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Physics doesn’t lie so why is there so much heat and controversy generated by this debate?

The science behind global warming has been developing for over 150 years and many climate scientists have spent much of their careers in investigating and trying to understand the physical processes involved and the implications for the future.  This course explores the science, history and issues surrounding this subject through lectures from some of the world experts in their fields who are here at the ANU. There will be also time allocated each session for discussion.

Course outline

Week 1: Weather and climate- what is the difference? (Clem Davis/Janette Lindesay)

  • A: Weather and climate basics
  • B. Evidence of climate change and the role of Greenhouse gases

Week 2:  Past climates and Oceans (Nerilie Abram/Will Howard)

  • A:  Past climates: What can they tell us?
  • B: Climate change and oceans

Week 3: Local climates (Mark Howden/Ian Fry)

  • A: Adaptation or mitigation?
  • B: Climate change and Island States

Week 4: Societal impacts (Margi Bohm/Liz Hanna)

  • A: Micro climates. How do they affect us?
  • B: Climate change and human health

Week 5: Global Impacts of climate change (Will Steffen/Jamie Pittock)

  • A: Present climate change in the broader earth system perspective
  • B:  What is happening in developing countries?

Week 6: Economic and Agricultural impacts (Paul Burke/Steve Crimp)

  • A:  Approaches for reducing emissions
  • B:  Agriculture and climate change


Guest speakers will include

Professor Mark Howden http://climate.anu.edu.au/about-us/people/mark-howden

Emeritus Professor Will Steffen https://researchers.anu.edu.au/researchers/steffen-wl

Emeritus Professor Janette Lindesay https://researchers.anu.edu.au/researchers/lindesay-ja

Professor Jamie Pittock https://researchers.anu.edu.au/researchers/pittock-j

Professor Nerilie Abrams https://researchers.anu.edu.au/researchers/abram-nj

Associate Professor Paul Burke https://researchers.anu.edu.au/researchers/burke-pjx

Dr Ian Fry https://fennerschool.anu.edu.au/research/researchers/dr-ian-fry

Dr Liz Hanna  https://researchers.anu.edu.au/researchers/hanna-e-l-g

Clem Davis https://researchers.anu.edu.au/researchers/davis-cj

Dr Steven Crimp https://researchers.anu.edu.au/researchers/crimp-s

Dr Margi Bohm https://www.researchgate.net/scientific-contributions/Margi-Boehm-78942168

Who should enrol

This course is designed for people who are confused about the competing claims with respect to climate change and global warming, or just want to learn about the latest science. It is not designed to be used as a professional development course. So here is your chance to interact with some of the world experts in their fields from the ANU on the topic. 

What our students say

"Loved that the science was current and enjoyed hearing from the different experts"

"I endorse the nature of the course that appeals to the general population including children who have their future vested in better understanding of the environment and how we can all contribute to remediating the climate for the better world. Science plays the vital role in providing comprehensive pictures of our contribution both historical and the projection of the future out look if we choose to neglect taking steps in the right direction. We owe it to our blue-green Planet."