1. I came across the following write-up (on Facebook) several months ago and kept it as an open tab until I had more time to actually READ it (which i was thankfully able to do). As an important disclaimer and reminder I do not necessarily endorse or challenge every particular article/video/essay/opinion I share with the class so it is important to note as you will come across the following piece that even though it has some political swipes in it (it is an opinion piece and I believe each person has the basic right to have an opinion (and to change it if wanting to)) the value of the concepts and their relevance in our day-to-day interactions is too important to miss out on, so please read this next piece (you can always check out the “about” tab to learn about the writer too):
2. Afterwards, please read the next article.
Here is a very important note – no matter how you approach this short essay and no matter what response you provide – provided it is well thought out and meaningful – you will get credit for it. As a matter of fact, this underlines my grading philosophy as an instructor, which I think is pertinent to point out at this point. I do not believe in “punishing” students for their personal opinions as everybody is entitled to their own world viewpoint, coming from a unique set of circumstances, experiences, challenges and interests that no two people share equally.
I believe in making knowledge accessible to everyone and allowing people to see a more complete picture. This may seem very different if most have only seen one side of a particular issue most of the time they have been exposed to it but I truly feel that more information means being more informed to make more informed decisions and maybe form opinions based on more complete information. Either way, everyone’s personal beliefs, it can be said, are like each person’s unique ‘sacred space’ and beliefs do not necessarily necessitate evidence – but science does. I know a couple topics in our short course were riding along the fine line between belief and science. It is also important to remember that when people point to “scientists” believing something there is sometimes a distinction that must be made between “science” and “scientists” – whereas the former is ideally an objective tool to evaluate the world around us and draw conclusions based on observational evidence the latter are human beings subjected to their own personal views that may also be influenced by what other human beings are influenced by commonly – whether they be laypeople or professionals. Furthermore, not everyone has the same set of standards when it comes to ethics, honesty, integrity or a higher moral code and unfortunately opportunism is rampant, from the least educated to those with the highest degrees held in our society.
In case we wonder whether what one of our topics we focused on in depth over a very short period of a few weeks matters to real people with real lives the following is an article that came out recently on the rather serious nature and phenomenon of “climate despair”. Please read through it.
Afterwards, please reference the following 11 charts on some human-related statistics and then please provide a short (or medium length) answer to what is written about in the article.
Feel free to use any information from charts, diagrams, articles, videos, graphs, statistics we have seen over the course of the semester as well as any you want to reference that we have not seen to support your response – once again you can approach this in whatever way you wish and WILL get credit for it regardless of your viewpoint – provided you back up the claims with verifiable evidence.
Here is the article (don’t forget to view and understand the charts and graphs provided after the link below):
Here are some statistics about a few human-life-related things – please make sure you can view ALL 11 charts/screenshots – if not please email me at my gmail asap:
The following is a chart of CO2 emissions and famous global treaties (along with the years they were implemented) aimed at stopping the further rise of CO2:
As far as the last screenshot based on a study of CO2 induced global greening – I have personally not investigated this claim, or research, thoroughly enough to comment on it – as this is largely related to the field of biogeography (and my main field is meteorology) however, it would seem that if a global greening is indeed taking place it *may be due to an increase in carbon dioxide which is a very important nutrient that plants need (being part of photosynthesis) and not necessarily due to a warmer climate (which is not necessarily the case as we have seen cross-referencing historical weather and climate charts in context before ajustments have been applied to them). Again, this focus within the field of geography lies on the periphery of my main areas of research.
Please summarize the two articles above and the data in the charts presented above (as well as any other information from the course) and include your thoughts. Were you surprised by any of the information? Is the information conveyed here important for society at this point in time considering real-world issues and popular perspectives on them?