Powerful Geography
Connecting to Geography

Connecting to Geography

Geographic Issue: Climate Change and Human-Environment Interactions

State or Region Climate Change Issue(s) Student Interests from Questionnaire Career Options Powerful Geographic Knowledge
Florida Urban Heat Islands and Rising Sea Levels Housing/Urban Development; Environmental Matters; Medical Urban Planner;

Parks Planner; Landscaper; Air Quality Inspector;

urban heat island effect; native vegetation; air quality
California Extreme wildfires First Responder; Environmental Matters Wildland Firefighter; Forest and Conservation Technicians;

Meteorologists; Emergency Management Director

land surveying;

meteorology; wind patterns; low and high pressure systems; weather forecasting

Nevada and surrounding areas Drought Environmental Matters;

Farming/Agriculture;

Real Estate

Water Conservationist; Watershed Manager; Hydrologists irrigation; water supply; aquifers; ground and surface water; riparian rights; horticulture
Midwest Agriculture – temperature and precipitation extremes (change in growing season) Farming/Agriculture;

Restaurants/Hospitality

Farmer; Soil Conservationist; Chef; Food production climate zones; soil; topography; precision agriculture; analyzing geographic data (GIS/GPS)
Entire U.S. Agriculture – shifting climate means seeds that can grow in that climate change Farming/Agriculture Farmer; Agricultural and Food Scientist climate zones; soil; topography
New England Rising temperatures effect snow resorts; Warming waters effects fishing industry Environmental Matters; Tourism/Travel; Farming/Agriculture;

Restaurants/Hospitality; Business

Ski resort manager; Ecotourism; Water quality inspector; Chef; Ecologists; Economist; Pollution Analyst hydroponic farming; climate zones; conservation; ecology; biomes
Gulf Coast/East Coast Increase in frequency and extreme hurricanes.  Extended hurricane season. Environmental Matters; First Responders; Construction and Extraction; Housing/Urban Development; Tourism/Travel Emergency Management Directors; Meteorologists; Urban and City Planners; Building Code Inspectors meteorology; climatology; tides and storm surge; floodplains; topography; planning evacuation routes; location; spatial awareness; GIS/GPS

Geographic Issue: Environmental Management

State or Region Environmental Management Issue(s) Student Interests from Questionnaire Career Options from Job Summaries Powerful Geographic Knowledge
National or State Parks, Protected Areas, Wilderness Areas, National Forests Parks and Protected Places – being a steward of the country’s protected places, and educating visitors on the natural resources of the location and why it is important to keep them preserved from intense development Tourism/Travel

Environmental Matters

Park Ranger; Ecotoursim Guide; Expedition Leader; Environmental Interpretater

Parks Planner; Park Naturalist;

Education; ecology; land management and stewardship; tour planning; resource management
Entire United States Water Pollution – managing the water resources of the United States, and planning to ensure the availability of clean water for all in the future Sciences (Life, Physical, Social)

Environmental Matters

Water Conservation Officer; Water Quality Inspector; Watershed Manager; Groundwater Hydrologist; Decontamination Technician Water Quality; Groundwater sources; watershed management; the hydrologic cycle
Entire United States Development and Industrialization – the United States is rapidly developing, usually at the detriment of our natural resources and environment. Environmental managers may work in these industries to help ensure that the environmental impact of development is minimal. Transportation Planning and Transit

Commercial Planning and Construction

Housing/Urban Development

Environmental Matters

GIS Analyst/Technician; Location Analyst; Cartographer and Photogrammetrist; Surveyor; Zoning Inspector; Environmental Consultant; Environmental Compliance Inspector; Environmental Conservation Officer; Environmental Science and Protection Technician; Industrial Ecologist; Urban and Regional Planner  Urban and Regional Planning; location analysis; GIS and Geospatial Technologies; Field Methods; local populations and their needs; ecology; environmental laws and policies
Pacific Northwest, New England Deforestation – historically, the once massive forests were cut down to harvest timber, and make way for development. Environmental Managers can work as forest technicians to protect and wisely use the forests that remain. Environmental Matters

Sciences (Life, Physical, Social)

 

