This course will give students an understanding of how the Earth’s climate changes naturally, as well as how humans are driving this change. We will explore what is likely to happen in the future, resulting both from natural change and change driven by the human-caused rise of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere and other influences. We’ll cover the physical climate system, how it interacts with water, landscapes and ecosystems, and what the options are for dealing with the change, both in terms of adaptation and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Although the course will steer clear of the politics of climate change, we will deal with scientific misconceptions and misunderstandings that commonly emerge in the public debate about climate change. Our geographic focus will be global, with a special emphasis on the US, and in particular, the Southwest.