Jordan Dodderer – Climate Change/WikiLeaks


In my system diagram I seek to explain the connection between Climate Change and WikiLeaks and the various input and output sources of those two items. As inputs, to Climate change, I included the burning of fossil fuels, which leads to a build up of CO2 ppm in the atmosphere. This build up of greenhouse gasses leads to climate change. As an output of Climate change, we have the proposed climate accord. The climate accord has various outputs of its own. These are the dealings of the United States government in an attempt to win support, and seek benefits for their own country. These outputs also serve as inputs to our output problem, which is the wikileaks hack. The wikileaks scandal made the US government look bad for their various secret dealings. This scandal served as an output source.

Drawing on this lesson’s core value of understanding the cause and effect of climate change, I think that any sustainability agreements that are reached on a global level are a win for environmentalists. In an environmental setting the accord is a winning output policy. However, as a surveillance state and the issue of public and private security I do not support the actions of the US economy. I think that there is a more altruistic and ethical way of dealing with such problems. The backdoor deals and coercion are a stain on democracy. So while I support the measure and the output policy I do not support the means by which the policy was achieved and hope for better in our future.

Good Agriculture in Indonesia and Drought in Ethiopia


In Lampung, Indonesia Agribusiness owner Great Giant Pineapple is working hard to meet he demands of a modern agricultural business model that meets environmental standards from governments and consumers alike. ( The leader in pineapple exports had several areas of concern in keeping up with a business that required achieving high yield while reducing waste, complying with environmental regulations and customer requirements, and participating in global warming prevention by reducing green house gas emissions. They were able to meet their goals by practicing “Good Agricultural Practices.” The corporation has been quite successful in creating a sustainable development plan. They reduced waste by 100% by building a biogas plant that turns their previous waste product into a natural energy source. They also switched over to all organic fertilizers (cow manure) as a natural source of soil fertilization to comply with customers needs as well as the health of the soil. In a further effort to meet standards they switched the products they use to treat their crop and they now include bio fertilizer and organic fertilizer application, as well as organic pest controller, nutrient conservation, soil conditioner, plant rotation, and nutrient storage.

In Adigrat, Ethiopia, The Economist reports on the massive drought that the country is experiencing. ( Although nowhere near the national emergency the country experienced in the 80’s, citizens are suffering on a large scale due to a lack of water. The drought has caused the loss of crops, as well as the deaths of hundreds of thousands of livestock animals. The government is doing their best to address the sustainability crisis and also to provide for those citizens who are too poor to afford the food that is available. The government created the Productive Safety Net Programme, which provides jobs for about 7million people who work on public-infrastructure projects in return for food or cash. In this way the government is able to provide for its citizens as well as invest in infrastructure development within its cities. In a further stage of development, as well as to address the crisis Ethiopia managed to accelerate the building of a new railway line—the country’s only one—to bring food supplies from Djibouti on the coast of the Horn of Africa.

I currently live in Southern California, where we too are experiencing a massive drought, just as in Ethiopia. Thankfully, El Nino is bringing California some much needed rain, as opposed to further drought. However, the scarcity of water still exists, thankfully we have the infrastructure to be sustainable for the moment, although the increasing drought threatens this ability. In connection to the same water crisis in California, I chose the Pineapple exporter’s Good agricultural practices, because the farmers of California are not held to this same high standard by the state government. The overuse of water by farmers is one of the reasons for the extremity of the drought in California. I think that the state government could learn from the policies of the Ethiopian government and the good practices of the Great Giant Pineapple company to be proactive in addressing the need for sustainable crops and sustainable water, especially in a crisis like a drought. The government can’t expect the daily citizen to turn around a drought, it will take a massive reform effort and new rules for everyone.

Getting to Know You-Madison Halbom

Hello fellow Geog 030 students!

My name is Madison Halbom, I am a junior studying Environmental Systems Engineering at University Park. I transferred here this school year from the Abington campus. I was born and raised in Perkasie, PA about an hour outside of Philly. I plan on pursuing a job in the field of environmental engineering hopefully working in the area of water treatment. My interest in this course is to learn about the other nations and societies in the world and differences between my culture and theirs. I have only been out of the country to Mexico so I find other countries very interesting and would really love to travel to many places when I get older. Some fun facts about me is that I am a twin, my sisters name is Darby and she goes to Kutztown University located also in PA. I also have an older sister that teaches first grade in a low income area in North Carolina and a brother who is studying Civil Engineering at San Jose State in California.

Now with an introduction to various perspectives of geography, I consider a very interesting topic in the area of geography to be the interactions of the environment on humanity and the effect of humanity on the environment. A concept to consider is Governance, how people are forced to take into consideration the environment and how it may limit there choices. An example of this is the water resources in California, they are very limited, this being the case residents in areas of California needs to consider the risk of wild fires and lack of water in the earth and available to them. Also another concept is how human activities and humanity can exist and prosper without hurting or taking negative effects on the environment is known as the concept of sustainability. When I consider this concept I think of the efforts in rural PA working to preserve farmlands from being bought and developed with town-homes. This is a big issue in my home county of Bucks and we are constantly working to preserve the farmlands as much as possible to we maintain so of the environments integrity while living in the same community.

