Environmental Science

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This is a course in environmental science. It is designed for people with little science background.

Course Notes

These are the topics for the course. In general, they can be studied independently of each other. Each topic includes activities, resources, and other material.

What is Environment?

Planetary Boundaries

Ecological Footprint and Sustainable Development

Food and Agriculture


Ecology - Definitions and Outline

Energy Flow in Ecosystems

Population and Community Ecology

Material Cycles



Atmosphere and Climate

Global Warming

Air Quality

Water Quantity

Water Quality

Solid Waste

These two sections are for those without any science background

Scientific Method

Matter and Energy


Activities are given within sections above.

Web Resources

This is a collection of all of the resources listed on the course notes pages. See also the next two sections.

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Web Resources

This is a collection of all of the resources listed on the course notes pages. See also the two sections below.

Thermodynamics - A wikieducator project on this topic

Definition of Science at The Skeptic's Dictionary.

Bad Astronomy - A blog about critical thinking, astronomy, and science.

Global Footprint Network - Information about ecological footprint, including a footprint calculator.

Population Statistics from UN Population Division

Statistics and Reports from Population Reference Bureau

International Data Base from US Census Bureau

World Population Clock

State of the World's Cities annual report of UN Habitat

Biodiversity Loss Threatens Human Well-Being A good article related to ecosystem services and the scientific literature around it

IUCN Red List red list of endangered species

Ecogeek - Website with all the recent news about energy especially renewable energy and energy conservation

BP Oil Disaster - An excellent website by the BBC all about the oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico

The Role of Natural Gas in a Low-Carbon Energy Economy Report by the Worldwatch Institute

World Commission on Dams 2000 Report on effects of large scale dams

Other Resources

Environmental Education - This page is a link to web resources on the environment

Environmental Glossary - A glossary of environmental terms (note it is incomplete).

author's blog on the environment (See also individual articles listed in the course notes)

Keeping up with environment news

One very good way to understand environmental issues is to follow the environmental news. There are a number of websites which are dedicated to environmental news (either general or a specific aspect).

RSS Feeds - one good way to keep up with news is to use RSS feeds. For a good description of RSS see the BBC's Feed Page. For reading feeds we recommend Feedly - especially since you can use it from any computer.

Below is some recommended sites.

News Sites


Intergovernmental and Non-governmental Organizations