Climate change – causes, impacts and solutions
AudiencePrimary school, Secondary school
Learning stageStage 3, Stage 4, Stage 5, Stage 6
Learning areaClimate change, Geography, Technology
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Climate change is already causing environmental, social and economic problems in Australia and around the world. We view climate change through different lenses that may depend on our career, culture or age. The type of work we do, the place where we live, or our socio-economic status also means we are affected in different ways. One thing is for sure though, and that is we’ll all be affected in some way and we quickly need community, national and global solutions to solve the problem.
- Australians emit the most CO2 per person of any country in the world!
- An estimated 3 billion terrestrial vertebrates died in Australia’s 2019 – 2020 bushfires.
- The planet has already warmed by 1° C since pre-industrial times. Humans need to reduce net global carbon emissions to zero to limit global heating to 1.5 °C.
- Virtually all coral reefs will be lost is the global temperature rises by 2 °C.
- You can reduce your carbon footprint by changing your behaviour. Here are 5 simple ways: https://www.climatecouncil.org.au/5-ways-you-can-tackle-climate-change-on-the-daily/
- CSIRO scientists have discovered that feeding raw dried Asparagopsis seaweed to sheep and cattle virtually eliminates methane emissions.
Video 1 – What is climate change?
- What is causing climate change?
- How is climate change today different to climate change in the past?
- Why do you think climate change is a human rights and social justice issue?
- Australia’s medical community have declared a climate emergency. How do you think our health could be affected by climate change?
- Climate scientists measure how human activity has altered the energy system on Earth. What have they observed and how have they measured these changes?
- What does climate change mean to you?
- With which person in the video do you have the most in common. Discuss how climate change the person’s life and community.
Video 2 – What are the impacts of Climate Change?
- How will climate change affect biodiversity? Why is Australia particularly vulnerable?
- Give two examples of biomes that will be altered because of climate change. What will happen to them?
- What is ecological decoupling? Give an example.
- How could climate change affect the distribution of diseases. Provide an example in Australia.
- What are two climate change impacts farmers are already feeling in Australia?
- How is climate change affecting food security and infrastructure Pacific island nations? Why are people in the Pacific currently the most affected by climate change?
- How is First Nations’ peoples connection to Country hurt by climate change?
- What was responsible for the 2019-2020 bushfires in Australia? How did the bushfires make you feel and how can we reduce their impact in the future?
Video 3 – What are the solutions to Climate Change?
- Why is community action and working together important find climate change solutions?
- Give examples of technology that will help us to maintain our quality of life while reducing emissions.
- Give examples of practices that can remove carbon from the atmosphere?
- How can something as simple as a t-shirt be causing climate change and how can we live more sustainably?
- Why is Australia suited to renewables?
- Threats present opportunities! Give an example of the economic benefits of renewable energy. Think personally, the local community and flow on effects on mental health.
Watch this series of three videos about the meaning and impacts of, and solutions to, climate change from the perspective of different people in our community, including scientists, First Nations’ educators, a student, farmer, doctor and citizen of the Pacific. Answer the guiding questions above.