Date Added: March 14, 2015
- The CosmoLearning Team
- Introduction to the Course
- Tools for Studying Earth System
- What Controls Earth's Global Temperature?
- Earth's climates
- Anthropogenic Climate Change
- Future Climate Change
- Outlook for Snow
- Permafrost and the Carbon Cycle
- Sea Ice, Part I.
- Sea Ice, Part II.
- Implications of Summer Sea-ice Free Arctic
- Formation of Glaciers, Ice Caps and Ice Sheets
- Glacier Mass Balance
- Measuring Glacier Mass Balance and Ice Dynamics
- Glacier Dynamics
- Surges, Tidewater Glaciers and Ice Shelves
- Glacial Landscapes
- Climate Records from Ice Sheets/Mountain Glaciers
- Ice Age World and Past Impact of Ice on Humans
- Melting Glaciers: Glacial Outburst Floods
- Melting Glaciers: Future of Water Supplies
- Sea Level Change
- Measuring Sea Level Change
- Consequences of Sea Level Change
In recent decades we have observed a significant reduction of the cryosphere due to anthropogenic climate change. The observed and predicted changes in the extent and amount of snow and ice will have major impacts on climate, ecosystems and human populations both at a local and global scale. This course will introduce students to the science behind climate change as well as the physical and chemical processes that govern components of the cryosphere, including snow, permafrost, sea ice, glaciers and ice sheets. Particular emphasis will be placed on the important role that each component plays in the larger climate system and potential feedbacks. We will also examine some of the social, economic and political impacts that the melting cryosphere will have on countries around the Arctic and also worldwide, such as access to new petroleum reserves, infrastructure damage due to melting permafrost, sea level rise and decreases in freshwater availability.