BIOL 1001 Week 6 Introduction to Biology

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Biology has always been a subject of great importance to me as it revolves around the study of living organisms. I have a personal commitment to taking steps to protect the environment in which my family lives. Every organism, regardless of its size, plays a crucial role in our ecosystems, impacting them positively or negatively. For example, the average carbon dioxide output for electricity in the United States was 884.2 pounds per megawatt-hour in 2018, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA, 2022). Many people now need to be mindful of conserving electricity, even if it is included in their monthly rent. But how much do our daily decisions affect the biosphere?

One of the most significant lessons I have learned during my time in Biology 1001 is that all human decisions have an impact on the biosphere. The biosphere encompasses all ecosystems on Earth, representing the various life zones (Fowler et al., 2013a). Our choices, such as how we heat, cool, and light our homes or our decisions regarding transportation and recycling, contribute to the release of carbon dioxide (CO2), the primary greenhouse gas emitted through human activities. In fact, investigations by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA, 2022a) in 2020 revealed that 79% of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions result from CO2.

BIOL 1001 Week 6 Introduction to Biology

Unfortunately, the CO2 released through human activities contributes to global warming by trapping heat within the atmosphere. This trapped heat cannot escape the biosphere, leading to a warming climate (EPA, 2022a). However, it is important to note that not all CO2 is detrimental. Carbon dioxide is continuously exchanged among the atmosphere, land surface, and ocean, as it is produced and absorbed by various plants, animals, and microorganisms. For instance, humans inhale the oxygen produced by plants and trees, while these plants and trees absorb the CO2 we generate through our daily activities.

During my childhood, I was exposed to numerous misconceptions about cancer through commercials and the school nutrition system. These misconceptions created illusions about how cancer can be contracted. However, I have come to learn that cancer is a collective term for various diseases caused by uncontrolled cell division (Fowler et al., 2013b). At the cellular level, genetic factors inherited from both parents can make some individuals more susceptible to specific types of cancer. 

BIOL 1001 Week 6 Introduction to Biology

As someone with fair skin, I have always been concerned about skin cancer. Due to the depleted ozone layer, my skin burns quickly when exposed to the sun’s ultraviolet rays. Before taking this biology course, I was under the impression that skin cancer is not hereditary and genetics do not play a significant role. However, The Skin Cancer Foundation (2022) reports that melanoma can run in families, with one in every ten patients diagnosed having a relative with a history of the disease. This newfound understanding of genetics has motivated me to take extra precautions to protect myself from ultraviolet rays, such as using sunscreen, wearing lightweight long-sleeved shirts, and limiting my time in the sun.

Participating in class discussions throughout Biology 1001 has been valuable in broadening my perspective and promoting open-mindedness. Engaging with others and considering their opinions has enhanced my ability to appreciate different viewpoints. During a discussion on cellular metabolism, the carbon cycle, and energy in week two, we debated whether drivers should be subject to a usage tax if their vehicles emit more emissions into the atmosphere. In my initial post, I argued against imposing such a tax, highlighting how some individuals cannot afford newer vehicles and that financial circumstances can limit their choices (Cardwell, 2022). However, after reading through the week two discussions, I had a change of heart.

BIOL 1001 Week 6 Introduction to Biology

I now believe that charging a usage tax to individuals whose vehicles contribute more emissions to the atmosphere is the most effective way to prioritize our biosphere. As expressed by Cravens-Lewis (2022), it is the responsibility of every individual to ensure the health of our environment and atmosphere.

In terms of policy, I believe it is crucial for all nations, regardless of size or nationality, to come together in the pursuit of renewable energy sources. By reducing greenhouse gas emissions, we can provide future generations with clean air and minimize respiratory illnesses caused by climate change.

BIOL 1001 Week 6 Introduction to Biology

In conclusion, my experience in Biology 1001 has provided me with a wealth of knowledge. Prior to this course, I had a basic understanding of the scientific method and its application in obtaining accurate results. However, through practical activities like the osmosis lab in week one, I have gained a clearer understanding of the scientific process and its significance in problem-solving and creating positive outcomes. Science, as Fowler et al. (2013a) state, not only leads to conclusions that may necessitate changes in approach but also brings forth new scientific questions. It is this aspect of science that captivates me, and I am grateful to be part of this field that continuously seeks to enhance our understanding and improve our planet for everyone.


Cardwell, C. (2022, June 10). Blackboard Learn [Online Forum Post]. Blackboard Inc.



Cravens-Lewis, L. (2022, June 4). Blackboard Learn [Online Forum Post]. Blackboard Inc.




Fowler, S., Roush, R., & Wise, J. (2013a). Ch. 1 Introduction – Concepts of Biology | OpenStax.


Fowler, S., Roush, R., & Wise, J. (2013b). Ch. 6 Reproduction at the cellular level in Concepts

of Biology. OpenStax. Openstax.

Introduction The Skin Cancer Foundation. (2022, June 30). Melanoma Risk Factors. Retrieved July 11, 2022,


and-risk-factors/#:%7E:text=Melanoma%20can%20run%20in%20families.,you%20are %20at%20increased%20risk. United States Environmental Protection Agency. (2022a, May 16). Overview of Greenhouse Gases. Retrieved July 11, 2022, from greenhouse-gases#:%7E:text=Carbon%20dioxide%20(CO2)%20is,gas%20emissions%20from%20human%20activities. United States Environmental Protection Agency. (2022b, June 23). Greenhouse Gases Equivalencies Calculator – Calculations and References. Retrieved July 10, 2022, from