The impact of human-caused warming on drought and forest fire in the western United States

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

4:00 pm

Turing Auditorium

Sponsored by:
Carnegie Institution for Science - Department of Global Ecology

This talk will describe and diagnose three important drought-related processes that unfolded in the western US in recent decades and motivated concerns regarding future effects of anthropogenic climate change: (1) During 1984-2016, the annual forest fire area in the western US forest has increased by a factor of six to eight. (2) During 2012-2016, California experienced 5-year drought conditions that exceeded those of any other 5-year period on record, causing major reductions in water availability for ecological and human use. (3) Throughout much of coastal southern California, the altitude of summertime marine-layer stratus clouds rose substantially over the past seven decades, leading to major reductions in the frequency of fog events that are important to coastal mountain ecosystems. The diagnoses will be carried out using a unique approach that utilizes empirical and modeled climate data to compare the observed world with a hypothetical one in which anthropogenic climate trends never occurred.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017
4:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Turing Auditorium

Open to the public


Environment Seminar Science 

General Public, Faculty/Staff, Students, Alumni/Friends
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