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Global Warming: It's all about carbon

Secondary, Middle

Description

This five-clip video package delivers an animated and highly entertaining chemistry lesson on the elemental cause of global warming- the behavior of the carbon atom. Mini-episodes explain how carbon atoms form bonds in living things that over time make fossil fuels. They break apart, release energy and reform with oxygen to create excess carbon dioxide gas which contributes to global warming. The final episode links carbon dioxide emissions to lifestyle choices and challenges viewers to use other energy sources and find innovative ways to remove carbon from the atmosphere.

General Assessment

Recommendation of how and where to use it

This video compilation could be used in high school chemistry classes to demonstrate the unique bonding properties of carbon atoms. It would be an effective tool in middle level science classes and environmental science courses to examine the root cause of global warming and climate change as well as to promote discussion of the need for alternative energy sources to fossil fuels.  These clips also address geography and social studies outcomes relating to the environmental impacts of human activity.

Relevant Curriculum Units

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  • Alberta
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        • Environmental Chemistry
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        • Science 10-4 (Knowledge and Employability Science): Investigating Matter and Energy in Environmental Systems
        • Science 10: Energy Flow in Global Systems
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    • Grade 11
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      • Chemistry
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        • Chemistry 20:The Diversity of Matter and Chemical Bonding: In introduction to organic chemistry
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        • Science 20-4 (Knowledge and Employability Science): Understanding Common Energy Conversion Systems
        • Science 24:Understanding Common Energy Conversion Systems
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        • Science 7: Earth and its climate have changed over geological time
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        • Science 9: The biosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere are interconnected, as matter cycles and energy flows through them.
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        • Chemical processes require energy change as atoms are rearranged
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        • Chemistry 11: Organic Chemistry
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        • Current Topics in the Sciences 30S: Science, Technology, Society & the Environment
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        • Chemical Reactions
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        • Physical Geography 110: The Atmosphere
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        • Science 1206: Chemical Reactions
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        • Chemistry 20:The Diversity of Matter and Chemical Bonding: In introduction to organic chemistry
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        • Science 20-4:Understanding Common Energy Conversion Systems
        • Science 24: Understanding Common Energy Conversion Systems
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        • Atlantic Canada in the Global Community: Environment
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        • Chemistry 11: Organic Chemistry
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        • Science 10: Energy Flow in Global Systems
        • Science 14: Investigating Matter and Energy in the Environment
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        • Science24:Understanding Common Energy Conversion Systems
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        • Hydrocarbons and Energy
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        • Interdependence: Atlantic Canada in the Global Community: Environment in the Global Community
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        • Science 421A: Chemical Reactions
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        • Chemistry 521A: Organic Chemistry
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        • The Contemporary World: Environment
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        • Science 7: Earth and its climate have changed over geological time
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        • Science 9: The biosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere are interconnected, as matter cycles and energy flows through them.
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        • Earth and Space Science: Energy Transfers in Natural Systems
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        • Organic Chemistry

Themes Addressed

  • Air, Atmosphere & Climate (1)

    • Climate Change