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Risorse bibliografiche
Risorsa bibliografica obbligatoria
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativa
Scheda Riassuntiva
Anno Accademico 2019/2020
Scuola Scuola di Ingegneria Industriale e dell'Informazione
Insegnamento 099247 - INDUSTRIAL ECOLOGY
Docente Mari Lorenzo
Cfu 8.00 Tipo insegnamento Monodisciplinare

Corso di Studi Codice Piano di Studio preventivamente approvato Da (compreso) A (escluso) Insegnamento
Ing - Civ (Mag.)(ord. 270) - MI (489) INGEGNERIA PER L'AMBIENTE E IL TERRITORIO - ENVIRONMENTAL AND LAND PLANNING ENGINEERING*AZZZZ099247 - INDUSTRIAL ECOLOGY
Ing Ind - Inf (Mag.)(ord. 270) - BV (477) ENERGY ENGINEERING - INGEGNERIA ENERGETICA*AZZZZ099247 - INDUSTRIAL ECOLOGY

Obiettivi dell'insegnamento

The goal of the course is to provide energy engineers with a broad introduction to the fundamentals of ecology, as well as to discuss the applications of this discipline to the problems related to industrial production, with a particular focus on the ecological impacts of human activities at both local and global scales. This course deals with topics concerning the UN Sustainable Development Goals 12 (Responsible Consumption and Production), 13 (Climate Action), 14 (Life Below Water) and 15 (Life on Land).


Risultati di apprendimento attesi

Upon completing the course, the students will gain a thorough knowledge and understanding of
- the principles of ecological organization and how human activities can interfere with ecological processes;
- the flows of energy and matter in ecosystems, with a specific focus on global biogeochemical cycles and their relation with global climate change;
- the basic mechanisms that govern population dynamics, with a special emphasis on human demography;
- the concept of sustainability, and how to promote sustainable practices in the management of natural resources and industrial systems.

 

The students will be able to apply the concepts outlined above to 
- assess the status of ecological systems by using suitable biodiversity indexes;
- evaluate energy/matter flows in ecosystems by formulating simple quantitative balances;
- describe population dynamics by applying demographic methods and models;
- design sustainable management scheme for natural resources and assess the environmental impact of industrial production.

 

Students will also be guided towards making up their own judgement about engaging topics of broad and urgent interest, specifically concerning the impact of anthropic activities on ecosystem integrity, diversity and services and on global climate change, with the overarching goal of promoting sustainable practices in human societies and industrial systems.


Argomenti trattati

What is ecology and why it is important
- fundamentals of biology and physical geography
- interactions between the abiotic environment and the living organisms
- levels of biological organization: from individuals to biomes
- biodiversity: basic concepts, measures, threaths
- measuring the value of nature: ecosystem services

 

Ecosystem functioning
- basic ecosystem processes (photosynthesis, respiration, primary production, decomposition) and their measurement
- energy and matter flows within and between ecosystems
- ecosystem structure: trophic networks, ecological efficiencies, energy pyramids
- biogeochemical cycles: general notions, the carbon cycle and its implications for global climate change, the nitrogen cycle, hints to other cycles
- the flow of toxic chemicals in ecosystems: principles of ecotoxicology, phenomenological and quantitative aspects

 

Population dynamics and demography
- basic concepts (mortality, fertility, migration), Malthusian dynamics, growth rates
- age- and size-structured populations: demographic indicators and dynamics 
- human demography: age pyramids, local and global projections, demographic transitions
- density dependence: interference/exploitative competition, positive density dependence

 

Sustainability
- the environmental, social and economic dimensions of sustainability
- measuring sustainability: indicators and trade-offs
- sustainable management of renewable resources: maximum sustainable yield and optimal harvesting policies
- basic notions of bioeconomics: open-access resources, the tragedy of the commons, regulation methods
- environmental impacts of industrial production: energy and material flow analysis, basics of circular economy, industrial systems as ecological networks

 

These topics will be covered in succession and will be accompanied by tutorial classes, during which students will be required to solve numerical exercises.


Prerequisiti

Mathematical formalism is used throughout the course, therefore having completed a basic Calculus course is highly recommended.


Modalità di valutazione

Assessment is performed through either two optional in itinere tests (mid-term and full-term) or a full evaluation test to be taken during one of the regular exam sessions, according to the official academic calendar of the School. All tests are in written form, and include both quantitative exercises (typically 3) and conceptual questions (in either multiple-choice or short-open formats, or both). A 0-32 scale is used to grade each test. As for in itinere tests, the exam is considered as passed if each of the two grades is ≥16/32 and their average is ≥18/32. As for the full test, the exam is considered as passed with a grade ≥18/32.

 

Within each written test, exercises and questions typically concern all of the topics discussed in the course. Formal correctness, numerical accuracy and exposition clarity all contribute to determine the final grade. Specifically, written tests may evaluate the students' ability to
- apply biodiversity measures to real or realistic field data;
- formulate energy and matter balances to study exchanges within and between ecosystems; 
- evaluate demographic indicators for structured populations and study population dynamics through mechanistic models; 
- use bioeconomic methods to design sustainable management of natural resources.


Bibliografia
Risorsa bibliografica obbligatoriaCourse slides and reading material http://www.ecologia.polimi.it/indeco/
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaAyres, R.U., Ayres, L.W., A Handbook of Industrial Ecology
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaRicklefs, R.E., The Economy of Nature
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaSmith, T.M., Smith, R.L., Elements of Ecology
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaSocolow, R., Andrews, C., Berkhout, F., Thomas, V., Industrial Ecology and Global Change

Forme didattiche
Tipo Forma Didattica Ore di attività svolte in aula
(hh:mm)
Ore di studio autonome
(hh:mm)
Lezione
48:00
72:00
Esercitazione
32:00
48:00
Laboratorio Informatico
0:00
0:00
Laboratorio Sperimentale
0:00
0:00
Laboratorio Di Progetto
0:00
0:00
Totale 80:00 120:00

Informazioni in lingua inglese a supporto dell'internazionalizzazione
Insegnamento erogato in lingua Inglese
Disponibilità di materiale didattico/slides in lingua inglese
Disponibilità di libri di testo/bibliografia in lingua inglese
Possibilità di sostenere l'esame in lingua inglese
Disponibilità di supporto didattico in lingua inglese
schedaincarico v. 1.6.5 / 1.6.5
Area Servizi ICT
20/09/2020