Available in 2013
|Callaghan Campus||Semester 1|
Previously offered in 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2005
Examines the nature, causes and extent of natural climate change through geological time, with a particular emphasis on how natural and human environments have responded to such change over the last several hundred thousand years. It focuses on the methods used to obtain proxy climate histories and the sources (archives) of these climate records, including ice cores, marine sediments, corals, tree rings, cave deposits, and landforms. The various techniques used to determine the age of the archives are also covered. The course provides a wide spectrum of evidence of climate changes and the responses of the environments to such changes from Australasian region, as well as Antarctica, the Americas and Europe. The course also explores how past climate change has affected ancient human civilizations.
In order to participate in this course, students must complete a compulsory Workplace Health and Safety requirement. Students will receive full information on this compulsory course component in the course outline provided by the school.
|Objectives||On successful completion of this course, students will have:
1. An understanding of the nature, extent and likely causes of climate change through Earth history.
2. A knowledge of the types of earth and biological materials (such as rocks, sediments, ice, corals) that host information on past climate, and the relative potential of those materials to preserve useful climate change information.
3. A knowledge of the scientific techniques used to extract climate and environmental information, including radiometric dating, stable and radiogenic isotope analyses, microscopy.
4. Skills in interpretation of climate proxies and in the use of hydroclimatic modelling;
5. Field skills in the identification, description and sampling of palaeodata archives.
The course provides an excellent background for students wishing to pursue a career in environmental management, industry and a great opportunity for those wishing to pursue Honours in the area of climate and environmental change.
|Content||The major topics covered are:
Overview of Climate change throughout Earth history
-Long term climate change - Tectonic scale
Icehouse climate: nature, magnitude and causes of climate change during the Quaternary.
Climate during and since the Last Deglaciation
Study of the records of climate and environmental change from:
-ice-cores, tree rings, boreholes
-cave deposits (speleothems)
-marine sediments and organisms, including corals
-field and laboratory methods in the sampling and processing of palaeodata archives
-critical evaluation and processing of climate change data
-climate modelling using palaeodata
|Assumed Knowledge||GEOS1040; GEOS2200; GEOS2050 or GEOS2070.|
|Modes of Delivery||Internal Mode|
|Teaching Methods||Field Study
|Contact Hours||Field Study: for 20 hour(s) per Week for 2 weeks
Lecture: for 38 hour(s) per Term for Full Term
Laboratory: for 26 hour(s) per Term for Full Term
|Timetables||2013 Course Timetables for GEOS3280|