GEOU6GI: Contemporary Issues in Environmental Geography

CO-ORDINATOR: Dr Richard Quilliam

Module Description

Drawing on John Beddington’s (previously Chief Scientific Adviser to U.K. HM Government) observation that by 2030 global society is facing a ‘perfect storm’ of intrinsically linked climate change, population growth, food security and increasing demands for energy and water, environmental sustainability is being advanced as the only viable way of managing the ‘storm’.  In this futures based module we ask the question:

‘What can Environmental Geographers meaningfully contribute in preparing for these major emerging and inter-related issues?  

The module will go on to focus on countries in the Developing World, where access to cutting edge modern technology is inhibited by cost. In these situations, ‘low tech’ green solutions are increasingly important for self-sufficiency, and we will explore the practicality and efficiency of such technologies for achieving sustainability in water security & sanitation, food security & agriculture, and the generation of energy. The module will then explore the recent web-based mapping that has been undertaken to give spatial and temporal representation of the ‘perfect storm’ and its management.

Module Objectives

To gain a broad understanding of how global environmental problems can be tackled by adopting appropriate sustainable technologies and by delivering multiple ecosystem services.

Learning Outcomes

Key employability skills: Critical thinking and analyses, discourse analyses for environmental mapping; problem solving, information management, reflective learning, issues analyses skills, writing skills, debating and discussion skills; global citizenship.


Scheduled Teaching: 22 hours
Independent Study: 178 hours
Placements: 0 hours


Coursework: 50%
Examination: 50%
Practical: 0%

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