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Colorado and a Warming Planet
http://learnmoreaboutclimate.colorado.edu/topics/climate-and-weather

Learn More About Climate, University of Colorado at Boulder

This video highlights a variety of current climate change research initiatives from scientists at the University of Colorado, Boulder. It describes the changing dynamics of Antarctic ice sheets and glaciers and the impacts of reduced Arctic sea ice on people, animals, and global albedo and sea levels, while providing a glimpse of the excitement of this field research through interviews and video clips of scientists in the field.

Video length is 8:52 min.

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Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»

Climate Literacy
About Teaching Climate Literacy

Natural processes driving Earth’s long-term climate variability do not explain the rapid climate change observed in recent decades. The only explanation that is consistent with all available evidence is that human impacts are playing an increasing role in climate change. Future changes in climate may be rapid compared to historical changes.
About Teaching Principle 4
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Based on evidence from tree rings, other natural records, and scientific observations made around the world, Earth’s average temperature is now warmer than it has been for at least the past 1,300 years. Average temperatures have increased markedly in the past 50 years, especially in the North Polar Region.
About Teaching Principle 4
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Growing evidence shows that changes in many physical and biological systems are linked to human-caused global warming. Some changes resulting from human activities have decreased the capacity of the environment to support various species and have substantially reduced ecosystem biodiversity and ecological resilience.
About Teaching Principle 6
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Melting of ice sheets and glaciers, combined with the thermal expansion of seawater as the oceans warm, is causing sea level to rise. Seawater is beginning to move onto low-lying land and to contaminate coastal fresh water sources and beginning to submerge coastal facilities and barrier islands. Sea-level rise increases the risk of damage to homes and buildings from storm surges such as those that accompany hurricanes.
About Teaching Principle 7
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Benchmarks for Science Literacy
Learn more about the Benchmarks

The earth's climates have changed in the past, are currently changing, and are expected to change in the future, primarily due to changes in the amount of light reaching places on the earth and the composition of the atmosphere. The burning of fossil fuels in the last century has increased the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which has contributed to Earth's warming.
Explore the map of concepts related to this benchmark

Notes From Our Reviewers The CLEAN collection is hand-picked and rigorously reviewed for scientific accuracy and classroom effectiveness. Read what our review team had to say about this resource below or learn more about how CLEAN reviews teaching materials
Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy | Technical Details

Teaching Tips

  • A nice introduction to show how we know what we know about increasing global temperatures and what some of the effects of this warming will be.
  • Only minimally focused on Colorado, the video is appropriate for all US.

About the Science

  • Leading climate scientists describe their work and how their research points to increasing temperatures and changes in the ecosystem.
  • The tone of this video is conversational rather than rigorous. Specific points made by the scientists are, however, supported with appropriate images and satellite photos.
  • Comments from expert scientist: Links research and data from polar regions to local climate in Colorado. The video includes interviews with scientists from the Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research and the National Snow and Ice Data Center in which they talk about their research. The title of the video is "Climate and Colorado's Future", but a majority of the video is about changes in the polar regions. The discussion of Colorado's future doesn't start until about the last minute of the video.

About the Pedagogy

  • The video is not integrated with a particular lesson plan, but the website provides lesson plans and complementary resources and activities that can be used to expand the reach of this video. These are well organized.
  • A young scientist is interviewed, which will engage students.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • High quality visuals may be engaging for audience.

Related URLs These related sites were noted by our reviewers but have not been reviewed by CLEAN

This is part of a larger collection "Learn More about Climate Colorado" which archives multi-media resources and links to related lesson plans: http://learnmoreaboutclimate.colorado.edu/

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