Engineers for a Sustainable Future Climate Change Discussion

Engineers for a Sustainable Future


I. Introduction

Sustainability Definition

Seven Generations

Major Concerns with Addressing Climate Change.

(Note holder)

United States National Climate Assessment 200 Worldwide Scientific Organizations

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)

II. Ten Signs of Climate Change

1. Global Temperature Rise

ii) Global Temperature Rise

iii) Global Temperature Changes relative to 1951 – 1980 Average

2. Ocean Acidification

3. Sea Level Increase

4. Warming Oceans

5. Coral Reef Decline

ii) Healthy and Damaged Coral Reefs

iii) Stages of Coral Death

iv) Australia’s Great Barrier Reef Decline

6. Shrinking Ice Sheets

7. Declining Artic Sea Ice

8. Glacier Retreat

ii) Glacier Calving

9. Decreased Snow Cover

10. Extreme Weather Events

Summary - Ten Signs of Climate Change

Summary - Ten Signs of Climate Change

IV. Climate Change Forcings and Context


The Greenhouse Effect

Four Greenhouse Gasses

Greenhouse Gasses

Keeling Curve

Annual Growth Rate – CO2

Atmospheric CO2 – 800,000 Years

CO2 Emissions from Fossil Fuels

Atmospheric Methane Since 1987

Atmospheric Methane, 800,000 Years

Igniting Trapped Methane

Nitrous Oxide

Fluorinated Greenhouse Gases

Fluorinated Greenhouse Gases

Black Carbon

Black Carbon

Pounds of CO2 emitted per Million BTU of Energy

Naturally Occurring Forcings

Summary – Causes of Climate Change

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Positive Feedback

Water Vapor

Negative Feedback

Encouraging Developments

Energy Efficiency – Cheapest Energy Resource

Electric Cars – Near Term Developments

Solar Energy Advantages / Disadvantages

Solar Medium Installed Prices since 2010

Solar Residential Systems Prices Since 1998

Wind Power Advantages / Disadvantages

Cost of Wind Power

Energy Storage Technologies

Summary – Encouraging Developments

Government Options

Government Options

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Paris Climate Agreement – US Emissions

National Determined Contributions (NDCs)

United States Climate Alliance

Government Options - Economic

Government Options - Regulatory

Government Options - Research

Government Options – Land and Forest Policies

Personal Options


Energy Conservation Measures Let’s “Walk Our Talk”

Move Away from Incandescent Lighting

Utilize RECs and Carbon Offsets

REC Option - PGE

Sample Carbon Offset Calculation

Our Children’s Trust

Summary of What Can We Do Personally

Engineering Options We Design the Built Environment!

Engineering Options – Technical Knowledge

Engineering Options – Advocacy


We Can Do This!

Sources of Information

What if we are wrong?

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