The Impacts of Climate Change on People and Places

Image: Hector Retamal/Getty Images


This page provides a number of resources that enable students to investigate the impacts of climate change on people and places at a number of different scales. It begins with a recap-syntheses activity that reinforces existing student knowledge. It then develops student knowledge based around a focused framework for student noting for a video library based on three regions of Asia, Africa and North America.

Enquiry Question

How will climate change impact people and places?

Teaching time: 1 Hour

Learning Objectives:

  • To assess the impacts of climate change on different people and places in terms of health hazards, migration and new ocean routes

Teacher Notes:

Starter_Making Connections_Synthesis_Student should annotate the diagram of different climate change impacts to identify connections between the impacts as well as identify place examples

1. IPCC Projections and Application _Graph analysis and synthesis - Give students the IPCC projections and they should attempt to identify the range in projections and then discuss the difficulty in stating exact ranges as well as suggest ways governments can use the projections

2. Independent work_Video Library_Places, Processes and Possibilities_Students should work with the worksheet provided and use it for each region resourced in the site. They should complete notes on the impacts of climate change on the three chosen regions and peoples

3. Extension Activity ICT - Google Earth_Spatial Interactions_ Students can make a Google Earth file to show new emerging shipping lanes in the Arctic due to climate change - but we do revisit this later in the course.

4. Student Assessment - Essay Question_Processes, Spatial Interactions and Possibilities_"The impacts on migration and health are likely to be the more destabilising consequences of global climate change" Discuss the extent to which you agree with his statement  (10)

Starter Activity_Synthesis_ Make the Connection!

By now you should have quite a good understanding of the spatial variation of climate change over the last 100 years as well as the projections up to 2100.

Study the diagram below showing the different climatic impacts of greenhouse gases.

  1. Draw arrows to connect the impacts as you see them
  2. Identify a place example for each of the outer circle impacts

Make the Connection!

Student Activity_Synthesis_ IPCC Future Projections

Study the graphs below and answer the following questions:

  1. Pick out the range in projection for each of the climate indicators above
  2. Discuss the difficulty in stating an exact projection
  3. Discuss how modelled projections could be used by governments and industry to prepare for future climate change.

Student Activity_Places, Processes and Possibilities_Noting the Impacts of Climate Change on People and Places

Study the resources for the three regions set out below and complete the noting sheet provided for each one.

Add to your sheet with independent research of your own

See the following Blog post with links to some outstanding regional maps of climate change impacts for each regions, produced by the European Union

Impacts on People and Places Worksheet



North America

Student Activity_ Climate Change and New Ocean Transport Routes

Watch the following video clip and make notes on the way new ocean transport routes will open up

Student Activity_Spatial Interactions_Google Earth New Arctic Transport Routes

Working with Google Earth make a map with future Arctic transport routes, create:

  1. a series of new routes
  2. create information with the future opportunities and challenges of these routes

Student Assessment _ Essay Question_Processes, Spatial Interactions and Possibilities

"The impacts on migration and health are likely to be the more destabilizing consequences of global climate change" Discuss the extent to which you agree with his statement  (10)

  • Discuss the extent requires an evaluative approach and a clear sense of argument
  • The essay should develop a well evidenced argument with place examples to exemplify
  • The students may agree with the statement or cast doubt  on it but should offer a degree of balance and understanding of a range of different impacts of climate change.
  • A clear statement of weighting of importance must be indicated
  • The conclusion will be consistent with the introduction and argument in the main body
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