Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Stopping Climate Change One Classroom at a Time

As a child I enjoyed watching black and white science fiction disaster films. Scientists in white coats would warn of impending doom, but be ignored until it was almost too late.
I don't have a white coat, but I am a member of the Australian National University Climate Change and Energy Change institutes. Some of my colleagues helped write the "Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C" for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), issued 8 October. The report warns of more extreme weather and rising sea levels if carbon emissions are not reduced. The report says limiting global warming to 1.5°C requires "rapid and far-reaching" transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities."

Unfortunately, like those old science fiction films, such unwelcome news is not well received. But some changes can be made which enhance human well being while also reducing emissions.

At the EduBuild Asia 2018 conference in Singapore today I am suggesting the increased use of blended, online and mobile learning. Older students can spend more time learning via their mobile devices, away from campus. Classrooms can be reconfigured and teaching techniques changed, so when on campus students learn much more intensively. As well as improving student's education, this will reduce the carbon footprint of the campus.

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