ENVI 103
Global Warming and Natural Disasters Fall 2009
Division III
Cross-listed GEOS 103
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Class Details

The destruction caused by recent hurricanes such as Katrina, devastation of prolonged drought in the African Sahel, catastrophic flooding and mudslides in Indonesia and sea level encroachment on the Alaska coast are visible examples of natural disasters that may be modulated by climate change. Reports from the World Bank conclude that global climate change, together with environmental degradation and urbanization, has the potential to increase the severity and impact of natural disasters. In this course we globally examine geological and climatological processes that “set up” natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods, landslides, droughts, extreme temperatures, and coastal surges, as well as the processes that condition availability of water resources. We study in detail the causes and anticipated consequences of human alteration of climate and its impact on the spectrum of natural hazards and resources. During laboratory sessions we use local field sites and computer models to analyze recent disasters/hazards and options for mitigating future impacts and study trends in weather and climate.
The Class: Format: lectures, 3 hours per week; laboratory, 2 hours per week
Limit: 24
Expected: 24
Class#: 1732
Grading: yes pass/fail option, yes fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: evaluation based on written reports from laboratories, two hour exams and a final exam
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preferences: first- and second-year students
Distributions: Division III
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
ENVI 103 Division III GEOS 103 Division III
Attributes: ENVI Natural World Electives
GEOS Environmental Geosciences Courses
SCST Related Courses

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