Archives for April 2015

Opportunity: Public Affairs Specialist, AGU

OpportunityCurrently, AGU has an excellent career opportunity in our dynamic Public Affairs department.

As a Public Affairs Specialist, the successful candidate will be responsible for advancing AGU by elevating the organization’s status among the U.S. Congress and the Administration and by engaging AGU members in science policy events and activities. The Specialist will work on development of strategic relationships with key U.S. Congress and Administration staff members and offices, and utilize those relationships to advance AGU policy goals. The Specialist will attend and help to organize science policy events, congressional briefings, and other Hill activities and conduct extensive work on congressional visits days and Hill strategy and targeting. This person will also implement, promote, and improve AGU programs such as science policy events at Fall Meeting, the AGU Science Policy Conference, AGU Congressional Visits Days, or the AGU Congressional Science Fellowship program.

In addition, the Specialist will assist the Manager, Public Affairs and Director, Public Affairs in development of departmental goals each year, and continually report on progress throughout the year. He/she will also work closely and effectively with the entire Public Affairs team, and be a positive and consistent team player that enables the department to achieve its goals. He/she must remain up to date on current federal legislation and budgets related to AGU sciences, and use that knowledge to inform legislative strategy.

Required Qualifications & Experience:

  • A BS/BA degree with 2+ years of relevant expereince
  • Excellent verbal skills and the ability to communicate easily and effectively with policy makers, scientists and senior executives of AGU, vendor partners, and staff.
  • Ability and proven experience in developing and maintaining strong relationships with congressional and agency staff.
  • Ability to think creatively and act proactively to seek opportunities for advancing AGU goals.
  • Must be able to perform responsibilities with composure under the stress of deadlines/requirements for accuracy and quality and/or fast pace.
  • In-depth understanding of science policy.
  • Good organizational skills with attention to detail.
  • Ability to maintain high level of confidentiality.
  • Must enjoy working effectively as part of a team.
  • Demonstrated high level of initiative.
  • Strong personal computer skills, Microsoft Office Suite and intranet are a must.
  • Previous experience working in a membership organization environment is preferred.
  • Ability to travel.
  • Science background is a plus, but not required.

To Apply:

For consideration, please submit your cover letter, salary requirement and resume at:

The successful candidate for this position will be subject to a pre-employment background check.  

AGU proudly offers a casual work environment, excellent compensation, generous work-life opportunities, and an outstanding benefits package.

Consortium for Ocean Leadership

Anthropogenic contribution to global occurrence of heavy-precipitation and high-temperature extremes

The contribution of human-induced climate change to global heavy precipitation and hot extreme events is quantified. The results show that of the moderate extremes, 18% of precipitation and 75% of high-temperature events are attributable to warming.

Nature Climate Change doi: 10.1038/nclimate2617

Nature Climate Change – AOP – science feeds

It’s not just glyphosate and neonicotinoids! Why we need a pesticide-free future

The risk of cancer from the world’s top herbicide, glyphosate, is just the tip of the iceberg of health damage caused by exposure to pesticides and other toxic agrochemicals, writes Georgina Downs. It’s time for governments to correct their scandalous failure to protect rural residents from the cocktails of poisons sprayed on crops.
Environment news & analysis, climate change reports –
The Ecologist

Ocean Output Rivals Big Nations’ GDP, But Resources Eroding

Ocean Reef Park at Singer Island Florida (Credit: Kim Seng/Flickr)

(Click to enlarge) Ocean Reef Park at Singer Island Florida (Credit: Kim Seng/Flickr)

Economic output by the world’s oceans is worth $ 2.5 trillion a year, rivalling nations such as Britain or Brazil, but marine wealth is sinking fast because of over-fishing, pollution and climate change, a study said on Thursday.

(From Reuters / By Alister Doyle)– “The deterioration of the oceans has never been so fast as in the last decades,” Marco Lambertini, director general of the WWF International conservation group, told Reuters of the study entitled “Reviving the Ocean Economy”.

Ocean output, judged as a nation, would rank seventh behind the gross domestic product of Britain and just ahead of Brazil’s on a list led by the United States and China, the study said.

The report, by WWF, the Global Change Institute at Queensland University in Australiaand the Boston Consulting Group, estimated that annual “gross marine product” (GMP) was currently worth $ 2.5 trillion.

