Which of the following best describes biodiversity? A) the sum of all plants, animals, and microbes on the planet B) the sum of all plants and animals on the planet C) the kinds of trees and other plants in a forest

GED108 Environmental Science MCQ


1) Which of the following best describes biodiversity?

A) the sum of all plants, animals, and microbes on the planet

B) the sum of all plants and animals on the planet

C) the kinds of trees and other plants in a forest

D) the kinds of plants and animals in a forest

E) plants and animals but not bacteria

2) Concern for the unfair concentration of waste sites and other hazardous activities in areas that are populated by poor or minorities is called:

A) sustainable growth.

B) environmental justice.

C) sound science.

D) sustainable development.

E) globalization.

3) Which of the following describes a theory?

A) an idea that is unproven

B) a hypothesis that can be tested through experiments

C) a scientific experiment

D) a model of how a system works

E) a worldview

Your weekly budget for the five-day workweek is twenty dollars. Lunch costs $2.00 per day, drinks $1.00. Gasoline for commuting to work costs $10.00 for the week.

4) Using the information above, match the statement with the correct step in the scientific method.

“I carpool with my neighbor and save $5.00 per week in fuel costs.”

A) hypothesis

B) theory/revised hypothesis/conclusion

C) experiment

D) observation/question

5) Using the information above, match the statement with the correct step in the scientific method.

“If I carpool, my weekly expenses now equal my available income.”

A) experiment

B) hypothesis

C) observation/question

D) theory/revised hypothesis/conclusion

6) The most likely explanation for the collapse of the Rapa Nui society of

Easter Island is:

A) lack of wood to make boats.

B) population growth.

C) an unstable society brought on by overexploitation of natural resources.

D) epidemic disease.

E) crop failure.

7) The process that photoautotrophic producers perform that is not performed by other organisms in most ecosystems is

A) photosynthesis.

B) reproduction.

C) metabolism.

D) cell respiration.

E) chemosynthesis.

8) The relationship between cats and mice is an example of:

A) competition.

B) mutualism.

C) symbiosis.

D) host-parasite.

E) predator-prey.

9) The long-term average of a region’s temperature and precipitation is that area’s

A) climate.

B) ecotone.

C) ecotype.

D) weather.

E) ecology.

10) Which of the following would be considered INORGANIC?

A) living organisms

B) dead organisms

C) nitrogen, and water

D) complex molecules that make up tissues of living organisms

E) wood and leather

11) Which of the following is NOT correctly matched?

A) oak tree – producer

B) bacteria – decomposer

C) squirrel – consumer

D) mushroom – detritus

E) dead leaf – detritus

12) In a food chain, the trophic level that has the greatest biomass is the:

A) primary consumer.

B) predator.

C) producer.

D) third order consumer.

E) secondary consumer.

13) The function of chlorophyll in plants is to

A) produce oxygen.

B) absorb carbon dioxide.

C) absorb water.

D) absorb light.

E) produce carbon dioxide.

14) ”Nitrogen fixation” refers to

A) repairing broken molecules.

B) converting nitrogen gas to chemical forms which plants can incorpo- rate.

C) animals releasing nitrogen in their urine.

D) releasing nitrogen to the air.

E) applying fertilizer.

15) The measure of the degree of disorder of a system is:

A) potential energy.

B) conservation of energy.

C) entropy.

D) energy.

E) calories.

16) Which of the following is a waste product formed in the breakdown of food to obtain energy?

A) starch

B) glucose

C) carbon dioxide

D) protein

E) oxygen

17) Primary productivity of ocean ecosystems is primarily determined by:

A) temperature and daylength.

B) depth and temperature.

C) temperature and nutrients.

D) sunlight and temperature.

E) sunlight and nutrients.

18) Which statement is false regarding the carbon cycle?

A) The important reservoir of CO2 is the soil

B) Plants absorb CO2 and construct organic molecules

C) Organic molecules are transferred to animals as food

D) As food is used for energy the carbon atoms are returned to the air as CO2

E) Photosynthesis and respiratory processes balance each other

19) The gradual movement of the segments of the Earth’s crust against each other does NOT cause

A) faults.

