Video: The age of stupid

"Milankovitch Cycles
Astronomer Milutin Milankovitch developed the mathematical formulas upon which these orbital variations are based. He hypothesized that when some parts of the cyclic variations are combined and occur at the same time, they are responsible for major changes to the earth's climate (even ice ages). Milankovitch estimated climatic fluctuations over the last 450,000 years and described cold and warm periods. Though he did his work in the first half of the 20th century, Milankovich's results weren't proven until the 1970s.
A 1976 study, published in the journal Science examined deep-sea sediment cores and found that Milankovich's theory corresponded to periods of climate change. Indeed, ice ages had occurred when the earth was going through different stages of orbital variation."

Excerpt above is a direct quote from:


Mr G: The natural greenhouse effect vs the enhanced greenhouse effect

Teaching Point p/point - 6.1.1


a) Approximately what proportion of world greenhouse gas emissions come from energy?
61.4% of the world's greenhouse gas emissions come from energy.
b) Which part of the energy sector emits most greenhouse gases (by volume)?
Electricity and Heat are the energy sectors that emit the most greenhouse gases.
c) What are the main greenhouse gases emitted? Draw a pie chart to show their relative volume in world emissions.
The main greenhouse gases emitted are carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide.
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d) Apart from the energy sector, what are the main sources of greenhouse gases?
Other than the energy sector, the main sources of greenhouse gases are land use and agriculture.
e)What are the main sources of (i) methane and (ii) nitrous oxides?
i) The main sources of methane are from agriculture and industrial processes.
ii) The main sources of nitrous oxides are from agriculture.

Breathing Earth

Case Study relating to Global Climate Change - What does it look like?


Work through this booklet, in order to create summary notes for this entire topic! (A big thank you to Mr Kremer for this resource, from the previous version of ESS course, but highly applicable to all dot points in the current ESS syllabus)


  • GHG = greenhouse gases

The natural greenhouse effect animation

Hans Rosling - CO2 emissions in tons per person

Nova - the enhanced greenhouse effect

Rising Temperatures - reporting in the media (in class activity)

The impacts of a 4 degree C rise in global temperature (in class activity)


In the report below on Modelling the effects of GCC on Biomes, linked from this University of Southern California website (, this is stated:

"(The) Above (graph) show the “measured global vegetation biomes.” Below are the “future global vegetation biomes” showing biome locations if carbon dioxide levels doubled their present levels. Vegetation moves closer to the poles where conditions for growth will be more favorable. Places previously covered in ice will allow for lush forests, as deserts continue to get hotter and drier.

Further reading - Modelling the effects of GCC on Biomes


Image below is taken from a blog post on Scientific American:


Dengue in Jamaica - a case study (in class activity)

Further reading - the complexities of modelling are presented in this scientific paper (thanks again to Mr Kremer for this resource)

Further reading - predicted effects of global warming on agriculture (thanks again to Mr Kremer)


National Geographic article on methane


Excellent explanations at Encyclopedia Brittanica on the feedback loops related to global warming

An explanation on feedback loops as they relate to global warming


"Positive and Negative Feedback Cycles: Feedbacks are important drivers of climate change as well as sources of uncertainty for projected changes.
Credit: Figure courtesy of the National Academies, 2008.

Methane... very high GWP

The relationship between methane and carbon dioxide


Hans Rossling on CO2

Durban & Kyoto worksheet

International (dis)agreement on climate change - Cancun, Dec. 2010 - worksheet

Kyoto protocol data processing

Mr G`s slideshow

And yet another thank you to Mr Kremer for this Story of Stuff story... on carbon trading schemes...


Habitable Planet - Carbon Lab

A must watch! Three 1 hour episodes...

Earth: The Climate Wars


Video: The Great Global Warming Swindle
Video: An Inconvenient Truth

Al Gore on TED