Impacts of Climate Change Resources

collapse Topic : Causes of Climate Change ‎(2)
Cyclical and Natural Changes
Human-Caused Changes
collapse Topic : Climate System ‎(12)
Atmospheric Circulation
Atmospheric Composition
Carbon Cycle
Climate Compared to Weather
Climate Feedbacks
Global Energy Balance
Greenhouse Effect
Ocean and Climate
Orbital Cycles
Regional Climates
Solar Radiation
Water Cycle
collapse Topic : Human Responses to Climate Change ‎(3)
Personal Responsibility
Risk Management
Social Values
collapse Topic : Impacts of Climate Change ‎(13)
Agricultural Changes
Economic Impacts
Ecosystem Changes
Extreme Weather
Freshwater Resources
Great Lakes Impacts
Melting Ice and Permafrost
Ocean Warming and Acidification
Plants and Animals
Public Health
Sea Level Rise
Surface Temperature Warming
collapse Topic : Measuring and Modeling Climate ‎(2)
Climate Modeling
Gathering and Measuring Climate Data

Ecosystem Changes


Ecosystem Phenology. Climate Change: A Wisconsin Activity Guide. Wisconsin DNR. Grades 7-12. This section of the Activity Guide provides an activity and worksheets to help students understand the methods of phonological data collection and how these methods can help us better understand climate change.

The Leopold Legacy: Phenology of Plants and Birds. Paradise Lost. Grades 6-12. In this activity, students work in small groups to examine a set of data that includes 23 phenological events, and then share their findings with the rest of the class. They will look at 3 major “themes” within the data: 1) changes in plant phenology, 2) changes in bird phenology, and 3) relationships among events.

Ecosystem Relationships. Climate Change: A Wisconsin Activity Guide. Wisconsin DNR. Grades 7-12. This section of the Activity Guide provides an activity and worksheets to help students understand that the living and nonliving components of an ecosystem are intricately linked to one another. It also helps students understand how climate change will impact Wisconsin.

Climate Change in Ecosystems. Your Climate, Your Future by World Wildlife Federation. Grades 9-12. Research the interdependencies among plants and animals in an ecosystem and explore how climate change might affect those interdependencies and the ecosystem as a whole.

March of the Polar Bears: Global Change, Sea Ice, and Wildlife Migration. My NASA Data Lesson Plans. Grades 6-12. Students use NASA satellite data to study changes in temperature and snow-ice coverage in the South Beaufort Sea, Alaska. They will then correlate the data with USGS ground tracking of polar bears and relate their findings to global change, sea ice changes, and polar bear migration and survival.

Global Warming Webquest. Marian Koshland Science Museum – National Academy of Science. Grades 6-12. In this Webquest activity, students assume roles of scientist, business leader, or policy maker. The students then collaborate as part of a climate action team and learn how society and the environment might be impacted by global warming. They explore the decision making process regarding issues of climate change, energy use, and available policy options. Student teams investigate how and why climate is changing and how humans may have contributed to these changes. Upon completion of their individual tasks, student teams present their findings and make recommendations that address the situation.

Changes Ahoof: Could Climate Change Affect Arctic Caribou. Smithsonian Museum of Natural History. Grades 6-8. Students run a simplified computer model to explore how climate conditions can affect caribou, the most abundant grazing animal in the Arctic.


Climate Change Wildlife and Wildlands. Video. Grades 7-12. A full 12 minute, high definition, engaging and highly informative video on climate change science and impacts on wildlife and their habitat in U.S., to be used in classrooms as an introduction to the topic or in Visitor Centers and in interpreter talks in informal educational settings.

60 Minutes: Global Warming by CBS Broadcasting, Inc. (2006). Grades 9-12. This short 60 Minutes segment summarizes the evidence in the Arctic supporting that global warming is real. This evidence includes melting ice caps, the intensity of storms, and the extinction of polar bears.

Planet in Peril: A CNN Wolrdwide Investigation. Cable News Network (CNN) and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Company. (2007). Grades 9-12. Bringing viewers the stories behind the statistics, CNN anchor Anderson Cooper, chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Animal Planet host and wildlife biologist Jeff Corwin will focus on four main issues that threaten the planet and its inhabitants: climate change, deforestation, species loss and overpopulation.


Ecological Impacts of Climate Change. National Academy of Sciences. This 28-page booklet is based on Ecological Impacts of Climate Change (2009), a report by an independent panel of experts convened by the National Research Council. It explains general themes about the ecological consequences of climate change and identifies examples of ecological changes across the United States. Climate change is affecting ecosystems right in your own backyard. In addition, Powerpoint presentation modules are available to assist educators in sharing this information.

General Web Resources

Lakes and Rivers. Union of Concerned Scientists Global Warming Hot Map. Discusses how climate change is already beginning to affect plants and animals that live in freshwater lakes and rivers, altering their habitat and bringing life-threatening stress and disease.

Land. Union of Concerned Scientists Global Warming Hot Map. Discusses how rising temperatures and shifting precipitation patterns are changing the geographic areas where mammals, birds, insects, and plants that live on land can survive—and are affecting the timing of lifecycle events, such as bud bursts, leaf drop from trees, pollination, reproduction, and bird migration.

Salt Water. Union of Concerned Scientists Global Warming Hot Map. Discusses how although marine species are more difficult to see and less well studied than land and freshwater species, they are known to be experiencing some of the same—and some different—effects from global warming.

National Wildlife Federation’s Global Warming Site. NWF’s global warming page contains up-to-date information on global warming’s effects on wildlife, conservation, and how both policies and personal decisions can help. Also contains information on Great Lakes impacts and Global Warming Fact Sheets and Clean Energy Solutions for each state.

Ecosystems by United States Global Change Research Program. This web site is a well-organized resource for information on the many facets of climate change. Users can examine climate change impacts by region (including the Great Lakes), sector (such as ecosystems and society), and agency (how the United States federal agencies are related to climate change issues).