The scale of human activity on Earth is now large enough to alter global climate. The most significant activity is the increase in greenhouse gas concentrations, particularly carbon dioxide, leading inevitably to a warmer climate. Given that human actions are leading to climate warming, one can conjecture that Earth’s climate can likewise be cooled by deliberate engineering. Of particular interest in the near term are actions that could lead to an increase in the reflection of solar radiation. Several such possible methods will be discussed using physical analogues and the results of complex global climate models. But, climate engineering research and potential deployment present ethical challenges in a number of unusual ways that must be considered as well. The intersection of climate engineering science, ethics, and governance is uncharted territory that requires careful and detailed study.
Dr. Thomas Ackerman is Professor Emeritus of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Washington. He was Professor of Atmospheric Sciences and Director of the Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean (JISAO; now CICOES) at the UW from 2007 to 2018. From 1999 through 2006, he served as the Chief Scientist of DOE’s Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Program and was a Battelle Fellow at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, WA. He was Professor of Meteorology at the Pennsylvania State University from 1988 to 1999, as well as Associate Director of the Earth System Science Center. Dr. Ackerman is the recipient of the NASA Distinguished Public Service Medal and the Leo Szilard Award for Science in the Public Interest, awarded by the American Physical Society. He is a fellow of both the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Geophysical Union.
Dr. Ackerman’s research interests span a wide range of climate issues from fundamental science, such as the life cycle of tropical cirrus and aerosol-cloud interactions, to applied issues, such as the impacts of nuclear war on global climate and solar climate engineering. Dr. Ackerman has published more than 180 papers in peer-reviewed journals.
Live at Lagunitas Brewing Company 1550 NW 49th St./Ballard
Wednesday/ November 30th / 7pm (PST)
Washington’s energy needs are increasing, given climate change, growth and electrification. The solution is to be sure we include nuclear power in our clean energy mix. Join Dr. James Conca to learn how we can avoid blackouts and get to net-zero carbon emissions. Bring all your questions!
Dr. James Conca is a Geo-environmental scientist, specializing in nuclear waste, and an EPA/State environmental consultant. Trustee of the Herbert M. Parker Foundation
Seattle, Washington 98101 (Live Streaming available, see tickets below)
Extreme weather events, such as heat waves, drought, along with forest fires, glaciers melting, sea level rise and acidification tell us it is time to stop using fossil fuels. Our experienced panel will discuss local to global energy issues in the face of climate change. We’ll include, first, the state of energy in Washington. How much energy do we need for the future? Can we avoid blackouts? Second, we’ll address international energy supplies affected by the Ukraine war and world energy needs. And finally, the panel will delve into changing attitudes towards nuclear energy and the rationale for more nuclear energy.
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Dr. James Conca – Geo-environmental scientist, specializing in nuclear waste, and an EPA/State environmental consultant Scott Montgomery – Geoscientist and energy policy expert on faculty at the Jackson School of International studies – UW and New York Times recognized author Dr. Nick Touran – Nuclear physicist who has been interviewed on NPR’s Science Friday, working on next generation nuclear design for nuclear innovation company, Terra-Power Moderated by Leila El-Wakil, MD
Nuclear power plants generate reliable and clean electricity – with the lowest lifecycle CO2 emissions of any power source. They also create waste in the form of used nuclear fuel. This is your chance to hear from a nuclear waste scientist with years of experience dealing with these issues.
What is nuclear waste?
What are its hazards?
How is it stored today?
What are the long-term plans?
How much waste do we make?
What is the composition of nuclear waste?
How does it compare to fossil fuel waste?
Dr. James Conca will give a lively and interesting talk. He is a scientist in the field of the earth and environmental sciences for 33 years, specializing in geologic disposal of nuclear waste, energy-related research, planetary surface processes, radiobiology and shielding for space colonies, subsurface transport and environmental clean-up of heavy metals. He is a Trustee of the Herbert M. Parker Foundation, Adjunct at WSU, an Affiliate Scientist at LANL and consult on strategic planning for the DOE, EPA/State environmental agencies, and industry including companies that own nuclear, hydro, wind farms, large solar arrays, coal and gas plants. He also consults for EPA/State environmental agencies and industry on clean-up of heavy metals from soil and water.
Seattle Friends of Fission and Citizens Climate Lobby-Snohomish are jointly putting on this event.
Join a conversation around current developments in the Energy Transition and its geopolitical realities with a nuclear engineer and an expert on energy policy.
The geopolitics of energy plays a key and dynamic role in modern life, affecting many aspects of international decision-making. This truth has been more than highlighted by Russia’s war in Ukraine. Issues surrounding energy are critical to security relationships and are central to all considerations of climate change and its impacts.
