December 14, 2009

Today here at the meetings there is a special focus on Oceans... Dr. Lubchenco speaks about Ocean Acidification at the U.S. Center in Copenhagen (video).

 


National and International Climate Services

Dr. Jane Lubchenco (Bio)

Today Dr. Lubchenco gave a presentation on climate services at the U.S. Center followed by a live webchat.

Today Dr. Lubchenco gave a presentation on climate services at the U.S. Center followed by a live webchat.

Dr. Lubchenco receiving a question from participants in Mongolia via webchat.

Dr. Lubchenco receiving a question from participants in Mongolia via webchat.

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Clim'City

Ned Gardiner

With long lines, damp cold weather and heightened security at the Bella Center kicking off the second week of negotiations in Copenhagen, the variety of youth involvement at the conference is bringing welcome energy and enthusiasm to solving climate change challenges. NOAA worked with the Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC) to bring youth and museum leaders from Boston, Massachusetts, Columbus, Ohio, Copenhagen, Denmark, and Bordeaux, France to COP15 via video teleconference.

The students had all taken the challenge of envisioning and designing solutions to climate change challenges by playing Clim'City, an interactive simulation about how cities and regions can adapt to a changing world. A spokesperson for Center of Science and Industry (COSI), in Columbus Ohio, pointed out that focusing on one aspect of the challenge would not produce a satisfactory result. In playing the game, if he focused on adaptation only, unexpected changes would overwhelm him, such as lack of water availability. If he focused only on mitigation aimed at preventing long-term problems, then his short-term prospects were inevitably compromised. "You have to do both," he said. Surely, real-world solutions will also require both managing the unavoidable (adaptation) and avoiding the unmanageable (mitigation).

One thing all the students agreed was that the game is difficult. This is a testament to game designer Eric Gorman of Bordeaux, who designed the system based on a French village model. His model includes transportation, agricultural production, energy supply, and a plethora of other major systems that are affected by climate change. By grappling with these interconnected systems, gamers are excited by the challenge of finding a solution that satisfies community needs while also preventing broad-scale problems.

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