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Royal Geographical Society (with IBG): the heart of geography
59 Dams: China's climate change challenges
Crude shock
Drastic plastic bag bans
Energy update
Europeans positive about Renewable future
Evaluating hydroponic farming in Japan
Fracking Blackpool
Global energy dilemmas: a geographical perspective
New resource rush
Nuclear power and energy security
Oil fires ignite debate on Iraq disaster
Regions, energy and climate change
The Belo Monte Hydroelectric Dam complex in Brazil
The four corners of the food crisis
The great global grape migration
Threatened heritage landscapes
Water access and social inequality in India
Water conservation and behaviour in Australia
Water Shortages in the Maldives
What killed King Coal?
Artisanal Mining Communities in South Africa
Sustainable energy access in Mozambique and South Africa
Teff: The next superfood?

Natural resources and energy

Energy consumption and production | water as a resource | food | oil | resource distribution | renewable energy | recycling | gas | fracking | pollution | air quality | nuclear power

A Level subject content overviews

To support teachers with the introduction of the 2016 A Level courses, the Society is providing a new range of online resources and support. The following overview documents provide an introduction for teachers to some of the key content, concepts and geographical theories within the new A Levels and will be particularly useful for colleagues who have not previously taught elements of the new content. These have been written by leading academic geographers, a number of whom were members of the ALCAB subject advisory panel for geography. 

Food production, circulation and consumption (PDF) Written by Peter Jackson, a Professor in the Department of Geography, University of Sheffield


Sustainable energy access in Mozambique and South Africa (April 2017) Mozambique has one of Africa’s lowest electrification rates – the national grid reaches just 23% of its population of 29 million people.
Teff: The next superfood? (September 2016) As health-conscious eating has risen, diets have changed bringing quinoa, and latterly 'teff' into the mainstream.
Artisanal Mining Communities in South Africa (December 2015) Artisanal mining (ASM) is a controversial form of small scale mining undertaken by low income communities in the global South.
Water access and social inequality in India (July 2015) The Our Water project was a scheme that aimed to supply drinking water more reliably to three areas of Rajasthan in northern India where groundwater was naturally saline
Water conservation and behaviour in Australia (May 2015) Water managers, companies and policy makers have long been concerned with how to balance water supply with water demand
Urban Air Pollution: Smog in Chinese Cities (March 2014) Dense layers of smog have caused chaos in major cities across China including Beijing, Shanghai and Harbin
The horsemeat scandal and other food geographies (March 2013) The recent revelation about horsemeat unknowingly making its way onto British plates has raised questions about where our food comes from
Threatened heritage landscapes (July 2012) Investigating how a range of 21st Century pressures can threaten the conservation of Britain’s historic urban and rural landscapes
Nuclear power and energy security (April 2012) How does Japan’s nuclear disaster interconnect with wider global issues of energy security and environmental sustainability?
Fracking Blackpool (February 2012) A quest for new gas reserves made headlines when the drilling operation triggered small earthquakes close to Blackpool in 2011
Hello South Sudan (November 2011) What are the geographical challenges facing the world’s newest nation?
The Deepwater Horizon, the Mavi Marmara, and the dynamic zonation of ocean space (June 2011) Read a Commentary from March 2011's Geographical Journal by Philip Steinberg
Japan earthquake and tsunami (March 2011) A collection of links and articles relating to the 11 March Japanese earthquake
The BRICs are coming: Will Brazil ever arrive? (February 2011) Brazil's economy is thriving, yet real development can be more complex than economic growth
Global energy dilemmas: a geographical perspective (December 2010) Prof Michael Bradshaw The Geographical Journal 176, 275–290 March 2011
Chocolate spread over (May 2010) Through Cadbury we take a look at the issues surrounding the increasingly globalised ownership of big businesses
Energy Update (February 2010) Does the planet have a secure and sustainable energy future?
Fast Food Farmers (September 2009) Investigating the aspect of the ethics of global trade – the treatment of agricultural workers at the other end of our food supply chain
Regions, energy and climate change. Environment and Society Forum Summary Statement 21 (July 2009) A summary statement of the findings from a one day conference held at the RGS-IBG in conjunction with the UK Energy Research Centre
59 Dams: China's climate change challenges (June 2009) Why 59 dams may help to ease China's potential water security issues
The great global grape migration (February 2009) What will be the effects of climate change on the world's wine regions?
The four corners of the food crisis (July 2008) Population growth,rising affluence,energy policy and climate change – these are the “four corners” of the food crisis
Drastic plastic bag bans (May 2008) Who are banning plastic bags - and why?
New resource rush (March 2008) How are climate change and new ocean laws affecting global patterns of resource ownership?
Retreating rainforest (October 2006) What are the causes and consequences of increasing deforestation in the Amazon?
Pupil power (September 2004) How is wind, solar and pupil power transforming a remote village in southern Africa?
Crude shock (June 2004) What are the causes and consequences of rising oil prices?
What killed King Coal? (March 2004) 20 years on: what were the causes and consequences of the 1984 miners’ strike?
Oil fires ignite debate on Iraq disaster (March 2003) Concern arises over the possible firing of Iraq’s oil wells to thwart conflict
Europeans positive about Renewable future (March 2003) A new survey indicates that Europeans have a positive image of renewable energy

Online lectures

Air quality for all (October 2014) Taking inspiration from around the world, a panel will discuss the hidden hazard of today: poor air quality. How can creative technology and new thinking can help us all breathe more easily?

