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Environmental Modeling | Michael Spratt

# Environmental Modeling

All living organisms are adapted to an environment. By taking measurements we are able to create a virtual organism and environments within a computer program. These programs develop into models and simulations. Having used, evolved and evaluated these decision support tools I have observed several common points.  I intend to start my “dis” course  simply, adding complexities as I develop my observations.

Number & Units

A number is useless, unless it comes with three units – base, numerator and denominator.

For example the number  5 has no meaning unless we add a numerator unit like “Stars”.   This is not enough we still need a second denominator unit like “General” or “Hotel”.  This gives us 5 Star/Hotel or 5 star/General.  Always look for the 2 units which go with a number.

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Thermal Profile

Temperature in relation to a time step (hour, day, week, year, etc) and geographical area.  All living organisms are adapted to a thermal environment weather in water, air or earth. One of the most important components of an environment is its Thermal Profile or climate…

thermal characteristics.

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Growth models

Most living organisms develop within a time step. Changes occur, depending upon a finite list of conditions and their relationships.  Leaves, flower, buds etc are dependent the species and climate.  Scales, fur, bones, etc development also depends upon the species and weather.

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Nutrients Nutrients prove the elements necessary for life and growth. Most nutrients are composed of simpler elements like proteins, carbohydrates, etc. Combinations can be extremely varied with large possibilities

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Mortality Death of an organism or some of its parts is unavoidable and can be calculated and modeled

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Excretions Waste products are processed and removed to accumulate in the environment.

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Costs/Benefits

This is relative to an individual, group and observer’s perspective.

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Evolution Changes and adaptations over time.

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Model/Simulate Here I will describe my view concerning what is a model or a simulation. Models are everywhere as are simulations. What is the difference?

AIACC Program (Assessments of Impacts and Adaptations to Climate Change in Multiple Regions and Sectors).   AIACC-DMS Toolk itttp://sedac.ciesin.columbia.edu/aiacc/toolkit.html

the website provides brief descriptions of software and computer models that are useful in impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability assessments. Sections cover climate, agricultural, water resource, and ecosystem software tools.

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SEDAC, the Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center, http://sedac.ciesin.columbia.edu/about

SEDAC, the Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center, is one of the Distributed Active Archive Centers (DAACs) in the Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) of the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration. SEDAC focuses on human interactions in the environment. Its mission is to develop and operate applications that support the integration of socioeconomic and Earth science data and to serve as an “Information Gateway” between the Earth and social sciences.

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Model for the Assessment of Greenhouse-gas Induced Climate Change, and a Regional SCENario GENerator (MAGICC/SCENGEN )  http://www.climateplanning.org/tools/model-assessment-greenhouse-gas-induced-climate-change-and-regional-scenario-generator

MAGICC/SCENGEN has been designed as an accessible piece of software that uses emissions scenarios for greenhouse gases, reactive gases, and sulfur dioxide in order to construct predictions of global mean temperature, sea level rise, and regional climate. MAGICC is a coupled gas-cycle/climate model that has been used in all Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports to produce projections of future global mean temperature and sea level change

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LiveMAGICC http://live.magicc.org/ Online calculator

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World Bank Open Data: free and open access to data about development in countries around the globe. http://data.worldbank.org/    –  http://data.worldbank.org/open-government-data-toolkit

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Virtual Life Computer generated numeric environments with virtual agents. These tools permit us to measure and understand competition, adaptation and evolution.

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