Module 1 - Introduction to the Human Dimensions of Climate Change
Climate change in the 21st century is essentially a human problem. People are causing climate change through their everyday actions and through the socioeconomic forces underlying those actions. At the same time, people are feeling the consequences of climate change through various impacts on things they value and through the responses they are making to address climate change.
Rising sea level threatens Sunderbans inhabitants. TopNews.in. Retrieved August 10, 2011 from http://www.topnews.in/rising-sea-level-threatens-sunderbans-inhabitants-2241921
In this first module, we introduce the human dimensions of climate change by digging more deeply into its causes and consequences. First, however, we develop a framework for understanding the relationships between humans and climate. We also present the various scales of space and time involved in the human dimensions of climate change.
What will we learn?
By the end of this module, you should be able to:
- explain what the climate system is;
- explain what we mean by the human causes of climate change;
- explain what we mean by the human consequences of climate change;
- discuss how reasons for concern about climate change risks are increasing.
What is due for this Module?
This module will take us one week to complete. Please refer to the Calendar in ANGEL for specific time frames and due dates. Specific directions for the assignment below can be found within this module.
|To Read||Smith, J.B., S.H. Schneider, M. Oppenheimer, G.W. Yohe, W. Hare, M.D. Mastrandrea, A. Patwardhan, I. Burton, J. Corfee-Morlot, C.H.D. Magadza, Hans-Martin Füssel, A.B. Pittock, A. Rahman, A. Suarez, and J.-P. van Ypersele, 2009: Assessing dangerous climate change through an update of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) “reasons for concern.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, doi_10.1073_pnas.0812355106.|
|To Write||Discussion of how and why the ‘reasons for concern’ changed since the Third Assessment Report (TAR), based on the reading assignment.|
|To Discuss||Impacts of climate change on one of five groups, including Eskimos, the Pennsylvania Amish, the city of Miami, Zimbabwe, and Tuvalu.|
If you have any questions, please send them to All Course Instructors through ANGEL e-mail. We will check daily to respond. If your question is one that is relevant to the entire class, we may respond to the entire class rather than individually.