5 news posts from May 2021

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Reflecting on more than a decade: a Q&A with Dean Lisa Graumlich

Lisa Graumlich

After serving as the inaugural dean of the College of the Environment, Lisa Graumlich will step down at the end of the 2020-2021 school year. Graumlich first joined the University of Washington in the 1980s as a graduate student in what is now the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, returning to her alma mater to unite earth sciences units and departments within the University of Washington to form the biggest College of its kind in the nation. 

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Approaching SciComm with the end in mind: what impact do you want?

SciComm—shorthand for science communication—is a term we’re hearing more and more these days. Classes in SciComm are offered in university settings; new professional societies are emerging around the topic; large organizations, like AAAS and AGU, offer tools and training to build communication skills; and more scientists are valuing the role science communication can play in their own work, especially outside of academia. 

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Two students from UW Environment honored in 2021 Husky 100

Congrats to UW's Husky 100!

Congratulations to our two College of the Environment students recognized in the 2021 Husky 100! The Husky 100 actively connect what happens inside and outside of the classroom and apply what they learn to make a difference on campus, in their communities and for the future. Through their passion, leadership and commitment, these students inspire all of us to shape our own Husky Experience. 

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Ice core data show why, despite lower sulfur emissions in U.S. and Western Europe, air pollution is dropping more slowly

The researchers in the drilling operation (left) and the drilled samples (right)

The air in the United States and Western Europe is much cleaner than even a decade ago. Low-sulfur oil standards and regulations on power plants have successfully cut sulfate concentrations in the air, reducing the fine particulate matter that harms human health and cleaning up the environmental hazard of acid rain. Despite these successes, sulfate levels in the atmosphere have declined more slowly than sulfur dioxide emissions, especially in wintertime. 

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Timing is everything: ShakeAlert comes to Washington May 4

A hand holds a phone lock screen with an emergency alert that reads Earthquake detected! Drop, cover, hold on. Protect yourself -USGS ShakeAlert

It could happen any time, any day. Multiple seismometers — scientific instruments that measure ground motion — detect a 7.0 magnitude earthquake in Washington, Oregon or California. Seismic waves move fast, but seismometers move faster: The data zips from seismometer to processing center at the speed of light (670,616,629 mph), where algorithms calculate the area and intensity of shaking and sound an emergency warning to phones moments before shaking arrives: Drop. 

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