The Rutgers Climate Institute is a University-wide effort to address one of the most important issues of our time through research, education and outreach. The Institute draws upon strengths in many departments at Rutgers by facilitating collaboration across a broad range of disciplines in the natural, social and policy sciences.
News in July 2018
RCI affiliate Alan Robock joins the Academic Minute on Inside Higher Ed podcast to discuss geoengineering as a way to prevent further global warming. Robock urges caution to use such dramatic measures, as the unintended consequences of artificially reflecting sunlight can be just as harmful as those of global warming
Rutgers University researchers have published results of their study that found a more efficient way to extract hydrogen from water, using gold nanoparticles and titanium dioxide. The research opens the door to better solar energy storage, boosting efforts to combat climate change. Hydrogen can be used to store solar energy and then when the sun is not available for energy capture, it can be combusted for energy.
RCI affiliate Jennifer Francis is featured on the Climate Cast podcast at MPR News. Francis discusses her research on the links between changes in the Arctic and changes in the jet stream in the mid-latitudes, a series of changes that starts with global climate change.
Jennifer Francisprovided insight into new research published recently in Nature Climate Change, which found that the Arctic Ocean was quickly becoming more like the climate of the Atlantic Ocean due to extreme warming in the Barents Sea. Francis connects this rapid warming, which has already been observed, to changes in atmospheric circulation that her research has shown is very likely to occur. This result in a more variable jet stream, influencing the frequency of extreme weather.
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine has published the report, Understanding the Long-Term Evolution of the Coupled Natural-Human Coastal System, which focuses on enabling a better understanding of the factors that influence long-term environmental changes along the Gulf Coast. The report promotes increased resilience and maintenance of the habitability of the Gulf Coast into the future.
Recent above average rainfall in NJ is causing very high pollen concentrations, as tree and grass pollen are surging at the same time, according to RCI affiliate Leonard Bielory. While tree pollen is expected to fade within a week, grass pollen will linger for up to another month.
Four new moons over the next few months will bring an above average risk of coastal flooding to the Jersey shore this summer, as reported by the Press of Atlantic City. New moons on June 12th, July 12th, August 11th, and September 9th are of interest, as the moon will be at its closest to earth, according to RCI co-director Anthony Broccoli. The angle of the sun also plays into just how high the tides get, according to RCI affiliate Steven Decker.
New Jersey’s average temperature has increased by 2.19 degrees Fahrenheit, outpacing much of the rest of the nation over the last 30 years. RCI affiliate David Robinson cautions against reading too much into the statistics of changes across very small areas, but agrees that it is indisputable that the NJ coast is already seeing increased flooding as temperatures rise.
Corals are vital habitats for many marine wildlife, and recent research by RCI affiliate Debashish Bhattacharya on how coral deals with environmental stress gives hope that steps can be taken to improve the protection of coral populations. Bleaching events are stressful and often deadly to coral, but understanding which corals are resistant can help inspire ways to protect coral in the future.
Rutgers Team Leads Development of New Glider Sensor to Monitor Acidification in Coastal Systems
Rutgers faculty Grace Saba and Travis Miles (Center for Ocean Observing Leadership, Department of Marine and Coastal Sciences), and Saba’s graduate student Elizabeth Wright-Fairbanks recently deployed the first integrated glider platform and sensor system for sampling pH in the water column of the coastal ocean. The researchers worked with SeaBird Scientific and Teledyne Webb Research to modify and integrate a deep rated version of the Ion Sensitive Field Effect Transistor (ISFET)-based pH sensor, the Deep-ISFET pH sensor system, into a Slocum glider. They recently completed the first of several planned missions off the coast of New Jersey, where a reporter from National Geographic tagged along to document the event: xx. The data produced from this new technology will allow the researchers and the community to track the movement of low pH water, understand the variability of pH, predict how mixing events and circulation will impact pH across the shelf, identify high-risk regions and populations of commercially important species that are more prone to periods of reduced pH, and ultimately will enable more informed management of essential habitats in the future, more acidic oceans.
Congratulations to RCI intern Emily Cheng who along with Maya Robles, both undergraduates majoring in Environmental Policy, Institutions, and Behavior took first prize in the 2018 Rutgers Energy Institute Competition for their “The Collegiate Carbon Exchange: Cap and Trade Between the Big 10 Schools”. The energy competition is intended to engage students in devising creative and innovative solutions in reducing energy wasted at Rutgers. "Energy Innovation" was the challenge for the 2018 competition. The winners were announced May 2, 2108 at the annual REI Energy Symposium.
Maya Robles and RCI Intern Emily Cheng in front of their 1st prize poster.
RCI Intern Emily Cheng (2nd from Left) recognized for the winning poster at the REI 2018 Energy Symposium.
Congratulations to the following RCI affiliates for winning departmental awards:
Elizabeth Sikes - Teaching Excellence Award
Cara Cuite - Outreach Excellence Award
Jill Lipoti - Barbara Munson Goff Teacher of the Year Award
Climate Lunch April 2018
On April 6, 2018, RCI hosted its final climate lunch of the academic year. RCI lunches are an opportunity for graduate students, post doctoral researchers, faculty and staff to meet over a casual lunch setting and foster collaboration and information exchange.
Professor Yair Rosenthal, Departments of Marine and Coastal Sciences & Earth and Planetary Sciences speaking on “Paleoceanography of the western Pacific warm pool: why, where and how?”
Professor Lauren Feldman, Department of Journalism and Media Studies presents “Climate Change in the Media: Effects on Public Opinion and Engagement.”
Rutgers Day 2018
On Saturday April 28, 2018, Rutgers Climate Institute teamed up with the Office of the NJ State Climatologist where visitors of all ages learned about climate change through stories, “climate jeopardy”, and questions and answers with experts.
USDA Northeast Climate Hub Partners Meeting
On behalf of the US Department of Agriculture, Northeast Climate Hub, on March 14-15, 2018 Rutgers University hosted the first regional Northeast Climate Hub Partners meeting “Building Agricultural Resiliency Through Adaptation” to examine the state of knowledge on climate adaptation and promote actions to support agriculture in the Northeast Region. The meeting enabled partners from government, academia and the farm community to share experiences in adapting to climate impacts and foster peer-to-peer learning through multi-directional information exchange; to strategize on how to best support science-based and cost-effective adaptation in the context of current climate science; and to support and formalize the growing community of practice around climate adaptation in agriculture in the Northeast. Meeting agenda and presentation abstracts are available here; learn more about climate change and agriculture in New Jersey here.
Bill Hohenstein, Office of the Chief Economist, United States Department of Agriculture provides perspectives on national efforts to address climate change.
Dr. Daniel Ward, Rutgers University speaking on Strategies and Tactics for Wine Grape Production in a Changing Climate.
Hannah Aitken and Dr. Joshua Faulkner both of the University of Vermont describing the Climate Masters Project: A Farmers and Fellows Project for Peer-to-Peer Climate Adaptation Education.
RCI Affiliate Paul Falkowski has been honored as 2018 Tyler Prize Laureate for Environmental Achievement.
Falkowski is a distinguished professor in the Departments of Marine and Coastal Sciences and Earth and Planetary Sciences. His scholarship focuses on phytoplankton, coral, and the primary production of aquatic organisms for his studies on the biophysical processes controlling ocean productivity, in the roles of the nitrogen and iron cycles in ocean biogeochemistry and climate. The knowledge that climate strongly influences the distribution and diversity of all animals and plants has been historically clear, but its effects on microbial communities were poorly understood. In the 1970s, Dr. Falkowski was among the first scientists to observe this chain of link processes at the source of all life's origins - our oceans- that now informs predictions about how phytoplankton communities will change in the future and impact global climate. He has authored over 300 scientific papers, edited and authored 6 books and advised more than 100 graduate student, postdoctoral fellows, and visiting scientists. Dr. Falkowski is the Bennett L. Smith Chair in Business and Natural Resources and the founding director of the Rutgers Energy Institute.
