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Regional Climate Change in the United States - Experts Fact Sheet

Dec 12, 2008 - by Staff


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How Can the Geoscience Community Help Local and Regional Decision Makers Deal With Climate Change?

Several of the nation’s top experts on regional change will participate in the December 15 oral session (PA12A) and poster session (PA13C) on this topic during the 2008 AGU Meeting in San Francisco, California.

For more information, please contact Rachael Drummond,, 303-497-8604; or David Hosansky,, 303-497-8611.


Jonathan Overpeck
Co-director, Institute for Environment and Society, the University of Arizona
Expertise: Climate, climate-ecosystems interactions, and environmental decision support

Overpeck will detail the essential elements that a national climate service must have to be successful in meeting the climate change adaptation needs of decision makers.

Philip Mote
Research scientist and state climatologist for the Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean and the Center for Science in the Earth System (JISAO/CSES) Climate Impacts Group
Expertise: Climate change, regional changes and impacts, connections between climate, snowpack, and wildfire.

Mote will discuss the 13-year history of the Climate Impacts Group at the University of Washington, and its role assisting decision-makers.

Mark Abbott
Dean, College of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences, Oregon State University
Expertise: Oceanography, climate issues, and national science policy

Abbot will address the challenges of reconciling the differing climate change perceptions of government agencies and academic researchers.

Don Wuebbles  
Professor, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, the University of Illinois
Expertise: Climate change impacts, air quality and ozone

Wuebbles will discuss Chicago’s Climate Action Plan and his work with policymakers to develop strategies to help the city prepare for heat waves, precipitation changes, and other likely results of global warming.

Cynthia Rosenzweig
Senior research scientist, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies
Expertise: Large-scale interdisciplinary projects addressing local and global climate change impacts and adaptation measures

Rosenzweig will discuss how the New York City Panel on Climate Change is advising multiple infrastructure agencies on adaptation planning and developing strategies for maintaining attention to long-term climate change.

David Yates
Project scientist, National Center for Atmospheric Research
Expertise: Hydrometeorology, climate change, and decision support systems

Yates will describe how water utilities are considering climate change in their planning processes.

Brad Udall
University of Colorado-NOAA Western Water Assessment
Expertise: Hydrology, especially Colorado River, climate and policy

Udall will describe how the need for climate change information from the nation’s large water utilities is impacting the way research is done.

Jack Fellows
Vice president, University Corporation for Atmospheric Research
Expertise: Hydrology, climate, and general science policy

Fellows will describe the overarching research strategy of more than 100 universities to assist local and regional decision makers planning for climate change. Fellows will also discuss recommendations provided to the incoming Obama administration to make the United States more resilient to severe weather and climate change.

Jim Hurrell
Senior scientist, National Center for Atmospheric Research
Expertise: Climate variability and climate change science

Hurrell will discuss the Nested Regional Climate Model (NRCM) and how it can provide regional climate information for policymakers. The NRCM is an ambitious effort to unite the strengths of two leading tools of atmospheric science: the worldwide reach of a premier global climate model and the detail of the world's leading county- and city-scale weather model.

Jessica Lowrey
Associate scientist, NOAA/University of Colorado Western Water Assessment
Expertise: Water policy and communicating usable climate information to decision makers

Lowrey will detail how state and local decision makers across the country have developed climate change adaptation plans despite uncertain climate change scenarios.  Her focus in on providing better information to state and local decision makers in the Intermountain West.

Kathy Hibbard
AIMES executive officer/project scientist, National Center for Atmospheric Research
Expertise: Ecosystem modeling, the carbon cycle, and disturbance

Hibbard will discuss improving coordination between scientific communities so there is a greater compatibility and consistency of results and a larger range of potential climate and uncertainty scenarios.

Wyss Yim
Professor, Department of Earth Science, University of Hong Kong/Deputy Chairman, Science Implementation Team, United Nations’ International Year of Planet Earth
Expertise: Quaternary sciences and environmental management

Yim will examine what can be learned from a coastal megacity to make future development more sustainable in order to combat climate change.

Olga Wilhelmi
Project scientist, National Center for Atmospheric Research
Expertise: Geography, climatology, and GIS

Wilhelmi will discuss local vulnerabilities to extreme heat and how to develop adaptation strategies, and will highlight the importance of partnerships among researchers, community leaders, and public health officials.

Kristen Averyt
Research scientist, NOAA/University of Colorado Western Water Assessment
Expertise: Climate change, science policy, global and regional scientific assessments

Averyt will examine the interconnections between energy, water, and climate change, as well as a strategy to address adaptation in the Western United States.

Dan White
Director, Institute of Northern Engineering/Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy, the University of Alaska
Expertise: Climate change and water resources

White will discuss research activities at the Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy to engage citizens and decision makers in climate change.

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