Chip Fletcher receives EPA award for climate change scienceUniversity of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Outreach Specialist, School of Ocean and Earth Sciences and Technology
Dr. Charles (Chip) Fletcher, associate dean for academic affairs at the UH Mānoa School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, recently received an award for climate change science at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency‟s 12th annual Environmental Awards Ceremony held in downtown Los Angeles, California.
Climate change is evident in Hawai'i. Surface temperatures are rising, rainfall and stream flow has generally decreased, rain intensity has increased, sea level and sea surface temperatures have increased, and the ocean is acidifying. These trends are likely to continue. Writing about these patterns, and their relevance to Pacific Island communities, has been the work of Fletcher, whose work is published in more than 100 peer-reviewed, international scientific journal articles and reports.
Fletcher is also the author of "Living on the Shores of Hawaiʻi: Natural Hazards, the Environment, and our Communities" published by University of Hawaiʻi Press. Fletcher formulated the concept and assisted in implementing the University's Center for Island Climate Adaptation and Policy. He not only studies island climate adaptation and policy issues, he also excels at communicating his findings to policy makers and the public. For instance, he writes that, "Heavy rainfall in Hawai'i means more than getting wet. It is a major challenge for civil defense agencies and emergency responders. Intense rain triggers a domino effect of other impacts including flash flooding, mudslides and debris flows, road and business closure, infrastructure damage, and loss of public services to isolated communities."
The Center connects individuals and institutions to the scope of climate knowledge at UH Mānoa. The Center for Island Climate Adaptation and Policy offers work product in the areas of law, policy, planning, and science to mitigate and adapt to climate change while embracing the wisdom of local, traditional cultures.
Each year, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)'s Pacific Southwest office encourages citizens in California, Arizona, Nevada, Hawaiʻi, and the Pacific Islands to nominate individuals or organizations for Environmental Awards. This program offers a great opportunity for the agency to recognize individuals and groups outside of EPA who are working to protect public health and the environment. Awards can be given to anyone, such as scientists, teachers, journalists, citizen activists, young people, organizations, business representatives, public officials, and others committed to protecting public health and preserving our natural surroundings.
For more information about these awards see the EPA website http://www.epa.gov/region9/awards/.
For more information, visit: http://www.soest.hawaii.edu/soest_web/2010_news_PDFs/Fletcher_EPA_Award.pdf