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Quantitative Skills

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Choosing Between Home Appliances: Benefits to the Planet and Your Wallet part of SISL:2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop:Activities
Corri Taylor, Wellesley College
Students research various options for new appliances and make purchasing decisions based not merely on purchase price, but also on energy efficiency, which has implications for the planet AND for longer-term personal finances. Students calculate the "payback period" for the more energy efficient appliance and calculate long-term savings.

Economics of installing Solar PV panels: is it worth it to the individual? part of SISL:2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop:Activities
Martin Walter
We show that it is economical for an individual to install solar photovoltaic panels in Denver, Colorado; and this is a sustainable strategy for society at large.

Energy Cost of Engine Idling part of SISL:2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop:Activities
Ben Fusaro
This is an open-ended but elementary modeling exercise about idling energy behaviors and impacts.

Simple Population Space Usage part of SISL:2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop:Activities
Bill Bauldry
Students find current values for world and US populations, the area of Texas, and the size of the average house in the USA. Students then look at ratios to assess land usage.

Water conservation part of SISL:2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop:Activities
Holly Partridge
Small amounts of water in one home dripping from a faucet can add up to huge monetary and resource losses

Arctic Sea Ice Extent part of SISL:2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop:Activities
Bill Bauldry
Student teams investigate Arctic Sea Ice by analyzing actual data and making predictions. A worthwhile extension is to predict the first year that the Arctic Ocean will be ice free.

Should I Unplug? part of SISL:2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop:Activities
Lori Carmack
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The True Cost of Eggs: Commercial vs. Local part of SISL:2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop:Activities
Caira Bongers

The Costs of Your Commute: Your Money, Your Time, and the Earth part of SISL:2012 Sustainability in Math Workshop:Activities
Charlie Buehrle
This activity has students investigate their own cost, CO2 output, and time for commuting. They then compare their commute to an environmentally conscious alternative by using comparable metrics.

Genetic and Empirical Approaches to Classifying Climates part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Charles Dodd, Shoreline Community College
Students (in groups of 3-4) are given a hypothetical planet and create a genetically based climate regionalization. Students then interpret empirical data of various climate phenomena (precipitation, temperature, evapo-transpiration) from different locations on the planet, and apply these to the Koppen system of climate classification.



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