Huxley Speaker Series 5/21: Amanda Graham on Ecological Literacy

As part of the 2014-15 Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series, Amanda Graham from MIT will speak on ecological literacy at 4 p.m. on Thursday, May 21 in Communications Facility 120 on the Western Washington University campus. The presentation is free and open to the public.

Ecological literacy, a project developed by David Orr in the early 1990s, calls for transforming formal education to place humanity’s relationship with the earth at the center. The project’s relevance seems only to grow as we become more aware of the geologic scale of humanity’s impact on the planet–a trend leading some to call our current age the “Anthropocene.” Recent literacy initiatives in climate and energy have emerged in response to the growing urgency of these twin environmental challenges. In her talk titled "Reflections on Ecological Literacy in the Anthropocene... Read more

Huxley Speaker Series 5/14: Steve Wright on Salmon Restoration in the Columbia River Basin

As part of the 2014-15 Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series, Steve Wright from Chelan County Public Utility District No. 1 will discuss salmon restoration and energy planning in the Columbia River Basin at 4 p.m. on Thursday, May 14 in Communications Facility 120 on the Western Washington University campus. The presentation is free and open to the public.

The Columbia River Basin is host to more than 30 dams that present a challenge to salmon spawning. In his talk titled, ""Salmon Restoration and Energy Planning in the Columbia River Basin," Wright will provide a case study of energy planning in the Columbia River Basin, which proves to be a multi-variate public policy equation. Economic and environmental health of the basin are intertwined, Wright maintains. His presentation will demonstrate how solutions can be... Read more

Huxley Speaker Series 5/7: Stuart Weiss on Conservation of the Bay Checkerspot Butterfly

As part of the 2014-15 Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series, Stuart B. Weiss from the Creekside Center for Earth Observation will speak on climate change and the Bay checkerspot butterfly at 4 p.m. on Thursday, May 7 in Communications Facility 120 on the Western Washington University campus. The presentation is free and open to the public.

The environment in the 21st century is radically different from previous eras, with rapid climate change, widespread nitrogen pollution, invasive species, and land-use changes rearranging species distributions and ecosystem processes. In his talk titled "Conservation in a Brave New Environment: Climate, Nitrogen Deposition, and the Bay Checkerspot Butterfly" Weiss will present a history of conservation of the threatened Bay checkerspot butterfly and its spectacular serpentine grassland habitat in the context of these changes. He will... Read more

Huxley Speaker Series 4/30: WWU Alumna Brenna Forester on Salamanders and Climate Change

As part of the 2014-15 Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series, Brenna Forester from Duke University will speak on adaptation in response to environmental change at 4 p.m. on Thursday, April 30 in Communications Facility 120 on the Western Washington University campus. The presentation is free and open to the public.

Faced with climate change, organisms either adapt in place or move—or they go extinct. Relative to dispersal, adaptation in response to environmental change remains poorly understood. Fortunately, the recent development of molecular techniques for detecting adaptation in wild populations has made it easier (and more cost-effective) to evaluate this response. These tools offer important benefits for conservation practice in a dynamic world, since adaptation can improve the ability of species to persist under the combined effects of climate change and habitat... Read more

ENVS Brown Bag Series: Jean Melious on Managing Water Resources

As part of the Environmental Studies Department's brown bag discussion series, ENVS Professor Jean Melious will present "Fish Out of Water: Why salmon lose to sprawl" on Monday 4/20 at 4pm in Arntzen Hall 225.

In response to epic drought, farmers in California are mining million-year-old water. Is water use here in evergreen Washington more rational? Over the past few years, Professor Jean Melious has been working with citizens and environmental organizations to implement Washington’s state laws, which appear to link new development to water availability. The reality, however, is far different. This talk will discuss some of the legal, political, and economic issues that make rational stewardship of water resources so difficult, focusing on Whatcom County and Washington and bringing in insights from other areas. Melious will also describe prospects for the future of water management under conditions of climate change.... Read more

Huxley Speaker Series 4/16: Tim Miller on Invasive Wildland Weeds

As part of the 2014-15 Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series, Tim Miller at Washington State University Extension will discuss battling non-native invasive plants at 4 p.m. on Thursday, April 16 in Communications Facility 120 on the Western Washington University campus. The presentation is free and open to the public.

