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Unit of study_

ENVI1003: Global Challenges: Food, Water, Climate

In the 21st century the population of the world will increase both in size and its expectation in terms of food, energy and consumer demands. Against this demand we have a planet in crisis where natural resources are degraded, biodiversity is diminishing and planetary cycles related to climate are reaching points of irreversible change. Management of our precious natural resources is a balancing act between production and conservation as always, but now we have to do this against a background of potential large scale changes in climate. In this unit students will gain an understanding of the key environmental challenges of the 21st century; namely food security, climate change, water security, biodiversity protection, ecosystems services and soil security. In the second half, using Australian case studies, we will explore how we manage different agro-ecosystems within their physical constraints around water, climate and soil, while considering linkages with the global environmental challenges. Management now, in the past and the future will be considered, with an emphasis on food production. This unit is recommended unit for students interested in gaining a broad overview of the environmental challenges of the 21st century, both globally and within Australia.

Code ENVI1003
Academic unit Life and Environmental Sciences Academic Operations
Credit points 6

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. explain the key global challenges around sustainable food production in the 21st century
  • LO2. relate the global challenges to an Australian context in terms of key agro-ecosystems
  • LO3. explain and calculate carbon, water and phosphorus budgets for agro-ecosystems
  • LO4. use GIS software to perform introductory spatial analysis
  • LO5. find, analyse, synthesise and reference information from multiple sources
  • LO6. write a scientific piece of writing
  • LO7. measure environmental (soil, water, plant, weather) properties in the field
  • LO8. work collaboratively in a group in a range of situations (field, computer laboratory and writing a report).