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Royal Geographical Society (with IBG): the heart of geography
Arsenic Pollution - a global problem
Climate Change: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability IPCC 4th Assessment
Climate Change Update
Copenhagen climate summit
Looking back to the future
Sky's the limit?
Small island developing states and climate change vulnerability
Thaw point
The climate forecast
Urban Air Pollution: Smog in Chinese Cities
Seeing the wood for the trees: how will increased atmospheric CO2 affect forests?
Water for Life
World Oceans Day 2017

The carbon and water cyles, climate and change

Water cycle | carbon cycle | human impacts | stores | processes | climate change | weather | pollution | flooding | sustainable water supply | water and carbon control at global scale

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. 

Carbon and water cycles (PDF) Written by Martin Evans, Professor of Geomorphology, School of Environment, University of Manchester

Weather and Climate Overview (PDF) Written by Dr Liz McGrath (Meteorologist, Weatherzone) and Dr Sylvia Knight (Head of Education, Royal Meteorological Society)

Climate Change Updates for A Level Geography Developed jointly with the Royal Meteorological Society and National Centre for Atmospheric Science


Seeing the wood for the trees: how will increased atmospheric CO2 affect forests? (Oct 2017)

CO2 is being pumped into a Staffordshire forests by scientists from the University of Birmingham. Why?

World Oceans day news stories (June 2017)

World Ocean's Day 2017 resources  (June 2017)

World Oceans day news stories (June 2017)

On 8 June, countries around the world celebrate World Oceans Day. This year’s theme is ‘Our Oceans, Our Future’, with a focus on encouraging solutions to plastic pollution for a healthier ocean and a better future
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
Small Island Developing States and Climate Change Vulnerability (May 2015) SIDS are mainly small isolated islands whose communities are commonly understood to be among the first places that will be very seriously affected by climate change
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
UK Water and Climate Risks (March 2014) What do recent expert reports tell us about possible links between hydrological changes and warmer temperatures?
Antarctic Glaciers: Pine Island (February 2014) Scientists have identified Pine Island Glacier as the most rapidly shrinking glacier on the planet
Superstorm Sandy: A geographical perspective (November 2012) When Superstorm Sandy hit coast of the USA it caused disruption that would dominate the headlines for days
The climate forecast (October 2012) Between July 2011 and July 2012, a series of extreme weather events left many people asking: is there a link with climate change?
Thai floods: mystery activity (November 2011) Simon Scoones, an IB teacher based in Bangkok has provided this mystery originally designed for the Freshwater IB Geography option
Rain, risk and resilience (July 2010) Are changing rainfall patterns putting the UK at greater risk of flooding?

Managing the impact of flooding (February 2010)

Two years on from severe floods in Hull, many victims remain in temporary accommodation
Climate Change Update (December 2009) Copenhagen is underway, but 2009 has already been an eventful year
Copenhagen climate summit (December 2009) Copenhagen in the news - an overview of useful websites, links & resources looking at the climate change and the conference
World at Risk: Summer 2009 (October 2009) Which natural hazards brought disaster – and to who, where and why?
Arsenic Pollution - a global problem (August 2009) This document makes recommendations for policy and action in the light of evidence on the extent and causes of arsenic pollution and its harmful effects to human health
Water for Life. Environment & Society Forum, Summary Statement 18 (July 2009) A summary statement reviewing material presented at a conference to launch the UK's input to the UN's Decade for Action:Water for Life in March 2005
Geo-engineering (May 2009) Examples range from using orbital mirrors to bounce sunlight back into space, fertilising the world's oceans with iron to increase their absorption of carbon and painting the roofs of buildings white to increase solar reflection
What is the stabilisation wedge theory? (May 2009) The theory aims to demonstrate how global warming is a problem which can be solved by implementing today's technologies to reduce CO2 emissions
Adaptation - the new life line for Bangladesh? (May 2009) Vulnerability and Accountability – why is the UK helping Bangladesh adapt to climate change?
Looking back to the future (September 2008) How can the Quaternary Period help us relate to the present?
What is at risk if London floods? (June 2008) 1.5 million people live in the floodplain of the River Thames and its tributaries. Many more people work, visit or travel through these potentially vulnerable areas
The Thames Barrier (June 2008) The Thames Barrier is a unique flood control structure on the River Thames at Woolwich Reach in East London. It is 520 meters wide and protects London against storm surges and rainfall swelling
The Thames Gateway (June 2008) The Thames Gateway is Europe’s largest regeneration project, stretching 40 miles along the Thames estuary from Canary Wharf in London to Southend in Essex and Sittingbourne in Kent
Climate Change: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability IPCC 4th Assessment (September 2007) The findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Working Group II Fourth Assessment
Taxing Times (April 2007) What can the Stern Review tell us about our future in the face of climate change?
Sky's the limit? (January 2007) What is the worry over carbon footprints?
Drought doubt? (June 2006) Did you know that there is less water per head in the southeast of England than there is in the Sudan?
Crazy paving (September 2005) Why are gardens disappearing and what is the impact on run-off and flood risk?
Thaw point (February 2005) Is Antarctic ice melting faster? Is the world getting warmer? Is the world changing for the worse? Will we be eating jellyfish and chips?
Sweats and the City (August 2004) Why is city life hotting up and what are the new urban heat island effects?
Milan 1 - 0 Kyoto (December 2003) Are talks in Milan and floods in Marseilles changing attitudes towards climate change?
Emissions impossible? (October 2003) To save the world from global warming. But why did talks fail?
Reservoir dogs future water supply (October 2003) Population growth, climate change, increased consumption: how are future water shortages to be resolved?
Summer 2003: too hot to handle? (September 2003) The European drought of summer 2003
Climate change is melting glaciers (September 2003) But why might melting ice lead to a water shortage?
Debate over global warming heats up (April 2003) Warmest year on record raises question of climate change causes
UK leads the world to green future (April 2003) But are cuts in the steel industry a factor?
And now for tomorrow's weather ... (February 2003) How climate change affects the UK
Urban Life is Breath of Fresh Air (February 2003) Government statistics confirm ongoing improvement in national air quality

