope, M. (2012). Fracking outpaces science on its impact. Environment Yale. Retrieved 9/10/15 from http://environment.yale.edu/envy/stories/fracking-outpaces-science-on-its-impact
U.S. Energy Information Administration (2015). What are the products and uses of petroleum? Retrieved 10-18-15 from http://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.cfm?id=41&t=6
Use it and Lose it: The outsize effect of U.S. Consumption on the Environment (2012, Sept 14). Scientific American, Retrieved 10/18/15 from http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/american-consumption-habits/