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Environmental Systems


Environmental Systems

002 - Environmental Systems

Biological Molecules:

In this video Paul Andersen explains how matter and energy are conserved within the Earth's system. Matter is a closed system and Energy is open to the surroundings. In natural systems steady state is maintained through feedback loops but can be be affected by human society.

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Title: I4dsong_loop_main.wav
Artist: CosmicD
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Title: String Theory
Artist: Herman Jolly

All of the images are licensed under creative commons and public domain licensing:

2006, Photo by Johntex. English: Man Sitting under Beach Umbrella., February 18, 2006. Johntex.
“Circular Graphic of Business Cycle or Circuit - Free Business Icons.” Flaticon. Accessed August 23, 2015.
College, OpenStax. English: Illustration from Anatomy & Physiology, Connexions Web Site. Jun 19, 2013., May 16, 2013. Anatomy & Physiology, Connexions Web site. Jun 19, 2013.
DePiep. English: Category Colors according to - Diatomic Nonmetals. See En:wp., August 14, 2013. Own work.
DynaBlast. Covalently Bonded Hydrogen and Carbon in a W:molecule of Methane., January 28, 2006. Created with Inkscape.
Eastland, Jessie. English: Sunset, Joshua Tree California, USA., July 20, 2012. Own work.
Ebaychatter0. English: Sport Car, October 3, 2012. Own work.
France, Chad Teer from Coquitlam. Offshore Platform Located in the Gulf of Mexico, Port Location Cd. Del Carmen., October 22, 2004. - image description page.
“Gasoline.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia, August 19, 2015.
English: A Colored Emoji from Emojione Project, [object HTMLTableCellElement].
“James Prescott Joule.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia, July 29, 2015.
Kulenov, Zhanat. English: The Aral Sea Is Drying Up. Bay of Zhalanash, Ship Cemetery, Aralsk, Kazakhstan, April 11, 2006. UNESCO.
“Lake.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia, August 21, 2015.
MODIS, NASA images by Reto Stöckli, based on data from NASA and NOAA Instrument: Terra-. Polski: Mozaika Zdjęć Półkuli Zachodniej, Zrzutowana Na Sferę I Poddana Obróbce., October 2, 2007. Earth Observatory: Twin Blue Marbles.
“Molecular Configuration - Free Education Icons.” Flaticon. Accessed August 22, 2015.
Producercunningham, NASA Collage by. English: A Comparison of the Aral Sea in 1989 (left) and 2014 (right)., September 30, 2014. 1989: aral sea 1989 250m File:Aralsea tmo 2014231 lrg.jpg.
“Recycle Reuse - Free Arrows Icons.” Flaticon. Accessed August 22, 2015.
Roscoe, Henry. Picture of James Joule, 1906. The Life & Experiences of Sir Henry Enfield Roscoe (Macmillan: London and New York), p. 120.
Wikipedia, The original uploader was Adz at English. Daintree Rainforest. Photo Taken June 2005. Uploaded with Permission., August 13, 2005. Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons.

Systems Boundary & Environment

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Up until now we have been talking primarily about the internal workings of systems, but in this section we will start to present models for understanding systems within the context of the broader environment within which they must operate and interact with other systems.



Source: article, adapted under license.

Environmental systems analysis (ESA) is a systematic and systems based approach for describing human actions impacting on the natural environment to support decisions and actions aimed at perceived current or future environmental problems. Impacts of different types of objects are studied that ranges from projects, programs and policies, to organizations, and products. Environmental systems analysis encompasses a family of environmental assessment tools and methods, including life cycle assessment (LCA), material flow analysis (MFA) and substance flow analysis (SFA), and environmental impact assessment (EIA), among others.

ESA studies aims at describing the environmental repercussions of defined human activities. These activities are mostly effective through use of different technologies altering material and energy flows, or (in)directly changing ecosystems (e.g. through changed land-use, agricultural practices, logging etc.), leading to undesired environmental impacts in a, more or less, specifically defined geographical area, and time, ranging from local to global. The basis for the analytical procedures used in ESA studies is the perception of flows of matter and energy associated to causal chains linking human activities to the environmental changes of concern. Some methods are focusing different parts or aspects of the energy/matter flows or the causal chains, where flow models like MFA or LCA deals with the more or less human controlled societal flows while, e.g. ecological risk assessment (ERA) is related to disentangling environmental causal chains. Environmental systems analysis studies has been suggested to be divided between full and attributional approaches. The full mode covers identified material and energy flows and associated processes leading to environmental impacts. The attributional approach, on the other hand, is based on an analysis of the processes needed to fulfil a certain purpose such as the function that a product delivers. The combination of methods (e.g. LCA and environmental risk assessment) has also been of interest

Methods can be grouped into procedural and analytical approaches. The procedural ones (e.g. EIA or strategic environmental assessment, SEA) focus on the procedure around the analysis, while the analytical ones (e.g. LCA, MFA) put the main focus on technical aspects of the analysis, and can be used as parts of the procedural approaches. Regarding the impacts studied, the environmental issues cover both effecs of natural resource use and other environmental impacts, e.g. due to emissions of chemicals, or other agents. In addition, environmental systems analysis studies can cover or be based on economic accounts (life cycle costing, cost-benefit analysis, input-output analysis, systems for economic and environmental accounts), or consider social aspects. The objects of study are distinguished into five categories.

Lecture 1-Principles of Energy Balance in Environmental Systems

Lecture 1 of 7 in the principles of energy balance in environmental systems lecture series.
Lecture covers:
1. Introduction: The magnitude of water use in agriculture
2. The challenge of measuring water use and evapotranspiration
3. Reference books on environmental physics
4. First law of thermodynamics: energy in equals energy out
5. The seven components of the energy balance equation
6. The magnitude of latent heat of evaporation
7. Understanding energy and power
8. Shortwave and longwave radiation
9. E = mc2 homework
All lectures and handouts can be found at

Aircraft Systems - 09 - Enviromental System

In this video we discuss the environmental systems that help to keep you and your passengers comfortable while in flight. These include the heating, ventilation, and defrost systems of the Cessna 172S.