Forest and Conservation Technicians; Urban Forester; Procurement Forester; Conservation Land Managers; Land Stewardship Coordinator; Environmental Restoration Planner Remote sensing; dendrochronology; physical geography; GIS and Geospatial Technologies; Field methods; ecology
Entire United States Environmental Justice – areas that are the most impacted by pollution and degraded environmental quality are usually those with greater economic disparities. Social Work

Medical/Health Care/Nursing

Environmental Matters

Community Health Worker; Community Garden Coordinator; Pollution Analyst; Community Resilience and Mitigation Planner; Environmental Compliance Officer; Environmental Inspector; Nurse; Physician  Local demographics; qualitative and quantitative research; local economies; social justice; patterns of health issues; environmental policies; pollution
Entire United States Sustainability – the notion of protecting the resources we have now to ensure that they exist for generations in the future. Individuals can also adopt sustainable “lifestyles” as to lessen their personal negative impacts on the environment Environmental Matters Electric vehicles associate researcher; pollution analyst; Recycling and Reclamation Workers; Recycling Officer; Solar Placement/Technician; Ecologist; Environmental Education Officer; Parks Planner; Parks Naturalist; Sustainability; pollution; alternative energy sources; natural resources management conservation; human-environment interaction;
Entire United States Climate Change – climate change impacts every aspect of the environment. Environmental managers are working to develop new strategies to mitigate the impacts of climate change on our natural resources such as water and energy Environmental Matters

Sciences (Life, Physical, Social)

Climatologist; Greenhouse Gas Reduction Specialist; Climate Change Analyst; Atmospheric Chemists; Environmental Consultants; Climate Scientist; Environmental Compliance Officer; Environmental Policy Officer; Environmental Restoration Planner Meteorology; the hydrologic cycle; natural resources; environmental management; watershed management; energy systems; weather patterns; air quality;

Geographic Issue: Air Quality and Pollution

State or Region Air Quality and Pollution Issue(s) Student Interests from Questionnaire Career Options from Job Summaries Powerful Geographic Knowledge
Large, densely populated cities Smog – fog, but made denser by chemical fumes. Environmental Matters; Conservation; Sustainability;

Transportation Planning and Transportation;

Housing/Urban Development

Greenhouse Gas Reduction Specialist; Air Quality Forecaster; Atmospheric Chemist; Electric Vehicles Associate Researcher; Pollution Analyst

Industrial Designer; GIS Analyst/Technician; County Surveyor

Air chemistry; transportation systems; population patterns;
Regions with high ozone levels or industrial pollutants Diseases – risk of health issues such as asthma, lung disease, or even cancer can be increased by poor air quality or pollution Medical/Healthcare/Nursing Epidemiologist; Medical Scientist; Physician and Surgeon; Nurse (Registered Nurse, Licensed Practical, Licensed Vocational); Physician Assistant; Community Health Worker; Location Analyst Geographic distribution of diseases; local populations; local economies and job industries; regional geography; GIS and geospatial technologies; quantitative and qualitative methods
Entire United States Environmental Justice – the movement behind the realization that communities and populations experiencing greater economic disparities also experience greater risk to poor air quality/pollution. Social Work;

Environmental Matters; Conservation; Sustainability

Government, Law and Criminal Justice System

Community Resilience and Mitigation Planner; Community Health Worker;

Environmental Health and Safety Specialist; Environmental Policy Officer; Environmental Compliance Officer; Location Analyst

Paralegal; Lobbyist; Lawyer

Local populations and economies; local and regional geography; quantitative and qualitative methods

Environmental policies; environmental law; environmental justice;

Law and policies; advocation skills;

Entire United States (concentrated in heavily industrial focused regions such as the Texas Gulf, Central California, the Midwest, and Appalachia) Industrial Pollutants – pollutants emitted into the atmosphere from industrial sites such as oil refineries, coal, mining, etc. Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science);

Environmental Matters; Conservation; Sustainability;

Engineering (Environmental, Mechanical, Chemical, etc.)

