The importance of the atmosphere and ocean in determining the fate of Antarctica

Landsat 9 satellite imagery shows the fractured front of the Crosson Ice Shelf in the Amundsen Sector of West Antarctica. The pace of the ice shelf’s retreat slowed in this region from 2003 to 2015. New research shows that changes in offshore winds brought less warm seawater into contact with the glacier.

An international team of researchers has combined satellite imagery and climate and ocean records to obtain the most detailed understanding yet of how the West Antarctic Ice Sheet — which contains enough ice to raise global sea level by 11 feet, or 3.3 meters — is responding to climate change. The researchers, from the University of Washington, the University of Cambridge and the University of Edinburgh, found that the pace and extent of ice destabilization along West Antarctica’s coast varies according to differences in regional climate. 

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Dan Brown reappointed director of UW School of Environmental and Forest Sciences 

Headshot of SEFS Professor and Director Dan Brown

The College is thrilled to announce that Dan Brown has agreed to be reappointed director of the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences (SEFS) for a four and a half-year term, effective January 1, 2023, through June 30, 2027. Dan’s research interests focus on land-use change as an outcome of social and ecological processes, and its effects on ecosystems and human well-being. 

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Join us for the 2022 Doug Walker Lecture, Climate Crisis: Finding Hope in Action and Community

Two people plant seedlings in the ground.

Faced with countless environmental crises, it can be difficult to see a path to a better world — but change doesn’t happen in a vacuum. We can find hope in the relationships we build, the communities we forge, and the power we share when we act together. Join us for the University of Washington College of the Environment’s 2022 Doug Walker Lecture as we explore these topics and more with environmental advocate and educator Jamie Stroble ’10. 

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