World Interdependence – Current Global Issues (Focus on Climate Change) (Section 1) [CRN 27365]

272:
Discipline: International Education
Instructor: Jonsson
Credits: 3
Day: B
Start: 0800
End: 0920
Field Work: Day 1 | January 31, 2018 | China
Prerequisites: None Download Syllabus

Global Warming has become a major issue that affects all societies in the world. We will stress the globality of global warming, as we travel to many different countries on our voyage and illustrate the many faces of it.  We will cover basic aspects of energy budgets of the earth and the role of the forcing of climate change. The influence of humans on these budgets will be considered, with particular consideration given to the release of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere.  The various feedback processes complicating the science of climate change will be demonstrated by examples. The carbon cycle will be addressed as well as the increased acidity of the ocean as a result of its uptake of CO2 from the atmosphere. We will examine  forecasts for climate change and the possible consequences for the Earth‘s climate, ecosystems and human societies. The possibilities for adapting to the changes occurring and how different countries can respond to those changes will be investigated. Also we will discuss how we can take actions to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere (such as switching to renewable energy sources) to restore ecosystems around the world.

Field Work

Country: China
Day: 1
Date: January 31, 2018

We will start our day with a visit to the Polar Research Institute of China in Shanghai. It is the only scientific research and support center in China that specializes in polar expeditions. The students will get a guided tour around the Institute as well as an introduction to the research it carries out in both polar areas and why China is interested in polar research. There will also be a presentation of how climate change in the Arctic, influences the monsoon weather system over China. The students will thus see how changes in a climate in a remote place like the Arctic can influence areas that are far away and thus how changes in climate are interconnected over the Globe. The students will have opportunity to ask questions about the subjects presented. After lunch the students will have a tour of the museum of polar research at the Institute. There the students will have a chance to learn about the history of polar research both from an international perspective as well as from a Chinese standpoint.

Learning Objectives:
1. To get an appreciation for how the climate system is interconnected over the whole globe
2. To understand why polar research is important for China and actually all countries in the World
3. To gain knowledge about the historical evolution of polar research in the last century and until today
4. The students will see how changes in a climate in a remote place like the Arctic can influence areas that are far away and thus how changes in climate are interconnected over the Globe