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Learning How to Avoid Climate Change

It’s always fun to see the wide variety of topics covered by online MOOCs. While it’s not an infinite number of choices, there are certainly hundreds of different courses to choose from.

Environmental topics can be found. Courses on climate change, sustainability, the future of energy, going green, and solar energy are offered at places like Coursera and edX.

For instance, the University of Melbourne has a course aptly entitled “Climate Change“.


Obviously, climate change is a complex topic. This course requires a lot of reading, and so you will get a good understanding of the various issues surrounding climate change, what it is, and what the various approaches are to solving the issue.

The World Bank (!) is also offering a free course, with a more complex name, “Turn Down the Heat: Why a 4°C Warmer World Must be Avoided“.


This course promises dire talk on the future unless big changes are made to the way we run this planet. Heat waves, droughts, and a rise in the sea level are promised, with a discussion on the impacts of that on life on this planet. It’s the only one we got.

The University of Illinois offers a course called, “Introduction to Sustainability“.


This course talks about weather, climate, peak oil, GMOs, water, demographics, and the disappearance of the third world. We definitely face some challenges in the decades ahead adapting to India and China, and billions of people reaching the “U.S. middle class” standard of living.

The University of Pennsylvania is offering a free course called, “Sustainability in Practice”. This course seems to focus on the systemic issues around sustainability. Shaping the laws at the city, state and national level, influencing how companies and individuals act, and how to balance the needs of the present with the needs of the future. Obviously aimed at a more practical level, in terms of understanding that we live in a society that is very hard to change on a massive scale without a massive disaster to motivate us.


There are many of these courses to choose from, and I haven’t listed them all here. But if the topic interests you, I encourage you to check it out.



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