Global Politics, Climate Change, and Nuclear Power
The geopolitics of energy plays a key and dynamic role in modern life, affecting many aspects of international and global decision-making. This truth has been more than highlighted by Russia’s war in Ukraine. Issues surrounding energy are critical to security relationships among regions and nations and are central to all considerations of climate change and its impacts.
Innovation in energy technology today is at the core of the Energy Transition. It has the goals of mitigating global warming and creating more sustainable, less polluting systems for society. In a bold move, the European Union has now accepted nuclear power as a means to help achieve these goals. Such acceptance reflects, in part, growing global Interest in the new technology of Small Modular Reactors (SMRs).
Come hear a conversation between a nuclear scientist and an energy policy expert on this and other essential developments related to the Energy Transition and its geopolitical realities.
Nick Touran, PhD. A nuclear engineer in Seattle working on the design of an advanced nuclear reactor for a nuclear innovation company, TerraPower. He developed and maintains his website whatisnuclear.com and was a guest on NPR Science Friday.
Scott Montgomery. He is an author, geologist, and affiliate faculty member in the Jackson School of International Studies, University of Washington. He writes, teaches, and lectures on a wide variety of topics related to energy (geopolitics, resources, nuclear power, climate change).
Register in advance for this meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZIqd-ihrTkjEtKa1sc13e78vfIxcF1QXxcQ Washington’s energy needs are going to continue to increase given climate change ,growth and electrification, at the same time, we have to stop using fossil fuels. This presents us with a daunting challenge. The solution is to be sure we include nuclear power in our energy mix.
Join us and learn how nuclear power works, what a Green New Deal for our state would look like, and ask all the questions you may have.
Dr. James Conca will give a lively and interesting talk. He is scientist in the field of the earth and environmental sciences for 33 years, specializing in geologic disposal of nuclear waste, energy-related research, planetary surface processes, radiobiology and shielding for space colonies, subsurface transport and environmental clean-up of heavy metals. He is a Trustee of the Herbert M. Parker Foundation, Adjunct at WSU, an Affiliate Scientist at LANL and consult on strategic planning for the DOE, EPA/State environmental agencies, and industry including companies that own nuclear, hydro, wind farms, large solar arrays, coal and gas plants. He also consults for EPA/State environmental agencies and industry on clean-up of heavy metals from soil and water.
Nuclear energy is a key technology for both Earth and Space. Join Dr. Christopher Morrison, from Ultra Safe Nuclear, while he discusses the wide-ranging applications of nuclear energy focusing on his work in both fission and radioisotope power systems. These include micro modular reactors for Earth, lunar reactors, medical radioisotopes, and even the NASA NIAC Extra-Solar Express mission study proposing to return a sample from a comet from outside our solar system. Plenty of time at the end for Q & A.
Dr. Christopher Morrison is an Astro Nuclear Engineer at USNC-Tech in Seattle, Washington. He is the product lead for the EmberCoreTM radioisotope power technology (https://usnc.com/embercore/ ). This technology enables nuclear to power small compact systems for remote locations on Earth and in space. EmberCoreTM can be used to monitor the climate in ways not possible before. Dr. Morrison graduated from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in 2012 with a B.S. in aerospace engineering and computer science. His passion for aerospace led him to nuclear. He sees nuclear as a key technology for enabling humanity to explore beyond Earth orbit. He pursued his Ph.D. in nuclear engineering and graduated in 2017 from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Chris is a NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts Program (NIAC) Fellow, Department of Energy’s Nuclear Energy University Program Fellow, member of the Explorer’s club, and founder of https://sign-language-blitz.
Moving from coal to clean nuclear power in Wyoming, the Natrium Reactor Project will be built, providing jobs, and reliable, safe, resilient clean energy. This is incredibly exciting as it will be the first next-gen (IV) reactor built in the United States. How it fits into the energy mix of today and tomorrow will be discussed by a lead on the project.
Join us for a Zoom talk and bring your questions.
We are fortunate to have Mark Werner, a mechanical engineer who develops and leads engineering teams that design advance reactor concepts focused on impacting future energy markets. Mark has worked in plant layout and design, reactor system and equipment design, reactor core design and fuel design in his past positions. Mark has worked for TerraPower for 10 years, and prior to that worked on Reactor designs for the US Navy’s nuclear fleet at Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory in upstate NY. Mark has a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Union College and B.S. in Mechanical Engineering (Drexel University).
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
Nick will give a brief talk about how nuclear energy works, why we need it to slow down climate change, and especially to answer all your questions about safety, waste, radiation, and more. This is your chance to ask the questions that make you step back and take a breath when you hear us say we need nuclear!
Nick Touran, PhD., is a nuclear engineer working on advanced nuclear reactors at TerraPower. He is helping develop technical solutions to world energy challenges. He is the founder of the nuclear public-education website whatisnuclear.com. He stays super busy with his hobbies of photography, electronics, motorcycles, ham radio, and hiking among others.