New
New
Year 11
Edexcel
Foundation

Human activity

I can evaluate the evidence for human activity causing climate change.

New
New
Year 11
Edexcel
Foundation

Human activity

I can evaluate the evidence for human activity causing climate change.

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Lesson details

Key learning points

  1. Correlation between changing CO₂ concentration and consumption of fuels, and global temperature changes.
  2. Uncertainties caused by locations where measurements are taken.
  3. Historical accuracy of measurements should be evaluated.
  4. Carbon footprints are a way of measuring a person's, product's or organisation's impact on global carbon emissions.
  5. Fossil fuel derived CO₂ has a different isotopic composition than CO₂ from other sources.

Common misconception

Individual actions cannot affect global climate. Technology alone can solve climate issues.

Emphasise the impact of collective individual actions. Discuss the need for behavioural change alongside technological solutions.

Keywords

  • Correlation - Correlation is a link between variables so that if one variable changes so does the other. It can be a negative or positive correlation.

  • Uncertainties - If there are uncertainties in data, it means there may be some doubt over the reliability of the data.

  • Isotope - An isotope is an atom of an element with the same number of protons, but different mass number, due to a different number of neutrons.

  • Carbon emissions - Carbon emissions are the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, often through the combustion of fossil fuels.

  • Carbon footprint - Carbon footprint is the total amount of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gases that a person, product, organisation or event emits in its life cycle.

Students could complete online questionnaires to determine their own carbon footprint.
Teacher tip

Licence

This content is © Oak National Academy Limited (2024), licensed on Open Government Licence version 3.0 except where otherwise stated. See Oak's terms & conditions (Collection 2).

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6 Questions

Q1.
Which of the following are fossil fuels?
Correct answer: coal
Correct answer: oil
Correct answer: natural gas
nuclear fuel
sedimentary rocks
Q2.
What word is used to describe a link between variables so that if one variable changes so does the other?
casual link
Correct answer: correlation
average
gradient
Q3.
Which of the following are ways humans can reduce their carbon dioxide emissions?
Correct answer: walk or cycle where possible
use high energy light bulbs
Correct answer: insulate our homes
heat our homes to a higher temperature
Correct answer: turn off electrical appliances when not in use
Q4.
Isotopes are atoms of an element with the same number of protons, but a different number of which subatomic particles?
protons
electrons
Correct answer: neutrons
Q5.
The combustion of fossil fuels releases which greenhouse gas into the atmosphere?
carbon particulates
sulfur dioxide
Correct answer: carbon dioxide
magnesium oxide
Q6.
Which of the following are reasons why humans combust fossil fuels?
to decrease global warming
Correct answer: for vehicles such as lorries, ships and aeroplanes
Correct answer: for cooking food
to improve renewable energy sources
Correct answer: to generate electricity

6 Questions

Q1.
Match the key term with the correct definition.
Correct Answer:carbon emissions,the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere

the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere

Correct Answer:carbon footprint,the total amount of carbon dioxide that something emits in its life

the total amount of carbon dioxide that something emits in its life

Correct Answer:uncertainty,some doubt over the reliability

some doubt over the reliability

Correct Answer:correlation,a link between variables; if one variable changes so does the other

a link between variables; if one variable changes so does the other

Q2.
What relationship does the graph show between the year and amount of atmospheric carbon dioxide (ppm)?
An image in a quiz
Correct answer: a positive correlation
no correlation
a negative correlation
a casual link
Q3.
What term do we give to an atom of an element with the same number of protons, but different mass number due to a different number of neutrons?
Correct Answer: isotope, an isotope
Q4.
Based on the following carbon footprint data, which plastic bag should we use to reduce the increase in global temperatures?
Plastic bag A releases 1.9kg of CO₂ during manufacture.
Plastic bag B releases 1.8kg of CO₂ during manufacture.
Correct answer: Plastic bag C releases 1.6kg of CO₂ during manufacture.
Q5.
Which of the following technologies could be used to reduce the carbon footprint of a product?
Correct answer: carbon capture and storage
Correct answer: carbon off-setting
combustion of fossil fuels
Correct answer: using carbon-neutral fuels
deforestation
Q6.
Which of the following lead to uncertainties in the climate change data?
rising sea levels alter the records
Correct answer: the limited data from the great expanse of the oceans surface
Correct answer: the lack of historical data on carbon dioxide levels
Correct answer: the altitude of the weather station affects the temperature
carbon dioxide dissolving in the oceans