Thursday, 20 February 2014

Self-learning on Climate Change - free and easy way

For the past years I have been educated on water engineering, so naturally I have encountered Climate Change on more than several university courses. I am in the impression that the issue of Climate Change is a global concern and should not be confined to classrooms and scientific conferences, nor should the general public be motivated to learn only after extreme events (like Typhoon Haiyan in Philippines).

With this, I thought that by writing in my personal blog, I can appeal to the average web-surfers by letting them know how to learn about Climate Change in a free, easy and more convenient way. The MOOC on Climate Change "Turn Down the Heat: Why a 4°C Warmer World Must be Avoided" by World Bank (2014) that I have attended provided me with the resources for this project.


First stop is to watch a video by NASA entitled Carbon and Climate Change in 90 Seconds where NASA carbon expert Peter Griffiths explains the different kinds of carbon (e.g. exhaled CO2 VS emission from fossil fuels), those that absorb carbon (e.g. oceans and plants) and why it is said that Climate Change is human-induced - all in a minute and a half. Follow this with another video from NASA, Piecing Together the Temperature Puzzle, that describes the causes of global warming and their impacts to our planet.

Aside from videos, NASA has provided an interactive historical map on climate change that lets you see the changes in Earth during the past decades i.e. the melting of sea ice; average increase in sea level, carbon emissions and average increase in global temperature. Then the video Climate Change Impact: NASA's 21st Century Predictions describes the impacts of Climate Change over this century, collated from different models used by the IPCC.

NOAA's Ten signs of a warming world is another interactive site that presents the biggest impacts of global warming e.g. sea level rise, some with comparison between current and simulated future state, data plots and other resources about Climate Change. EPA explains in this interactive video about more about climate modelling: testing, historical models and future projections.

PIK (Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research) provides information about Tipping Elements, which are Earth System components that are sensitive to small external changes, then will be in rapid (and mostly irreversible) transition through self-mechanism once tipped. Another characteristic of these elements are that their impacts are large-scale and cascading.

World Bank then illustrates the impacts of Climate Change scenarios to society through this interactive map. The maps show the effects from different scenarios used by IPCC on food security, economy, and disasters. Then, it provides a comprehensive Climate Risk and Adaptation Country Profiles of 51 developing and vulnerable countries.

Additionally, World Bank presents a fact sheet on regional climate change in Asia and Africa:

Other interesting links and more resources:

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