2-1: Climate System and Climate Predictability
Importance of this Unit to the Course
Because the earth's climate can be described, in an abstract sense, by mathematical
equations, we can get some indication of the properties of future climates by examining the
properties of these equations. We find that these equations are the same ones that describe
chaotic behavior in physical systems, which provides motivation to look at past records (unit on
paleoclimate) for evidence of chaos in past climates.
- To understand the elements that comprise the climate system and how
- To explore the concept of predictability and understand the
difference between weather forecasts and climate simulation.
Preparation for Discussion
(You must complete this section before class.)
- Read the
(Print text for offline review;
- Take the
- Review additional reading material (this material is not covered in the
quiz, but offers more ideas for online discussion)
(online / face-to-face)
(See your portfolio for due dates and times)
A major component of the course is participation in the online dialog.
The following types of comments are required:
The following may be used as discussion starters for the online dialog:
- Social Comments
- Knowledge-building Comments
- Ethical Comments
- Unit Problem to Ponder:
If humans are perturbing the Earth's climate, what will be the
first evidence of such perturbations?
- Unit exam questions
from previous years
- Unit discussions from previous years, available from
the current online