Overview of Environmental Management Systems

An overview of: environmental management in industrial applications, what environmental managers do, and what an Environmental Management System is.

Environmental Economics

021 - Environmental Economics

In this video Paul Andersen explains how economic models, like supply and demand, can be applied to environmental systems. The market forces will not protect environmental services until proper valuation and externalities are established. The wealth of a nation can be more accurately measured through the sustainability of the economic model.

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Music Attribution

Title: I4dsong_loop_main.wav
Artist: CosmicD
Link to sound:
Creative Commons Atribution License

Title: String Theory
Artist: Herman Jolly

All of the images are licensed under creative commons and public domain licensing:
balin, jean victor. (2009). Cartoon cloud. Retrieved from
Contrast, H. (2008). Deutsch: Eine Fabrik in China am Ufer des Jangtse.English: A Factory in China at Yangtze River.Euskara: Landare industrialen ondoriz, aire kutsakorra.Nederlands: Industrie langs de Yangtse rivier in China. Retrieved from
EPA. (2008). English: Diesel smoke from a big truck. Retrieved from
Evans, N. 17 crew; taken by either H. S. or R. (1972). العربية: صورة الكرة الزرقاء الشهيرة التي تعتبر أول صورة لمنظر الارض الكامل. إلتقطت الصورة في 7 ديسمبر 1972. Retrieved from
Factory by Anonymous. (n.d.). Retrieved from
Gizlog. (2011). English: Sigmund Freud Bobble Head/Wackelkopf. Retrieved from
Zifan, A. (2015). English: Countries by GDP (PPP) per capita in 2014, based on data from the International Monetary Fund. Retrieved from

KC-135 Maintenance – Electrical And Environment Systems Specialists

Electrical and environmental specialists from the 6th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron perform routine maintenance on a KC-135 Stratotanker.

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Video: Bradley Tipton

IB Environmental Systems and Societies Exam Tips- The Holistic Approach

Dubay explains the need to think holistically using a systems approach and he identifies the principle of sustainability as being central to good environmental management. Go here for the link to the Ted Ed lesson mentioned in the video:

Environmental Systems Innovation

View the full paper at this link:
A short video giving an overview of our environmental systems innovation paper.
Produced By:

U.S. Air Force: Aircraft Electrical & Environmental

Jets are packed with electronics, wires, circuits and more. Somebody has to be in charge of it all.

Tips for the IB Environmental Systems and Societies Exam

The sample question and model answer were made by Dubay and it is not owned by the IBO. Many of the tips are based on comments in the examiners reports from the IBO and from Dubay's experience as an examiner in this subject. There are many useful links to key topics embedded in this video.
A full exam review playlist is available here:

Dissolved Air Flotation (DAF) System in Operation | Ecologix Environmental Systems

100 GPM Dissolved Air Flotation System separates sludge from an industrial food manufacturing wastewater. Learn more about V-Series DAF systems at

UC Merced Graduate Studies: Environmental Systems

The Environmental Systems graduate program trains students to tackle the most challenging problems facing our planet -- water, soil, climate, energy and resources. Through understanding the Earth as an integrated system of atmosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere and biosphere that intersects human society, ES students are uniquely poised to address critical research needs of the environment and its sustainability. Graduates are prepared for careers in academia, research, government and industry that integrate expertise from across engineering, natural sciences and social sciences.

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Socio-Environmental Systems By Design

Socio-Environmental Systems by Design assessed outcomes of engineered landscapes and intentional efforts to alter, manage, or direct the structure and functioning of socio-environmental systems. It involved ​governance, urban planning, infrastructure, environmental justice, synthetic biology solutions, technology, conservation or protected areas, scientific inquiry, and knowledge production. Key take-aways from the theme include the importance of tangible products in order to engage the public and stakeholders and encourage involvement as well as encouraging taking academic risks and embracing being a novice outside of the academic community.

Chapter 2 Environment Systems, Matter & Energy LECTURE VIDEO

Chapter 2 Environment Systems, Matter & Energy LECTURE VIDEO

Human-Environment Systems

What is Human-Environment Systems science? Listen to experts in the field describe how this new way of combining social science data with biological data is critical in addressing our most pressing environmental challenges. For more information about the research and courses from the Human-Environment Systems team within the College of Innovation and Design go to

Nasuni Customer Story: Environmental Systems Design (ESD)

The global architecture and engineering firm Environmental Systems Design, Inc., had enough capacity to handle its data.
The challenge was protecting that data. The firm would often have 15TB of data in production at a given time and its existing backup solutions simply could not keep pace. After quickly outgrowing several other systems, ESD turned to Nasuni’s enterprise storage as a service. Now, thanks to Nasuni’s automated backup, which delivers unlimited versioning, fast disaster recovery
and an unmatched RPO, IT can stop worrying about backup and focus on its core mission of enhancing business productivity.

Lecture 4-Principles of Energy Balance in Environmental Systems

Lecture 4 of 7 in the principles of energy balance in environmental systems lecture series.
Lecture covers:
1. Understanding the radiation balance on Earth
2. Differential absorption of Shortwave radiation
3. Reflectance of longwave radiation
4. Wein’s Law
5. Planck’s Equation
All lectures and handouts can be found at

Frac Water Treatment with the ITS | Ecologix Environmental Systems

Treating frac water with the Integrated Treatment System near Carrizo Springs, Texas



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