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Mobile middle class (March 2014) The global class system is changing. By 2030, two billion people will join the middle class from emerging economies, leaving Europe and North America with less than a third of the total middle class population. What impact is this having on people and the planet?

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Junkyard Planet: Adam Minter (January 2014) The collection of our recycling is only one half of a story which is actually global in scale and represents a multibillion dollar industry worldwide

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Will the shale gail prevail? Michael Bradshaw (January 2014) In 2014 the UK stands at a crossroads with regards to hydraulic fracturing. It is important to understand the way the USA have explored and exploited their shale gas in order to inform our own decision making

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Feeding the 9 billion (October 2013) Our global food system is under increasing strain. We need to produce and supply enough safe and nutritious food in a sustainable way to a population which is expected to rise to 9 billion by 2050. How are we meeting this challenge with new technology as well as new thinking?

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The Energy Water Food Stress Nexus (December 2012) The world's energy, water and food systems are tightly linked. How will these vital resources cope in the coming decades from a growing and more prosperous global population?

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Unsustainable fishing (October 2012)

How can we avoid the collapse of a resource that remains an essential part of food security and vital to the communities and livelihoods of half a billion people across the planet?

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Can the UK ever be sustainable? (December 2010) Our way of life is placing an increasing burden on the planet, but how realistic are visions of a sustainable future? How can business, politics and the creative industries help create a sustainable future?

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Plastic pollution in the oceans (October 2010) Our throw away society is polluting large areas of the world's oceans with plastics, threatening marine life and food chains. How did it get there? What are the practical solutions? Is it time to re-evaluate waste as a resource?

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Not in my back yard (March 2010) With pressure on the UK’s ageing energy and transport infrastructures mounting, is it time to put projects of national importance ahead of local concerns? Or does this bypass our democratic right to object?

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Importing goods, exporting drought (October 2009) The scale of global water consumption needed to produce what we use and consume has a dramatic impact around the world. From the food we eat to the clothes we wear, discover the hidden cost of Britain's consumption.

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Razing the rainforest (October 2008) How can we best conserve the world's rainforests in the face of enormous challenges from palm oil, timber trade, green colonialism and biofuels?

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Future of low carbon energy (March 2008) With countries across the world working towards a low carbon future, how can global investment be encouraged to forward low carbon technologies?

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KS3: Natural resources Looking at the distribution and uses of natural resources
KS5: Energy security Exploring the way that energy is used, governed and controlled in a number of EU countries and the different ways that energy affects people’s lives

 Case studies

The Belo Monte Hydroelectric Dam complex in Brazil (October 2015) A new large scale hydroelectric dam, the Belo Monte, is due to be completed in 2016 on the Xingu River in the state of Pará, Brazil
Evaluating Hydroponic Farming in Japan (July 2015) Hydroponic farming grows food crops without the use of soil and natural light, instead replacing these conditions with liquid nutrient feed and light emitting diodes (LEDs) in indoor farms 
Ethiopian dam threatens Lake Turkana (April 2015) Lake Turkana is currently the world’s largest lake found within a desert region and there are fears for its future as a means of sustaining both local economies and ecology
Water Shortages in the Maldives (January 2015) Freshwater shortages are not uncommon in Male, the island capital of the Maldives

Ask the Experts

The water challenge (October 2014) Professor Dame Judith Rees, President of the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG)
Energy in China (June 2014) Guy C.K. Leung, Visiting Scholar, Oxford University's China Centre
Unconventional oil and gas (May 2014) Michael Bradshaw, Professor of Global Energy, Warwick Business School
Overfishing (December 2012) Liam Carr, Senior Advisor to the Director of External Affairs, US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Food globalisation (October 2012) Ian Cook, Associate Professor of Geography, University of Exeter
Global energy security (March 2009) Michael Bradshaw, Professor of Human Geography, University of Leicester
Sustainable agriculture (August 2007) Gordon Conway, Chief Scientific Adviser to the Department for International Development

60 second guides

  • Biomass energy
  • The hydrogen economy
  • Wind farms
  • Wind energy
  • Solar energy
  • Nuclear energy
  • Biofuels
  • Would you like flies with that?
  • Food prices
  • The Aral Sea
  • What is virtual water?
  • Saving the rainforest
  • Climate change: financing global forests
  • The hidden cost of what we consume
  • Indoor air pollution
  • Unsustainable fishing
  • Sustainable Development Goal 14 - Life below Water
  • Sustainable Development Goal 15 - Life on land
  • School Members, Early Career Teacher Members and Young Geographers can sign in to read the full range of articles. If you are not already a member you can join us as a School Member or Young Geographer and access our vast library of educational articles.




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