Dr. Tom Pedersen, Director of the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions, presented a talk in Vernon entitled: Responding to the Climate-Change Challenge in British Columbia: Science, Social Science, Politics and Opportunity on November 12, 2010 in the Lecture Theatre of the Vernon campus of the Okanagan College.
Global warming caused by human activities is happening, it is scientifically well understood, and it presents a serious challenge to human societies. Dr. Pedersen will explore how this challenge provides an opportunity for us to do things better, to unleash a new era of creativity, to improve the stewardship of our natural environment, and to revitalize our economy while generating new, cleaner industrial activity. The talk will describe in lay terms the scientific underpinning of the reality of global warming, present the latest observational evidence that confirms the theory, explore mitigation and adaptation possibilities, and offer an optimistic view of a better environmental and economic future for Canada. The role the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions, an endowed four-university consortium hosted and led by the University of Victoria, is now playing in contributing to British Columbia’s response to the climate-change challenge will also be briefly described.
Dr. Thomas Pedersen was appointed Director of the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions beginning September 1, 2009. His previous positions included dean of science (2003-2009) and director of the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences at the University of Victoria (2002-2003), and associate dean, research, for the Faculty of Graduate Studies at the University of British Columbia (2000-mid 2002). Pedersen holds a degree in geology from UBC and a PhD in marine geochemistry from the University of Edinburgh. He is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and a fellow of the American Geophysical Union. He is an internationally recognized authority on ocean chemistry, has published extensively in the field of paleoceanography, and has longstanding interests in climate change issues and the application of government policy to climate-change mitigation and adaptation.