HSC Geography Notes - Ecosystems At Risk

By Katie · In 2020
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These notes contain detailed definitions, summaries, case studies, examples and explanations that cover all content for Ecosystems at Risk for HSC Geography, investigating coral reefs and coastal dunes for the two case studies. The notes also contain supportive images, flow charts and diagrams to facilitate learning via visual summaries. These notes can be used as a comprehensive reference for both assessments, trial exams and the HSC exam. The notes have been compiled from class notes, tutorials, textbooks and further research. Thoroughly reading through these notes will provide extensive knowledge on the entire course and give broad context to all of the required topic areas.


ECOSYSTEMS AND THEIR MANAGEMENT • biophysical interactions which lead to diverse ecosystems and their functioning • vulnerability and resilience of ecosystems – impacts due to natural stress – impacts due to human induced modifications to energy flows, nutrient cycling, and relationships between biophysical components • the importance of ecosystem management and protection – maintenance of genetic diversity – utility values – intrinsic values – heritage values – need to allow natural change to proceed • evaluation of traditional and contemporary management strategies.

CASE STUDIES OF ECOSYSTEMS - CORAL REEFS AND COASTAL DUNES • TWO case studies of different ecosystems at risk to illustrate their unique characteristics including: – spatial patterns and dimensions: location, altitude, latitude, size, shape and continuity – biophysical interactions including: – the dynamics of weather and climate – geomorphic and hydrologic processes such as earth movements, weathering, erosion, transport and deposition, soil formation – biogeographical processes: invasion, succession, modification, resilience – adjustments in response to natural stress – the nature and rate of change which affects ecosystem functioning – human impacts (both positive and negative) – traditional and contemporary management practices.

Added January 2022