Virtual Field Tours “As if You were There” From the USDA Northeast Climate Hub
Explore farm and forestry climate adaptation practices from throughout the Northeast through these 360 degree demonstration projects including.
In one, Rutgers University scientists, RCI Affiliate Dave Bushek and Rutgers Program Coordinator, Jenny Paterno Shinn, both of the Haskin Shellfish Lab, assist partners from US Fish and Wildlife Service, The Nature Conservancy and Partnership for the Delaware Estuary to build living shorelines along the Delaware Bayshore to reduce the impacts of future storms.
Distinguished Professor Debashish Bhattacharya Appointed to National Academy of Sciences Committee Addressing Interventions to Increase the Resilience of Coral Reefs
RCI affiliate, Professor Debashish Bhattacharya of the Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology has been appointed by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to serve on the committee to discuss and report on strategic Interventions to Increase the Resilience of Coral Reefs (http://dels.nas.edu/Study-In-Progress/Interventions-Increase-Resilience/DELS-OSB-17-01). Prof. Bhattacharya’s lab studies coral genome evolution, population structure, and coral responses to abiotic stress, with the goal of identifying the ‘genetic toolkit’ used by these species to adapt to environmental fluctuations.
This committee has multiple tasks. These include to review the state of the art in ecological and genetic interventions that can be used to enhance recovery and persistence of coral reefs. The committee will consider scenarios and solutions that address the next 5-20 years which will see serious deterioration in the reef environment due to warming, more acidic waters. The committee will provide an environmental risk assessment and develop a decision pathway for implementation of potential interventions that includes knowledge gained from genetic, genomic, and ecological data. Two reports will result from this initiative.
Jobs, Internships, Academic Opportunities, Student Competitions & Funding Opportunities
Click here for more information on Fellowships and Internships.
PhD position in interdisciplinary climate research at the International Max Planck Research School on Earth System Modelling (Germany). Application deadline September 15, 2018.
PhD position in drone analytics for environmental monitoring at Maynooth University (Ireland). All queries should be addressed to andrew.parnell(at)mu.ie. [Posted July 15, 2018]
2 Postdoctoral Scientist Positions in large-scale climate dynamics at the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology (Germany). Application deadline September 1, 2018.
Postdoctoral Fellow in regional climate modeling and analysis at the University of Bergen Centre for Early Sapiens Behaviour (Norway). Application deadline August 20, 2018.
Postdoc position in carbon cycling modeling of the Baltic Sea at Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research, Warnemuende (Germany). Application deadline August 5, 2018.
Postdoctoral position in state and timescale-dependency of past climate variability from the last Glacial to present day at Heidelberg University (Germany). Application deadline August 15, 2018.
Climate researcher and model developer at the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute. Application deadline August 12, 2018.
Programmer and data manager in climate model experiments at the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute. Application deadline August 12, 2018.
User Engagement and Training Specialist at the Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium (Canada).
Director of Resilience Planning at the Connecticut Institute for Resilience and Climate Adaptation (CIRCA) to provide support for activities associated with the development of the Connecticut Connections Coastal Resilience Plan. Application deadline July 19, 2018.
Assistant Director of Research at the Connecticut Institute for Resilience and Climate Adaptation. Application deadline July 19, 2018.
Data Analyst/Programmer at the Connecticut Institute for Resilience and Climate Adaptation. Application deadline July 19, 2018.
Climate Change Research Associate at the Connecticut Institute for Resilience and Climate Adaptation. Application deadline July 19, 2018.
Proposals now being accepted for Public Transit Technology and Innovation Program to develop and demonstrate innovative technologies and operational approaches that improve New York’s public transportation systems, while contributing to the State’s energy and greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction goals. Concept papers due August 7, 2018 and full proposals due November 8, 2018.
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation National Coastal Resilience Fund planning and design and program implementation grants due August 7, 2018.
Director of the Indiana State Climate Office at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. [Posted July 9, 2018]
PhD position in Dust Impact and Vegetation Influence on Climate: looking to the future from a paleo perspective at the University of Quebec in Montreal, Canada. To apply send an expression of interest, CV, academic transcripts and contacts of at least two academic references in a single PDF to pausata.francesco(at)uqam.ca. Application deadline July 31, 2018.
