The city of Bergen and the southern Greenland are both on the same latitude. But the climate is very different. On Greenland there is floating icebergs, on the Norwegian west coast the climate is relatively mild, with heavy rainfalls.
In the new open online course reasons you will be guided through the physical processes behind climate variatons in the past, present and the future. The course is developed by professor Asgeir Sorteberg at the Geophysical Institute and professor Kerim Nisancioglu at the Institute of Earth Science, both at the University of Bergen and the Bjerknes Centre.
During the six lectures, they will take you to heavy snowfall in the Norwegian mountains and to calving glaciers on the coast of Greenland.
The tilting of the earth, the earths orbit around the sun and volcanic emissions contributes to climate variations on the Earth. the course will look at the earths main external forcing mechanisms such as the sun, volcanoes, and changes in greenhouse gasses and aerosols, which all can contribute to changing the global energy budget.
"In this MOOC we will try to answer many of the key questions relating to the dynamics of the climate system and what drives it. We will also take you on a brief tour of past changes in climate and their causes, as well as discuss the implications of man made emissions of greenhouse gases", Kerim Nisancioglu says.
In order to understand the regional variations in climate, Sorteberg and Nisancioglu will also describe the important role of internal feedback mechanisms and the energy transport in the atmosphere and ocean.
With a team of PhD students, Sorteberg and Nisancioglu will guide you through six lectures, interactive proble sets and background reading.
Through this course, you will gain an in-depth understanding of the complexities of the climate system, and be able to put the recently observed, man-made changes in climate in the context of past natural changes.
The course is provided as an Massive Online Open Course (MOOC) by Future Learn, starting in September 2015.