That included fisheries, coastal tourism, shipping lanes and the fact that the oceans absorb carbon dioxide from the air, helping to slow global warming. The study did not estimate the rate of decline in GMP.

Lambertini said the report aimed to put pressure on governments to act by casting the environment in economic terms and was a shift for the WWF beyond stressing threats to creatures such as turtles or whales.

“It’s not just about wildlife, pretty animals. It is about us,” he said.

The report, for instance, values carbon dioxide absorbed from the air at $ 39 per tonne, drawing on estimates by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to judge damage from warming such as more flooding or risks to human health.

Read the full article here:

Consortium for Ocean Leadership

NASA Probe Spies Possible Polar Ice Cap on Pluto

In the latest series of observations beamed back from NASA's New Horizons spacecraft, surface features are becoming evident including the stunning revelation that Pluto may possess a polar ice cap.
Discovery News

China solar expansion needs billions from wary investors

HONG KONG/SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Chinese solar companies, some already heavily indebted, will need to raise many billions of dollars this year to fund a big expansion in capacity, a major test of investor confidence in a sector hit hard by the global financial crisis.

Reuters: Environment

NEPAL QUAKE: Survivors Clash With Riot Police

The European Space Agency released its first detailed look at the effects of the Nepal quake, via its Sentinel satellite.
Discovery News

Ripe for abuse – Palestinian child labour in Israel’s West Bank settlement farms

Palestinian children as young as 11 work on Israeli farms in the occupied West Bank, an HRW investigation reveals. While the EU buys produce worth $ 300m a year from the illegal ‘settlements’, undocumented child labourers are exposed to pesticides, paid well below the minimum wage, enjoy no employment rights, and toil long hours in hot fields and greenhouses.
Environment news & analysis, climate change reports –
The Ecologist

Star ‘Mass Grave’ Surrounds Our Galaxy’s Black Hole

Astronomers have zoomed into an X-ray emission region immediately surrounding our galaxy's supermassive black hole and stumbled on a mysterious place where stars go to die.
Discovery News

Catching Waves And Turning Them Into Electricity

An artist’s rendering of experimental buoys made by Carnegie Wave Energy. The buoys harness the motion of waves  off Australia and use it to create electricity and desalinate water. (Credit: Carnegie Wave Energy Limited)

(Click to enlarge) An artist’s rendering of experimental buoys made by Carnegie Wave Energy. The buoys harness the motion of waves off Australia and use it to create electricity and desalinate water. (Credit: Carnegie Wave Energy Limited)

Off the coast of Western Australia, three big buoys floating beneath the ocean’s surface look like giant jellyfish tethered to the seafloor.

(From The New York Times / By Amy Lee)– The steel machines, 36 feet wide, are buffeted by the powerful waves of the Indian Ocean. By harnessing the constant motion of the waves, the buoys generate about 5 percent of the electricity used at a nearby military base on Garden Island.

The buoys are a pilot project of Carnegie Wave Energy, a company based in Perth and listed on the Australian Securities Exchange. In late February, the buoys started supplying 240 kilowatts each to the electricity grid at HMAS Stirling, Australia’s largest naval base. They also help run a desalination plant that transforms seawater into about one-third of the base’s fresh water supply.

Renewable energy is not an urgent matter in Australia, given the country’s plentiful supplies of fossil fuels, particularly coal. But Carnegie’s demonstration project is ultimately aimed at island nations that must import expensive fuel for electricity, as well as military bases looking to bolster energy and water security.

“Island nations are all looking to be sustainable,” said Michael E. Ottaviano, chief executive of Carnegie. Wave energy could be a good fit, especially for islands where tropical clouds impede solar power or where wind turbines disturb the aesthetics of tourist destinations.

Given the ocean’s power, wave energy seems a promising source of renewable energy. Over the last two decades, companies have developed various designs, including a snakelike apparatus with hinged joints from Pelamis Wave Power, a pioneering Scottish company that connected wave power to the grid in 2004; a tubelike device from Ocean Power Technologies of New Jersey and bobbing buoys from AWS Ocean Energy of Scotland.

Read the full article here:

Consortium for Ocean Leadership