Saturday, 21 June 2014

6 degrees of warming

A 'conversation' on Twitter earlier  this morning reminded me of a resource that I created back in 2009. It was connected with the Mark Lynas book 'Six Degrees' which explores possible future climate change.
I worked with a film company to create the treatments for a series of three programmes on Weather and Climate. We met in Cambridge on a hot day, and chatted through some ideas and then worked on scripts and other ideas.
The three programmes involved interviews with people doing different jobs. In the first programme, there was a transect taken across the UK, with an exploration of how the weather varied along it. The second programme looked at the Great Storm of 1987, but from the point of view of the storm itself.
The third one brought the people who had been interviewed back again and this time they spoke some lines of a poem which explored the impacts of a gradual warming from one to six degrees...
The poem was written by Mark Cowan.

The programme can be viewed HERE.

Teachers TV disappeared, but the videos were thankfully archived.
I dug out the series of poems that we asked Mark Cowan to write for us. They were then edited, and if you watch the programme, you'll see and hear that some of the 'verses' that were used were different to those in the poem, as it was edited and improved during the process of connecting it to the filming that went on...
I'm still proud of my involvement in these three programmes, which deserve a repeat airing.

Mark had created a book on Poems for the Geography Classroom (still available from here)
and I've included the first of the draft poems below, as I think they could form a good basis for work by students...

They are the drafts of the poems and you could use them in a number of ways.
a) Read them out, or ask students to record them and add images to represent the words to create a new movie
b) Add some new verses of your own, using research and information on the different levels of warming
c) Classify the various effects that the poems describe as being human or physical issues. How can we adapt to these various levels of warming ?

Poems are copyright Mark Cowan, so please credit if using.

Climate change

Introductory verses

As Co2 figures steadily climb
Will temperature levels soar?
Does climate change spell catastrophe
Or leave us wanting more?

Warming – it sounds inviting
Like a mid-winter break in the sun.
But each degree rise
With the sun in our eyes

Could leave us exposed and undone.

'One degree’

What is the likely scenario
With a change of one degree?
How might Britain begin to alter
From mountains, to valleys, to seas?

One degree, a subtle shift
But the chance of UK change.
Will the changes be obvious?
Or could they feel quite strange?

Oceans might alter with warmer waters
And Britain’s sea life may shift
As other species, alien to us
Through UK waters drift.

Sunfish populations
Have now arrived on our shores.
And as our waters experience warming
Expect a good deal more.

Nature tourism could flourish
With boat trips out to sea.
Dolphins, whales and tropical fish
With a rise of one degree.

With a one degree rise farming will alter
Already, there’s one clear sign.
Look around you; a growing trend
Are olives and grapes on the vine.

Will this be the new California?
Perhaps, but there’s some doubt.
For much like a wine, life could become dry
As Britain is plagued by drought


I'll post the other 5 verses from 2 up to 6 degrees of warming over the next few days, so some back for more...

No comments: