Choose one of the three main questions to address. Each question is followed by a brief discussion to get you started.
1. What is your community doing to prepare for the impacts of climate change?
Climate Change (or Global Warming) is often thought of as a problem happening far away and that the solutions to the problem are elusive or impossible. However, if given the opportunity, students can see that people and communities are doing things right now that represent a lower carbon and more sustainable future. Students should consider what actions local town offices as well as industries such as waste management, utility companies, schools, and businesses are taking to prepare for the impacts of climate change. More efficient cars, better insulted buildings, energy friendly construction, and recycling programs are just a few of the examples students might find that exemplify how we can help reduce the impacts of a changing climate by reducing the amount of carbon emissions we pump into the atmosphere.
Eight global warming effects that may surprise you- A brief eight-slide presentation that will expand your concept of climate change impacts in Massachusetts. Some of these impacts are more direct than others, but all are worth considering.
2. What evidence for global warming is most important to you?
The history of scientific research is rich and interesting. Since the late 19th century, scientists have been gathering evidence about a warming earth. To date, the preponderance of evidence collected strongly indicates that the earth’s climate is warming due to human activity. More specifically, our society’s use of fossil fuels for energy has thrown an abundance of heat trapping carbon gases into the atmosphere producing a greenhouse effect. Lines of evidence include: 800,000 year old ice cores, military research into carbon’s heat trapping properties, carbon cycle, ocean chemistry, migratory changes, and much more. A Google search on “lines of evidence for climate change” will produce an array of high quality websites to explore and identify a line of evidence that is particularly important to you.
3. Create a climate change character. How does your character fight a changing climate?
This question is meant to be a very creative opportunity to promote a specific science based mitigation or adaptation strategy. The character can be anything you want it to be. For example, polar bears have been adopted as an unofficial animal for the earth’s changing climate. So, making a polar bear character here might not be a very original idea. Your character might be a passionate individual, a super hero, a creature or animal, or something completely new and different. Once you create your character, ask yourself what does your character do to fight climate change? You will want to review an array of adaptation and mitigation strategies to find the one that best suits your character.
Climate Change Facts: Answers to Common Questions.