Climate Change News (CCN)- Summer 2012

Climate Change News (CCN) is a quarterly newsletter designed to keep you up-to-date on PCC activities and to help create an integrated, interdisciplinary community of students, faculty and researchers working on issues related to climate.

PCC Summer Institute/Friday Harbor Labs Centennial Symposium--"Atmosphere-Ocean-Ice Shelf Interactions", Sept. 16-18

The meeting opens on Sunday afternoon, Sept. 16, at Friday Harbor Labs, with a poster session and reception. Invited talks begin later than evening, with a session on "What the observations tell us about the Antarctic and Greenland Ice Sheets" chaired by Eric Steig (ESS, co-organizer). Monday includes sessions on Oceanography and Ice Shelves, chaired by Mark Warner (Ocean, co-organizer) and Atmospheric Forcing, chaired by Qinghua Ding (Atm s). The meeting concludes on Tuesday Sept 18 with talks related to large-scale ocean circulation, chaired by LuAnne Thompson (Ocean).

All are encouraged to submit abstracts for the poster session on Sunday September 16. Abstracts can be submitted through the registration link:

We are nearing capacity, with 65 registered and a capacity of 75. So, do register soon if you intend to participate.

For additional detail visit the 2012 PCC Summer Institute webpage.

PCC volunteers as climate experts at the C2S2: Climate Change Student Summit

ANDRILLís C2S2 (Climate Change Student Summit) was held Saturday, April 28, 2012, in Hitchcock Hall on the UW campus, with help from the PCC and PCC graduate students. The summit brought together over 75 middle and high-school students from the Seattle area via videochat with students from 8 sites across the country, to present their research and to have a dialog with scientists on the topic of climate science and anthropogenic change.

Students answering true or false questions during the summit

Fairbanks Alaska, acting as the hub for the videoconference, connected students in their auditorium to our group at the University of Washington, and to Beaufort, NC, Blacksburg, VA, Bozeman, MT, Chicago, IL, Lincoln and Omaha, NE, San Diego, Santa Barbara and Ventura County, CA. They shared personal and place-based stories about climate change in their regions, as well as interacted with questions and answer to scientists.

UW Faculty members Mike Steele (APL Polar Science Center) and Richard Gammon (Oceanography), along with PCC graduate students Hilary Palevsky (Oceanography), Karl Lapo (ATM S), Jack Scheff (ATM S), and Maximo Menchaca (ATM S), interacted with students, providing answers to questions and informal interaction with participants. Many thanks to all, including recently graduated Lexi Brewer (Oceanography), high school volunteers including Anton Resing, and the event coordinator and C2S2 representative Barney Peterson (6th grade Everett teacher), for making the day a success.

PCC Graduate Student Hilary Palevsky talks with students at the C2S2 Summit

UW in the High School ATMS 211 Modules

To fulfill the capstone component of the Graduate Certificate in Climate Science, many PCC students have created modules for the PCC's UW in the High School Climate Science class (ATMS 211). The PCC website now has some of the labs that were created by students for this course, including:

  • Sarah Purkey's Historical Temperature Data Lab
  • Steve Po-Chedley's NASA MERRA Circulation Model Lab
  • Ashley Maloney's Ice Core Proxy Data Lab
  • Chris Terai's Terrarium Experiment
  • and Nicole Wigder's Scientific Evidence for Anthropogenic Climate Change culminating project.

  • These labs and more materials and information are accessible through the UWHS ATM S 211 Course Page on the UWPCC website. For current graduate students, if you are interested in getting involved, email Miriam at An intensive teacher workshop is coming up in August, and we could always use more graduate students to work with teachers and answer questions about the science.

    2012/2013 PCC Fellowship applications due August 15

    Last year, for the first time, fellowships were available to existing AND incoming, core AND non-core department graduate students. This year we are able to offer two-fellowships to the most qualified applicants. Students who have completed NOT MORE than 2 years of graduate school at the UW will be considered, and must be committed to participating in the Graduate Certificate in Climate Science (GCeCS) and other PCC programs. Additional details can be found here or by contacting the PCC office (

    Upcoming 2012/2013 "PCC" Courses

    Updated June 2012

    Autumn 2012

  • Current Research in Climate Science Undergraduate Seminar (ATM S/OCEAN/ESS 475)--Instructor: LuAnne Thompson (OCN).
  • Current Research in Climate Science Graduate Seminar (ATM S/OCEAN/ESS 586)--Instructor: LuAnne Thompson.

    Students enrolled in 475 join those in 586 for the weekly lectures, but meet separately for discussions. Check back soon for this fall's topic.

  • NEW! Fundamentals of Global Warming Science (ATM S/OCEAN/ESS 587, formerly 'Climate Dynamics')--Instructor: Dargan Frierson (ATM S)
  • Winter 2013

  • The Global Carbon Cycle and Climate (ATM S/OCEAN/ESS 588)--Instructors: Abby Swan (ATM S) and TBD (OCEAN)
  • Spring 2012

  • Paleoclimatology: Data, Modeling, and Theory (ATM S/OCEAN/ESS 589)--Instructor: Eric Steig (ESS).
  • A full list of quarterly course offerings can be found here.

    Autumn 2012 Graduate Student Seminar

    Back for Autumn 2012 is the informal Program on Climate Change Graduate Student Seminar, which focuses on climate research from graduate students. This is a great opportunity to see what is going on in climate research with your fellow students down the hall or in the building over. This seminar is also a chance to show off some of your own research to fellow graduate students or post-docs (and receive unique feedback from a range of participants).

    This seminar series is intended to be pretty relaxed with presentations of about 20-25 minutes followed by a brief discussion. Presentations will be geared toward a general scientific audience (of graduate students) with some background in climate science. Presentations should emphasize the background and motivation behind the research so that everyone can get the punch line without being overwhelmed with technical details.

    If you're willing to briefly share your research for a general audience e-mail Spruce at so we can get you on the schedule!

    e-list Subscription Information

    To receive direct e-mail notices...

    ...of climate related seminars, subscribe to:

    ...from or for graduate students involved or interested in climate science, subscribe to:

    ...of updates to this newsletter and of general PCC community announcements (social events, summer institute registration, etc.), subscribe to:

    We also have an active climate outreach group; if you'd like to be contacted when we get speaker or other climate-related requests, send an e-mail to Miriam at

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