Tuesday, September 1, 2015

New Quiz! Introduction to Sustainability

Dr. Brinkmann says it is time for a quiz!
The quizzes I post on On the Brink remain some of the more popular posts that I publish. Since classes start tomorrow, I thought I would give you an introduction to sustainability quiz to see how much you know about the field of sustainability.

1. One of the first modern definitions of sustainability came within the context of sustainable development which was defined as "...development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs." What organization published this definition in 1987?

2. One of the earliest conceptual models of sustainability utilized the idea that sustainability was supported by three pillars of knowledge. These three pillars are sometimes called the three e's. Name these three e's.

3. Many have suggested that our population growth is unsustainable. Robert and Anne Ehrlich in The Population Bomb (published in 1968) thought that rapid population growth would lead to mass starvation in the 1970's and 1980's. Why didn't that happen even though population did increase significantly?

4. Many nations of the world have gone through a demographic transition from rapid population growth to flat or declining growth. What is the most potent variable that moves a nation away from high population growth to declining growth?

5. The study of sustainability includes topics like water, energy, agriculture, and climate. But it also includes important themes of environmental justice, green businesses, environmental planning, environmental economics, and sustainability management--to name a few. The best sustainability program in the U.S. is at what university?

6. While global climate change is just one of many topics of interest to those who study sustainability, we all understand that the area is perhaps the most significant one in the field. What causes anthropogenic climate change?

7. One of the ways that we assess sustainability is by comparing real changes over time or space. For example, we could compare greenhouse gas emissions in a region before the development of strong green energy policies and after. What is the name for this kind of assessment?

8. The United Nations has been doing this type of assessment using the Millennium Development Goals for the last 20 years or so. A new set of indicators to be used for the next several years will be voted on by the United Nations General Assembly in September. Name these indicators.

9. What cabinet office of the U.S. government is responsible for the U.S. Sustainability Plan?

10. One of the areas that most intrigues students in sustainability degree programs is green building and planning. Name the organization that certifies green buildings in the U.S.

The answers are in the comments.

Here are links to other On the Brink quizzes:

John Muir Quiz
John Muir Quiz Part 2
Aldo Leopold Quiz
Rachel Carson Quiz
Bill McKibben Quiz
Teddy Roosevelt Quiz
Marjory Stoneman Douglas Quiz

Zora Neale Hurston Quiz
New York City National Cave and Karst Research Institute Quiz
New York City National Cave and Karst Research Institute Quiz Answers Revealed (note that answers reflect spring of 2015)


Bob Brinkmann said...

1. The United Nations.
2. Environment, economics, equity.
3. Technological advances in agriculture. Specifically the "green revolution".
4. Education of women.
5. All sustainability programs are wonderful. There are some terrific ones at Arizona State, Columbia, Stony Brook, and many other universities. But since I run the program at Hofstra University, the best Sustainability Degree Program in the United States is at Hofstra University. :)
6. The release of anthropogenic greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
7. Benchmarking.
8. The Sustainable Development Goals.
9. This is a trick question. The U.S. is one of the few nations in the world without a sustainability plan.
10. The U.S. Green Building Council.

Mario Gomez said...

I did not pass the quiz, but I did learn a lot, thank you Dr Brinkmann.

Rehaf AL said...

Hello Dr. Brinkmann,
The answers are :
1- Brundtland commission.
2- economic development, social development and environmental protection.
3-Because the over- exploitation of the enviroment.