Enviornmental Sustainability

Three hours lecture per week. This course will explore the underlying causes of the current environmental sustainability crises, using lectures, case studies and recitation to explore and to understand the human impact on the Earth s environment and the sustainability of human culture. The student will comprehend the causes and the extent of the unsustainable use of earth s resources and the danger of the collapse of the planet s environmental support systems. Topics will include: the exponential function as it applies to human population growth and resource use; the economic and political causes of the sustainability crisis; resource use and depletion; human population dynamics; the transition from fossil fuel energy to renewable energy; feeding a hungry world; climate disturbance (causes, mitigation and adaptation); denial of human impacts on the environment; and steps towards an environmentally sustainable human society. Prerequisite: 101 or BIOL 160 and 161.