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Environmental and Climate Science

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Addressing Short- and Long-Term Risks to Water Supply
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Public Domain
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In 2012, water managers in Fredericktown, Missouri, saw their city's main source of water dwindle. They used the EPA’s Climate Ready Water Utilities program to consider options and develop plans to protect their water source.

Subject:
Hydrology
Physical Science
Material Type:
Case Study
Provider:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Provider Set:
U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit
Date Added:
08/29/2016
Alaskan Tribes Join Together to Assess Harmful Algal Blooms
Unrestricted Use
Public Domain
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Tribal communities in southeastern Alaska are partnering with federal and state agencies to investigate increasing harmful algal blooms—events that pose human health risks to subsistence harvesters.

Subject:
Biology
Life Science
Material Type:
Case Study
Provider:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Provider Set:
U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit
Date Added:
08/18/2016
Anticipating and Preventing the Spread of Invasive Plants
Unrestricted Use
Public Domain
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Finding and eradicating invasive plants is a tough job that requires constant vigilance. County-scale maps that show where invasive plants are and where they have the potential to spread in the future are helping on-the-ground efforts to build the resilience of natural vegetation.

Subject:
Botany
Life Science
Material Type:
Case Study
Provider:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Provider Set:
U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit
Date Added:
08/09/2016
Assessing Climate Risks in a National Estuary
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Public Domain
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Stakeholders of the Morro Bay National Estuary Program in California worked with resources from the EPA's Climate Ready Estuaries program to identify their climate risks. Their results helped them prioritize actions for building resilience.

Subject:
Atmospheric Science
Physical Science
Material Type:
Case Study
Provider:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Provider Set:
U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit
Date Added:
09/20/2016
Assessing the Timing and Extent of Coastal Change in Western Alaska
Unrestricted Use
Public Domain
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An interactive map based on four decades of satellite images helps residents, resource managers, and stewards of the land anticipate and plan for coastal change.

Subject:
Physical Geography
Physical Science
Material Type:
Case Study
Provider:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Provider Set:
U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit
Date Added:
08/29/2016
Bending the Curve: Climate Change Solutions
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
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Climate change is an urgent problem. Because it is causing new weather extremes and fatal catastrophes, climate change is better termed climate disruption. Bending the curve to flatten the upward trajectory of pollution emissions responsible for climate disruption is essential in order to protect billions of people from this global threat. Education is a key part of the solution.

Subject:
Atmospheric Science
Physical Science
Material Type:
Textbook
Provider:
eScholarship
Author:
Max Auffhammer
Roger Aines
Veerabhadran Ramanathan
Date Added:
09/04/2019
Climate Toolkit: A Resource Manual for Science and Action - Version 2.0
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CC BY-NC
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The Climate Toolkit is a resource manual designed to help the reader navigate the complex and perplexing issue of climate change by providing tools and strategies to explore the underlying science. As such it contains a collection of activities that make use of readily available on-line resources developed by research groups and public agencies. These include web-based climate models, climate data archives, interactive atlases, policy papers, and “solution” catalogs. Unlike a standard textbook, it is designed to help readers do their own climate research and devise their own perspective rather than providing them with a script to assimilate and repeat.

Subject:
Atmospheric Science
Physical Science
Material Type:
Textbook
Provider:
Portland State University
Author:
Frank Granshaw
Date Added:
11/18/2021
Earth in the Future
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
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Our planet is becoming hot. In fact, Earth may be warming faster than ever before. This warming will challenge society throughout the 21st century. How do we cope with rising seas? How will we prepare for more intense hurricanes? How will we adapt to debilitating droughts and heat waves? Scientists are striving to improve predictions of how the environment will change and how it will impact humans. Earth in the Future: Predicting Climate Change and Its Impacts Over the Next Century is designed to provide the state of the art of climate science, the impact of warming on humans, as well as ways we can adapt. Every student will understand the challenges and opportunities of living in the 21st century.

Subject:
Applied Science
Atmospheric Science
Biology
Environmental Science
Geology
Hydrology
Life Science
Oceanography
Physical Science
Material Type:
Full Course
Provider:
Penn State University
Provider Set:
Penn State's College of Earth and Mineral Sciences (http:// e-education.psu.edu/oer/)
Author:
David Bice
Tim Bralower
Date Added:
09/18/2018
Energy and Human Ambitions on a Finite Planet
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CC BY-NC
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Where is humanity going? How realistic is a future of fusion and space colonies? What constraints are imposed by physics, by resource availability, and by human psychology? Are default expectations grounded in reality?

This textbook, written for a general-education audience, aims to address these questions without either the hype or the indifference typical of many books. The message throughout is that humanity faces a broad sweep of foundational problems as we inevitably transition away from fossil fuels and confront planetary limits in a host of unprecedented ways—a shift whose scale and probable rapidity offers little historical guidance.

Salvaging a decent future requires keen awareness, quantitative assessment, deliberate preventive action, and—above all—recognition that prevailing assumptions about human identity and destiny have been cruelly misshapen by the profoundly unsustainable trajectory of the last 150 years. The goal is to shake off unfounded and unexamined expectations, while elucidating the relevant physics and encouraging greater facility in quantitative reasoning.

