Spring 2007 Environment & Society News Archive

The Universities' Council on Water Resources (of which UCB is a member) awarded its "Friend of UCOWR" award to the memory of Gilbert White at the Council's annual meeting in Boise, Idaho, Wednesday, July 25th, 2007. A framed certificate was prepared for later presentation to Gilbert's family. The certificate was received by Chuck Howe for transfer to the family. A splendid 15 minute film on Gilbert's life that had been produced by Robert Hinshaw was shown at the ceremony. Robert Hinshaw was the author of Gilbert's biography, Living with Extremes: the Life of Gilbert Fowler White, and it had been hoped that he could introduce the film to the audience. Personal constraints prevented his presence.

Bill Travis' new book, "New Geographies of the American West: Land Use and the Changing Patterns of Place", has been published by Island Press, spring 2007. Bill is associate professor of geography and faculty affiliate of the Environment and Society Program; he wrote the book with support of a fellowship from the Orton Family Foundation. The book is highly praised by such luminaries as Bruce Babbitt, former Secretary of the Interior, and Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper.

Tom Dickinson and Nancy Thorwardson of IBS Computing and Research Services provided technical help with creating maps and illustrations for the book.

Jeannette Sutton presented at the 2007 National Urban Area Security Initiative Conference, April 10, in Miami, FL. Her presentation "Regional Collaboration and Preparedness for Terrorism and Extreme Events" provided an overview of the Hazards Center's role in START, the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism, one of the DHS Centers of Excellence, and research being conducted on regional collaboration.

Lori Hunter organized and presented a panel discussion in Washington DC at the Population Reference Bureau April 5, 2007. The discussion was titled, "HIV/AIDS and the Environment: Implications and Interventions". The panel also included Kathy Kurz of the International Center for Research on Women, Nancy Gelman of the Africa Biodiversity Collaborative Group, and Melissa Thaxton of the Population Reference Bureau.

This panel explored the environmental dimensions of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Presentations offered an overview of social science research on the ways in which environmental degradation lessens the ability of impacted households to cope with loss, and how high AIDS prevalence can lead to increased environmental degradation in the local context. Overviews of multi-faceted programs were provided dealing with conservation, food security and gender issues in a variety of settings including Uganda and Tanzania

Lori Hunter presented her poster, "Locusts Are Now Our Beef: Adult Mortality and Household Dietary Use of Local Environmental Resources (co-authored with Wayne Twine and Laura Patterson) at the Population Association of America annual meeting in New York, NY, March 2007.

Lori was also an Invited Discussant for the Population and Environment Session on "Migration, Land, and Environment" at the meeting.

Jeannette Sutton, research coordinator at the Natural Hazards Center, presented on "Preparing for Human Continuity is More Than Just Psychological First Aid" at the Disaster Recovery Journal Spring World Conference, March 25 in Orlando, FL.

Kathleen Tierney, professor of sociology and director of the Natural Hazards Research and Applications Center, has been chosen to serve on the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) Advisory Committee on Earthquake Hazards Reduction. William Jeffrey, director of the Department of Commerce's National Institute of Standards and Technology, named Tierney one of 15 distinguished academic, industry and government experts to participate. Established by the Earthquake Hazards Reduction Act of 1977, NEHRP is the federal government's program to reduce the risks to life and property from earthquakes.

The Natural Hazards Center is happy to welcome Laurie Schmidt, who joined the staff in early February as the Center's Editor. In that position, Laurie will compile and edit the Observer newsletter and assist with coordination of special projects and publications.

Laurie holds a M.S. degree in science communication and a B.A. in English. Before joining the Natural Hazards Center, she worked on the Phoenix Mars Lander mission in Tucson, Arizona, developing educational content for the mission's web site. Prior to that, she served as editor of NASA's DAAC Alliance Annual publication from 2001-2005, based at the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder.

Her interests include communicating earth science concepts to lay audiences, particularly with regard to correcting public misconceptions about geologic processes and natural hazards.

Kathleen Tierney presented "Crossing Boundaries: The Value of Multidisciplinary and Interdisciplinary Research for Disaster Loss Reduction." Invited presentation, Frontiers of Human Dimensions Science Research Series, Institute for the Study of Society and the Environment, National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder CO Jan 23, 2007.

The Natural Hazards Center is happy to welcome Corey Reynolds, who joined the staff at the beginning of the year as the Center's Program Associate. In that position, Corey will compile and edit the Disaster Research e-newsletter, manage the Center's Web site, coordinate special projects and publications, and manage the Center's Quick Response Research Program.

Corey holds a bachelor's degree in journalism and political science from the University of Colorado, where he worked in communications and outreach at the nation's largest student-run environmental center. Before joining the Natural Hazards Center, he was a reporter for newspapers in central and northern Colorado.

His interests include the role of the media before, during and after disaster; the effect of trauma reporting on media organizations and individuals; risk communication; and emergency management public policy.

Lori Hunter presented her research on how HIV/AIDS affects agriculture, nutrition, and land use at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Environmental Change and Security Program, Washington DC "HIV/AIDS, Agriculture, and Conservation: Impacts and Solutions," Wednesday, January 17 2007. The panel also included Richard Skolnik of the Population Reference Bureau presenting current and future trends of the wide-ranging impacts of the HIV/AIDS pandemic and Judy Oglethorpe of the World Wildlife Fund discussing how the disease influences conservation efforts and security issues.