Understanding the ecological mechanisms governing the biogeogoraphy of organisms is essential to predict how climate change will alter ecosystems and their functioning. Factors affecting the patterns of aboveground plant and animal communities across landscapes have…
Tracey Osborne is Assistant Professor in the School of Geography and Development and Director of the Public Political Ecology Lab at the University of Arizona. Her research investigates the political ecology of environmental markets, particularly carbon markets, and their implications for the lives and livelihoods of forest communities in the Global South. Specifically, she explores the intersection of carbon markets, development, and agrarian change as they relate to forestry-based carbon initiatives in Mexico.
Radley Horton from Columbia University Earth Institute will speak on climate projections for New York City. The $20 billion Special Initiative for Rebuilding and Resiliency (SIRR) Plan for New York is grounded upon climate risk information provided by the New York City Panel on Climate Change (NPCC). This expert panel, tasked with advising the City on climate-related issues, completed a ‘rapid response’ climate assessment with updated climate projections.
Pearson and colleagues (2013) recently showed how the expansion of shrubs and trees in the Arctic could promote even further warming through a series of positive feedbacks. Their modeling study that estimates the future composition and distribution of vegetation across the Arctic indicated shrubs and trees could expand by as much as 50% over current levels by 2050.
Earth’s climate system includes several patterns of climate variability at the hemispheric scale. One of the best known of these is the El-Nino/Southern Oscillation, which influences weather across much of the globe. Another important feature of the climate system is the Southern Annular Mode (also known as the Antarctic Ocean Oscillation), which is an index of the pressure gradient between the mid- and high-latitudes in the Southern Hemisphere. Over the last few decades, the dominance of the positive phase of the Southern Annular Mode has been increasing.