Introduction and spread of non-native invasive plants are one of the largest threats to ecosystems of the Pacific Northwest. Many of these introductions are so recent that control recommendations have not yet been constructed. Miller, Extension Weed Scientist with Washington State University, has conducted trials on a host of newly introduced, noxious weed species. In a talk titled "Battling Invasive Wildland Weeds:  How We Plan and Conduct Management Trials," he will share the systematic research that must be accomplished before management recommendations can... Read more

Huxley Speaker Series 4/9: Erika McPhee-Shaw on Pacific Coast Ecosystems

As part of the 2014-15 Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series, Shannon Point Marine Center director Dr. Erika McPhee-Shaw will discuss characteristics of coastal ecosystems at 4 p.m. on Thursday, April 9 in Communications Facility 120 on the Western Washington University campus. The presentation is free and open to the public.

In lakes and in oceanic water bodies such as the Gulf of Mexico, there can be a relatively clear relationship between land-based agricultural pollution and impaired water quality. However, in some regions of the ocean the causes for low oxygen are less clearly attributable to human activities. This is particularly so along the west coasts of the U.S., where upwelling brings naturally low-oxygen waters up into shallow ecosystems on a regular seasonal basis. In her talk titled, “Life on the Edge of the Pacific,” McPhee-Shaw will discuss a series of... Read more

45th Anniversary of Huxley College: May 16 at Back2Bellingham

Huxley College's 45th Anniversary Celebration will take place at WWU's annual Back2Bellingham reunion weekend on Saturday May 16, 2015. Please join us for a day of Huxley-focused activities, including Classes Without Quizzes led by Huxley College faculty and a Huxley College alumni happy hour and dinner celebration with family, faculty, and students at the Wade King Rec Center's Mac Gym. See the schedule below for more details.

Online registration for the anniversary and reunion celebration is available on the Back2Bellingham website. Updated information will also be available here on the Huxley blog and on our Facebook page, or call the Alumni Association at (855) WWU-ALUM.

Huxley B2B Schedule of Events

Saturday, May 16, 2015

11am-12pm: Classes Without Quizzes... Read more

ENVS Brown Bag Series: Nathan J. Bennett on environmental management and policy

In the inaugural lecture of the Environmental Studies Department's brown bag discussion series, visiting scholar Nathan Bennett will present "Engaging Critical and Constructive Approaches to Environmental Management and Policy."

Scholars studying environmental management and policy often engage either constructive or critical approaches and theory. Yet, scholars from each of these traditions rarely present in the same venues or publish in the same journals and thus often lack awareness of the methods, theories and rationales for engaging the opposite perspective. This absence of a productive conversation between the two groups interferes with the interdisciplinary engagement and knowledge co-production vital for solving complex environmental problems. In this talk, I will reflect on the requirements for engaging both critical and constructive approaches to studying environmental management and policy with reference to my own work on marine... Read more

Huxley Speaker Series 3/12: Chance Asher on Science and Environmental Policy Making

As part of the 2014-15 Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series, Chance Asher from the Washington State Department of Ecology will discuss environmental law and policy at 4 p.m. on Thursday, March 12 in Communications Facility 120 on the Western Washington University campus. The presentation is free and open to the public.

As the cornerstones of environmental protection, environmental laws and policies must be scientifically sound, legally defensible, practically implementable, and cost effective. Achieving these varied purposes requires the critical thinking and cooperation of environmental law and policy makers from divergent professions: scientists, lawyers, statisticians, social scientists, and engineers. In her talk titled, “The Critical Role of Science in Environmental Law and Policy Making,” Asher will describe the specific impact of science on the development of effective... Read more

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