ENGAGE Seminar: Water, Rocks & The Tropics: "Did the Missoula Floods Impact Climate?" AND "How Did Life Survive the Snowball?"

Start Date/Time: Wednesday, May 22, 2013, 6:00 PM
Ending Date/Time: Saturday, January 01, 2011, 7:30 PM
Location: Town Hall Seattle, 1119 8th Ave.

ENGAGE Seminar: Water Rocks & The Tropics
Did the Missoula Floods Impact Climate? AND How Did Life Survive the Snowball?

Speakers Megan Gambs (UW Oceanography) and Adam Campbell (UW Earth and Space Sciences)

Event Description:
First up in this double-header of global proportions: During the end of the most recent Ice Age, roughly 15,000 to 19,000 years ago, vast areas of North America were covered by sheets of ice. Glacial lakes formed in valleys, behind walls of ice that acted as dams; Glacial Lake Missoula, with a volume roughly 19 times that of Puget Sound, for example, was held in place behind an ice dam roughly the height of four Space Needles. Periodically, the ice dam would weaken or falter, allowing catastrophic floods to sweep across the Northwest, then into the Pacific Ocean through the Columbia River, creating large geologic features in Eastern Washington such as the Channeled Scablands and Dry Falls. Megan F. Gambs, a graduate student in the UW School of Oceanography, investigates how massive flooding of freshwater disrupted the ocean locally, and impacted the ocean and atmosphere globally.

Then: Frozen oceans and vast deserts might sound like something out of a science-fiction movie, but this is precisely what scientists think our Earth looked like 650 million years ago, during what’s called the Snowball Earth Events. While we know that photosynthetic, or light-loving, organisms such as plants and algae survived during these times, it’s not clear where they survived. UW researcher Adam Campbell searches for those refuges that sustained life when the Earth’s land was frozen and barren and its oceans totally blanketed in ice thousands of feet thick. Presented by Town Hall and UW’s Engage: The Science Speaker Series as part of The Seattle Science Lectures, with the University of Washington, Pacific Science Center and University Book Store. Series sponsored by Microsoft. Series media sponsorship provided by KPLU.

UW STUDENTS GET IN FREE. Advance tickets are $5 at www.townhallseattle.org or 888/377-4510 and at the door beginning at 5:30 pm. Town Hall members receive priority seating. Downstairs at Town Hall; enter on Seneca Street. Double feature! Your ticket to this event also gains entry to Annalee Newitz: How Humans Will Survive a Mass Extinction at 7:30 pm.