Webinar Archive

Past GEC Webinars

All Global Environmental Change Section webinars are recorded and available via the AGU Youtube channel. If you have any questions about our past webinars or want to suggest new webinar topics, please contact GEC section leadership via AGU Connect.


Global Environmental Change Early- and Mid-career Award Webinar Series – I

Global Environmental Change Section Presents three Early Career Awards and Piers J. Seller Mid-Career Award each year to recognize the outstanding contribution from early/mid-career section members in the field of global environmental change. This Award Lecture series will feature and celebrate award recipients’ work. We invite all AGU community members to join us for this lecture series.

The first lecture series features two 2021 Global Environmental Change Early Career Award recipients – Dr. Alexandra G. Konings (Stanford University) and Dr. Kimberly A. Novick (Indiana University Bloomington). 

"Microwave Remote Sensing of Plant Water Stress Response" (Dr. Alexandra Konings)
Understanding how vegetation responds to increasingly frequent and intense droughts is a fundamental prerequisite for characterizing the response of the global carbon cycle to a changing hydroclimate. However, doing so is challenging because of the large diversity of relevant vegetation traits (including root, xylem, and stomatal properties) within species, within ecosystems, and across the globe. In this talk, I will describe how microwave remote sensing of vegetation – which naturally integrates over these sources of variability and provides data across the globe - may be a useful tool for better understanding plant water stress response. I will describe how microwave observations of vegetation water content are conceptually related to both biomass and leaf water potential. Although several unknowns limit the ability to directly invert leaf water potential from microwave remote sensing observations, I will illustrate several approaches for nevertheless being able to use these datasets to characterize plant responses to water stress. I will discuss several applications, including determining ecosystem-scale plant hydraulic traits (including isohydricity, stomatal closure, P50, and xylem closure) and their link to spatial variability in photosynthesis responses to water stress, estimating drought-driven tree mortality rates, and understanding how vegetation water stress response affects wildfire risk.

"Opportunities for more robust assessments of Nature-Based Climate Solutions in the United States" (Dr. Kimberly Novick)
Most pathways for avoiding the worst impacts of climate change require removal of CO2 from the atmosphere, for example with managed alterations to ecosystems including reforestation and crop diversification. These so-called “Nature-Based Climate Solutions” (NbCS) have growing private and public sector support, despite being characterized by substantial mechanistic uncertainty. This talk will identify knowledge gaps surrounding NbCS that may be confronted, over the short term, with pre-existing data and analysis tools that have long been used to understand the mechanisms driving ecosystem carbon cycling. 


Toward “solution” science: Lessons learned from a decade of dialog between a practitioner and a scientist - David Behar & Dr. Philp Mote   

This webinar features a conversation between a climate scientist and a climate adaption practitioner on how to make scientific research relevant to societal challenges and inform the decision-making process. David Behar, an at-large member of the AGU Council, is the Climate Program Director at the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC), founder of the Water Utility Climate Alliance, and former chair of the Sea Level Rise Committee for the City and County of San Francisco. Dr. Philip Mote is the President of AGU’s Global Environmental Change section, Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School at Oregon State University, and former co-leader of the NOAA-funded Climate Impacts Research Consortium for the Northwest.

Transmission Dynamics of Influenza and SARS-CoV-2: Meteorological Drivers, Inference, and Forecast - Dr. Jeffrey Shaman    

Dynamic models of infectious disease systems are often used to study the epidemiological characteristics of disease outbreaks, the ecological mechanisms and environmental conditions affecting transmission, and the suitability of various mitigation and intervention strategies. In recent years these same models have been employed to generate probabilistic forecasts of infectious disease incidence at the population scale. In this webinar, Dr. Shaman presented research describing the investigation of the meteorological determinants of influenza transmissibility and development of model systems and combined model-inference frameworks capable of simulation, inference, and forecast of disease outbreaks with a particular focus on influenza and SARS-CoV-2.

Two approaches for mitigating global climate change: Solar Radiation Management and Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction - Drs. Alan Robock & Marilyn Brown  

In this webinar, Drs. Alan Robock and Marilyn Brown discussed two different approaches to mitigate global climate change at regional and global scales. 
In Dr. Robock's presentation -  "Stratospheric Sulfur Geoengineering – Benefits and Risks", he presented the current results from the ongoing Geoengineering Model Intercomparison Project which is using climate model experiments with standard stratospheric aerosol injection scenarios.
In Dr. Brown's talk - "Translating a Global Emissions Reduction Framework for Sub-National Climate Action: A Case Study from the State of Georgia", she described a process that considers (1) Georgia’s baseline carbon footprint and trends, (2) the universe of Georgia-specific carbon-reduction solutions that could be impactful by 2030--including both mitigation and natural carbon sinks, (3) the greenhouse gas reduction potential of high-impact 2030 solutions for Georgia, and (4) associated costs and benefits including "beyond carbon" priorities, such as job creation, public health, environmental benefits, and equity.


Drought and Water Security in the West: Highlighting the roles of scientists in the 21st Century - Dr. Jonathan Overpeck

Water security is a huge issue facing the Western United States and beyond. In this webinar, Dr. Jonathan Overpeck discussed the crucial role scientists play in addressing water scarcity. Dr. Overpeck is a Samuel A. Graham Dean and William B. Stapp Collegiate Professor of Environment and Sustainability at the University of Michigan.

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Climate extremes in present and future: How can we avoid the worst? - Dr. Sonia Seneviratne

In this webinar, Dr. Sonia I. Seneviratne discussed climate extremes in the present and the future and how we can avoid the worst. Dr. Seneviratne is a Professor at the Institute for Atmosphere and Climate Science at ETH Zürich and was elected an AGU Fellow in 2013.

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Climate Findings from a 40-Year Satellite Record of Arctic and Antarctic Sea Ice - Dr. Claire Parkinson

A few weeks after the Arctic sea ice reached its minimum coverage for 2019, Dr. Claire L. Parkinson shares the story of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice as revealed from a 40-year satellite record and how the sea ice relates to the rest of the climate system. This webinar was originally presented on 23 October 2019.

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Climate Change and Inequality: Distributional Impacts and Dynamic Vulnerabilities - Dr. Julie Silva

Different regions are experiencing the impacts of climate change differently. Please join Dr. Julie A. Silva for a discussion about climate change, inequality and the drivers of differential vulnerability. Dr. Silva is an associate professor of the Department of Geographical Sciences at the University of Maryland, College Park. This webinar was originally presented on 15 November 2019.

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