Author discusses climate change

In Campus News, News
(Mimi Hung / Daily Titan)
(Mimi Hung / Daily Titan)

Conservationist William deBuys presented a lecture focusing on sustainability and the repercussion of dry weather in the southwest region of the U.S. at Cal State Fullerton on Wednesday.

His book, A Great Aridness, focuses on climate change and how it will influence Southern California in particular.

Since the book’s release, there has been research and new climate change findings discussing its effects on the southwest region.

During his demonstration, deBuys presented many color-coded maps that showed the warming climate around the world.

DeBuys wanted to stress the impact that climate change can have to the planet and to the people living in it.

According to deBuys, young people will be affected the most as time progresses because the climate will intensify and water scarcity will worsen.

“Climate change is the paramount challenge of the world today,” deBuys said. “The thing we really need more urgently than anything else, is a total engagement of the younger generation.”

Areas closest to the coast will become cooler, while inland regions will become hotter, leading to an increase in extreme weather.

According to deBuys, wet places will get wetter and dry places will get drier. Water supplies will also become scarce, causing California reservoirs to shrink.

Other consequences of hotter weather that deBuys mentioned includes the increase of insects. The warm temperature will mean more insects, which will have an impact on the forest. This will result in dead trees and forests vulnerable to fires.

Matthew E. Kirby, a paleoclimatology professor, agreed with deBuys water argument.

“Water is the final frontier in Southern California and the southwest United States, so he’s absolutely right that we’re going to continue to face very serious issues with water availability and water management,” said Kirby.

Zvi Drezner, Ph.D., a statistics professor, said he believes that variations of weather have been occurring for a long time.

“The climate always changes, and to blame every change on global warming, on pollution, I think its ridiculous,” said Drezner.

Drezner said that this winter has been one of the coldest winters.

He called climate change a hoax, adding that climate fluctuations could be due to the variations of the sun’s activity.

According to deBuys, climate change can have a negative effect on human relations.

Although other natural disasters help bring people together, drought is different and tends to divide people by further stressing “human fault lines,” deBuys said. Fault lines, according to deBuys, could be the negative aspects of a person, or areas where they fall short.

DeBuys is the first speaker of the Focus on Sustainability series of lectures that will continue through the first week of May, along with an exhibit in the Pollak Library that focuses on the art of sustainability.

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  • Matthew E. Kirby

    Very disappointed in the quality of reporting in this article…why include a 1% denier of global warming? This poor quality reporting only perpetuates the idea the scientists disagree whether global warming is real or, as quoted by a statistician – not a climate scientist – a hoax. Scientists DO NOT DISAGREE!! Read the PEW report. Very disappointed indeed. Perhaps we can invite a Flat Earther here for a talk and find the 1% on campus whom agrees??

  • Dylan Garcia

    Let’s see, who should be reporting on climate change: Climatologists. I wouldn’t ask a psychologist about climate, so why are we asking statisticians? Science is true whether you believe it or not. This isn’t really a debate.

  • Katherine Glover

    A “Focus on Sustainability” lecture series sounds awesome! So why must this write-up of some really great climate science include a drive-by “OMG climate change is a hoax” tangent? Did the author look to peer review at all to support this statement…or just have it on good authority from a professor who’s well-lettered, but never even worked in climatology? This analysis of 13,000 peer-reviewed articles on global warming demonstrates just how little the scientific community disagrees about the issue — the visual of the pie chart is especially striking and drives the point home:

    http://www.desmogblog.com/2012/11/15/why-climate-deniers-have-no-credibility-science-one-pie-chart

    Also, the statement “this winter has been one of the coldest winters” is problematic; it again sounds like another drive-by, casually-dropped opinion statement, against which the author didn’t check her facts. On what evidence is this based? There’s been numerous press articles in the past few weeks about the melt season already underway in Greenland and sea ice starting its breakup (in MARCH!), and as of last weekend, fire season has begun in Colorado.Two of my colleagues have spent months gearing up for a pre-melt season study of ice cover in Greenland and planned to start next week. They may have to call off the trip because air temp highs on the southwestern portion of the ice sheet has been around 50?F for over a week.

    This journalistic tendency to give equal time/equal words to both sides of an issue has done a huge disservice to climate science for far too long.

  • Katherine Glover

    I’m not sure what you’re trying to say here. You mention we are in a broader cooling phase with a link that (I assume) was supposed to support that point, but it led to a general “state of the climate” NOAA page with summaries about global climate for the month of Feb 2013. Also, not sure why you also support this point…with a popular press article from the 1970s.

    Lastly, you mention/imply that this cooling event is a subject of debate, again with a link that seems unrelated – a graph that very clearly shows mean temperatures have been going up over the past few decades.

  • Matthew E. Kirby

    classic rebuttal…attack the person when you cannot understand the science.