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Climate Impacts in the West

by Craig CooperCraig Cooper | 23 Jun 2009 00:03
How will climate change impact the west, and how can GSA members help to influence policy in a beneficial way?

Climate change is one of the big issues of our time, and the western US will be "ground zero" for many issues related to climate science, climate adaptation, and climate mitigation. A large proportion of the United States' energy resources are found in the West; ranging from coal, to oil and gas, to uranium, to wind and solar. In many ways, the West is the "energy basket" of the U.S. We also will experience some of the most severe impacts from climate change — ranging from increased forest fire and forest disease to fundamental changes in our water cycle at a time when our water resources are already stretched thin. With regards to climate science, the West provides many case studies for what happens when human societies exceed the physical limits of their environment - and provides an intriguing testbed to help generate the "next generation" of climate science that helps us to better understand how global change impacts local systems.

What issues should GSA members focus their efforts on, and how can we better serve GSA's mission of "Science serving Society" with regards to the climate change issue? This forum is a place to discuss your thoughts, and help organize GSA members to better respond to this challenge.

Comments: 0 | category: Policy Discussion by Area / Rocky Mountain

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