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Education
Climate Change
 

Climate Change

Learning Objectives

At the end of this lab, students should know...

What are the differences among weather, climate, and global climate?

Weather is defined as short-term atmospheric conditions, such as temperature or precipitation, in a region. Climate is exactly the same conditions, but over extended periods. Global climate refers to the same variables that are analyzed and complied across the entire planet, such as the global average temperature.

What is the greenhouse effect?

Greenhouse effect is trapping of heat on earth’s surface and the lower atmosphere by certain atmospheric gases.

What are some of the greenhouse gases?

Carbon dioxide, water vapor, ozone, and methane are some of the important greenhouse gases. Carbon dioxide levels increase significantly due to human activity.

What are some consequences of global warming?

One consequence is rising sea levels due to “albedo effect”. Also, oceans become more acidic by absorbing carbon dioxide. Moreover, species that cannot move to more favorable habitats and cannot adapt to the global warming-induced changes in their environments face extinction.

How can we study a species' fate?

We can study the range shifts of species in relation to a variety of environmental conditions. We can also model future changes by looking at fossil records from historical environmental and climate events and other times.

List of Materials

  • Measuring cylinders
    10
  • Ruler
    5
  • Ice cube tray
    5
  • Styrofoam circle (3 x 3 inch)
    5
  • Marking tape
    1 per station
  • Permanent Marker
    1 per station
  • Scissors
    1 per station
  • Measuring cylinders
    10
  • Rubber bands/tape
    10
  • Submersible Thermometer
    10
  • Marking tape
    1 per station
  • Permanent Marker
    1 per station
  • Plastic wrap (1 roll)
    1 per station
  • Print outs- Figures containing species ranges
    1 set/station

Lab Prep

  1. Preparation for the Ice Melt, Greenhouse Gas, and Species Range Activities
    • To prepare for the exercise, first print enough data recording tables for students in each group. NOTE: Activities one and two can be done simultaneously, each by half of the class broken up into groups of two to four students, or by all students if desired.
    • If the class will split the activity, separate the data tables accordingly.
    • Students performing activity one will need copies of Table 2 and Table 4. Click Here to download Tables
    • Students performing activity two will need copies of Table 3 and Table 5.
    • For each group doing the land and sea ice activity, set out two 500 mL graduated cylinders, marking tape, a permanent marker, a ruler, and 20 ice cubes.
    • Cut out a two-inch diameter piece of styrofoam.
    • Use a hole punch or scissors to cut a small hole out of the middle for draining, and then place the styrofoam with the rest of the materials for the land and sea ice activity.
    • For each group doing the greenhouse gases activity, arrange two 500 mL graduated cylinders, plastic wrap, tape or rubber bands, marking tape, a permanent marker, and two thermometers.
    • Print figures 3-11, and the historic glaciation figure so that students can draw out ranges to visualize species range expansion. Click Here to download Figures
    • The nine potential species ranges that we explore are tabulated in Table 1, and the species list can be edited to fit the class size at www.neotomadb.org.

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JoVE Lab Lab: 28 Prep

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