Introduction:Environmental Science is an Eagle Required Merit Badge that focuses on helping scouts see their impact on the environment around them and helps them to learn to live sustainably. Environmental Science has several requirements where where scouts can choose to do specific parts. We will make some recommendations throughout our videos, however scouts are free to choose any of the alternate options if they prefer.
- Merit Badge Requirements
- Associated Worksheets
- Environmental Science By Gretchen Shumpert & Robert “Scorpio” Carlin
- Video: Part 1 – Environmental Science Merit Badge (Req. 1-3g)
- Video: Part 2 – Environmental Science Merit Badge (Req. 3g-4)
- Video: Part 3 – Environmental Science Merit Badge
What Are The Environmental Science MB Requirements?
- Requirement 1. Make a timeline of the history of environmental science in America. Identify the contribution made by the Boy Scouts of America to environmental science. Include dates, names of people or organizations, and important events. Check out the following link for a great reference: https://www.sutori.com/story/a-timeline-of-the-history-of-environmental-science-in-america–4T7voVGxQE7MWEXTqm5yk69c
- Requirement 3. Do ONE activity from seven of the following categories (using the activities in this pamphlet as the basis for planning and projects): Please note that for this list we are only showing the option that we are doing as a troop, however other options are available per the Merit Badge Requirements if the scout chooses to do a different option on their own:
- Requirement 3a3 – Ecology – Discuss what is an ecosystem. Tell how it is maintained in nature and how it survives.
- Requirement 3b3 – Air Pollution – Explain what is acid rain. In your explanation, tell how it affects plants and the environment and the steps society can take to help reduce its effects.
- Requirement 3g1– Pollination – Using photographs or illustrations, point out the differences between a drone and a worker bee. Discuss the stages of bee development (eggs, larvae, pupae). Explain the pollination process, and what propolis is and how it is used by honey bees. Tell how bees make honey and beeswax, and how both are harvested. Explain the part played in the life of the hive by the queen, the drones, and the workers.
- Requirement 3h1 – Invasive Species – Learn to identify the major invasive plant species in your community or camp and explain to your counselor what can be done to either eradicate or control their spread.
- Requirement 5. Using the construction project provided or a plan you create on your own (We’ll discuss a construction project during the 6/29 troop meeting but you may pick any one you’d like), identify the items that would need to be included in an environmental impact statement for the project planned. We’ll also discuss the things that should be included in an environmental impact statement and scouts will work on their own to determine potential environmental issues and make a recommendation about whether the project should continue or be stopped based on their environmental impact statement.
- Requirement 6. Find out about three career opportunities in environmental science. Pick one and find out the education, training, and experience required for this profession. Discuss this with your counselor and explain why this profession might interest you. We will show you several career options during a troop meeting, you’ll need to pick your favorite 3 (they may, but do not need to, include any that we show) and do the research on one of them.
- Requirement 2. Define the following terms: population, community, ecosystem, biosphere, symbiosis, niche, habitat, conservation, threatened species, endangered species, extinction, pollution prevention, brownfield, ozone, watershed, airshed, nonpoint source, hybrid vehicle, fuel cell.
- Requirement 3. Do ONE activity from seven of the following categories (using the activities in the merit badge pamphlet as the basis for planning and projects): Please note that for this list we showing all options available for the category but we have highlighted the one that we recommend during Scouting Continues 2020; however the scout may choose to do any of the options they would prefer:
(c) Water Pollution
(1) Conduct an experiment to show how living things react to thermal pollution. Discuss your observations with your counselor.
(2) Conduct an experiment to identify the methods that could be used to mediate (reduce) the effects of an oil spill on waterfowl. Discuss your results with your counselor.
(3) Recommended (We will discuss examples of waterborne pollutants during a troop meeting) Describe the impact of a waterborne pollutant on an aquatic community. Write a 100-word report on how that pollutant affected aquatic life, what the effect was, and whether the effect is linked to biomagnification.
(d) Land Pollution
(1) Conduct an experiment to illustrate soil erosion by water. Take photographs or make a drawing of the soil before and after your experiment, and make a poster showing your results. Present your poster to your counselor.
(2) Perform an experiment to determine the effect of an oil spill on land. Discuss your conclusions with your counselor.
(3) Recommended (We will show some examples during a troop meeting) Photograph an area affected by erosion. Share your photographs with your counselor and discuss why the area has eroded and what might be done to help alleviate the erosion.
(e) Endangered Species (Recommend 3e1 or 3e2)
(1) Do research on one endangered species found in your state. Find out what its natural habitat is, why it is endangered, what is being done to preserve it, and how many individual organisms are left in the wild. Prepare a 100-word report about the organism, including a drawing. Present your report to your patrol or troop.
(2) Do research on one species that was endangered or threatened but that has now recovered. Find out how the organism recovered, and what its new status is. Write a 100-word report on the species and discuss it with your counselor.
(3) With your parent’s and counselor’s approval, work with a natural resource professional to identify two projects that have been approved to improve the habitat for a threatened or endangered species in your area. Visit the site of one of these projects and report on what you saw.
(f) Pollution Prevention, Resource Recovery, and Conservation (choose your favorite)
(1) Look around your home and determine 10 ways your family can help reduce pollution. Practice at least two of these methods for seven days and discuss with your counselor what you have learned.
(2) Determine 10 ways to conserve resources or use resources more efficiently in your home, at school, or at camp. Practice at least two of these methods for seven days and discuss with your counselor what you have learned.
(3) Perform an experiment on packaging materials to find out which ones are biodegradable. Discuss your conclusion with your counselor.
- Requirement 4. Choose two outdoor study areas that are very different from one another (e.g., hilltop vs. bottom of a hill; field vs. forest; swamp vs. dry land). For BOTH study areas, do ONE of the following:
(a) Mark off a plot of 4 square yards in each study area and count the number of species found there. Estimate how much space is occupied by each plant species and the type and number of non-plant species you find. Report to your counselor orally or in writing the biodiversity and population density of these study areas.
(b) Make at least three visits to each of the two study areas (for a total of six visits), staying for at least 20 minutes each time, to observe the living and nonliving parts of the ecosystem. Space each visit far enough apart that there are readily apparent differences in the observations. Keep a journal that includes the differences you observe. Discuss your observations with your counselor.