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Climate Change and Atmostpheric Chemistry: Role of CO2 in Climate
E&ES 359
Fall 2006 not offered

The climate of the earth has always been changing during earth history. In this class we look at what determines climate (climate physics), what determines weather (distribution of heat on the earth), and provide a short review of the main climatic changes through the 4.5 billion years of earth history. We then switch to the main topic of the course: CO2 and modern global climate change. The role of CO2 in earth processes is very large relative to the modest quantities of it that are present in the atmosphere. We will study all aspects of the chemistry and biology of CO2 (broadly the carbon cycle of all its loops) with experimental classes that use our CO2 monitoring facility. We will carry out experiments on temporal variations in CO2 in the Middletown atmosphere, spatial atmospheric CO2, variations around Middletown (forest versus swamp versus town) and CO2 uptake in water. We will discuss empirical evidence for modern global warming, and engage in some limited climate modeling with simple computer programs. We will discuss the attempts of the global community to limit anthropogenic CO2 emissions (e.g., Kyoto protocol) and with our computer routine we will model future climate given some economic scenarios.

Essential Capabilities: None
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: NSM E&ES
Course Format: LectureGrading Mode: Graded
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (CIS)(E&ES)(ENVS-MN)(ENVS)

Last Updated on APR-18-2024
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