Global Environmental Problems: Implications for U.S. Policy invites students to weigh the significance of global environmental problems in the formulation of U.S. foreign policy today. The unit traces the entry of climate change, water pollution, deforestation, biodiversity, and population pressures into the sphere of public policy.
Online Resources from the Choices Program
Carbon Dioxide Data
Charts and graphs included in the printed optional lesson examining humanity's impact on the global carbon cycle are also available as Powerpoint documents.
Bring university scholars into your classrooms with video featuring top scholars answering specific question in his or her field of expertise.
Exploring the Amazon Using Google Earth
This Google Earth file is for use with an alternative lesson published in Global Environmental Problems: Implications for U.S. Policy. The alternative lesson adds significant depth to the Day One lesson by having students explore the Amazon Basin using Google Earth.
If you are having trouble opening the file above: Right click (or hold down the control key and click) on the link above and download or save the file to the desktop. Before opening the downloaded file, make sure you have the Google Earth application, which you can download free at earth.google.com.
IRIN: Climate Change—The Human Cost
This series of short films explores how climate change is affecting communities throughout Asia and Africa, highlighting innovative responses to emerging challenges. Videos are produced by IRIN, a news agency that is affiliated with the United Nations.
BBC: A brief history of climate change
This timeline traces key milestones, scientific discoveries, technical innovations and political action from the 1700s to the present.
Ecological Footprint Calculator
How much land does it take to support your lifestyle? This interactive, animated tool helps individuals discover their largest areas of resource consumption and offers recommendations for reducing environmental impact. This calculator estimates how much land and sea area is needed to provide the resources an individual uses and to absorb the waste they create, including carbon dioxide.
Carbon Footprint Calculator
What size is your carbon footprint? This tool estimates household carbon footprint and shows how different lifestyle choices, household features, and new technologies affect this.
Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center
This site provides U.S. and world current and historical data on greenhouse gas emissions and their effects.
Energy Information Agency: Annual Energy Review
This site provides current and historical U.S. data on energy production and use and their environmental effects.
EPA Global Warming Site
This site provides helpful background on a range of environmental issues.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
This site provides scientific, technical, and socio-economic data and analysis as well as reports on the IPCC meetings.
PBS Wide Angle
This is a PBS program dedicated to international current affairs documentaries. Viewers may search by topic to find documentaries about the environment.
POV Borders Environment
This is a PBS site that provides background on environment issues, discussions with professionals in various roles within the environmental field, links to a rich array of other resources, and a series of lesson plans on "earth, air, and water." The site map is particularly helpful.
The New York Times — A Series: The Energy Challenge
Articles in this series will periodically examine the ways in which the world is, and is not, moving toward a more energy efficient, environmentally benign future.
United Nations Environment Program
This site provides current events updates, data, and links to all UN environment activities and meetings.
World Resources Institute
This environmental think-tank offers analysis of events, explanations of trends, and extensive data.
Diamond, Jared. Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies (New York: W.W. Norton, 2005). 512 pages.
French, Hilary. Vanishing Borders: Protecting the Planet in an Age of Globalization (New York: W.W. Norton, 2000). 257 pages.
Goldfarb, Theodore D, ed. Taking Sides: Clashing Views on Controversial Environmental Issues (Guilford, Connecticut: The Dushkin Publishing Group, 1995). 358 pages.
Tal, Alon. Speaking of Earth: Environmental Speeches That Moved the World (New Jersey: Rutgers University Press, 2006). 276 pages.
Watson, Robert T., John A., Dixon, Steven P. Hamburg, Anthony C. Janetos, and Richard H. Moss, Protecting Our Planet, Securing Our Future: Linkages Among Global Environmental Issues and Human Needs (United Nations Environment Program, U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration, The World Bank, 1998). 95 pages.