Air Quality Forecaster; Environmental Compliance Officer; Environmental Health and Safety Specialist; Greenhouse Gas Reduction Specialist; Environmental Science and Protection Technician; Location Analyst; Industrial Ecologist

Environmental Engineer

Local industries; meteorology; climatology; environmental policies; local economies; greenhouse gas emissions; energy sources
Entire United States Ground-level Ozone – an unhealthy level of air quality caused by chemical reactions from a wide range of pollutants. Ground-level Ozone tends to be worse in the warmer months, and can be carried overland by winds. Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science)

Environmental Matters; Conservation; Sustainability

Air Quality Forecaster; Atmospheric Chemist; Climate Scientist; Environmental Inspector; Environmental Education Officer; Greenhouse Gas Reduction Specialist; Meteorology; air quality; physical geography; atmospheric patterns; weather patterns; GIS and geospatial technologies;
Entire United States Climate Change – warming temperatures have the possibility of increasing the amount of ground-level Ozone across the entire country Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science) Climate Scientist; Climatologist; Meteorologist; Environmental Science and Protection Technician; Forensic Meteorologist Climatology; meteorology; weather patterns; qualitative and quantitative methods; environmental management
Large, densely populated cities Nonrenewable and renewable energy – a current concern is making the switch from relying less on nonrenewable energy sources (such as coal, fossil fuels, and natural gas) which tend to be more detrimental to air quality, to renewable energy sources such as wind, hydro, or solar. Environmental Matters; Conservation; Sustainability Power Plant Operators, Distributors, and Dispatcher; Greenhouse Gas Reduction Specialist; Wind Turbine Technician; Solar Photovoltaic Installers; Solar Placement/Technician; Green Careers; Industrial Ecologist Energy resources; hydrology; solar energy; location analysis; GIS and geospatial technologies;

Geographic Issue: Availability and Sustainable Management of Water and Sanitation

State or Region Food Security and Nutrition Issue(s) Student Interests from Questionnaire Career Options from Job Summaries Powerful Geographic Knowledge
Southwest United States; Flint, Michgan Water Scarcity – a lack of enough clean, potable, water to meet the needs and demands of a specific area Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science);

Environmental Matters; Conservation; Sustainability;

Social Work

Climate Scientists; Groundwater Hydrologist; Hydrologist; Water Conservation Officer; Watershed Manager;

Humanitarian Program Manager; Social Worker; Social and Human Service Assistant

qualitative and quantitative methods; hydrology; water resources; field methods

Local populations; demography; human behavior and patterns;

Urban Areas/Major Cities; Rivers and Lakes near major agricultural or industrial production sites Water Pollution – water that has been impacted by pollutants from industry, agriculture, or urban landscapes to where it is no longer safe to consume or use Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science);

Environmental Matters; Conservation; Sustainability;

Social Work

Water Quality Inspector; Watershed Manager; Environmental Compliance Officer; Environmental Policy Officer; Environmental Restoration Planner;

Social Worker; Humanitarian Program Manager

Water quality; pollution; hydrology; water resources; landscape analysis; environmental sustainability
Southwest United States (the entire United States experiences drought, but it is consistent in SW states such as Nevada, Arizona, Texas, and Southern California) Drought – a shortage of water in rivers, lakes, reservoirs, etc. caused by a prolonged period of little to no rainfall Farming/Agriculture/Ranching;

Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science);

Environmental Matters; Conservation; Sustainability

Agricultural Extension Supervisor; Farmer; Agricultural Science Technician;

Groundwater Hydrologist; Hydrologist; Water Conservation Officer; Soil Conservation Manager;

Climatology; meteorology; landscape analysis; hydrology; water resources; soils and soil chemistry; water usage
Coastal United States (Louisiana, Maryland, Florida, etc) Wetland Loss – the disappearance of wetlands, a vital natural feature, caused by development or natural Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science)

Environmental Matters; Conservation, Sustainability

Environmental Restoration Planner; Environmental Science and Protection Technician; Ecologist; Water Conservation Officer; Land Stewardship Coordinator Environmental geography; soils; hydrology; GIS; landscape and location analysis; ecology; field methods; oceanography; water resources

Human and environment relationships

Entire United States  Water Infrastructure – human built infrastructure such as dams and reservoirs that were created to manipulate water resources to increase water quantity or water quality Engineering (Environmental, Mechanical, Chemical, etc.);

Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science)

 

Environmental Engineer; Power Plant Operators, Distributors, and Dispatchers; Civil Engineer