Various post-doctoral fellowship positions through The Nature Conservancy NatureNet Science Fellowship Program in the areas of Re-powering; Forests, Freshwater; Grassland and Prairie, Decision Making; Urban Conservation; Agriculture; Marine and Fisheries. [Posted July 1, 2018]
Climate Adaptation Manager with The Nature Conservancy in Morris County or Cumberland County in New Jersey, Job ID#46607 . Position will work to influence statewide policy, planning and/or financing efforts that reduce flood risk across the state. Application deadline July 27, 2018.
The Data Incubator, a free, intensive 8-week fellowship in data science, will be held from September 10, 2018 to November 2, 2018. Open to master’s students, PhDs, and postdocs in STEM and social science fields seeking industry careers as data scientists. The fellowship is located in-person in New York City, San Francisco Bay Area, Boston, and Washington DC, as well as remote.
Postdoctoral position in cryospheric and high mountain research with a focus on climate change related impacts at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland. Application deadline August 15, 2018.
Earth System Modeler in soil and vegetation biogeochemistry at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Application deadline July 31, 2018.
Funding available from the Renewable Resources Extension Act-National Focus Fund Projects available to 1862 and 1890 Land-Grant Institutions to provide funds for pilot projects that address emerging forest and rangeland resource issues, have national or regional relevancy, or develop new and innovative projects that can be replicated at other institutions. Application deadline July 20, 2018.
Foundational and Applied Science Program grants available from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Application deadlines vary. [Posted June 17, 2018]
2018 NJDEP Recycling Awards to recognize businesses, government agencies, organizations, and individuals who have made significant contributions to recycling and source reduction in New Jersey. Deadline for nomination submittals is July 27, 2018.
Funding opportunity from NOAA RESTORE Science Program on identifying, tracking, understanding, and/or predicting trends and variability in the Gulf of Mexico’s living coastal and marine resources and the processes driving them. Applicants must propose work that addresses this priority in one or more of these areas of emphasis: 1) exploring trends in multiple species, 2) investigating the link between weather and/or climate and trends, and 3) examining the relationship between trends and economic activity. Application deadline October 29, 2018.
Assistant/Associate Extension Professor in climate science at the University of Minnesota. Review of applications will begin September 14, 2018.
NJDEP grant competition to help communities impacted by Superstorm Sandy. Application deadline July 20, 2018.
NJDEP is providing grants to improve water quality in the Barnegat Bay Watershed. Email an electronic copy of project proposal to NPSgrants(at)dep.nj.gov. Application deadline August 31, 2018.
The 2018 Artists and Climate Change Incubator, open to artists, activists, and educators who want to engage or further their engagement with climate change through artistic practices, will be held from August 6- August 10, 2018 in New York City. [posted May 13, 2018].
Funding available from the National Science Foundation in Growing Convergence Research. Application deadline October 15, 2018 for FY 2019 funding.
Economic Development Administration is now accepting applications for Disaster Supplemental Relief Funding. Applications accepted on a rolling basis.
UCAR is accepting proposals for short-term research collaboration opportunities at NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP). Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis.
Capacity Center for Climate and Weather Extremes is now accepting applications for the Climate and Weather Extremes Tutorial to be held August 1- August 3, 2018 at the NCAR Foothills Laboratory, Boulder, Colorado. Registration open until filled.
Climate Risk Analysis is now accepting applications for the 23rd Summer Course in Climate Time Series Analysis to be held from August 20-August 24, 2018 in Germany. Registration deadline August 10, 2018.
Environmental statistician Michael Stein of the University of Chicago is the Rutgers’ Inaugural Distinguished Visiting Fellow in Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences. He will be teaching an advanced course in Statistics of the Earth System in the fall 2018 semester. Those interested in participating in the course should fill out this survey.
Academic Service Opportunities
Expert Reviewers for the IPCC second-order draft of 2019 Refinement to the 2006 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories. The review period runs from July 2 to September 9, 2018. Prospective reviewers must register by September 2, 2018.