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Atmospheric scientists study the weather and climate and examine how those conditions affect human activity and the earth in general. Most atmospheric scientists work indoors in weather stations, offices, or laboratories.

Ice, which covers 10 percent of Earth's surface, is disappearing rapidly.  While the Arctic sea ice extent is declining, air temperatures are rising. Vegetation is changing, with tundra being replaced by shrubs. Permafrost is warming and thawing over parts of the Arctic.

Soil scientists study the physical and chemical properties of soil. A soil scientist reviews the distribution, origin, and history of soil and plants, as well as identifying, interpreting, mapping and/or managing soils. This field is commonly applied for agricultural purposes.

Students identify kinds of land cover (such as roads, fields, urban areas, and lakes) in Landsat satellite images. They decide which land cover types allow the passage of water into the soil (pervious) and which types do not allow it (impervious).

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