Environmental Geography & Climate Change

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Affecting future populations

Climate change and energy form an area of study that covers both physical and human geography. The topic is also tightly intertwined with politics and economics and is of such importance that it will only get more important as time goes on. The geo-politics of energy production have been relevant for decades, but it is only since more advanced satellite data has become available that there is irrefutable evidence for global warming. The argument now lies in whether this warming is caused or exacerbated by human activity, with the majority of climate scientist saying it is, and the majority of non-renewable energy producers saying that it is not.

Leaving the climate to one side, we are facing a very real problem with energy production. The two most populous nations on earth, China and India, are going to send energy consumption to unsustainable levels, and debates rage about whether that demand can be sated through non-renewables including nuclear and shale gas, or whether renewable energy can be made efficient enough to solve the crisis. For the geography student, the topic forms a fascinating area of study, and for you the teacher, there are plenty of opportunities to take them to see the climate and energy problem played out in the field. We cannot recommend these school visits highly enough.

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