The requirements for Environmental Science merit badge were revised
effective January 1, 1998.
Environmental Science is a required merit badge for the Eagle Scout
- 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.
- Define the following terms and describe the relationships
among them: population, community, ecosystem, biosphere,
symbiosis, niche, habitat, conservation, threatened species,
endangered species, extinction.
- Do ONE activity in EACH of the following categories (using the
activities in the merit badge pamphlet as the bases for
planning and carrying out your projects), and record your
- Conduct an experiment to find out how living
things respond to changes in their
environments.Discuss your observations with
- Conduct an experiment illustrating the
greenhouse effect. Keep a journal of your
data and observations. Discuss your
conclusions with your counselor.
- Air Pollution
- Perform an experiment to test for particulates
that contribute to air pollution. Discuss
your findings with your counselor.
- Conduct a study to test the effects of acid
rain on plants. Discuss your findings with
- Water Pollution
- Conduct an experiment to show how living things
react to thermal pollution. Discuss your
observations with your counselor.
- 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.
- Land Pollution
- 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 patrol
- Perform an experiment to determine the effect
of an oil spill on land. Share your journal
and discuss your conclusions with your
- Endangered Species
- 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.
- Do research on one species that was endangered
or threatened but which 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.
- Resource Recovery
- Perform an experiment on packaging materials to
find out which ones are biodegradable. Discuss
your conclusions with your counselor.
- Find out if your local community has a
recycling program in effect. If it does, find
out what items are recycled, and who pays for
recycling. If your community does not have a
recycling program, write questions for and
conduct a survey on recycling. Include
questions about attitudes toward recycling,
what should be recycled, and your community's
willingness to support a recycling program.
Discuss your findings with your counselor.
- Build an ecosystem in a bottle. Include soil, plants, fungi,
and small animals found in your local environment. Maintain
the ecosystem for one week. Observe it daily, and keep a
record of your observations. Discuss your observations with
- Choose an outdoor area to study. In your study area, do ONE
of the following:
- Mark off three study plots of four square yards each,
and count the number of species found there. Then
estimate how much space is occupied by each species
found in the plots. Make a chart, graph, or table
to compare the plots. Write a report that adequately
discusses the biodiversity and population density of
your study area. Discuss your report with your
- Make four visits to the study area, staying for at
least 30 minutes each time, to observe the living
and nonliving parts of the ecosystem. Keep a journal
of your observations, including a discussion of
differences noted during the four visits. Write a
report on your observations and discuss it with your
- Propose a hypothetical construction project in your community
and prepare a limited environmental impact statement for
the project. Study the area to see what the impact of the
project might be upon the living and nonliving parts of the
- Develop a plan that would help solve an environmental problem,
reduce an environmental impact, or affect environmental
awareness in your community. Include plans for a specific
project that could be done by your patrol or troop.
- Discuss three possible careers in the field of environmental
science. Identify the education that you would need to pursue
ONE of these careers.