13 December 2013
Classroom treaty talks speak volumes on climate politics
By Steve Hockensmith, UC Berkeley News Center
UC Berkeley announced recently that it had reduced its carbon emissions to 1990 levels two years earlier than expected, showing how quickly progress can be made — at least at the local level — in addressing climate change. Unfortunately, getting the world community to take significant action has proven far trickier, and a recent exercise in a Berkeley class demonstrates why.
Kate O’Neill, an associate professor in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, has been teaching international environmental politics since 1999. This year, she decided to make a simulated international climate-change conference the centerpiece of her fall course. Each of her 125 students was assigned one of 26 nations, chosen to represent a range of political and economic interests, from superpowers to some of the world’s smallest, poorest countries. The students then spent the semester studying and writing about their assigned nation’s population, economy, politics and vulnerability to climate change.
All that preparation was put to use last month, when the students were divided into four groups, each of which held its own mock treaty negotiations.
Posted by Ann Guy at 0:03
10 December 2013
Senior With Passion for Water rights Wins Prestigious Marshall Scholarship
By Carol Ness, UC Berkeley Public Affairs.
Rebecca Peters, a senior whose deep interest in water rights has taken her to Latin America many times to work on safe water projects and to Budapest and Washington, D.C., to take part in international water policymaking, has won one of the nation’s top honors for undergraduates, a Marshall Scholarship.
It’s the second big honor for Peters, a double major in international development economics and environmental studies who last spring was awarded a Truman Scholarship, for “exceptional college juniors.”
Posted by Ann Guy at 7:02
05 December 2013
Cal Forestry Club holiday tree sale starts TUESDAY
UC Berkeley Public Affairs
HOLIDAY TREE SALE DELAYED. Due to a storm in the Sierras, the sale will start on TUESDAY, Dec. 10. Check back here for updates.
Short of cutting your own, you can’t get holiday trees fresher than the white fir, incense cedar and other evergreens that Cal Forestry Club students will offer for sale starting on TUESDAY.
Equipped with chainsaws and fundraising spirit, the students will make their annual trek up to the Sierra foothills to harvest the trees.
Posted by Ann Guy at 1:05
03 December 2013
Europe is banning bee-harmful pesticides; US should take the lead
By Claire Kremen, Professor of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management and Co-director of the Berkeley Food Institute.
Like the European Union – which on Dec. 1 boldly began a two-year ban on selected pesticides thought to be harmful to honeybees and other pollinators – the United States should help protect pollinators by banning these pesticides. But the United States should do far more, and become a world leader in championing sustainable alternatives to harmful pesticides.
Posted by Ann Guy at 6:07
19 November 2013
UC's Natural Reserves to Monitor Climate
The University of California's Natural Reserve System (NRS) has just completed the installation of weather stations at 20 of its 38 reserves that will gather and disseminate real-time climate data.
The weather stations will allow scientists to connect their on-the-ground observations about ecology — acorn production, range shifts in plants and other changes — to the effects of climate. The information will be fed to a central online site that is a hub for disseminating major weather station information and is publicly available.
Posted by Ann Guy at 4:32