Let's look at the problem of climate change on a global scale.
Take the Global Trends Quiz from PBS LearningMedia™ to gain perspective on U.S. and world energy and resource use. As you proceed through the quiz identify trends in both prosperous and less-prosperous nations that stress the environment and add to resource depletion.
For an international perspective, view the Climate Time Machine interactive and select "Carbon Emissions." As you explore the interactive, take note of the greatest producers of carbon emissions across the globe.
Next, watch "Corporations or Consumers: Who's Responsible for Climate Change?" from PBS LearningMedia to see the roles globalization and consumerism play in the emissions of carbon dioxide. As you watch consider how the rise of China threatens to overwhelm any reality of controlling CO2 emissions. Should the United States demand that China change its course of development when we ourselves benefit on a daily basis from its rapid development, as many of our goods are made in China?
Now, look at the problem of climate change on a national scale.
What are some of the challenges faced by our government as they debate what action they need to take? With the threat of climate change looming large, Americans are looking for political leadership on this issue. View the "Leadership on Climate Change: Can America Summon the Political Will?" video. As you watch, consider whether you think there is a gap between science theory and political policy in America.
Next, look at the problem of climate change on a local scale.
Read the short news article, "A tale of two cities" for a community perspective on climate change to see how two cities are taking measures to decrease carbon emissions and improve the quality of life for their residents.
Finally, look at the problem of climate change from an individual perspective.
Why is it important for individuals to examine their personal energy practices? See how our everyday behaviors add up to tons of carbon emissions by viewing the "Snapshot of U.S. Energy Use" video. As you watch, notice some of the energy sources used to meet our ever-increasing demand for power.
Finally explore solutions to the question "What can we do to help?" from NASA's Climate Kids website to see ways students can reduce carbon emissions as well as contribute to consuming fewer resources by making changes in their daily behavior.
How can you help your students understand the different perspectives of energy use in their lives—global, national, local, and individual—and the implications these have on their way of life?
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Global Climate Change Modules
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