After addressing limits to growth, population dynamics, uncooperative space environments, and the current fossil underpinnings of modern civilization, various sources of alternative energy are considered in detail— assessing how they stack up against each other, and which show the greatest potential. Following this is an exploration of systemic human impediments to effective and timely responses, capped by guidelines for individual adaptations resulting in reduced energy and material demands on the planet’s groaning capacity. Appendices provide refreshers on math and chemistry, as well as supplementary material of potential interest relating to cosmology, electric transportation, and an evolutionary perspective on humanity’s place in nature.

Corrections and feedback can be left at https://tmurphy.physics.ucsd.edu/energy-text/

Subject:
Physical Science
Material Type:
Textbook
Author:
Thomas W. Murphy
Date Added:
03/15/2021
Energy and the Environment
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
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Our world runs on energy - without it, things come to a screeching halt, as the recent hurricanes have shown. Ever stop to wonder what our energy future is? What are our options for energy, and what are the associated economic and climatic implications? In \Energy and the Environment\" we explore these questions, which together represent one of the great challenges of our time - providing energy for high quality of life and economic growth while avoiding dangerous climate change. This course takes an optimistic view of our prospects, and we'll see how shifting to renewable energy can lead to a viable future.

Subject:
Applied Science
Atmospheric Science
Economics
Environmental Science
Geology
Physical Science
Physics
Social Science
Material Type:
Full Course
Provider:
Penn State College of Earth and Mineral Sciences
Author:
Richard Alley
Date Added:
10/07/2019
Environmental Biology
Unrestricted Use
CC BY
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This college-level open textbook covers the most salient environmental issues from a biological perspective.

Subject:
Biology
Life Science
Material Type:
Textbook
Provider:
eCampusOntario
Author:
Matthew R. Fisher
Date Added:
03/09/2020
Environmental Issues
Unrestricted Use
CC BY
Rating
0.0 stars

This first-year undergraduate open textbook covers the most salient environmental issues from both biological and social science perspectives.

Subject:
Atmospheric Science
Career and Technical Education
Ecology
Environmental Studies
Life Science
Physical Science
Material Type:
Textbook
Provider:
British Columbia/Yukon Open Authoring Platform
Author:
Andrew Frank
Date Added:
06/02/2020
From Meteorology to Mitigation: Understanding Global Warming
Conditional Remix & Share Permitted
CC BY-NC-SA
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Human-caused climate change represents one of the great environmental challenges of our time. As it is inextricably linked with issues of energy policy, a familiarity with the fundamentals of climate change is critical for those looking to careers in the energy field. To appreciate the societal, environmental, and economic implications of policies governing greenhouse gas emissions, one must understand the basic underlying science. METEO 469 serves to lay down the fundamental scientific principles behind climate change and global warming. A firm grounding in the science is then used as a launching point for exploring issues involving climate change impacts and mitigation.

Subject:
Applied Science
Atmospheric Science
Career and Technical Education
Ecology
Environmental Science
Environmental Studies
Life Science
Physical Science
Material Type:
Full Course
Provider:
Penn State College of Earth and Mineral Sciences
Author:
Brian Gaudet
Michael Mann
Date Added:
10/07/2019
Future Energy: Opportunities & Challenges
Unrestricted Use
CC BY
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How can we produce enough sustainable energy while avoiding unacceptable environmental consequences? To evaluate the various energy options, we must understand the science of each potential energy source and energy use technology. This book presents the science in an easy-to-understand way to enable readers to make informed decisions about what is possible and practical, and to choose lifestyle options to implement in their personal lives.

America and the world face daunting questions about how we produce energy and how we use it. Conservation and improved energy efficiency can help reduce energy requirements, but cannot halt the steady increase in energy consumption. An increasing world population and increasing energy appetites in emerging economies will create competition for energy resources for all nations.

The possibilities for future energy production include fossil fuels (oil, natural gas, coal, oil sands, and oil shale), biofuels, solar, wind, hydro-energy, geothermal, and nuclear (probably fission and possibly fusion). Each of these sources has relative advantages and disadvantages.

The problem is to produce enough sustainable energy while avoiding unacceptable environmental consequences, especially climate change. In order to evaluate the potential of the various energy options, one must understand the basic science that underlies each potential energy source and energy use technology. This knowledge will enable us to determine what is possible and practical and, maybe more importantly, what is impossible or impractical.

Fortunately most of the pertinent science is old, well established and, for the most part, quite simple. This science provides a framework into which one can insert real data and draw conclusions. Without such quantitative assessments, claims about capabilities of the various energy options must be viewed as unverified assumptions rather than hard facts. This book presents the essential science in an easy-to-understand, yet comprehensive way.

A big change in the ways that we produce and use energy is inevitable. Informed choices will help avoid waste, avoid unnecessary disruptions in our lives, and avoid undesirable environmental effects. The purpose of this book is to help the reader make informed decisions about which energy production technologies to support and which energy use technologies and lifestyle options to implement in his/her personal life.

Subject:
Applied Science
Environmental Science
Material Type:
Textbook
Provider:
University of Tennessee
Author:
Thomas W. Kerlin
Date Added:
11/08/2021
The Greenhouse Effect, Global Warming, and Climate Change
Unrestricted Use
CC BY
Rating
0.0 stars

This resource provides a basic introduction to the greenhouse effect, global warming, and climate change. It is aimed roughly at undergrad classrooms (which is where I have taught), but it's also suitable for high school teachers, lifelong learners, climate change outreach, etc., and can be used for 'just in time' professional development by everyone.

Subject:
Atmospheric Science
Ecology
Environmental Science
Oceanography
Material Type:
Lecture
Reading
Author:
Michael Khoo
Date Added:
05/12/2020