Study Climate

Emory University offers several programs within which students may pursue climate change-related course tracks. Prospective doctoral students might consider Emory's graduate programs in Population Biology, Ecology and Evolution, Environmental Health Sciences, Physics or other related fields.  Prospective masters students might consider the Masters of Public Health (MPH) program in the Rollins School of Public Health, the Master’s in Development Practice (MDP) program, or the Masters of Science in Environmental Sciences.  Prospective undergraduate students might also consider a major or minor in Environmental Sciences.

Students in the Rollins School of Public Health can pursue a Certificate in Climate and Health. 

See below for climate-related courses; see something incorrect or missing?  Please let us know at climate@emory.edu

Fall Courses

Fall courses that spend more than half of the semester on climate-related topics

Please note that this information is subject to change. Please check the course atlas and the for the latest information.

Faculty -- have we missed or micharacterized a course?  Please email climate@emory.edu to let us know!


Candler | ES 665 Ecoapocalypse

Instructor: Kyle Lambelet 

Apocalyptic language pervades current talk about the environment. Whether covering wild fires, extreme weather, or urban rat infestations, journalists, activists, and public intellectuals construct this discourse by calling on the apocalyptic to indicate the urgent, world altering impact of these phenomenon. In dialogue with this popular discourse, this course draws upon theological traditions of apocalyptic reflection to analyze the attritional catastrophe of our current climate crisis.

ECAS | ENVS 190 Freshman Seminar: Natural Disasters

Instructor: Shaunna Donaher

The topics for freshman seminars are variable and change every semester. Past offerings include Climate Change, Global Earth Systems, Interpreting Behavior That You Can't See, Ecological Economics, Plants, People and Places and Ecological Restoration. 

ECAS | ENVS 326 / ENG 380-1 Climate Change and Society & ENVS 426 United Nations Climate Change Conference

Instructor: Eri Saikawa

This class draws upon the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework on Climate Change (UNFCCC) as a way to explain interdisciplinary issues related to the science, policy, and business of climate change through multimedia. ENVS 426 is offered to students selected to participate in a one-week fieldwork trip to the U.N. Climate Change Negotiation as a part of Emory's delegation. The course explores interdisciplinary climate change issues from science, policy, and business perspectives.

ECAS | ENVS 229 Atmospheric Science with Lab

Instructor: Shaunna Donaher

Meteorology is the science of the atmosphere and the weather it produces. It seeks to understand the dynamics of the system in terms of available energy and how those dynamics produce the daily weather and long-term climate of the globe. This course will include a weekly lab.

ROLLINS | EH 543 Sustainability

Instructor: Ciannat Howett

Students will explore principles, policies and practices related to sustainability. The course will cover the general approach to sustainability from environmental, social and economic perspectives. Lectures will also cover specific sustainability-related topics, including energy, water, waste, transportation, food, buildings, greenspace, land use, community revitalization, behavior change, purchasing, and curriculum development. The focus of our work together will be to analyze the role of the public health professional in shaping sustainability policy and furthering sustainability practices. This course has a satisfactory/unsatisfactory grading basis.

ROLLINS | EH 581 Public Health Consequences of Disasters 

Instructor: Judy Kruger

Considers health aspects of disaster preparedness and management of natural and man-made disasters. Topics include tornados, floods, nuclear accidents, etc. Explores lessons learned from the past and implications for current and future policies and disaster planning.

ROLLINS | EH 582 / GH 582: Global Climate Change: Health Impacts and Response

Instructors: Shubhayu Saha, Noah Scovronick

This course will explore the public health effects of global climate change, epidemiologic and other methods for understanding and studying these effects, the public health adaptation response, and health impacts of potential mitigation efforts and activities. The public health response will be discussed with particular focus on global health issues. The course will emphasize a practical approach to vulnerability and risk assessment, and students will develop skills assessing the risks of particular climate-related health impacts.

Other Fall 2021 Courses that Cover Climate-Related Topics

GOIZUETA | OAM 332 Business and Society

Instructor: Wesley Longhofer

This course surveys the complex and evolving relationship between corporations and society. As powerful social actors, corporations are increasingly held accountable to not just their shareholders but also a range of internal and external stakeholders. This course adopts a broad theoretical perspective on the challenges and opportunities that corporations confront in their interactions with society, such as struggles to maintain legitimacy, acquire resources, build partnerships, and solve complex global problems. Topics covered in the course include (but are not limited to) the following: The history of the corporation as a social, political, and legal actor; the participation of business in government, including lobbying and PACs; corporations, the environment, and human rights; ethical consumerism and cause-related marketing; fair trade and fair labor; corporations, NGOs, and social movements; and multilateral institutions that impact business, such as UNICEF and the UN Global Compact. A significant portion of the course will address the issue of corporate social responsibility and how companies are strategically addressing these challenges with business acumen.

