Earth & Environment

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  • CAS ES 492: Directed Study in Earth Sciences
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: junior or senior standing, consent of instructor, and approval of CASRoom 105.
    Individual instruction and directed research of a selected topic.
  • CAS ES 507: Dynamical Oceanography
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS MA 124 or CAS MA 127 or CAS MA 129; and CASES144, and CASPY212, or consent of instructor.
    Introduction to the physical ocean system. Physical properties of seawater; essential ocean dynamics; mixing and stirring in the ocean; simple waves; observed current systems and water masses; and coupled atmosphere-ocean variability. Also offered as CAS GE 507.
  • CAS ES 510: Introduction to the Atmospheric Boundary Layer
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS GE 310, two semesters of calculus (CAS MA 123 and 124, or 127, or129), one semester of statistics (CAS MA 213 or ES 270, or equivalent), one semester of physics (CAS PY 211 or 251); or consent of
    Covers the basic dynamics of the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL), with a focus on the ABL processes and modeling. Introduces statistical descriptions of turbulent flows in the atmosphere and the connection between the ABL and other environment/climate system processes.
  • CAS ES 514: Dynamic Landsurface Hydrology
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS MA 121 or CAS MA 123 or CAS MA 127 and CAS CH 101 or CAS CH 111 or CAS CH 131 or CAS CH 161 or CAS CH 171 or CAS PY 105 or CAS PY 211 or CAS PY 233 or CAS PY 251; CAS MA 121 or 123 or 127 and one course from CAS CH 101, 111, 131, 161, 171, or CAS PY 105, 211, 233, 251.
    Graduate Prerequisites: CAS MA 121 or CAS MA 123 or CAS MA 127 and CAS CH 101 or CAS CH 111 or CAS CH 131 or CAS CH 161 or CAS CH 171 or CAS PY 105 or CAS PY 211 or CAS PY 233 or CAS PY 251.
    Land surface hydrology with emphasis on the unsaturated zone. Development and applications of physics governing transport of water, vapor, and heat in soils and the near surface atmosphere. Effects of vegetation, topography, and water table on runoff, evapotranspiration, and recharge. (Offered alternate years.)
  • CAS ES 520: Modes of Climate Variability
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS ES 351, or consent of instructor.
    Assesses dynamics/physical mechanisms that drive major modes of climate variability, including: El Nino- Southern Oscillation, Pacific Decadal Oscillation, Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation, Monsoons, and Annular Modes and investigates evolution of modes through time using paleoclimatic evidence and climate model simulations.
  • CAS ES 533: Quantitative Geomorphology
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS ES 317 or CAS ES 331 or CAS ES 333; , and CASMA124
    Quantitative analyses of surface processes that lead to landform evolution and landscape change. Emphasizes study of analytical techniques in understanding specific depositional and erosional processes; models of global landscape change; tectonic and climatic geomorphology.
  • CAS ES 539: Coral Reef Dynamics: Shallow Waters, Deep Time
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: Admission to the BU Marine Semester.
    Tropical reefs-- diverse, complex, and ancient-- exhibit lawful cycles of growth, degradation, and regeneration. Explore these through observations on the Belize Barrier Reef in fossil reef environments and through laboratory experiments. Insights are applied to reef conservation in today's changing world. Also offered as CAS BI 539.
  • CAS ES 543: Estuaries and Nearshore Systems
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS ES 331 or CAS ES 440 or CAS ES 541; or consent of instructor.
    Physical and ecological processes interacting in estuarine and nearshore environments, including salt marshes, beaches, lagoons, deltas, and in wave- and tide-dominated regimes. Lectures complemented by extensive field work oriented toward individual and group research projects.
  • CAS ES 557: Oceanography of Stellwagen Bank and Surrounding Waters
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: enrollment in the BUMP Marine Semester, and CASES144, AND CASCH101 AND CASCH102 (or CASCH171 AND CASCH172), or consent of instructor.
