[Climate change (Class of 2019)]

One of the international exchange courses, Tokyo Metropolitan University
Academic year 2019, 1st semester (April-July 2019), Thursday 13:00-14:30, Minami-Osawa campus


Key words

Climate system, energy balance, greenhouse effect, natural and anthropogenic causes of climate change, adaptation to climate change, mitigation of climate change

Course Description / Theme

The subject of 2/3 of the course is natural science of climate change. The basic mechanism of global climate change is explained based on the physical principle of conservation of energy. Thinking about a century ahead, the outlook of "global warming" caused by emission of carbon dioxide by burning fossil fuel is robust, but still has a range of uncertainty.

The subject of the other 1/3 is climate change as a matter of global policymaking. Climate change is likely to have bad impacts to human society, and people need both to adapt to climate change and to reduce use of fossil fuel.

Knowledge & Abilities students can acquire through the class / Course objectives

Understanding of the relatively simple part of the mechanisms of global climate change. Experience of handling physical quantities relevant to climate change. Notion about complexity and uncertainty of climate. Understanding how climate change is framed in the agenda of global policymaking. Some thoughts about the relevance of climate change for the global human society.

Course Schedule, Contents

Instruction Methods

Lecture, aided by materials which the lecturer has put on the web, and a textbook.
Short report assignments, mainly calculation of climate-relevant physical variables.

Learning Activities outside the Classroom


Textbooks and/or References

On-line materials will be placed at the lecturer's personal web site http://macroscope.world.coocan.jp/ , to be updated weekly.
Textbook: Mark Maslin, 2014: Climate Change (A Very Short Introduction), 3 ed. Oxford University Press. (Note: This is a book different from "Climate" by the same author in the same series. The scope of the course is not fully covered by the book, and the lecturer will give additional references during the course. The textbook is not needed at the beginning of the course. It will be used from the fourth week.)

Grading Evaluation Policy

Responses to short report assignments, mainly calculation of climate-relevant physical variables, several times during the semester. 40%.
End-ofterm report, including some confirmation of acquired knowledge, some original thoughts, and some computation. 60%.

How to contact the instructor for questions

Make appointments just after lectures or by e-mail masudak @ tmu.ac.jp

Notice for Students

I am a natural scientist. The contents of the part of natural science will be robust knowledge shared by climate scientists, which may be rather classical than cutting-edge. The contents in the part of climate-society interactions will be an interpretation of the interdisciplinary subject from my viewpoint, which may be naive in the sense of social sciences or humanities.

Updated: 2019-Apr-16
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