ROLLINS | EH 584 Built Environment

Instructor: Arthi Rao

Recommended prerequisites: INFO 530 or GIS knowledge. This interdisciplinary course, examines how cities and neighborhoods can have both positive and adverse effects on human health, and produces recommendations to improve these outcomes. This seminar is an elective planning and public health course that explores the interconnections between these fields and equips students with skills and experiences to plan healthy communities. This course covers planning and public health foundations, natural and built environments, vulnerable populations and health equity, and health policy and global impacts. This course is cross-listed with the Georgia Tech City and Regional Planning program and is an elective course offered through the Emory Environmental Health department. Half of the course takes place at Georgia Tech; allow for travel time.

ROLLINS | EH 500 Perspectives on Environmental Health

Instructor: Ajay Pillarisetti

Students enrolled in EH 500 will focus on both domestic and global environmental and occupational health problems. Presents the ecological paradigm as applied to public health. Introduces the core areas of environmental health -- human toxicology, environmental epidemiology and exposure science, and how they help us understand environmental influences of disease, exposure pathways, regulatory efforts, and the health impacts of various environmental exposures. Discusses various aspects of environmental health, including environmental contamination, food safety, occupational health, chemical and physical hazards, injuries, vector control, global climate change and rapid industrialization, and developing nations' perspectives. 

Spring Courses

Spring courses that spend more than half of the semester on climate-related topics

Please note that this information is subject to change. Please check the course atlas and the for the latest information.

Faculty -- have we missed or micharacterized a course?  Please email climate@emory.edu to let us know!


EH 586: Adv. Sem in Climate Change and Health: Research and Policy

Instructor: Yang Liu 

Recommended prerequisite: EH 582/GH 582. Building on EH/GH 582, this course offers an advanced examination of climate and health research and solutions. On the research side, this course will use an in-depth climate health impact assessment study to demonstrate scientific premise, study design, data access and processing, research methodology, results visualization and interpretation. On the solutions side, we will unpack the history and current state of play of global and national climate policy while also diving deep into state and local efforts. In addition, we will pursue emerging topics related to climate change research and policy. Throughout the semester, students will work on a project that will contribute to the Georgia Climate Project, a multi-university consortium co-founded by Emory. Through this effort we will apply systems thinking tools to propose strategies and identify stakeholders important for implementing climate solutions.

EH 587 + 587L (optional): Intro. to Satellite Remote Sensing of the Environment and its Applications in PH

Instructor: Yang Liu 

Prerequisites: at least one GIS class (INFO 530) or equivalent. Geospatial information collected from satellite remote sensing has become a powerful tool in environmental and public health science and policy making. However, public health researchers usually lack training to benefit from this rapidly evolving technology. This computer lab-based course provides students with the theoretical basis and refined understanding of satellite remote sensing technologies, and tools for geospatial data analysis. Students will learn (1) the history, terminology and data structure of both land and atmospheric remote sensing such as those from MODIS and Landsat, and (2) the strategies and techniques to analyze geospatial data in advanced software packages. Various case studies and lab exercises help students overcome the initial hurdle to the effective use of satellite data in land use change and air pollution characterization, climate change and other areas related to public health. The final project allows the students to apply satellite data together with other information to solve a problem of their interest.

EH 590R: Environmental Health Seminar: Planetary Health

Instructor: Matthew Gribble

Human beings are profoundly altering the natural systems of the planet, resulting in a variety of unintended population health consequences. This course explores several of the mechanisms by which humans are influencing the physical, chemical, and ecological conditions on the planet, and some of the potential consequences of those ongoing changes in systems for human societies. Although all topics presented in this course are intersectional, the impacts can be broadly grouped into planetary health impacts of ecosystem changes (“biosphere”), and planetary health impacts of geological and atmospheric changes (“geosphere”). Successful completion of this course will refine skills in systems thinking and regard for planetary challenges.

EH 590R: Environmental Health Seminar: PH Communication Env. Justice

Instructor: Holly Patrick

Topic: Public Health Communication for Environmental Justice.

ENVS 342: Barrier Island

Instructor: Anthony Martin

Overview of barrier islands, integrates geology and ecology to understand barrier islands as places denoted by dramatic and rapid change. Includes human-related factors related to barrier islands and effects of climate change. Weekend field trip to Georgia barrier islands. Fulfills ENVS Elective.

LAW 624L: Climate Change Law

Instructor: Rebecca Purdom 

The purpose of this class is to prepare future practitioners to advise clients in all aspects of climate change law. The class will focus on federal law and rules, as well as regional, state and local greenhouse gas reduction programs, and how those programs intersect with the rapidly changing federal landscape under the Trump administration.