Saturday, 12 April 2014

Initial Failures

During the project, we faced a couple of initial failures that In the beginning, instead of letting the beans germinate in dark, we put all of them under direct glaring sunlight. This caused moulds to grow on the cotton and around the seeds, preventing some of them from growing.

So we learnt from our mistake and planted a whole new set of beans; this time in the darkness [in the cabinets in classroom]. But yet some of the beans did not germinate for they were already dead. We instead of planting only 15 seeds, this time we had 24, filling up the entire Ferrero Rocher box. Thus, we had a greater chance of having more germinated beans to be experimented on.

(Watering the seeds)

We grew beans in trays with partitions to seperate the different beans which we watered with different ph-level water

Things we have gone through as a group

Throughout this project, we have faced many challenges, one of which was when we were not able to agree on the same thing. We could not make a decision on what type of plants we should base our experiment on and what kind and how much acid was needed for our project. This led to many disputes and debates on our different opinions. Finally, after much discussion and the help of internet resources, we could finally come to the conclusion that using sulphuric acid with the difference of 0.002 molars for each solution of acid was the best choice. We also decided that green beans was the most efficient and fair way to find out about the effects of acid on plants. Although we had many disputes among us, we were able to put them aside and did our best to complete our work while keeping the importance of this project in mind. This helped us concentrate on what we were doing and it set us on a mindset to complete our work with high quality and efficiency.

What we have summarised and planned

(Help given by Mr Tan) 

(What we planned to do)

Finalised Research Topic

The Effect of Acid Rain on Plants in the Equatorial Rainforest

As our research advanced, we realised that we did not have that much time to collect and grow plants from the equatorial rainforest to experiment on them. Also, we did not have the financial capability to buy and purchase such plants. Thus, as a result, we decided to experiment on green beans, a plant which is more affordable and available everywhere. Furthermore, it DOES grow in equatorial countries. To satisfy everyone's constant asking of the question, "Why only experiment on one plant?" I would like to redirect your attention to this blog post. In our Research Topic, it is clearly stated that we want to investigate THE EFFECT OF ACID RAIN on plants in the Equatorial Rainforest. As such, we are more concerned on the EFFECT of acid rain on plants and not the DIFFERENT EFFECTS ON DIFFERENT PLANTS. I hope this clears that up.

(Cherry, 2014)
(Sue, 2012)

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Research Topic 2

The Effects of Acid Rain on the Plants in the Equatorial Rainforest

With further research on the topic, we have decided to further refine our research topic to something more relatable to us. Specifically, we decided to research on the effects of Acid Rain on the Plants in the Equatorial Rainforestsomething geographically closer to us. As such, by doing so, we would be able to have a greater impact from our research. We would be able to collect our data and implement possible solutions to places around us, allowing us to see a greater impact or change in the environment around us. The mind map below shows some of the various plants we researched on.

Monday, 20 January 2014

Research Topic

The effects of acid rain on the plants in the environment

We found out that the main source is sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxide in the atmosphere. And that natural, unpolluted rainwater actually has a pH of about 5.6, which is acidic. Most acid rain deposition ranges from pH 4.3 to 5.0. The acidity of rainwater comes from the natural presence of carbon dioxide, nitric oxide and sulphur oxide that could be found in the lowest layer of the atmosphere.

The types of plants in the environment, mostly rain-forests, are: Pine, Maple trees (which are weak; brittle), creepers/vines in general near ground level (which are weak and soft)

The most Equatorial Rain-forests affected by acid rain is the Congo rainforest of Africa. With it falling throughout the year with levels comparable to acid rain falling in Europe and North America.
According to sources, African fires were the world's leading contributor to pollution coming from the burning of vegetation. African savanna fires are so extensive, he said, that they pump three times more gases and particles into the air than all the fires set by farmers and settlers in South America, including the dramatic fires of the Amazon.  

