Navigation Links
Stanford expert brings climate change science to heated Capitol Hill
Date:8/2/2012

Now's the time to prepare for the heat waves, heavy rains and droughts that climate change will bring, says Stanford's Chris Field, a noted climate researcher.

Speaking Wednesday at a contentious U.S. Senate hearing on climate change, Stanford's Chris Field, an expert on climate change, offered a stark yet hopeful analogy.

Just as speeding increases the chance of having a car accident, climate change intensifies the risk of heat waves, droughts and heavy precipitation, said Field, a senior fellow at the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment. He testified before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.Speaking Wednesday at a contentious U.S. Senate hearing on climate change, Stanford's Chris Field, an expert on climate change, offered a stark yet hopeful analogy.

"We can point clearly to the causal mechanism, but it's still difficult to predict exactly when or where the crisis either the accident from speeding in a car or the disaster that's related to climate change will occur, he said. "But still, we can have high confidence in the driving mechanism."

Or, as Field put it later in his testimony, "It is critical to understand that the link between climate change and the kinds of extremes that lead to disasters is clear."

Although we can't be certain that staying within the speed limit will prevent a crash, we know it will decrease the risk. Similarly, Field said, we can reduce the risk of a weather-related disaster with measures such as disaster preparations, early warning systems and well-built infrastructure.

While climate change's role in tornadoes and hurricanes remains unknown, Field said, "the pattern is increasingly clear" when it comes to heat waves, heavy rains and droughts.

The hearing came on the heels of months of intense heat waves and massive wildfires. A disastrous drought still affects more of the U.S. than any drought in almost 25 years. Last year alone, the U.S. endured 14 climate-related disasters that each wreaked at least a billion dollars in damage, according to written testimony Field prepared for the hearing.

Field is a Stanford professor of biology and environmental Earth system science and director of the Department of Global Ecology at the Carnegie Institution for Science. He was part of a group of researchers who shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for their climate change work with the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Field is co-chair of an IPCC working group that recently released a special report entitled "Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation."

Citing studies from the IPCC, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), among other scientific organizations, Field told the committee that climate change will lead to more frequent and intense extreme weather that affects larger areas and lasts longer. This, Field said, is a recipe for "unprecedented extreme weather and climate events."

At the hearing's close, Field explained his objective. "What we're trying to do is provide sufficient information for policymakers to make good decisions to try to figure out ways to avoid the damages that come from climate change without providing unacceptable costs to the rest of society. And we're really trying to find smart ways to move forward, recognizing what's happening, recognizing what the risks are and that there are consequences of using the atmosphere as a dump for greenhouse gasses just the same way there are consequences of making changes in the economy that are intended to alleviate those damages."


'/>"/>
Contact: Christine Harrison
christine.harrison@stanford.edu
650-725-8240
Stanford University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Stanford-Penn State scientists use microbes to make clean methane
2. Stanford-SLAC team uses X-ray imaging to observe running batteries in action
3. Stanford researchers calculate global health impacts of the Fukushima nuclear disaster
4. Stanford scientists find molecule to starve lung cancer and improve ventilator recovery
5. Stanford marine biologist Barbara Block wins Rolex Award for Enterprise
6. Stanford researchers help predict the oceans of the future with a mini-lab
7. Stanford scientists document fragile land-sea ecological chain
8. Support for climate change action drops, Stanford poll finds
9. Americas clean energy policies need a reality check, say Stanford researchers
10. Stanford and MIT scientists win Perl-UNC Neuroscience prize
11. Climate change may create price volatility in the corn market, say Stanford and Purdue researchers
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/30/2017)... 2017  On April 6-7, 2017, Sequencing.com will host ... hackathon at Microsoft,s headquarters in Redmond, ... on developing health and wellness apps that provide a ... Genome is the first hackathon for personal genomics ... companies in the genomics, tech and health industries are ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... , March 28, 2017 ... Biometrics), Hardware (Camera, Monitors, Servers, Storage Devices), Software (Video ... and Region - Global Forecast to 2022", published by ... in 2016 and is projected to reach USD 75.64 ... 2017 and 2022. The base year considered for the ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... , March 23, 2017 The report "Gesture Recognition and ... Industry, and Geography - Global Forecast to 2022", published by MarketsandMarkets, the market ... CAGR of 29.63% between 2017 and 2022. Continue ... ... ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/16/2017)... ... May 16, 2017 , ... ... availability of its new ProxiMeta™ Hi-C metagenomic deconvolution service. ProxiMeta enables researchers ... or high-molecular-weight DNA extraction—speeding research insights at lower cost. , “We’re very ...
(Date:5/16/2017)... Village, CA (PRWEB) , ... May 16, 2017 ... ... personalized medicine technology and cancer diagnostics, has released its ClearID Lung Cancer blood ... altered in lung cancer, this new test is designed to quickly and accurately ...
(Date:5/16/2017)... ... (PRWEB) May 16, 2017 , ... ... Chinese Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (CAOS), long-standing development partners Invibio Biomaterial Solutions, ... interbody spine surgery workshop to help expand knowledge of the implantation of ...
(Date:5/15/2017)... ... May 15, 2017 , ... Tunnell Consulting announced that ... “The Key Role of Specifications in Process Validation,” at the Process Validation Summit ... will bring together leaders from the pharmaceutical and biotech industries to explore processes, strategies ...
Breaking Biology Technology: