This interactive map shows the impact of a changing climate on maple syrup sap production. Students can explore the changes in production under two different emissions scenarios.
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Interactive could be used as a motivating context for introducing a unit on emissions and climate change.
Students can collect data through interactive and create a data table that displays comparisons among all locations.
Have students find the temperature differences at each site given both low and high emission scenarios.
An interactive graphic that demonstrates the impacts of climate change on maple syrup sap production in the Northeast.
5 different locations in the Northeast are featured.
Students have different scenarios to change and visualize the effects of emissions rates and temperature on the window of sap production.
The graphic alone does not explain the reasoning behind the changes. Have students read the [link http://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/2010/11/100-years-maple-sap-will-flo... 'article about sap flow'] in the 'more info' section.
Suggestions from expert scientist: Educators could assign a small number of questions that students can investigate first on their own, and then confirm by clicking the "official" answer. E.g. things like: "Will there be an effect on timing only, or also on yield? If so, does it regionally differ?"
Comment from expert scientist: The map does not match the spatial trend described in the second-to-last paragraph of the supporting article ("Maple production south of Pennsylvania will likely be lost by 2100 due to lack of freezing, while production in Quebec may benefit from climate changes"). In this way, the graphic may not match the text of the article. Without seeing the original research it is hard to say which one is accurate. That said, the map projections are for 2080, not 2100.
Visualization encourages students to make connections between climate and the scientific research that predicts how these changes will effect our environment.
Very location-specific but could be made relevant elsewhere by (a) bringing prices into it, or (b) talking about local syrup production and how climate change might affect it (e.g. in upper Midwest).
Sap flow/run changes are one of several issues we experience with climate change, this could be useful as a starting example to promote exploration of others.
Instructor may want to use this to further explore economic or biological impacts of climate change on sap flow (why does this matter; how else does climate affect the tree?).
The 'more info' button links to additional background context for educators.
Easy and intuitive to use.
Graphics are are sterile but clean and sharp.
The link to Data Source and Credits > Temperature Maps actually leads to contextual supporting info for understanding emissions scenarios and sap flow, not just temperature maps.