Electricity and the Environment

    EXERM 4312 is offered this spring:

Explore the mate­r­i­al rela­tion­ship between elec­tric­i­ty gen­er­a­tion and the nat­ur­al envi­ron­ment. Learn about the role of car­bon diox­ide in rela­tion to the green­house effect and the impacts of dif­fer­ent elec­tric­i­ty gen­er­a­tion forms on emis­sions. Dis­cuss top­ics such as albe­do effect and ener­gy reflec­tion, cli­mate change feed­back loops, cli­mate pol­i­cy frame­works, Canada¿s per­for­mance rel­a­tive to Paris tar­gets, and future trajectories.
Course at a glance
  • Fully online asynchronous course.
  • Aimed at industry executives, environmental professionals, project managers, power producers and regulators, those working in government agencies, utility companies and energy agencies, as well as developers and investors interested in expanding their career or business with renewable energy.
  • Credentialed by the Foundational Technologies Institute (FTI), an independent organization, to meet standards of quality, practicality, and alignment to business needs.
What you will learn

By the end of this course, you should be able to:

  • Describe the relationship between CO2 and temperature through the greenhouse effect.
  • Define the albedo effect and outline its role in energy reflection.
  • Outline the environmental impacts associated with different electricity generation technologies.
  • Describe different policy tools used for Greenhouse Gas mitigation (including price-based instruments, command and control regulations, and technology support policies).
  • Describe the principal characteristics of all major forms of energy storage.
  • Outline the strengths and challenges of battery, thermal, compressed hydro, and compressed air energy storage systems.
  • Outline the energy storage potential of Alberta.
  • Describe some of the limitations and challenges to utility-scale energy storage.


Take note:
  • Assessment activities include discussions, assignments, and quizzes.
May 21, 2024Jun 3, 2024
Asyn­chro­nous online learning, eClass

14 hours of instruction

In asynchronous online courses, students are expected to move through the course material at the same pace as their peers, but there are no real-time virtual classroom sessions to attend. All components of this type of course are accessible through eClass, the University of Alberta’s eLearning management tool. for­mat details

Your Instructor

Gabriel JohnID: gabriel-john

Gabriel John is a professional agrologist with extensive experience in program design and implementation in the areas of climate change, emissions management, clean energy, and emerging technologies. His government and academic work in the past decade has focused on developing strategic policies and innovative programs in the complex energy-environment nexus. Gabriel currently works on strategic environmental and sustainable energy policies and programs, including leading the development of policies relating to renewable development and the de-carbonization of the electricity sector.

Jorge Osorio Pina

Your Instructor

Jorge Osorio PinaID: jorge-osorio-pina

Class info
This course has no prerequisites

Students from all educational backgrounds welcome. You can register for this course without applying and enrolling in a program.

Take note:

  • Assessment activities include discussions, assignments, and quizzes.
Currently counts towards:

Applicants intending to enrol in a program are encouraged to apply as soon as possible to lock in their course requirements since they are prone to change.

*If you are already enroled in this program, please refer to your specific program requirements as outlined at the time of your admission: Bear Tracks > Academic Advisement.

Looking for
different course dates?

New course schedules are released each June and November.

EXERM 4312 is offered this spring: