Chapter 1

Biotic factor
Any living component of the environment
Abiotic factor
Any nonliving component of the environment
Dependent variable
The variable that is affected by the manipulation of the independent variable
Independent variable
The variable that the scientist manipulates in a manipulative experiment
Environment
The sum total of our surroundings. Including all biotic and abiotic things.
Nonrenewable resources
A natural resource that is in limited supply and is formed much more slowly than we use it (ore minerals and crude oils)
Renewable resources
A natural resource that is virtually unlimited (trees, food crops, water and soil)
Scientific method
A formalized method for testing ideas with observations that involves several assumptions and a more less consistent series of interrelated steps.
sustainability
a guiding principle of environmental science that requires us to live in such a way as to maintain Earth’s systems and its natural resourses for the foreseeable future