B) earthquakes.

C) volcanic eruptions.

D) tides.

E) growth of oceanic ridges.

20) Which of the following best describes the J curve?

A) rapid growth followed by population equilibrium

B) slow growth and a gradual rise in population until the carrying capacity is reached

C) rapid growth followed with a balance with the carrying capacity

D) rapid growth, often exceeding the carrying capacity

E) slow growth followed by population equilibrium


51) Which of the following is a goal of CITES, the Convention on Trade in Endangered Species?

A) to prohibit use of endangered species habitat.

B) to regulate and set limits on trade in endangered species and their parts.

C) to develop recovery programs for endangered species in the U.S.

D) to prohibit trade in endangered species and their parts.

E) to ban the sale of any endangered species or their parts.

52) An essential part of any strategy to bring back species that are endangered is:

A) a recovery plan.

B) purchase of their habitat.

C) identification of invasive species.

D) reintroduction into suitable habitat.

E) captive breeding in zoos.

53) Which of the following statements concerning the Biodiversity Treaty is cor- rect?

A) countries are granted protection of their genetic resources but are not obligated to protect the environment more than they are now.

B) financial support for protection in developing countries must come from the countries themselves.

C) developed countries stand to benefit little from the treaty.

D) other environmental problems such as deforestation are ignored.

E) in return for access to a species for a commercial purpose (e.g. to make a medicine). developing countries can expect compensation or access to specific technologies.

54) Which of the following is true of the economic value of forests products in developing countries?

A) since forests are regrowing in developed countries, their value globally has declined.

B) they are used primarily used for local consumptive use.

C) their main value is the extractive reserves of nuts, latex, and fruits.

D) they are a major source of income and international trade.

E) certification programs prohibit their sale to developed countries.

55) Japan and Norway would like the IWC to set a quota for hunting ________ whales.

A) fin.

B) all species of.

C) blue.

D) humpback.

E) minke.

56) According to the Maximum Sustained Yield model, a population shows the most rapid growth when it is:

A) twice the carrying capacity.

B) about half the carrying capacity.

C) not harvested at all.

D) above the carrying capacity.

E) at the carrying capacity.

57) The Magnuson Act of 1976 extended United States jurisdiction to ________ miles offshore.

A) 100

B) 500

C) 1000

D) 200

E) 30

58) Demand for electricity fluctuates:

A) but not by a significant amount each day.

B) hourly, daily, and weekly.

C) hourly throughout the day.

D) hourly, daily, weekly, and seasonally.

E) hourly and by the day of the week.

59) The greatest demands on electrical power use are during

A) fall.

B) use of electricity is the same all year round.

C) summer.

D) winter.

E) spring.

60) Which of the following is true concerning the energy in coal used to pro- duce electricity?

A) it cannot be used for any other purpose.

B) most of it is converted to electricity.

C) little energy is lost as heat in the production of electricity.

D) most of it is dissipated in the conversion to electricity.

E) it is the only fuel that can be used to produce electricity.


E) chlorination.

81) The effective mechanism of trickling filters is

A) fine-particle filtration.

B) bacteria and other organisms.

C) chlorination.

D) deactivation.

E) aeration.

82) Most collection and disposal of municipal solid waste is the responsibility of the:

A) federal government.

B) local government.

C) individual homeowner.

D) state.


83) What have landfill “archaeologists” that have studied old landfills conclud- ed about the rates of decomposition in landfills?

A) all materials decompose at the same rate.

B) paper and other organic wastes often degrade very slowly.

C) plastics break down at the same rate as paper.

D) little organic material remained in old landfills.

E )both paper and plastic decompose rapidly.

84) Which of the following best characterizes the make-up of leachate

produced in landfills?

A) a complex mixture of inorganic and organic wastes.

B) mostly acids from batteries.

C) since it is mostly water it doesn’t pose a serious threat.

D) discarded household cleaning products and pesticides.

E) mostly organic nutrients.