Monday, 13 January 2014

21st Century Problems (Extreme poverty)

Extreme poverty all around the world is a great problem right now. many people out there are starving, who lack of clean drinking water. According to statistics, 2 to 3 billion people live in conditions of extreme poverty. Most of these environments have lack of sanitations. The unhygienic surroundings makes the spread of deadly diseases quick, and they might kill a lot of people. Many people might suffer from diseases that kill them, or some that would affect them for generations. Throughout the years, the difference between rich and poor is becoming ever more extreme. More and more people have access to clean drinking water, have healthy and clean food, have hygienic houses to comfortably settle into. However, there are also increasingly more and more people who have not even tried to drink a drop of pure clean water. More and more who have not are one full course meal in one single day.

Many charities and movements exsists to help out the people suffering from extreme poverty. There are people who donate a huge sum of money to these people to provide shelter, clean water, clean food etc. Many people has also gone to those people to help them clean up the place, fix a clean water filter into their water source etc etc.

These children are food deprived. 

Sunday, 12 January 2014

21st Century Problems (World Food Shortage)

World Food Shortage

World grain reserves are so dangerously low that severe weather in the United States or other food-exporting countries could trigger a major hunger crisis next year, the United Nations has warned.
Failing harvests in the US, Ukraine and other countries this year have eroded reserves to their lowest level since 1974. The US, which has experienced record heatwaves and droughts in 2012, now holds in reserve a historically low 6.5% of the maize that it expects to consume in the next year, says the UN.
"We've not been producing as much as we are consuming. That is why stocks are being run down. Supplies are now very tight across the world and reserves are at a very low level, leaving no room for unexpected events next year," said Abdolreza Abbassian, a senior economist with the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO). With food consumption exceeding the amount grown for six of the past 11 years, countries have run down reserves from an average of 107 days of consumption 10 years ago to under 74 days recently.
There is a mounting world food shortage problem in many areas around the globe. The world economy is in such turmoil that this could easily cause a situation where world food shortages become a widespread global issue. There has been a dramatic increase in food prices around the globe for stable foods such as maize, lentils, flour, and oil. These basic foods are the substance that many families around the world live on from day to day. When the costs of these essential foods rise, it dramatically affects those relying on them. For example, what used to take a days wage to buy may now take three weeks wages to purchase. That places many families in dire circumstances.

One other food shortage that is becoming a very big issue is the lack of rice in Asian countries. The price of rice over the past 20 years has risen substantially. Many farmers in some Asian countries such as the Philippines are no longer growing rice because they have found more profitable crops to grow in their fields. Drought has also prevented some rice crops from growing well.
Food is a very important part of our survival, without it, a lot of chaos will erupt in a fight for survival. (which is already happening now in some countries) And, if this problem is not solved soon, it will most likely lead to the extinction of humanity. This is an impending problem that needs to be solved soon.

21st Century Problems (Water Shortage)

Water Shortage

Rivers and streams are driving up. Many farmers will not have enough essential water to grow crops for living. Scarcity of water would cause the prices of water to increase and people will have wars over water.

Today, nearly 1 billion people in the developing world don't have access to it. Yet, we take it for granted, we waste it, and we even pay too much to drink it from little plastic bottles. Water is one of the basic necessity of life. Without it, we will die.

Water is so precious that to this day, far too many people all around the world, spend their entire day searching for it. Water shortage can affect other factors: Education is lost to sickness. Economic development is lost while people merely try to survive. 

As you can see, water is so important that people would pay large price for it. Water scarcity is both a natural and a human-made phenomenon. There is enough freshwater on the planet for seven billion people but it is distributed unevenly and too much of it is wasted, polluted and unsustainably managed.

This therefore, is an impending problem that people all around the world are still finding a solution to water scarcity.

21st Century Problems (Pollution)

Pollution is the introduction of contaminants into the natural environment that cause adverse change.

Improper industrial waste disposal can cause :

  • Water pollution (caused by industries dumping Asbestos, Lead, Mercury, Nitrates, Phosphates, Sulphur, Oils and Petrochemicals.) will harm the health of humans and animals.
  • Air pollution will cause acid rain which harms animals, plants and humans. It also causes respiratory problems in both humans and animals.
  • Soil contamination which causes unnatural soil pH levels which will cause damage to the plants roots and will cause the plant to die. This will cause an unbalance in the food chain.