InTeGrate Modules and Courses >Environmental Justice and Freshwater Resources > Student Materials
InTeGrate's Earth-focused Modules and Courses for the Undergraduate Classroom
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These materials are part of a collection of classroom-tested modules and courses developed by InTeGrate. The materials engage students in understanding the earth system as it intertwines with key societal issues. The collection is freely available and ready to be adapted by undergraduate educators across a range of courses including: general education or majors courses in Earth-focused disciplines such as geoscience or environmental science, social science, engineering, and other sciences, as well as courses for interdisciplinary programs.
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The student materials are available for offline viewing below. Downloadable versions of the instructor materials are available from this location on the instructor materials pages. Learn more about using the different versions of InTeGrate materials »

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For the Instructor

These student materials complement the Environmental Justice and Freshwater Resources Instructor Materials. If you would like your students to have access to the student materials, we suggest you either point them at the Student Version which omits the framing pages with information designed for faculty (and this box). Or you can download these pages in several formats that you can include in your course website or local Learning Managment System. Learn more about using, modifying, and sharing InTeGrate teaching materials.

Student Materials

Welcome to the student page for the Environmental Justice and Freshwater Resources Module! Most human beings care about what is fair and what is not when it comes to the distribution of goods and services. Included in goods and services are natural resources and the benefits provided by a healthy environment. In this module you will explore aspects of the hydrologic cycle, including the processes that take place within it. You will focus explicitly on the freshwater portion of the hydrologic cycle: how it works, how it changes, and how it impacts human beings depending on gender, race and class—categories significant to social scientists who are interested in environmental justice. You will learn to use Google Earth in order to understand geospatial data and interpret their meaning. Below you will find materials to help you prepare for class discussions about freshwater resources and environmental justice as well materials that can be used to review topics that arise as a result of your classroom investigations.

Unit 1: Introduction to Environmental Justice

Unit 1 investigates the history of the environmental justice movement in the United States by situating it within the context of the US civil rights and environmental movements. It also makes connections to issues of environmental equity on a global scale.

Unit 2: The Hydrologic Cycle and Freshwater Resources

Unit 2 addresses the major components of the hydrologic cycle, how each of its components interacts with the others, and how changes in one can affect the others. A water survey in the unit allows for calculation of the amount of water an individual in the United States might use daily and how that compares with daily water use by people in other parts of the world.

Unit 3: Streams and Water Diversion

Unit 3 explores the relationships between watersheds, drainage divides and the hydrologic cycle via a case study from the Hawaiian Islands where surface water diversions from a region inhabited by indigenous people contrast with water diversions for large-scale agriculture. Part of the unit relates to the effects of societal power structures on the prioritization of water allowances granted to different interest groups.

Unit 4: Women and Water

Unit 4 considers how gender plays a role in the abilities of women in the Global South to access fresh water readily.

Unit 5: Hazardous Waste and Love Canal

In Unit 5, the quintessential case of the effects of toxic waste disposal on local communities and their responses to resulting contamination of fresh water is considered. Information about the case, that of Love Canal in upstate New York, facilitates understanding of the roles played by working class women and people of color, arguably some of the least powerful segments of some communities, in attending as best as possible to such injustices.

Unit 6: Groundwater Availability and Resources

To conclude this module, Unit 6 provides the opportunity to evaluate issues of groundwater scarcity utilizing as an example the arid southwestern United States and the Ogallala Aquifer.


     

These materials are part of a collection of classroom-tested modules and courses developed by InTeGrate. The materials engage students in understanding the earth system as it intertwines with key societal issues. The collection is freely available and ready to be adapted by undergraduate educators across a range of courses including: general education or majors courses in Earth-focused disciplines such as geoscience or environmental science, social science, engineering, and other sciences, as well as courses for interdisciplinary programs.
Explore the Collection »