Online lectures

Flooding, climate change and the resilience of cities, Alex Nickson  (May 2015) As we become an urban species, how can our cities grow and become more resilient to climate change? Alex looks at the lessons London can learn, and apply, from international cities.

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The Nile, Toby Wilkinson (April 2014) The Nile is the contant thread that runs through Egyptian history. Toby takes us downriver through the past and present of a conservative yet rapidly changing land

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From science to service: making climate science work for society, Professor Dame Julia Slingo (January 2014) Societies globally are more vulnerable than ever to hazardous weather and climate extremes. Met Office Chief Scientist Professor Dame Julia Slingo discusses the latest developments in climate science and services, and the challenges and opportunities that they present

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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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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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Antarctica's future - should we care? Collin Summerhayes (February 2010) Antarctica is the world's refrigerator and home to unique flora and fauna on land and in the sea. Colin explores the seeming contradictions - such as melting glaciers but little melting sea ice - and looks at what will happen to this magnificent continent over the next 100 years

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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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Britain's ageing population (June 2009) As the baby boom generation approach retirement, Britain's population is ageing. Discover the changing nature of retirement; the importance of older people in the workforce; the increasing pressures on public services and how Britain is adapting to an ageing society

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Engineering our climate (May 2009) Geo-engineering, the deliberate manipulation of the earth's climate, is not a solution to climate change. But can it be an effective means to delay its impact? Should we be researching it as 'Plan B'?

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London under water (June 2008) What is the threat of flooding to London’s people and infrastructure? How will current defences cope with enhanced flood risk to the capital over the next 30 years?

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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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KS5: Carbon and water cycle Carbon cycle and water cycle resources from the Royal Met Soc
KS3: Are you flood ready? Looking at resilience, risk and management
KS3: Changing climates Discussing the facts about climate change and the predictions for the future
Weather and climate resources A selection of resources, lesson ideas and experiments from the Met Office
Climate 4 classrooms Teaching resources on the local impacts of climate change in China, Indonesia, China and the UK; developed in partnership with the British Council and the Royal Meteorological Society
Your climate, your life Teaching resources based around our changing climate and how it affects our lives. Supported by the DEFRA Climate Change Fund

Case studies

Water Shortages in the Maldives (January 2015) Freshwater shortages are not uncommon in Male, the island capital of the Maldives

Ask the Experts

The societal responses to El Niño (May 2015) Dr George Adamson, Lecturer in Geography, Kings College London
The water challenge (October 2014) Professor Dame Judith Rees, President of the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG)
Climatic Systems (July 2011) Dr Sylvia Knight, Royal Meteorological Society
Met Office (June 2011) Julia Slingo, Met Office Chief Scientist
Urban climatology (February 2010) Professor Sue Grimmond, Geography Department, Kings College
Ocean acidification (December 2009) Professor Nicholas Owens, Director, British Antarctic Survey
Meterological forecasting (September 2009) Paul Hardaker, Chief Executive, Royal Meteorological Society
Water planning (July 2003) Professor Edmund Penning-Rowsell, Flood Hazard Research Centre, Middlesex University

60 second guides

  • Ways to prepare for a flood
  • Tidal flooding
  • Surface water flooding
  • Ground water flooding
  • Fluvial flooding
  • Air pollution in London
  • What is virtual water?
  • Climate change impacts in Africa
  • Increasing reflectivity
  • Increasing cloud reflectivity
  • Artificial trees
  • Ocean fertilisation
  • Sulphur screens
  • Carbon capture and storage
  • What is the great Pacific garbage patch?
  • The Aral Sea
  • Unsustainable fishing
  • Sustainable Development Goal 6 - Clean water & Sanitation
  • Sustainable Development Goal 13 - Climate Action
  • 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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