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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Geosciences : Postgraduate Courses (School of GeoSciences)

Postgraduate Course: Climate Change Management (PGGE11127)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course considers climate change mitigation at a range of scales from the local to global, the role of the public, private and third sectors and includes an array of options and possible technologies including renewables, carbon dioxide capture and storage (CCS), energy efficiency, demand reduction and geoengineering. The focus is global though examples will frequently draw upon experience in the UK and other parts of Europe. The course explores the role of science in defining the problem of climate change and the need for managing emissions within known carbon budgets, therefore requiring deep greenhouse gas emission cuts. Scenarios of possible future emissions will be presented and analysed and the adequacy of emission control targets at the international and national scales will be presented and critically evaluated. The challenge of the multiple-agendas and drivers at work in addition to climate change in all domains, including 'energy', 'land-use' and 'consumption' will be explored and the implications drawn-out. The key overarching conceptual framework that will be introduced is Michael Grubb's 'three domains / three pillars' analysis. This allows for a coherent approach to understanding carbon mitigation efforts from the behavioural and practice-focused (e.g. energy efficiency), market-based instruments to systemic, larger-scale and longer-term innovation processes. A secondary framework that will be used is 'socio-technical transitions' (also known as the 'multi-level perspective') in order to emphasise the social dimensions of change required. Through using these frameworks, we will also be evaluating the adequacy, effectiveness and fairness of climate change mitigation policies, options, actions and measures.
Course description Week 1
- Introduction
- Future Emission Pathways and Policy Targets
Week 2
- The Three Domains
- The Three Pillars
Week 3
- The Three Domains and the Three Pillars Applied
- Wind energy - A developers perspective
- TUTORIAL - World Climate Exercise
Week 4
- The solar PV revolution and integrating diverse RE sources into smart grids
- Autarkic urban energy systems
Week 5
- Marine Renewables
- Presentations
Week 6
Week 7
- Bioenergy
- TUTORIAL The UK Energy Market
Week 8
- Climate Engineering
- Climate Policy Post Paris
- TUTORIAL: Stabilisation Wedges
Week 9
- Non-CO2 GHGs
- Energy Efficiency
Week 10
- MACCs - their uses and abuses
- TUTORIAL: Exam preparation
Week 11
- Systemic innovation and socio-technical transitions
- Course Review
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites Students MUST also take: Dissertation in Carbon Management (PGGE11128)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Any student wishing to take this course who is not on the MSc in Carbon Management programme must seek the permission of the Course Organiser.
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2016/17, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  40
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 22, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 174 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 60 %, Coursework 40 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Form of Assessment:
- Group presentation on relevant topic - allocated in week 3 for delivery in week 5 (20%).
- Individual business/policy memo allocated in week 7 for delivery in week 8 (20%).
- Take Home Exam- to be completed in 24 hours (60%).
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand the concept of carbon budgeting and its application to policy making.
  2. Understand the major policies, options, measures and technologies for both limiting greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere and for reducing atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases.
  3. Comprehend the major sources of CO2 and other greenhouse gases from a socio-economic perspective and to understand key future trends.
  4. Think critically about greenhouse gas control using environmental, techno-scientific, socio-economic, political and cultural frameworks and criteria.
Reading List
Students are required to read:

Chapters 1 to 5 and 9 to 12 (inclusive): Michael Grubb, with Jean-Charles Houcarde and Karsten Neuhoff (2014), Planetary Economics: Energy, climate change and the three domains of sustainable development, Routledge.

Other useful texts are:
Grin, J., Rotmans, J. and Schot, J. (2010), Transitions to Sustainable Development: New Directions in the Study of Long Term Transformative Change, Routledge.

Climate Change 2014: Mitigation of Climate Change, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Summary for Policymakers plus other chapters (or sections thereof) as appropriate. All available free of charge from:

The New Climate Economy: The Global Commission on the Economy and Climate (2014). The Executive Summary and more information on particular topics of interest. Available for free at :
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Special Arrangements This course is only available to students studying the MSc in Carbon Management. Students are not permitted to audit this course unless formally agreed with the course organiser.
KeywordsPGGE11127 mitigation,renewable energy,geoengineering,methane,nitrous oxide,project developme
Course organiserDr Simon Shackley
Tel: (0131 6)50 7862
Course secretaryMrs Karolina Galera
Tel: (0131 6)50 2572
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