2018-2019 Changing Climate, Changing Times
Climate change will affect multiple dimensions of our lives and is causing mass extinction. While the impacts will be felt by all, human challenges will be faced most by the youngest generations. How does climate information and disinformation affect needed lifestyle changes? What is technology’s role? What are the challenges and possibilities in the realm of education? How do politicians respond to challenges on longer time scales? What cultural media can be leveraged to effect needed change? What underlying aspects of the human psyche affect how people grapple with the issue? This year’s Sidore lectures will address these issues from local, national, and global perspectives.
All Sidore lectures are at the Silver Center for the Arts, in Smith Recital Hall. Lectures are free and open to the public, but reservations are recommended.
For reservations or to arrange special accommodations, call (603) 535-ARTS.
Tuesday, February 19, 2019, 7 p.m.
From Mountains to Sea: How Climate Change Impacts New Hampshire’s Wildlife
Warming temperatures, increasing precipitation, and decreasing snow cover impact New Hampshire’s diverse natural habitats and the species of wildlife that inhabit them. Changes in our northern forests affect distributions of birds and mammals, including iconic species such as moose, lynx, and loon. Warming ocean waters bring with them a shift from cold-water to warmer-water adapted marine life, with foreseeable changes in commercially important fisheries. Rising sea levels affect our coastal ecosystems, including birds that nest in sand dunes and salt marshes. This talk will consider some of these climate change impacts, features of ecosystems that are more resilient, and human actions that may facilitate species’ adaptations.
Dr. Adrienne Kovach grew up in the Midwest and obtained her B.S. in Biology from the University of Kansas. She received her PhD in Zoology from North Carolina State University, studying black bears in the Blue Ridge mountains. She’s been at the University of New Hampshire since 2001, researching New England wildlife, with a focus on species of conservation concern, including the state-endangered New England cottontail, tidal-marsh-nesting birds threatened by sea-level rise, and cod fish. She is a faculty member in the Wildlife and Conservation Biology program in the Department of Natural Resources.
Tuesday, March 19, 2019, 7 p.m.
Climate Impacts on Agriculture
Rising temperatures, lengthening growing seasons, increasing intensity of rainfall, shifting rainfall patterns, and increasing humidity are all part of the changing climate. Agriculture is dependent upon temperature patterns suited to a specific crop and a distribution of rainfall that allows the crop to grow without stress during the year. Variations in production for crops are directly related to temperature extremes during the pollination period and during reproductive development and the amount of precipitation during the reproductive period. When we evaluate yields gaps as the difference between what is attainable and actual yields, we have found that the changing climate patterns will significantly impact yields of agricultural crops beyond 2050. These climate impacts will be exaggerated by the fact that the ability of the soil to capture and hold water is decreasing as we continue to degrade our soils. To build climate resilient agricultural systems will require that we understand the dynamics among the climate, soils, and plants. This will require an innovative approach to this problem for all of our agricultural systems in the United States and the world. However, this is the path to food security and human wellbeing.
Jerry Hatfield received his PhD from Iowa State University in 1975 in the area of agricultural climatology and statistics and a MS in agronomy from the University of Kentucky in 1972. He was appointed laboratory director of the National Soil Tilth Laboratory in 1989 (renamed the Laboratory for Agriculture and the Environment in October 2009). Dr. Hatfield’s research emphasis is on the interactions among the components of the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum and their linkage to air, water, and soil quality. His focus has been on the evaluation of farming systems and their response to water and nitrogen interactions across soils, as well as the evaluation of remote sensing methods to quantify spatial variation within fields for application to risk management tools. Dr. Hatfield is the author of 448 refereed publications and the editor of 18 monographs. He served as the lead author on “The Effects of Climate Change on Agriculture, Land Resources, Water Resources, and Biodiversity” and a member of the IPCC process that received the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize. Additionally, he was contributing author on “Agriculture” for the State of the Knowledge Report, “Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States.” He is a fellow of the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America. He is also past-president of the American Society of Agronomy and member of the American Meteorological Society, American Geophysical Union and Soil and Water Conservation Society. He is the recipient of numerous awards including the 2011 Conservation Research Award from the Soil and Water Conservation Society, ARS Hall of Fame in 2014, and the Hugh Hammond Bennett award from the Soil and Water Conservation Society in 2016, and a Presidential Rank Award for Distinguished Service in 2017.
Friday, April 19, 2019, 7 p.m.
From Pikas to People Power: A Multifaceted Look at Climate Action
Rapid, localized shifts in energy sourcing produce social justice wins for some, and challenges for others. Join Laura Getts as she discusses how her time at P.S.U prepared her for a career in climate research and activism and how her work as a Young Leader in Climate Change for the National Park Service, and as Energy Coordinator for Pueblo County, Colorado addresses climate change challenges for both local and federal government entities.
Laura Getts is a NH native who holds a BA in International Relations from the University of Edinburgh, and an MS in Environmental Science and Policy from Plymouth State University, where she also served as the University’s Sustainability Fellow. Over the past decade, Laura has worked as a ranger, a biologist, an environmental consultant, a GIS specialist, and a Young Leader in Climate Change Intern for the National Park Service. Laura currently serves as the Energy Coordinator for Pueblo County, Colorado, where she is supporting the community with its target of running on 100% renewable energy by 2035.