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Tzeporah Berman


9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Social Studies, Earth and Space Sciences, Civics, Health

Resource Type

  • Videos, 13 minutes, 20 seconds, CC, Subtitles

Regional Focus

Global, North America


Downloadable MP4/M4V

The Global Treaty to Phase Out Fossil Fuels

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  • This thirteen minute TED talk provides historical context and rationale for global fossil fuel treaty. 
  • The speaker explains the need for a framework for constraining the production of fossil fuels. 
  • Topics that are touched upon in the talk include distorted markets, climate delusion, the world's capability for change, and government regulation. 
Teaching Tips


  • The speaker worked diligently to identify a climate problem yet remains focused on solutions to that problem. 
  • The emphasis on the idea that the world can change quickly can be helpful for any students who may experience climate despair.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Not required but helpful would be a basic student understanding of how governments can regulate industries aa well as how economic markets function.  


  • There are many opportunities to differentiate instruction using this video depending on how you design and structure the learning activities that surround it. Here are just a few ideas:
    • Activate Engagement: Pose a question/scenario to the students ~ Think of an instance where the adults in a school district believed that a school-related issue was being handled well but the youth knew or believed otherwise. Have a few students share out, then draw the parallel example of how many in the public believe that world governments are effectively regulating fossil fuel industries but those who are closely involved know otherwise.
    • Student Design Opportunities: The notion that economic markets would constrain fossil fuel supply has proven to be very weak. Allow students to watch this video with a focus on distorted markets. Challenge them to design an improved model to ensure that fossil fuel drawdowns would actually occur.
    • Robust Scientific Literacy Accompaniment: The IPCC chapter on mitigation pathways to reach the 1.5 degree temperature goal is dense but informative. Pieces of this would be excellent to break down with an advanced class.
Scientist Notes
This 13-minute TED talk is a direct and clear presentation of the current issues with government policies geared towards addressing climate change and phasing out fossil fuel development. The disconnect between rhetoric and policy is presented, and frameworks and treaties that are in development or in place that address these issues are discussed. This resource is recommended for teaching.
  • Science
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • HS.ESS3.4 Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
    • ETS1: Engineering Design
      • HS.ETS1.3 Evaluate a solution to a complex real-world problem based on prioritized criteria and trade-offs that account for a range of constraints, including cost, safety, reliability, and aesthetics, as well as possible social, cultural, and environmental impacts.
  • Social Sciences
    • Civics and Government (K-12)
      • HS.7 Evaluate the relationships among governments at the local, state, tribal, national, and global levels.
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