For the final assignment, you will apply what you have learned about water, the water cycle, and laws related to water to a real life example where these topics/concepts are at the center.  

 

1.Watch “Erin Brokovich” with Julia Roberts.  

 

2.Take on the role of an Environmental Scientist gathering evidence and documentation to support a strong court case.  

 

3.As you watch the film of your choice, be sure to take notes related to the topics/concepts covered in this course:

 1. The role of water

 2. The water cycle

 3. Infiltration and soil water

 4. Surface water and groundwater

 5. Water Quality and Treatment

 6. Federal Legislation and Water Law

 

4.Create a slideshow to convey the information needed to answer the following questions/prompt. Use the film as your source/citation, along with any other research you may need to do.  

Questions to answer:

 

1.What is the problem? Who is affected by the problem? Who is involved in solving/creating the problem?

 

2.What are some things you already know about this case?  Be sure not to confuse what you know with what you assume.

 

3.As an Environmental Scientist, what is your job?

 

4.What can you do to help solve the case (even if you already know the ending)?  Brainstorm and list the things that you would like to test or dig into.

 

Now, you have lab results from the water samples taken from the well water.  The water containing TCE is a solvent used in industrial processes and is a Volatile Organic Compound.  TCE is toxic and carcinogenic. You take this case on as the lead Environmental Scientist.  

 

1. How should you test the water to determine where the TCE came from?

2. Where should you begin?

3. What variable(s) should you take into consideration? Think about earth materials, landforms, chemicals and solubility, effects on humans, etc.  

4. What is your plan to test the water?

5. Were there industries in the area that are no longer present? Are any industries present currently?

6. How could you be sure about who caused the contamination?

7. What would you do if you were called to testify in court as the lead environmental scientist?  

 

5.Disadvantaged communities often do not have access to environmental scientists.  What are the implications of this difference between industries and communities?

 

6.The manufacturing of goods we use every day has environmental and human health impacts.  How could environmental science be used to improve the sustainability of creating these products?

 

Conclusion:

 

What was the final outcome of the case? Are residents still being impacted by this today? What does this imply for our actions today and the future of our communities even with all of the environmental awareness and laws that we have now?