    Nutrient distribution and physical oceanography of Stellwagen Bank and adjacent waters. Bathymetric influences and effects of ocean currents of biogeochemical parameters. Includes day-long cruises on NOAA research vessel. Taught as part of the BU Marine Program Semester.
  • CAS ES 576: Aquatic Geochemistry
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS CH 101 or CAS CH 171; and CASES371, or equivalent, or consent of instructor.
    Graduate Prerequisites: .
    Fundamentals of water chemistry as applied to the evolution of surface, soil, and ground waters. Emphasis is on chemical equilibrium and kinetics, pH as a master variable, carbonate chemistry, mineral solubility, aqueous complexes, ion exchange, redox, and weathering reactions.
  • CAS GE 100: Environmental Change and Sustainability
    Introduces natural and social science concepts that underlie global environmental change and sustainability. Topics include climate change, biodiversity, energy, water, pollution, deforestation, agriculture, population growth. Sustainable development illustrated with ecological footprint based on student's lifestyle. Carries social science divisional credit in CAS.
  • CAS GE 101: Natural Environments: The Atmosphere
    An introduction to weather and climate. Topics include the controls of weather and climate, day-to-day variations in weather, severe storms, climates of the world, urban climate and air pollution, past climates and climatic change, and the impact of climatic variations on society. Carries natural science divisional credit (with lab) in CAS.
  • CAS GE 150: Sustainable Energy: Technology, Resources, Society, and Environment
    Examines the social, environmental, and technological aspects of renewable and nonrenewable energy systems. Discusses energy issues in context of globalization, climate change, and sustainable development. Explores lifestyle and policy decisions related to energy issues. Carries social science divisional credit in CAS.
  • CAS GE 201: World Regional Geography
    Overview of the special combination of environmental, historical, economic, and organizational qualities of the regions of the Old World, including Western and Eastern Europe, the former Soviet Union, East and South Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. Emphasis on current issues of regional and global development. Carries social science divisional credit in CAS.
  • CAS GE 250: The Fate of Nations: Climate, Resources, and Institutions
    Relationships among environment (e.g. climate), natural resources (e.g. energy, water), and human societies (hunter-gatherers to industrial economies). Principles from thermodynamics, climatology, ecology, and economics used to evaluate the role of environment and resources in the success and failure of societies. Carries social science divisional credit in CAS.
  • CAS GE 302: Remote Sensing of Environment
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS GE 100 or CAS GE 101 or CAS GE 104 or CAS GE 110 or CAS ES 101 or CAS ES 105; or CASBI117 or CASPY105 or consent of instructor.
    Introduction to satellite remote sensing of the Earth environment. Examines the physical basis and methods of the remote sensing process, as well as basics of digital image processing and analysis. Applications in Earth system science and natural resource management are considered.
  • CAS GE 304: Environmentally Sustainable Development
    Traces the emergence of sustainable development as the defining environmental challenge of our times. Surveys and evaluates policies for balancing ecological sustainability and economic development in various parts of the world and at the global level. Also offered as CAS IR 304.
  • CAS GE 307: Biogeography
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS BI 107 and CAS GE 101.
    Examines the spatial distribution of plants and animals from historical, ecological, and analytical perspectives. Environmental and human influences on species distribution, abundance, and diversity are considered, as are changes resulting from past and projected climate change. Also offered as CAS BI 307.
  • CAS GE 309: Intermediate Environmental Analysis and Policy
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS GE 100 and CAS EC 101.
    Introduction to economic and environmental theory critical to the formulation and evaluation of environmental and resource policy. This theory is applied to real world analysis of climate change, population growth, oil supplies, energy use, and globalization.
  • CAS GE 310: Climate and the Environment
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CASMA123 or equivalent; CASPY211 or equivalent; and either CASGE100 or CASES105.
    Physical principles governing the climate system and its impact on the environment. Emphasis on understanding the physical processes governing energy, mass, and momentum transfer in the ocean and atmosphere. The interaction and feedback of these processes and their impact on the climate system and its variability.