Andy Cortese, MS Candidate in Environmental Sciences, to Present Thesis Seminar on 4/18

Please join us on Friday, April 18 at 1 PM in Environmental Studies 534 to hear Andy Cortese's MS in Environmental Sciences Thesis Seminar Presentation: "Mycorrhizal Availability in the Basin of Lake Mills and Influence on Colonization and Drought Tolerance of Scouler’s Willow (Salix scouleriana)."

Western Reads/ Huxley Speaker Series 4/17: Naomi Oreskes on Climate Change

As part of the Western Reads program and the Huxley College Speaker Series, Naomi Oreskes will discuss her book Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming. The presentation, which takes place at 4 p.m. on Thursday, April 17 in the Viking Union Multi-Purpose Room, is free and open to the public.

Oreskes's book examines the troubling story of how a body of influential scientists have clouded public understanding of scientific facts to advance a political and economic agenda. In seven compelling chapters addressing tobacco, acid rain, the ozone hole, global warming, and DDT, Merchants of Doubt rolls back the rug on this dark corner of the American scientific community. According to Al Gore, "Naomi Oreskes has demonstrated what many of us have long suspected: that the ‘debate’ over... Read more

Interested in Talking Climate Change with Author Naomi Oreskes?

Naomi Oreskes, author of Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming, will be speaking at Western on Thursday, April 17, 4pm, in the VU Multipurpose Room. As a component of Dr. Oreskes' visit, the Western Reads program is hosting a small group lunch discussion that day from 12-1:30 in Miller Hall 258.

As of today (4/7), there are still openings for students to attend the lunch. If you're interested, please contact Anna Carey at or (360) 650-3847.

Oreskes' book,  Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming, details how the dangers of many issues in science have been masked by “scientific” efforts to confuse the public and our policy leaders.

According to Al Gore, “Naomi Oreskes has demonstrated... Read more

Huxley Speaker Series 4/10: James Meadow on the Built Environment Microbiome

As part of the Huxley College Speaker Series, Dr. James Meadow will discuss architectural design and indoor microbiology. The presentation, which takes place at 4 p.m. on Thursday, April 10 in Environmental Studies 100, is free and open to the public.

Humans spend more than 90% of our lives indoors, where we are constantly interacting with the built environment microbiome. Until very recently we knew almost nothing about the microbes in our buildings, except for a few troublemakers. In fact, we’re surrounded indoors by bacteria found in soils, on plants, and in humans and pets, the vast majority of which pose little or no risk to our health. In his talk titled “Can We Design Buildings toward a Healthier Indoor Microbiome?” Dr. Meadow will discuss the human microbial cloud, a few recent revelations from indoor microbiology, and some ways that architectural design can influence the microbes in our homes and offices.

James... Read more

Western to End Sale of Bottled Water April 1

From Western Today:

"Western Washington University will end the sale and distribution of bottled water on campus on April 1, an effort initiated by students to enhance sustainability at Western. Western now is the largest college or university, public or private, in the state of Washington to end the sale of bottled water on its campus.

"'Bottled water and water privatization is detrimental to the environment, to human rights to water and simply doesn't make sense in a region where we have clean, amazing tap water,' said Carolyn Bowie, a member of Students for Sustainable Water at Western. 'When WWU implements this change, we will proudly support our local water source, Lake Whatcom, and be a leader in standing up against water privatization in the United States and around the world.​ This change is important because it means upholding Western's values in sustainability and... Read more

Huxley College Scholarship Application Due April 4

Huxley College is now accepting scholarship applications for the 2014-2015 academic year. More than $25K in scholarship funds is available to students within the Environmental Sciences and Environmental Studies departments, and will be awarded based on individual scholarship criteria.

Application guidelines, links, and a list of all Huxley College scholarships and corresponding criteria can be found online at Scholarship application materials are due to the Huxley College office in ES 539 by Friday, April 4, at 5 p.m.

For more information about scholarships, please contact Jen VanderWeyden at (360) 650-2554 or

Huxley Speaker Series 3/6: Mike Warner from U-W on Climate Change and Extreme Weather in the PNW

Mike Warner from the University of Washington will discuss climate change and extreme weather as part of the Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series at 4 p.m. on Thursday, March 6 in Communications Facility 125. The presentation is free and open to the public.

In his talk titled “Projected Changes in North American Atmospheric Rivers Due to Climate Change,” Warner will describe his research into the connection between anthropogenic global warming and extreme weather. Atmospheric rivers (ARs)—long, narrow bands of highly-concentrated water vapor that occur with winter storms—are often associated with extreme precipitation and flooding, particularly along the mountainous West Coast of North America. Several studies have suggested that climate change could lead to shifts in the location and intensity of the jet stream, which in turn could impact the location and frequency of ARs. Warner will share his research into these projected shifts and the anticipated impact on... Read more

Huxley Speaker Series 2/27: Alex Ramel from Sustainable Connections on Energy Efficiency

Alex Ramel, Energy and Policy Director at Sustainable Connections, will discuss energy efficiency as part of the Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series at 4 p.m. on Thursday, February 27 in Communications Facility 125 on the Western Washington University campus. The presentation is free and open to the public.

Nearly every serious plan to tackle global climate change starts with massive scale energy efficiency retrofits across every sector of the economy. In his talk titled “Achieving Massive Energy Efficiency,” Ramel will describe the Community Energy Challenge, a locally-organized and nation-leading effort to achieve deep energy efficiency retrofits in hundreds of homes and small businesses. With three and a half years of experience the program's efforts shed some light on the complexities and opportunities in this field.

Western Lecture Series at Huxley College on the Peninsulas

The Western Lecture Series continues at Huxley College on the Peninsulas in Poulsbo with talks on the Climate Reality Project, the Port Gamble forest block, and the electricity infrastructure in the Pacific Northwest:

Free Workshop 2/22: Community Engagement in Oil Spill Preparedness and Response

Many citizens are concerned about the growth of oil tanker and cargo ship traffic in the Northwest Straits region of the Salish Sea, especially about the potential of a major oil spill. What will happen if a major oil spill occurs off the shores of Whatcom County? How will it impact our shores? Who is in charge of spill response and what happens behind the scenes? What training do you need to be involved in the clean-up?

These questions and others will be answered at an upcoming workshop in Bellingham on Saturday, February 22, 2014. The workshop will be held at the Squalicum Boathouse in Zuanich Point Park in Bellingham.

Learn from the U.S. Coast Guard about the decisions they face when oil is spilled. Meet spill response managers from the Department of Ecology and Department of Fish and Wildlife, and hear about their roles in the event of a major oil spill. Learn about the challenges spill responders would face in dealing with a spill in our community and how you can help before, during, and after a spill.

Please join us:

  • Saturday, February 22, 2014
  • 9:00 AM-3:00 PM
  • Squalicum Boathouse,... Read more