Saturday, March 21, 2009

Learn a bit more about Obama's environmental team.

This is cut and pasted from the APES blog, so you might be unfamiliar with some of the references, but I thought a more general audience might be interested in learning more about Obama's picks for major science/environmental posts.

There is a short article in today's NY Times about Jane Lubchenco, the new head of NOAA, a critical agency involved in the management of the oceans and atmosphere. I knew Jane when I started grad school at Oregon State....she is married to Bruce Menge, of the Menge-Sutherland model you read about in the paper on trophic cascades by Mary Power; she also worked with Mary on the optional paper I gave you on how to define a keystone species (she and Mary are good friends). Additionally, she did critical experiments on the role of disturbance in intertidal ecosystems. All of the professional and academic ecologists and environmental scientists that I know were extremely excited by her appointment to this important post, which once again shows that the Obama team are using a very educated, thoughtful, smart approach to filling these positions. The article linked above discusses Lubchenco's view regarding the idea of adding iron to the ocean to stimulate algal primary productivity - you might recall that there is a Bio case study on this topic, and it was the focus of Abby Halperin's APES project last year.

There are also links to an info and an interview with John Haldren, a Harvard scientist who is Obama's new Science Advisor - he will surely have a strong say in determining how the Obama administration approaches climate change and other environmental issues.

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