With Thanksgiving right around the corner, a sudden chill in the air, and what I assume to be new Christmas bells decked on top of Kane, the holiday season is officially in full swing! For many, this is the time of the year to take advantage of Black Friday’s low prices and stock up on the household items, christmas gifts, and miscellaneous objects you never knew you needed (until now!) For others, 'tis the season to "opt-out".
The University of Washington, Western Washington University and the Evergreen State College are jointly offering a regional symposium on low-carbon space heating alternatives to natural gas. The symposium will be held Friday, May 12, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the UW Alder Hall Commons.
It was an honor to participate in UW’s “Future of Ice” Speaker Series earlier this month. Mt. Baker Ski Area hosted a weekend of talks with expert speakers from our region, and I was thrilled to spend an afternoon overlooking the beautiful powdery slopes while discussing some fundamental issues surrounding the current perceptions of climate change and how we talk about it.
The Clean Energy Institute is hosting Jonathan Pershing, Special Envoy for Climate Change at the U.S. Department of State, on Tuesday, Dec. 13 at 12-1 p.m. in Anderson Hall 223 for a talk on "The Paris Agreement and the Path Forward." He will discuss global efforts to combat climate change, including the outcomes of the 22nd Conference of the Parties (COP 22) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that recently concluded in Marrakech, Morocco.
This fall, Jacqueline Patterson, the director of the NAACP Environmental and Climate Justice Program, came to UW to talk about the intersection of climate science and social justice, and how to work to advance equitable preservation of our environment. Kane Hall was at capacity for the event, but you can watch the entire talk below thanks to the Seattle Channel.
As a major research institution, the UW has a global impact, and many faculty and staff members regularly travel by air. Just how far, and the carbon impact of all that travel, was until recently something the UW could only estimate. Over the past year, the Sustainability Office has been working with student teams to gather the UW’s travel data, quantify our air travel carbon footprint, and make recommendations. The student teams also interviewed faculty and staff to learn about campus attitudes towards travel.
What does global warming sound like? UW atmospheric science graduate student Judy Twedt provides an answer in this video, which turns the measurements of atmospheric carbon dioxide over several decades into music. As the carbon dioxide levels rise, so does the pitch of the music. It can make for an unsettling listen:
The UW Nutritional Sciences Program's fall seminar series explores the connections between climate change, nutrition and population health.
Lectures are held every Thursday during the fall from 12:30-1:20 p.m. in the Alder Commons Auditorium. Topics include the health risks of climate change, the risks climate change presents to health and food security, and what climate change means for the global food system.
See the full schedule below (click image for PDF version):
Here in the Pacific Northwest we’re so accustomed to being surrounded by nature that we take it for granted. We have neatly paved trails with swarms of trees on our right and left, we can drive for miles on end and be surrounded by luscious evergreens and shrubs on either side, or we can go for a hike and see a variety of wildlife before our eyes.
Whether we like to admit it or not, the burning of fossils has negatively impacted our environment for quite some time now. And although we can do our part in reducing our carbon footprint, alleviating the large-scale effects of global warming lies within the grasps of the U.S. government and fossil fuel companies who follow the guidelines our administration sets.
Currently, there is no incentive for companies to use cleaner energy, let alone stricter regulations or laws calling for cleaner practices, allowing corporations to keep reaping the benefits of fossil fuel production.