Definition of Geography and Environmental Geography
Before defining the geography of the environment (environmental geography), it is useful to consider first the concept of geography in general. One common misconception is the view of geography as a simple study of the names of a place. The implications of such understanding, resulting in the reduction of the essence of geography. Geography of knowledge to memorize places on earth, so that this field becomes less meaningful to life. Geography dipandanng often synonymous with cartography or create maps. In practice the geographers often very skilled in reading and understanding maps, but not appropriate if the activity to make the map as a profession.
The word geography comes from geo = earth, and graphein = mencitra. The phrase was first cited by Eratosthenes who suggested the word "geografika". The word is rooted in a geo = earth and graphika = painting or writing. So geographika word in Greek, means painting or writing about the earth on earth. The terms of geography is also known in various languages, such as geography (UK), geographie (France), die geographie / die erdkunde (Germany), geografie / aardrijkskunde (Netherlands) and geographike (Greece).
For years humans have sought to identify the environment in the earth's surface. The introduction was preceded by visiting places directly on the earth, and subsequent use of equipment and technology more advanced. In line with the recognition that human thinking about the environment continue to evolve, understanding geography is also experiencing change and development. Understanding geography is not just writing about the earth, but has become its own science as well as other sciences. Geography has evolved from a story about a region with a population into the field of science studies yan has objects, methods, principles and concepts of its own, so have a place in the midst of other sciences.
In connection with the progress, the concept of geography have also developed. Ekblaw and Mulkerne suggested that geography is the study of earth science and kehidupannnya, affect our view of life, the food we eat, the clothes that we use, the house in which we live and we enjoy recreation.
Bintarto (1977) argues, that geography is the science that mencitra, explaining the nature of the earth, to analyze the phenomena of nature and population as well as learn about the typical life and try to find the function of the element of earth in space and time.
Results semlok improving the quality of teaching geography in Semarang (1988) formulate, that geography is the study of similarities and differences with the phenomenon of geosphere kelingkungan perspective in the context of territorial or spatial.
James argued geography associated with spatial system, which occupies a space the earth's surface. Geography is always berkaiatan with the interrelationships between humans and their habitats.
Based on a study of the concept of the author argues that geography is the study of natural phenomena and human learning and linkages both at the surface of the earth by using a spatial approach, kelingkungan, and complex region. In the sense that some essential aspect, namely (1) the reciprocal relationship between nature and human elements (reciprocal). (2) The relationship can be interelatif, interactive, and intergratif according to the context. (3) how memadang berisifat spatial relationship.
Based on these concepts, the study of Geography bekaitan with the following questions.
* Where is it?
* Why is it there?
* So what?
In other words, Geography studying spatial distribution of something (language, economic activity, pollution, transportation Rote, soil, climate, and and other phenomena) to find out why it spread as it is. Geography then try to describe the distribution, and with the understanding that can propose solutions to problems occur.
Preston James tried to solve the question of whether geography to give constraints of geography into four main traditions, namely:
1. The spatial tradition
Geographers have long been Concerned with mapping and the spatial arrangement of Things. Some geographers were the resource persons developing statistical methods to improv both the description and analysis of Such spatial patterns (James). Because this trend was not without its critics, the James article is Often seen as a fence-mending effort Within the discipline.
2. The area studies tradition
Geographers Such as Reclus and Humboldt were the resource persons famous for Their exhaustive descriptions of places. Even today, many geographers develop an expertise in the study of one or two regions. Typically, earnest geographers learn the language or langauges spoken in the region being studied and earnest They develop an understanding of both the natural and physical features of the human activities and patterns. The goal is changed from an expert on the region as it is and to study specific problems or questions about the region.
3. The man-land tradition
Beginning with George Perkins Marsh in the middle of the Nineteenth Century, geographers have sought to understand how the natural environment determines Either or constrains human behavior and how Humans, in turn, modify the physical world around Them. Given the inherent sexism of this title, most geographers use the term now Would "human-environment" to DESCRIBE this tradition.
4. The Earth sciences tradition
Many geography programs in the United States emerged from geology departments, and the Connection Between the disciplines Remains strong. Most geographers - even if They focus on human geography - Some receive training in areas Such physical geography landforms, climate, soils, and the distribution of plants.
The existence of environmental geography inseparable from environmental issues, khsususnya relationship between population growth, resource consumption, and increased intensity of the problem due to excessive exploitation of natural resources. Environmental Geography can provide a powerful combination of conceptual tools for understanding complex environmental problems.
Environmental geography or human geography tend to integration of human and physical geography in understanding global environmental change. Geography environment using a holistic approach. Environmental Geography involves several aspects of the interrelationships between humans and the environment. To understand the environmental problems are not possible without understanding the process of economic, cultural, demographic which leads to increased resource consumption and generation of a slump. Most of the process is complex and tranasional. Potential solution is only by understanding the biochemical cycle functions (circulation of water, carbon, nitrogen, etc.) and also the technology used by humans to intervene in that cycle.
On the basis of this perspective, can disarkan that geographical environment is a science which studies the location and spatial variation of natural phenomena (physical) and humans on the earth's surface. (Environmental geography is the scientific study ot the location and spatial variation in both physical and human phenomena of the Earth) (James Hayes-Bohanan).