Getting To Know You: M01, GEOG 30


Hello Class! My name is Jordan Dodderer. I am originally from Johnstown, Ohio but have since moved to Los Angeles, CA where I am a professional dancer for television, movies and music artists. It was always a dream of mine to pursue a dance career and the past 7 years have afforded me a great career in the entertainment industry. Another lifelong dream of mine was to receive my college diploma and so, I am pursuing my degree in Political Science through Penn State University World Campus. My pursuit of the degree at this point in time is really just to enhance my knowledge of the world at large and engage in thoughtful discussions in an academic setting. However, I am open to a future career change that is engaged in the political spectrum. I am taking this course in connection with understanding the political nature of human-environment interactions. I am excited to explore this area of study with you all!


The issue of governance resonates strongly with me as a resident of Southern California. The policy decisions made by governance have greatly affected our water resources and lead the region into a major drought in recent years. Many cities have enforced strict regulations on water usage, while others have enforced greater taxes on water consumption. Politically, the state has refused to impose these same regulations on farmers. I find this of particular interest in regards to the social aspect of human environment interactions and governance. Policy makers clearly regard that water is vital to the agriculture industry and keeping the land fertile with unrestricted water usage continues to drain the state water supply even as city residents continue to reduce their consumption effectively. Of course, there are no right and wrong answers to the policy debate, but I this specific example from my own experience came to mind as I read the descriptions of the importance of governance within Geography.

Getting to know you

Hello! My name is Maura. I am originally from the South Hills of Pittsburgh. I enjoy riding horses, skiing, hiking, cooking, and traveling. I graduated from Penn State in May 2014 with a degree in forensic science (chemistry option) and minors in chemistry and psychology. I began doing research my junior year and following graduation I accepted a full-time position in the research laboratory.   I am a research assistant in an analytical chemistry lab that focuses on environmental and forensic applications. I live and work full-time at University Park. I am currently applying and interviewing for pharmacy school. My career goals are to become a pharmacist. I am currently taking courses to meet the prerequisites for pharmacy school. I have laboratory experience investigating environmental chemistry impacts on human health. I am excited for this class to display other perspectives on the environment. I hope to have a well-rounded understanding of the environment and how humans effect the environment after completing this course.


The United States of America has been experiencing an energy crisis.   The coal supply is rapidly decreasing and the USA is becoming increasingly dependent on the Middle East for oil. With the diminishing amount of fossil fuels in the USA and the government’s reluctances to rely on the Middle East, the USA has displayed governance. Foreign policy and natural resource constraints have resulted in unconventional shale gas drilling in America. People have expressed great concern about the sustainability of fracking. Many people are worried about the potentially detrimental impacts fracking could have on the environment. A fracking incidence could result in dangerous chemicals leaching into drinking water. This would affect a local scale in which small towns or counties could experience health effects if fracking sites were to contaminate drinking water supplies. Maps of the shale rock basins in the USA visualize the various shale basins present in the bedrock of America. The shale rock stretching across Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Ohio is the Marcellus formation.

Getting to Know Me!

Hello everyone! My name is Julianna Cardillo (but people call me Julie or Jules for short). I currently live in Dunmore, Pennsylvania, but up until I was ten years old I lived in a near by town called Throop, Pennsylvania. I am a sophomore at Penn State Worthington Scranton, but I will be transferring to University Park in the fall! My major is Early Childhood Education, so I would like to become a teacher when I graduate (preferably  of 1st or 2nd graders). In addition, I would like to specialize in math education by obtaining a Masters Degree. I am taking this course for two reasons: The first reason is obvious; I needed an Economic Geography credit for my major. The second reason is because when I was looking for different courses to satisfy this credit, GEOG 030 caught my attention the most because the topics discussed in this course seemed very interesting to me, since I never knew/learned about the social aspect of Geography. As one to have a major that deals with social science, I felt that this course would be the most beneficial one. Now, some facts about me are I am on my campus’ softball and cheer teams. I am a member of THON and our campus’ Lion Ambassadors, as well. I love meeting and talking to new people, so I am very excited to “meet” all of you!

As I was reading through Module 1, the issue that sparked my interest the most was “Human-Environment Interactions.” I feel that this is well suited to discuss because this is the world we live in, so we should be weary of how we affect it and how it affects us. Moreover, humans are changing the environment everyday (and vice versa). However, when I read through this module, I learned that Paul Crutzen (Nobel Prize- winning scientist) believes that we live in an Anthropocene era, where humans are believed to be dominant over the environment. I can agree with Crutzen because I have noticed over the past decade humans have impacted and dominated the environment more by pollution, deforestation, etc. For example, I live by a small city called Dickson City, where they have had a Texas Roadhouse for many years. However, recently, that Texas Roadhouse was knocked down because it “wasn’t big enough” and rebuilt down the road. In order to build a bigger Texas Roadhouse, trees had to be cleared and the environment was disrupted. That leads me into thinking about ethics, because was it really environmentally ethical to ruin more of the environment to make a bigger Texas Roadhouse? Probably not. Ideas and actions like this are causing our environment to deplete. On the contrary, in this same city exists an abandoned Walmart, and this Walmart is abandoned because it was build too close to a rocky cliff. This resulted in boulders and rocks constantly falling on it. Clearly, the builders of this Walmart did not have much governance when it came to the location of where they wanted to build this Walmart. It is obvious that humans and the environment are constantly affecting each other in many (bad/good) ways. It is important that people consider the environment before they take action in doing something, since the result can be negative. By sustainability, I believe that we and the environment can live in peace without harming each other. Also, by learning about our surroundings and “thinking before we do,” we can avoid from being harmed by the environment or harming the environment.