From the climate of Venus to the Kyoto summit, Union's
Environmental Studies program will explore a range of topics related to global climate
change through seminars by Union faculty.
The first of four weekly talks is Feb. 5.
The series is to highlight the advances in understanding various aspects
of climate change, and to address the increasing awareness of the public.
The hour-long talks are presented by Union faculty who are involved in
aspects of climate change in their scholarship.
Feb. 5, 7:30 p.m., Reamer Campus Center Auditorium
Jonathan Marr, physics, on “The determining factors of planetary
surface temperatures: A comparison between the greenhouse effect on Earth and Venus”
Can we learn anything about global climate change by looking around the
solar system? What determines the temperature of a planet? The Moon's atmosphere and
climate and the extreme greenhouse effect on Venus are examined in order to better
understand the dangers posed to Earth's climate by the burning of fossil fuels.
Feb. 12, 7:30 p.m., Nott Memorial
Donald T. Rodbell, geology, on “Global warming and El Niño: A
Natural archives of global climate change over the last several million
years preserved in marine sediment, ice cores, tree rings, and lake sediments will be
reviewed as background for addressing the current debate over global warming. The last two
million years have been some of the coldest in Earth's recent history, and natural
climate change is now thought to have occurred over extremely short intervals. El Niño
will also be examined from a geologic perspective.
Feb. 19, 7:30 p.m., Nott Memorial
Peter L. Tobiessen, biology, on “Global WarmingWhat, me
worry? The effect on plants and animals”
The earth has cooled and warmed repeatedly over the last several million
years. Just 10,000 years ago, the Schenectady area was under an enormous glacier that
flowed southward to New York City and Long Island. Despite this incredible disruption,
most plants and animals survived. Will more be lost this time?
Feb. 26, 7:30 p.m., Nott Memorial
Dr. James M. Kenney, economics, on “Global Warming and the
Global Economy: Policy Challenges from Kyoto”
Can the nations of the world reach an agreement to balance their
economic needs and the need to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases? What should the
U.S. position be? An economist assesses the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, the unresolved policy
issues, and the consequences for the U.S. and other economies.
For information: http://zircon. geology.union.edu/es/98seminar or call
John I. Garver, director, Environmental Studies, ext. 6517.