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

Postgraduate Course: Climate Change Mitigation (online) (PGGE11207)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
Course typeOnline Distance Learning AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course examines climate change mitigation and solutions, covering technology, policy and scientific understanding. This course examines climate change mitigation at a range of scales from geoengineering to microgeneration. It explores the role of science & technology, economics and innovation in carbon management and the interactions of other drivers (e.g. land-use change, energy access & security, economic development) with carbon management policy and ethics. It includes coverage of international and national targets and scenarios, local and household mitigation, and examines feasibility and implementation of carbon reduction projects such as wind energy, solar PV, forestry and anaerobic digestion.
Course description All dates for lectures and tutorials can be found in the Course Handbook.

This 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 technologies including renewable energy sources (RES), infrastructure, energy efficiency, waste, reforestation and land-use change, demand reduction, behavioural change 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 need for managing emissions within known carbon budgets, therefore requiring deep greenhouse gas emission cuts and achievement of carbon neutrality (= net carbon zero) by mid-21st century in many developed countries. 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, including ¿energy security¿, ¿energy costs¿, ¿land-use¿ and ¿consumption¿, will be explored and the implications drawn-out. The ¿three domains / three pillars¿ approach, which allows for a coherent approach to understanding carbon mitigation efforts from the behavioural and practice-focused (e.g. energy efficiency), to market-based instruments and then, further, to systemic, larger-scale and longer-term innovation processes, is presented and explained. Through using such frameworks, we will be in a position to evaluate the adequacy, effectiveness and fairness of climate change mitigation policies, options, actions and measures.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation (Online) (PGGE11189) OR Carbon Economics (online) (PGGE11219)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements This course is only available to students enrolled on PG Cert Climate Change Management (Online Learning) or MSc Carbon Management (Online Learning). Students are not permitted to audit this course unless formally agreed with the Course Organiser.
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  32
Course Start Semester 2
Course Start Date 15/01/2024
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Online Activities 40, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 156 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Coursework 100%

Podcast Assignment - (30%)
Deadline: 12:00 noon on 27th February

Final Report (consisting of a maximum of 3,000 words) - (70%)
Deadline: 12:00 noon on 13th April
Feedback Formative feedback will be provided on both assignments in sufficient time to help you improve your submissions.

Written summative feedback on all assignments will be provided within 3 weeks of submission.

The academic team also rely on feedback from you to help them continually improve the course. This feedback can be given directly to the Course Organiser, Tutor, Programme Director, Personal Tutor or via a class representative.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand global, national and local climate change mitigation policies and measures at a high-level, including projected emissions and targets
  2. Understand the range and potential of low and zero carbon technologies
  3. Be familiar with non-CO2 greenhouse gases and their mitigation
  4. Evaluate the potential for geoengineering of climate
  5. Think criticaly about greenhouse gas control using environmental, techno-scientific, socio-economic, political and cultural frameworks and criteria
Reading List
Summary for Policymakers, IPCC Working Group III (2014)

Planetary Economics: Energy, Climate Change and the Three Domains of Sustainable Development, Michael Grubb (Routledge, 2014)

'Geoengineering the Climate' (Royal Society)

Drawdown¿, Paul Hawkens (Ed.), Penguin (2017)
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Cognitive Skills:
The course deepens and develops the numerical skills, analytical skills and skills of synthesis and presentation.

Subject Specific Skills:
On completion of the course, students should be able to make an assessment of the key climate change mitigation strategies available to a business / industry sector or government department and to have the necessary knowledge and skills to recommend an effective suite of such strategies. This includes an awareness of the incentives for, and barriers to, low-carbon technology and emission reduction policies.
Additional Class Delivery Information The course will start with THREE one hour tutorial slots during the week. If attendance at one of these is low (below 5 persons) then it will be paused. The slots proposed are as follows (all UK time zone). All tutorials will take place on Zoom. Tutorials will be recorded.
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Simon Shackley
Tel: (0131 6)50 7862
Course secretaryMrs Katherine Ingram
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