Daily Assignments (pdf)
I. Why is the Climate Changing?
Activity 1: How much is the climate changing?
National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC, PSC, and NASA Figures)
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC Figures)
Global Climate Change Impacts in the U. S. (USGCRP Figures)
In the Arctic, the Old Ice Is Disappearing (pdf, New York Times, May 14, 2018)
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (Video, IPCC, 2013)
Are warmer Arctic temperatures behind extreme winter weather? (Video, CBS News, February 2014)
Bill McKibben (Audio, APM, 2009)
Lab 1: How much does air weigh?
Lab 2: How are gas volume and pressure related?
Lab 3: How are gas volume and temperature related?
Activity 2: How are the atoms connected within atmospheric gas molecules ?
Activity 3: What are the shapes of atmospheric gas molecules?
Lab 4: Which gases absorb infrared waves?
Activity 4: What are the sources and sinks of greenhouse gases?
Activity 5: How do we balance the source and sink equations?
Activity 6: What are your personal contributions to CO2 emissions?
Activity 7: How much do your daily activities contribute to rising greenhouse gas concentrations?
Activity 8: How should we keep cool?
Background Readings (pdf)
A. "Earth-Friendly Cool Cars in 2011," C&E News, September 4, 2006
B. "Keeping His Cool," C&E News, September 15, 2008
C. "GM First to Market Greenhouse Gas-Friendly Air Conditioning Refrigerant in U.S,." Press Release, July 2, 2010
D. "Greenlight For New Automotive Refrigerant," C&E News, March 7, 2011
E. "Honeywell, Dupont Face European Probe,"C&E News, January 2, 2012
F. "As Coolant Is Phased Out, Smugglers Reap Large Profits," New York Times, September 7, 2012
G. "UN hails 25-year ozone treaty for preventing disaster," Agence France-Presse, September 14, 2012
H. "Effort to Curb Coolant Falters, Sometimes at Home," New York Times, November 22, 2012
I. "US and China to Cooperate on Reducing Potent Greenhouse Gases," C&E News, June 10, 2013
J. "EPA Approves New Climate-Friendly Refrigerants/Rule," EPA Newsroom, March 2, 2015
K. "Protection of Stratospheric Ozone: Listing of Substitutes for Refrigeration and Air Conditioning and Revision of the Venting Prohibition for Certain Refrigerant Substitutes," Federal Register, April 10, 2015
"Global Warming Potentials and Ozone Depletion Potentials of Refrigerants," US EPA, 2014
"Climate friendly mobile air conditioning for buses," Umweltbundesamt, 2015
"Bans on F gas in new equipment," UK Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs, 2014
"Cool Technologies: Working Without HFCs," Greenpeace, 2012 (See sections B.1, C.1.a, D, D.9, E)
"Twenty Questions and Answers About the Ozone Layer," World Meteorological Organization Global Ozone Research and Monitoring Project, 2014
"Nations agree on phase-out of super greenhouse gases," PhysOrg, October, 2016
Every Two Weeks (NASA TOMS Movie, recommended introduction)
This weeks images (NASA)
NASA's Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (Daily image movies, 1978-present)
Gas Concentrations, Ozone Depletion Potential, and Atmospheric Lifetime (table, jsmol, Movies)
HR 910: A bill to amend the Clean Air Act to prohibit regulation of greenhouse gases was passed by the House (April 7, 2011), but died in 2013 when the legislative session ended without action by the Senate.
China has pledged to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP by 60-65% for 2030 compared with 2005 levels. (June 2015)
Australia will implement an economy-wide target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 26 to 28 per cent for 2030 compared with 2005 levels. (August 2015)
United States will reduce US carbon emissions from the power sector in each state by 32% for 2030 compared with 2005 levels. Suggested limits are 1000 lb CO2/MWh for natural gas units and 2000 lb CO2/MWh for coal units. (Obama Clean Power Plan, August 2015) BBC, NY Times but also see Trump revision.
Paris Climate Change Agreement aims to keep global warming below 2°C.
Obama on Climate Change: The Trends Are 'Terrifying', Sept. 8, 2016, New York Times (Video)
States Will Lead on Climate Change in the Trump Era, Dec. 26, 2016, New York Times (pdf)
Obama Farewell Address, Jan. 10, 2017, youtube (Video)
Trump Announces Withdrawal from Paris Climate Accord, June 1, 2017, Business Insider (Video)
Major Climate Change Rules the Trump Administration Is Reversing, Aug. 29, 2019, New York Times (pdf)
Regulations called burdensome to the fossil fuel industry.
U.N. Climate Summit and Carbon Report Card, Sept. 23, 2019, NPR Morning Edition (Audio)
16-year-old Greta Thunberg addressing the U. N. Climate Summit, New York, Sept. 23, 2019, youtube (Video)
Lab 7, 8, 9: What is the empirical formula of my cool blue copper compound?
II. Food and Fuel: Which Energy Sources Should We Use?
Activity 9: How do chemists represent the structure of molecules?
Activity 10: How much heat is released upon fuel combustion?
