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Climate Detectives (investigation category)

Team: Eco Team 1H

Italy 10 years old, 11 years old, 12 years old   4, 18, 1 / 15

Project title:

A journey through the history of weather and climate in Monza

Research question

Is it possible to measure the effects of climate change in Monza through meteorological data?

Identify the local environmental/climate problem you want to investigate

This summer our city was hit by extreme weather events that caused damage throughout the territory, including the fall of over 30,000 trees in the Monza Park. In addition, discussing in class, we noticed that the first part of October was characterized by an unusual heat wave. These phenomena led us to question how climate is changing and what effects this may have on our city.
We have read newspaper articles, institutional documents, and reports from research institutes, and we have decided to study how the temperature has varied in our territory in recent centuries. We will also try to understand if the number of tropical nights and very hot days has increased over time.
In addition, we will study rainfall to understand if periods of drought have become longer and if extreme weather events have become more frequent.

Project topic

Climate change

Describe how you plan to investigate the problem identified and which data you plan to analyse.

In our investigation, we will analyze the variations of temperature and rainfall data measured by some meteorological stations in the local area. In particular, we will focus on the data from the Milano Brera Meteorological Station, installed on the roof of the Brera Astronomical Observatory in the historic center of Milan, which has been collecting measurements continuously since 1763. We will also use data from the Monza meteorological stations, collenting also humidity and pressure data.
We will install a maximum-minimum thermometer and a pluviometer in the courtyard of our school. In this way, we will be able to directly measure the daily maximum and minimum temperatures on school days and the millimeters of rain that fell each day.
After collecting all the data, we will analyze it with the help of spreadsheets to create graphs that could allow us to identify trends. We will also study this data to obtain information on the number of tropical nights and the number of days with extreme temperatures recorded over the years.
Then, we will study some documents from the Monza historical archive, to obtain qualitative and quantitative information on the weather and climate changes observed in the area in recent centuries.
Finally, we will study and compare, via EO Browser, images and satellite data regarding the health of the vegetation of Monza Park, one of the largest urban parks in Europe. We will try to determine the effects of the drought of recent months and extreme weather events on vegetation.

Your feedback

Expert feedback Phase 1 - 2023-2024
Is the suggested problem a problem that the students can actually investigate? Is it feasible, realistic? Please explain why or why not. Is the relation with climate/local environment worked out? Where necessary indicate the wider scientific context to which the identified problem belongs.