News & Blog


The Third Annual Spring Symposium was held on April 27, 2019

The Program on Climate Change (PCC) held its third annual Spring Symposium on Saturday, April 27, 2019. Over the span of lively morning and early afternoon sessions, 17 students and postdoctoral researchers shared their climate-related research, education, and outreach work through a full program of talks and posters. These presentations represented a variety of perspectives on climate, drawing from observation and modeling of physical and ecological processes on scales ranging from the hyperlocal to global, as well as insights from policy, industry, and philosophy. 

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Deep ocean warming rates are accelerating in the South Pacific

PCC board member Gregory Johnson (NOAA/PMEL) and former student Sarah Purkey (now at Scripps Institute of Oceanography) have recently published papers in GRL measuring warming rates in the South Pacific with Deep Argo (Johnson) and the impact of these warming rates on local sea level and heat budget (Purkey). Previous measurements of deep ocean temperatures were made on 10-year intervals, and indicate warming since the 1990s, but new data from the Deep Argo floats over the last 4.4 years show that these rates have accelerated. 

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PCC presents "Climate Change and Impacts on the Pacific Northwest", a Whole U Seminar December 2018

Climate change is already affecting life in the Northwest, and impacts are expected to grow over the coming century. How would limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius compare to current global commitments? The PCC assembled a panel of UW expert scientists who spoke about where we are headed regarding temperature extremes, snowpack, and impacts on human health, fish, and wildlife. They considered climate impacts from different future emissions scenarios, including current international commitments to limit greenhouse gas emissions. 

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Updates from the PCC Graduate Student Steering Committee (P-GraSC)

The PCC Graduate Student Steering Committee (P-GraSC) is about to have it’s third meeting of the 2018-19 academic year. In the fall, we welcomed new members and said goodbye to those who finished their terms. PCC Assistant Director Miriam Bertram attended the first meeting and PCC Director Cecilia Bitz attended our second meeting to lead discussions of current PCC initiatives. This year, P-GraSC is coordinating a wide range of outreach and education efforts, which include augmenting the Slide Database on the PCC website and supporting a monthly, local event called ‘Climate Science on Tap’. 

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Early spring rain boosts methane from thawing permafrost by 30 percent

As permafrost thaws, wetlands form, from which methane is released into the atmosphere due to microbial and plant processes. Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas with atmospheric warming abilities that can be up to 32 times stronger than that of carbon dioxide. A new study led by Dr. Rebecca Neumann, an associate professor in the UW Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, was recently published in Geophysical Research Letters examining the impact that spring rainfall has on permafrost thaw and wetland methane emissions.

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Between snow storms PCC gathers to welcome and congratulate

On 6 February 2019, nestled in time between two major snow events (#SnowMageddon2019) was the PCC Winter Welcome (#PCCWinterWelcome).  The event attracted a cozy crowd who gathered to reconnect around food and drink with friends and colleagues from across campus. This event is an opportunity to introduce and welcome the first year graduate students who received PCC fellowships, postdocs working on climate from across campus, GCeCS awardees and new PCC board members.  

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Ann Bostrom elected to Board of Directors for the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Ann Bostrom, Weyerhaeuser Endowed Professor in Environmental Policy, was elected to the board of directors of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The AAAS seeks to "advance science, engineering, and innovation throughout the world for the benefit of all people." Congratulations, Ann!

Learn more about the AAAS 2018 elections
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