Human Dimensions of Global Warming

Lesson 7: Impacts on Places


The Built Environment and Our Coasts

What will we learn?

This lesson is a bit unique in that we are tackling two separate but decidedly related issues - impacts of climate change on our coasts and impacts of climate change on our cities.  Not all cities are near water, but many of our largest, busiest, most populated cities are. Therefore, it makes sense to think about these issues in tandem while also recognizing their unique attributes. And then, let's add extreme weather events to the mix because while they don't happen exclusively on the coasts or in the cities, the nexus of these produces some of the biggest concerns related to human impacts of a changing climate.  

By the end of this lesson, you should be able to:

  • describe the main physical impacts of climate change on coasts and in cities (including urban utilities and infrastructure, industry, services, and social systems);
  • describe which people and what things are exposed to these physical impacts;
  • explain why these exposed people and things are or are not sensitive to these physical impacts;
  • explain how location, size, and type of economy affect the overall vulnerability of a city to climate change;
  • describe the factors that influence the adaptive capacity of cities in relation to climate change and explain how those factors work.

What is due for Lesson 7?

Lesson 6 will take us one week to complete. Please refer to the Calendar in Canvas for specific time frames and due dates. Specific directions for the assignments below can be found within this lesson.

Complete the following steps to complete Lesson 7:

  • Work through the Lesson 7 content on this website.
  • Read the required readings.
  • Take the Lesson 7 Content Quiz.
  • Write your Write to Learn response.

If you have questions, please feel free to post them to the Ask a Question about Lesson 7 forum. While you are there, feel free to post your own responses if you, too, are able to help a classmate.