Activity 11: Why do we make so much CO2?
Activity 12: What are some alternative fuels we could use?
Lab 11: Preparation of a Hydrogen Fuel Cell
Activity 13: What functional groups are in foods?
Lab 13: Can like attracts like be used to rank polarity
Activity 14: How are functional groups, molecular sizes, and boiling points related?
Activity 15: What is Hydraulic Fracturing?
Activity 16: What is the difference between a fat and an oil?
Lab 14: How does vegetable oil change when hydrogenated??
Summary Activity: Food & Fuel
What will fuel transport systems of the future? (pdf) Materials Today, November 2011
Renewable Fuels (Figures)
Smooth Running with Soybeans (pdf) Chemical & Engineering News, October 28, 2013
Ethanol in fuel (Audio), February 2010
Ethanol subsidies (Audio), January 2012
A Fine for Biofuels That Don't Exist (pdf)
New York Times, January 2012
New York Times, January 2013
Government Cuts Biofuel Targets (pdf)
Chemical & Engineering News, November 2013
EPA Regulatory Announcement, May 2015
Robotic Kelp Farms Promise an Ocean Full of Carbon-Neutral, Low-Cost Energy (pdf) or IEEE Spectrum, 15 Mar 2017.
2018 Renweable Fuel Standards (EPA)
Climate Dangers of Palm Oil (Audio), November 2018
Boeing 747 transatlantic biofuel flight (Movie), June 2011
Cellulosic Ethanol (Denmark) (Movie), January 2012
What are biofuels? (Movie), ExxonMobil, May 2016
Turning Algae into Energy (Movie), Los Alamos NationalLab , May 2013
Algae for Fuel (Movie), NETNebraska, July 2011
Tinder Chips (Movie), May 2014
Global Warming Threatens Nutrition (Audio), Living on Earth, October 2017
New plant-focused diet would ‘transform’ planet’s future, say scientists, The Guardian, January 2019
Avoiding meat and dairy is ‘single biggest way’ to reduce your impact on Earth – study, The Guardian, May 2018
Humans just 0.01% of all life but have destroyed 83% of wild mammals, The Guardian, May 2018
Giving up beef will reduce carbon footprint more than cars, says expert, The Guardian, July 2014
Lab 15, 16, 17 Synthesis and Analysis: Is my Aspirin Pure?
Lab 18: Is My Aspirin Stable?
III. What Changes Can We Make to Decrease Environmental Impact?
Lab 19: How well do different materials conduct heat?
Activity 18: How should we make light?
Reading Groups: AGLP, BJMP, CKNP, DEHP, FIOP (pdf)
- "A brilliant new approach," The Economist, March 19, 2009
- "Green Promise Seen in Switch to LED Lighting," The New York Times, May 30, 2009
- "Incandescent Bulbs Return to the Cutting Edge," The New York Times, July 6, 2009
- "Europe's Ban on Old-Style Bulbs Begins," The New York Times, September 1, 2009
- "Build a Better Bulb for a $10 Million Prize," The New York Times, September 24, 2009
- "Tiny semiconductor crystals, called quantum dots, enable new forms of energy-efficient lighting," The Economist, March 4, 2010
- "LED Lighting: Blue + Yellow = White" and "The Light bulb that really is a better idea," IEEE Spectrum, January 2011
- "Seeing the Light: LED technology moves into the mainstream and delivers improved efficiencies," Signage Solutions, Nov/Dec 2011
- "What it takes to change all the street lights in New York City," Greenbiz, April 17, 2013 and October 29, 2013
- "This Little LED of Mine," The New York Times, November 2, 2013
- "Efficient, useful blue-light LED draws Nobel Prize in physics," CNET, October 7, 2014
- "Benefits and Disadvantages of LED Lighting," LED Technology, 2012, and Luminanz Ltd, 2011, and Pulse, 2015
- "How to get that old-fashioned light bulb glow without wasting so much energy," Science, 11 Jan 2016
- "Science advances in matching LED lighting to horticultural needs ," LEDs Magazine, 20 Sept 2016
- "LED Streetlights Are Giving Neighborhoods the Blues," IEEE Spectrum, 22 Sept 2016
- "The search for better white light," C&E News, November 19, 2018
- "America's Light Bulb Revolution," The New York Times, March 8, 2019
Activity 19: Which elements in the periodic table are metals?
Lab 21: What is the net ionic equation?
Activity 20: How can we represent solids?
Activity 21: What controls the properties of elements?
Lab 23: How can you get a specific color of light from a solid?
Lab 24: How do we know how atoms are arranged in solids?
Lab 25: Synthesis and Characterization of CH3NH3Pb(I1-xBrx)3 Solid Solution Perovskite Semiconductors
Activity 22: Lighting Summary
Activity 23: Is my soil contaminated? Lead in soil
Activity 24: Environmental & Climate Justice
Putting it all together
Write like a chemist: a guide and resource
by Marin S. Robinson (2008).
Chapters 2-6 are useful for writing a scientific paper.
This page created by George Lisensky, Beloit College.
Last modified March 14, 2020
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