Summer 2022 - GEOG 104 OL01

Climate Change, Water, and Society (3)

Class Number: 4988

Delivery Method: Remote


  • Course Times + Location:




An examination of climate change, its interaction with water availability, and how humans cope with these altered circumstances. Students who have completed GEOG 102 prior to the fall 2011 term may not complete this course for further credit. Breadth-Social Sci/Science.


Format: Remote Learning, Asynchronous.

We will begin with an introduction to the climate system and feedbacks on Earth’s climate, including the water cycle. We then examine the causes of climate change and how future climate pathways are modelled and the impacts on natural and human systems. We will then explore all the solutions for to mitigating and/or adapting to changing climatic conditions, especially the restoration of wetlands, soils, forests and water cycles. We also discuss the governance of climate change and investigate why this issue is still a controversial topic in politics and the media, despite overwhelming scientific consensus that Earth’s climate system is warming. 


  • Explain the complexity of the climate system and identify linkages between its components, including sources, flows, and feedback processes.
  • Think critically about the science behind natural and human disruptions to the climate system.
  • Understand all the potential solutions, such as restoration of terrestrial and aquatic systems
  • Explain the social, political, and economic drivers and impacts of climate change, including the influences of social inequity
  • Differentiate between evidence-based claims and pseudo-science
  • Practice diverse modes of communication of climate change causes, impacts, and solutions, demonstrating awareness of audience
  • Demonstrate improved climate literacy


  • Graph interpretation assignment 5%
  • Class engagement activities 10%
  • Climate change communication project (2 assignments x 12%) 24%
  • Module Quizzes (x 4) 24%
  • Final Exam (cumulative) - asynchronous 25%
  • Learning e-portfolio 12%



  • Access to a computer with reliable internet connection and working microphone
  • Microsoft Office software (can be downloaded for free from SFU)



Burch, Sarah L., and Sara E. Harris. Understanding climate change: Science, policy, and practice. University of Toronto Press, 2021.  Digital Version available via VitalSource.

All other readings and materials are available via SFU Library.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University.


Teaching at SFU in summer 2022 will involve primarily in-person instruction.  Some courses may be offered through alternative methods (remote, online, blended), and if so, this will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes. 

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote, online, or blended courses study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning ( or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the summer 2022 term.