Hydrologist;

Demographics; human behaviors; spatial distribution and location; local economies; physical geography; soils; GIS and Geospatial technologies’ landscape analysis; power generation
Entire United States Land Management – the adoption of responsible land management practices that aid in preserving acceptable water quality and preventing any further degradation of water quality Farming/Agriculture/Ranching;

Environmental Matters; Sustainability; Conservation

Science (Life, Physical, Social Science)

Agricultural Extension Supervisor; Agricultural Science Technician; Farmer;

Soil Conservation Technician; Soil Conservationist; Land Stewardship Coordinator; Conservation Lands Manager;

Climatology; meteorology and atmospheric scientists; statistics; environmental management; qualitative and quantitative methods; hydrology; natural resources management; conservation and sustainability; human and environment interaction
Entire United States Water Treatment and Sanitation – the treatment of water that is initially not safe for consumption or other uses such as cooking or personal hygiene to meet the standards for those uses. Water that has already been used by humans through showering, or even flushing a toilet, is also treated before it deposits back into a river system to not pollute it. Engineering (Environmental, Mechanical, Chemical, etc.);

Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science)

Trade

Environmental Engineer; Water and Wastewater Treatment Plan and Systems Operator

Water Quality Inspector; Decontamination Technicians;

 

 

Water quality and quantity; water resources; watershed management;

Geographic Issue: Food Scaracity and Promote Sustainable Agriculture

State or Region Food Security and Nutrition Issue(s) Student Interests from Questionnaire Career Options from Job Summaries Powerful Geographic Knowledge
Southeast United States Food Deserts – a location or geographic area that has limited access to affordable and healthy foods Social Work;

Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science)

Community Garden Coordinator; Community Health Workers

Demographer; Survey Researchers; Sociologist

Food deserts; demographics

Spatial distribution and location; GIS; populations; local economies

United States Agricultural Hubs (Midwest, California/Nevada, Great Plains) Agriculture – Types and amount of produce being grown is dependent on location and season Farming/Agriculture/Ranching Farmer; Agricultural Extension Supervisor; Climatology; soils; hydrology; weather and meteorology; transportation; natural resources
Southeast United States (and United States in its entirety) Obesity – can be tied to food deserts and heightened by economic disparities Social Work;

Medical/Health Care/Nursing;

Trade Jobs

Community Health Workers;

Dietitians and Nutritionists; Physician; Registered Nurse (RN); Physician Assistant

Fitness Trainer and Instructor

Spatial distribution of disease; culture; local economies; location analysis
United States Agricultural Hubs (Midwest, California/Nevada, Great Plains) Agriculture – researching more effective methods in increasing crop productivity and food supply Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science)

Environmental Matters

Agricultural & Food Scientists; Agricultural Science Technician Environmental geography; soils; hydrology; GIS; landscape and location analysis;
Entire U.S. Economic disparity – the unequal distribution of money and income in the United States can impact the types of food they can afford, as well as equal access to food. Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science) Demographers; Sociologist; Survey Researchers; Economist; Agriculture and Food Scientist Demographics; human behaviors; spatial distribution and location; local economies;
Entire U.S. Climate Change – overall change in climate impacting what crops can be grown and the ideal location for the crop. Change in precipitation levels (on both extreme ends of the spectrum) Sciences (Life, Physical, Social Science)

Environmental Matters; Conservation; Sustainability

Climate Change Analyst; Pollution Analyst, Environmental Compliance Inspector; Environmental Consultant; Environmental Education Officer; Greenhouse Gas Reduction Specialist; Hydrologist; Climate Scientist; Climatologist; Water Conservation Scientist Climatology; meteorology and atmospheric scientists; statistics; environmental management; qualitative and quantitative methods; hydrology;
Rural United States Transportation and Infrastructure– a lack of major transportation means (highways, locomotive hubs, airports, ports, etc). Transportation Planning and Transportation;

Housing/Urban Development

Transportation Logistics Manager; Transportation Modeling Specialist; County Surveyor; GIS Analyst/Technician; Commodities Shipper; Heavy and Tractor-trailer Truck Driver; Surveyor; GIS and GPS; location analysis; land surveying; cartography; LiDAR; Remote Sensing; data management; transportation systems