85) A waste management strategy that is immune from escalating transporta- tion costs and tipping fees is:

A) recycling of electronic wastes.

B) source reduction.

C) municipal composting of leaves.

D) combustion.

E) landfills.

86) Biomagnification refers to

A) certain traits becoming more pronounced through natural or artificial selection.

B) increase in populations when environmental resistance is low.

C) growth in size of individuals when given optimum nutrition.

D) the increase in concentration of a pollutant as it moves up the food chain.

E) two or more factors interacting together causing a much greater effect than each factor would acting alone.

87) The contamination at Love Canal was:

A) seepage from a deep well injection site.

B) residential housing built over a closed and capped hazardous waste site.

C) an isolated case of improper waste disposal.

D) an abandoned hazardous waste site.

E) widespread contamination from flooding of a waste impoundment.

88) In phytoremediation, once plants have absorbed the wastes from the

contaminated soil:

A) they are safe to eat.

B) the soils are too toxic to support further plant growth.

C) the soils are deficient in nutrients and will not support further plant growth.

D) can be used as feed for livestock.

E) they are harvested and treated as toxic waste.

89) The term “cradle to grave” means that:

A) matter, and thus wastes can neither be created nor destroyed.

B) wastes cannot have a health impact on any aged individual.

C) hazardous wastes that kill infants and children are the most toxic.

D) hazardous wastes that kill people must be carefully disposed of.

E) there must be an accurate accounting of wastes from their initial

production to ultimate disposal.

90) The ultimate source of energy that determines a region’s climate is

A) wind currents.

B) solar radiation.

C) geothermal vents.

D) ocean currents.

E) greenhouse gases.

91) The major greenhouse gases are

A) methane, oxygen, nitrogen and neon.

B) carbon dioxide, oxygen, nitrogen, and water vapor.

C) oxygen, nitrogen, argon, and neon.

D) chlorine, fluorine, neon, and argon.

E) carbon dioxide, water vapor, methane and chlorofluorocarbons.

92) How much of ultra-violet light is absorbed by ozone in the stratosphere?

A) 20 %

B) 99 %

C) 50 %

D) 0 %

E) 100 %

93) Which of the following is absorbed by ozone in the stratosphere?

A) UV-B and UV-A.

B) UV-B.

C) UV-A but not UV-B.

D) visible light and ultraviolet light.

E) all radiation.

94) Which of the following is NOT a significant source of indoor air pollution?

A) cooking.

B) use of hobby glues and paints.

C) house plants.

D) smoking.

E) use of cleaning agents.

95) Which of the following describes changes in the 5 criteria air pollution in the U.S. since the enactment of the Clean Air Act?

A) emissions have decreased but ambient air quality remains the same.

B) they have decreased substantially.

C) they are about the same.

D) they have increased because of economic growth and more automo- biles.

E) they have become steadily worse.

96) The brownish color of air in some polluted urban areas is due to:

A) nitrogen oxides.

B) soot.

C) sulfur oxides.

D) carbon dioxide.

E) ozone.

97) According to the ecological economist’s view, economic production:

A) does not require natural resources.

B) can supply needed services without affecting the environment.

C) lies outside of the environment.

D) competes with ecosystem services.

E) involves the transformation of natural resources into manufactured goods.

98) A major limitation in the use of GDP as a measure of a nation’s wealth is that it does not take into account:

A) value of agricultural products.

B) income from abroad.

C) the value of natural resources.

D) per capita gross domestic product.

E) the depreciation of natural capital.

99) Local governments raise money for the services that they provide mainly through

A) state lotteries.

B) gasoline taxes.

C) property taxes.

D) direct billing to those affected.

E) income taxes.

100) Suburban communities have generally thrived economically while cities have declined economically because:

A) higher population density in the suburbs means more tax dollars.

B) there are fewer people in the suburbs.

C) suburban residents have higher paying jobs.

D) suburbs received more funds from the Highway Trust Fund.

E) services provided by the local governments are financed mainly through property taxes which have declined in cities and increased in suburbs.

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