“It seems to me that the natural world is the greatest source of excitement, the greatest source of visual beauty and the greatest source of intellectual interest. It is the greatest source of so much in life that makes life worth living.”– David Attenborough
If you’ve seen the latest IPCC Climate Report about the current impact of global warming, you’ll be aware of the shocking influence human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) have on our natural environment.
According to Earth Day Network (EDN), “…limiting global warming to 1.5°C would require ‘rapid and far-reaching’ transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities. Global net human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) would need to fall by about 45 percent from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching ‘net zero’ around 2050.”
EDN also advises that we must tackle this issue before it’s too late, “Each of us can make a difference. The biggest action we can take? Vote for candidates who understand the gravity of the situation and committed to taking action on climate change. We need world leaders to make stronger commitments to guarantee a healthy future for life on this planet.”
Since the report was released, there has been a global sense of urgency sweeping over the world and many universities are focusing on their environmental research efforts more than ever.
By transforming today’s students into tomorrow’s leaders and inspiring learners to act, there’s a chance we could still save our planet from complete destruction.
As an increased number of media outlets home in on the topic, it’s easy for panic to spread. That’s why there’s never been a better time to study ecology and environmental science.
Not only is there a huge demand for experienced earth science specialists and researchers, there’s also a need for environmental entrepreneurship. By forming innovative solutions to the world’s complex climate change problems, humanity will still have hope for the future.
So, if that IPCC report saddened you and you want to make a difference, continue with your search for an environmental science school that cares about climate change just as much as you.
Here are 4 schools that care about environmental entrepreneurship and global sustainability…
DEPARTMENT OF ECOLOGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE, UMEÅ UNIVERSITY – SWEDEN
By applying a strategic approach to the study of global sustainability, Umeå University in Sweden teaches students to think twice about their carbon footprint.
At the research-driven Department of Ecology and Environmental Science (EMG), there are English-taught Master’s degrees that often attract the interests of international students.
An example of their study options is the two-year Master’s Programme in Ecology. Here, you’ll learn how to identify and characterise ecological problems, plan and execute research and gain a deeper understanding of how fishing, forestry, river regulations, pollution and climate changes affect biodiversity and ecosystem function in forests, lakes, mountains and sea.
Alternatively, there’s the Master’s Programme in Earth Science. This degree enables you to grasp the link between human influences and environmental disruption and to understand the impact of geoecological processes. A recent addition is the one-year Master of Science Programme in Environmental Sciences where you’ll study environmental issues from a scientific perspective and analyze causes, relationships and possible solutions to environmental problems.
Another incredible advantage to pursuing your passions for ecological conservation and global sustainability at Umeå is the Year in the Arctic Programme. With a Climate Impacts Research Centre (CIRC) strategically located at the Abisko Scientific Research Station (68.35° N, 18.82°E), Umeå takes experiential learning to a whole new level, as you’ll be stationed on the frontline of sustainability while studying Arctic Geoecology, Alpine Ecology and Arctic Ecosystems.
DEPARTMENT OF EARTH SCIENCES, UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON (UCL) – UK
Interested in undertaking a degree in a dynamic earth sciences discipline at UCL?
This university has a multidisciplinary study style that will keep you motivated throughout the years.
With an academic selection as wide as the solar system itself, you can learn about the Earth, planets, palaeontology, micropalaeontology, geochemistry, geohazards, seismology, sedimentology, polar observation and modelling, geodynamics, petrology, volcanism, rock mechanics and mineral physics.
In reaction to global panic about earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, the UCL Hazard Centre is hard at work preparing for the disturbance of volcanic environments. Taking matters into their own hands, the Centre is creating brand-new interactive online hazard maps, low-cost monitoring sensors and toying with the use of theatre in the delivery of warnings.
Recognised for a forward-thinking, dedicated work ethic, the UCL Earth Sciences department was re-opened by Sir David Attenborough on Tuesday 17 April 2018, following a £27.5 million refurbishment. By sparking global attention and the approval of Sir Attenborough, many students and graduates are proud to be a part of UCL’s revolutionary research efforts.
DEPARTMENT OF EARTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES, KU LEUVEN – BELGIUM
If you’re searching for an education that’s ingrained with environmental science and a European study adventure, KU Leuven in Belgium offers both.
With an eco-conscious Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, KU Leuven students are equipped with the skills they need to understand geo and ecosystems at different spatial scales, as well as the niche knowledge they need to master solutions that will benefit the sustainable management of natural resources.
Through the department’s divisions of Soil and Water Management, Forest, Nature and Landscape, Geography and Tourism, Geology and Bioeconomics, the university has made important contributions to the scientific understanding of societal issues and has helped learners dig out their academic desires and direct them towards a suitable degree.
Alongside proactive and practical lessons, KU Leuven learners are also involved with the department’s research efforts. Since there’s always an innovative project happening here, you may want to dedicate your time and expertise to future research initiatives that will boost your repertoire.
For instance, current ecological projects going on at KU Leuven relate to bacterial invasion ecology in microbial biofilms and the environmental impact assessment of human activities in the Sagalassos territory of the past.
DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL SYSTEMS SCIENCE, ETH ZURICH – SWITZERLAND
The Department of Environmental Systems Science (D-USYS) at ETH Zurich is dedicated to training future generations of scientists and decision-makers in society, industry and politics.
Delving into the five main research areas of Climate Change, Food Security, Sustainable Resource Use, Biological Diversity and Adaptation and Ecosystem Processes and Services, ETH Zurich places the needs of the environment and its future generations first.
Through the visual learning tour video, you’ll witness the innovative teaching methods and student-friendly work environments used to spark student ambitions. As a hotbed of academic talent, it’s common knowledge that 21 Nobel laureates have studied, taught or carried out research at ETH Zurich.
For any prospective international student reading this, ETH Zurich ensures you’re supported throughout your environmental studies. Equipped with comprehensive visa information and engaging employment advice, you’ll never feel alone during your Swiss study abroad experience.
So, if you want to protect the planet and enhance your potential with a school that admires environmental entrepreneurship and global sustainability, ETH Zurich is an everlasting source of knowledge with a universal reputation for excellence.
*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International
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