Catherine Seavitt gave a presentation on Adaptive Sediments: Dredge and Drift. In this, she talked about the Upper Bay of NYC, ways to mitigate flooding, ways of living with flooding, and then some different sediment projects that they've worked on (in the Mississippi and Yangtzee Rivers). Full notes below.
An image borrowed from slate.com's photo blog.
The artist is Catherine Nelson
Actual title: "Future Memories - First Freeze - Bourgoyen Winter"
This struck me (and felt appropriate for this blog) because it's a great visual metaphor for albedo (unintentionally so, I presume). More generally, it seems to capture the human tendency to project our own experiences of nature onto the entire planet. - Tri
From The New York Times:
THE AGENDA: Nearly Absent in the Campaign: Climate Change
Even after a year of high temperatures and drought, President Obama and Mitt Romney have seemed intent on trying to outdo each other as lovers of coal, oil and natural gas.
Goofy post title, I know...
Following up on this week's speaker, this slate piece discusses (a bit more generally and sometimes a little creepily) some of challenges with what seems to me like data-sharing problems
Koonin and Cohen agreed that one of the best ways to help cities like New York develop resilience is to work with other places facing the same problems. For instance, if you’re worried about earthquakes, Koonin said, look to the seismic codes of Japan, which requires gradual upgrades to its buildings. Cohen pointed to some efforts of the Dutch as models for how New York City could address sea-level rise. The NYC mayor’s office is involved the C40 group of dozens of cities—originally 40, but now more than 50—that are engaged in discussion about climate change. Perhaps the biggest hurdle, aside from budget, is bureaucracy. Koonin believes that when it comes to inefficiencies, “We do a lot of this to ourselves, the way we divide up governmental authorities.” Too many departments are involved in the same areas—like energy policy.
The National Research Council has a nice little video called "Climate Change: Lines of Evidence". It was just posted this summer. What's interesting about it is not that the NRC and National Academy of Science is talking about climate change, but exactly what this video is saying (or is at least trying to say). To the point, the video is saying climate change is real, and humans are the major cause of it.
Here are the notes from Andy Revkin's discussion. This compiled from both myself (Dan) and Sam.
Andy Revkin is a science writer who began his career in the 1980s. He began by writing a story for Science Digest about nuclear winter, the effect of nuclear on ecology and agriculture. This segued into his interest into climate change and the greenhouse effect. Andy went on to provide us a brief history of his written works.
Chad – What is your view of how climate change is perceived in the blogosphere?
AR – There are camps or tribes that take on this issue in a very partisan manner. It becomes discouraging because it doesn’t resolve anything. I try to avoid tribal approach and follow the science and policy, which makes it difficult because these views don’t always fit with agendas.
Tri – Are there any other questions you would have added to your recent article from October 5?
AR – What gets missed is there is not an adequate definition of what people are talking about (climate change). In a study, Yale referred to climate change as just warming. What do you do to adapt to climate change, what do you do to limit climate change, what do you do about greenhouse gasses. (He also stressed a clarification of global warming terms is needed). Science was mention at end of the presidential debate by Obama, expressing R&D in energy science. We haven’t really done that, it’s hard to get a hold of in congress. Without a robust economy, we can’t make environmental progress, unfortunately economy comes first. Climate change is not a priority issue (for presidential race).
Erik – Tiny countries want to litigate climate change
AR – I don’t see that going much of anywhere, certainly not in the UN. US rep said, all history of US emissions og GHG before 1990, we owe it to help countries avoid change, but not as responsible because we didn’t know what was happening at the time.
Sam – Are state and regional policies useful or effective in the absence of national policy?
AR – Not effective. Example: An Australian policy caps coal usage, but exports coal which is not counted towards that cap. We need a global cap and rigorous standards on how to count carbon. A rigorous system for CO2 would not pass any legislature.
Sam – I agree that state and regional policies are not effective, you don’t think national legislation is possible? What is the prospect for any meaningful policy changes in cutting carbon emissions in the US?
AR – The economy is dominant issue for years to come, we have to go back to our roots; increase R&D. However libertarians want to cut subsidies. We need to create a culture of not wasting. Looking at the realities of other energy technologies, we are in for a substantial climate change. It will take decades to transition out of fossil fuel dependencies. We also won’t convince China or other developing countries to regulate emissions if it affects them getting out of poverty.
Marco – How much will this issue play a role in creating a driver for education so people can make informed choices, a future profession
AR – crucial opportunity for scientists to experiment with new ways to communicate. It won’t lead to a swell in public concern. Social science shows there is shifting signs of perception. Each generation is born with a new or different perspective. Kids now think of the Arctic as a place in flux, not simply the frozen wilderness we once saw it as. We can communicate more effective, but fighting the new norm. Things we make political priorities are “soon, salient, and certain”.
Gerry – How do you talk about uncertainty?
AR – There are ways to be honest about levels of uncertainty, referring to Rachel Carson’s written work. It is best to try and stick with the science while making a case as it will lead to better outcomes. Don’t gloss over the uncertainties
- Dan Hauptvogel
David Brooks writes in the Times today that the momentum behind green technology has all but disappeared since its apex in 2003. Now, renewable energy and even the slightest mention of global warming are pretty much absent from the presidential race. This is sad but true, and we need to seriously address this.
Check out this short but sweet recent piece by Elizabeth Kolbert in the New Yorker. Soon climate change will cease to be the issue that politicians dare not mention!
This is the email to which you will have to provide a reply:
My name is Rickie Cook a student at Phillips Community of the University of Arkansas on the Stuttgart campus.
I gave a report in Physical Science class on the article "Record melt year for Greenland ice as heat waves sweep across Artic" which was posted in Science News on August 25, 2012. I found the article very interesting and wanted to know if Greenland continues to out what do you think would happen to Earth(such as temperture and sea level).
Thank You ,
@revkin on twitter and firstname.lastname@example.org for further questions