Causes of Climate Change


Explore how human activities such as burning of fossil fuels and deforestation have increased the concentration of heat-trapping greenhouse gases in Earth’s atmosphere.

  • Physics of How Greenhouse Gases Trap Heat

    Greenhouse gases are molecules that have the ability to trap heat in the Earth's atmosphere. Learn the physics behind how greenhouse gases trap infrared radiation in the Earth's atmosphere, which leads to global warming.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Clue into Climate: Causes of Change | E-Book

    Explore the difference between weather and climate, the evidence for and causes of climate change, the impacts of climate change on freshwater and ecosystems and strategies to address these and other impacts.

    Grades: 6-12
  • The Greenhouse Effect and Greenhouse Gases

    With this info graphic and accompanying lesson from Clue into Climate, produced by KQED, students will learn about the greenhouse effect and find out how scientists use data collected from ice cores to study climate change.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Sources of Greenhouse Gases

    Learn about greenhouse gasses, how they are generated and their role in climate change. 

    Grades: 6-12
  • The Keeling Curve Explained

    Learn about the Keeling Curve, one of the most compelling pieces of scientific evidence that shows that carbon dioxide (CO2) is accumulating in our atmosphere.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Levels

    With this graph and accompanying lesson from Clue into Climate, produced by KQED, students will explore how the level of CO2 has increased over time, hypothesize about why this is a concern, and begin to think about what can be done to slow or stop continued climate change.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Water Vapor's Role in Climate Change

    Learn how water and the Earth's climate directly affect each other in this interactive graphic. Water vapor is a greenhouse gas that enhances warming of Earth. However, as Earth warms, more water evaporates and turns to water vapor. This leads to further warming and creates a "positive feedback loop."

    Grades: 6-12
  • Regulating Greenhouse Gases

    In this lesson from Clue into Climate, produced by KQED, students will learn about how destruction of the world's largest rain forest affects global climate change. Prior to engaging in this lesson, students will need to have a general knowledge of greenhouse gases (particularly carbon dioxide), the greenhouse effect, and global warming.

    Grades: 6-12

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