Resources from the Earth

Important Notice

This course is not active. Please contact Department Chair for more information.

Science & Technology
Earth & Environmental Sciences
Course Code
GEOL 1900
Semester Length
15 weeks
Max Class Size
Method(s) Of Instruction
Typically Offered
To be determined


Course Description
This course is an overview of resources that are extracted from the Earth. Origin, extraction, use, economic effects and environmental impact of major earth resources will be discussed. Resources include energy, metals, industrial minerals, other minerals, soil, water and groundwater. A field trip may be scheduled.
Course Content

1.  Earth resources and society:  Population and economic growth, exploitation and consequences, resources versus reserves, economic cycles.

2.  Plate tectonics and resources:  rock cycle, plate tectonics overview, igneous and metamorphic processes, shallow subsurface processes, surface processes, marine processes.

3.  History of Earth resources:  early exploitation of resources, the colonial era, modern resource trends, history of resources in Canada.

4.  Environmental impacts related to Earth resources:  resource extraction, usage, and waste  disposal.

5.  Resources, their properties, occurrence and use:

a)  Energy:  Fossil fuels, nuclear energy, geothermal energy, other renewable energy resources.

b)  Metals and metaloids:  Iron, aluminum, titanium, magnesium, silicon, nickel, chromium, base metals, precious metals, exotic metals.

c)  Industrial minerals used in fertilizers, chemicals, building materials, others.

d)  Gemstones:  diamonds, rubies, sapphires, emeralds, others.

e)  Water and groundwater:  hydrologic cycle, occurrence, quality, production, conservation.

f)  Soil:  formation, properties, uses, conservation.

6.  Future of Earth resources.

Learning Activities

Lecture and seminar.  A field trip may be scheduled.

Means of Assessment

Term papers, projects                            10 - 40%

Assignments                                          10 - 20%                       

Midterm Exam                                       20 - 30%

Final Exam                                            30 - 40%

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, the student will be able to:

1.  describe the relationship between society and the demand and use of Earth resources.

2.  describe the concept of plate tectonics and the major related earth processes, and explain how occurrence of important resources is related to tectonics.

3.  understand that environmental impacts follow from use of resources, and be able to discuss important impacts and mitigating activities.

4.  name important mineral and metal resources and discuss how they are extracted and used.

5.  name important energy resources and discuss how they are harnessed or extracted.

6.  describe the occurrence, use and extraction of groundwater and water.

7.  describe uses and conservation of soil.

Textbook Materials

Students should consult the bookstore for the latest required course materials, including textbook.  The course will use Craig, J.R., Vaughn, D.J., Skinner, B.J.; Earth Resources and the Environment;  Prentice Hall  or an equivalent text.







No equivalent courses.

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

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Institution Transfer Details for GEOL 1900
There are no applicable transfer credits for this course.

Course Offerings

Summer 2023