Stabilization Wedges Game
In this lab activity, students learn about carbon stabilization. The Stabilization Wedges Game, developed by the Carbon Mitigation Initiative at Princeton is a way for participants to, in an interactive way, come to an understanding about the myriad factors that drive social and political decisions on how this can be done (and why it is so slow in coming).
Students in this activity:
Evaluate carbon input and output data from various human carbon sources.
Create a carbon mitigation plan based on their own analysis of data.
Other skills: In this activity, students must negotiate a plan with their team, present their plan orally to the rest of the class, and defend their plan against the questions and criticisms of thier classmates.
This activity is explicity about sustainability. Although it may stand alone outside of a geoscience course, it is particularly effective as part of greater treatment of the climate system from a geoscience perspective.
Context for Use
Time: 2-3 fifty-minute class periods.
Skills: One class period, and assigned take-home readings are needed to prepare game participants on the concepts relevant for this activity.
This activity could probably be done anywhere in a course but I have used it my standard geoscience course after the section on climate change which comes in the second half of the semester. By this time, students have a significant investment in understanding the complexities of climate change and carbon-mitigation solutions.
Adaptability: This activity is adaptable for high-school through graduate-level students. My experience is using it in introductory-level geoscience courses.