Annual Theme

PCC activities for a given year are unified by a common theme. This year the annual theme will be introduced in a graduate student-led Winter Research Seminar (PCC 586), which features weekly student-led discussions of recent scientific papers on topics related to the theme. This is followed in September with our Annual Summer Institute, which brings research scientists, graduate students, and invited speakers together for a 2-3 day retreat. The last element of our program that speaks to this common theme is the Fall Seminar Series (PCC 586), where local and invited speakers address topics related to the annual theme. (Note from 2012 onward, the PCC will collaborate with other efforts to bring public lectures related to climate science to campus, rather than conducting our own Spring Public Lecture.)

2015 Annual Theme: Interactions between terrestrial ecosystems, land surface processes, and climate. The annual Summer Institute at FHL is scheduled for September 20-22, 2015 (Sunday to Tuesday).

2014 Annual Theme: Climate Variability and Uncertainty. This year, the PCC will focus on on the challenges of preparing for climate change in the presence of climate variability and uncertainty and how human activites impact and influence climate variability. The tentative dates for the annual Summer Institute at FHL are September 15-17, 2014.

2013 Annual Theme: Climate and Ocean Change. This year the PCC focuses on the physical and chemical changes in the ocean that have been observed and attributed to natural and anthropogenic climate change as well as the ecological responses to those changes. We will partner with the NSF-funded IGERT on Ocean Change, to host our annual Summer Institute, accepted as a Friday Harbor Centennial Symposium in September 2013. We will also be participating in hosting the Walker Ames Scholar/spring public lecture by Peter Brewer, an ocean chemist from Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI). The final activity related to this theme will be the fall 2013 seminar series.

In Winter 2012 we transitioned to the annual theme of Ocean Ice Shelf Interactions. This theme aims to draw together research from diverse scientific communities to address issues such as interactions between the ocean and ice sheets in both Greenland and Antarctica, the role of the atmosphere in ocean and ice-sheet change, and the role of Greenland and Antarctica in sea level rise. The summer institute will address the topic of Ocean Ice Shelf Interactions in September 2012 at Friday Harbor Laboratories on San Juan Island; it will be our fourth FHL Centennial Symposium. Check the 2012 Summer Institute event page for details as they become available.

In 2011 we focused on the Water Cycle in a Changing Climate, featuring Larry Schick (Meteorologist)as our spring public lecturer, a summer institute on the topic (as a Friday Harbor lab Symposium)and a fall PCC 586 seminar that reached to global health, water and climate.

The theme of Climate Feedbacks dominated PCC Programs in 2010. Brian Soden of the University of Miami presented our annual Spring Public Lecture, concerning the role of natural feedback processes in climate prediction, on Feb 11, 2010. The Annual Summer Institute, organized by Dargan Frierson, focused on climate feedbacks. The fall 2010 seminar series hosted a wide variety of speakers who addressed issues related to climate feedbacks.

The Past, Present and Future Climate of the Pacific Northwest was the focus of PCC Programs for Spring thru Fall 2009. Jessica Lundquist, UW Assistant Professor in Civil and Environmental Engineering, discussed snow and climate in the Pacific Northwest at our annual Spring Public Lecture on Thursday, 23 April 2009. The Annual Summer Institute, also on PNW climate, was organized by Nate Mantua, and was honored to be FHL's Centennial Symposium: our second! The fall seminar series (2009) also brought local and distant speakers to campus to talk about issues related to climate in the Pacific Northwest.

Climate and Ocean Dynamics was the unifying theme in 2008. Carl Wunsch visited the UW from MIT, delivering two lectures, one to the UW scientists, and one to the public on Ocean Circulation and Climate Change. The PCC Summer Institute 14-17 Sept. 2008, part of the Friday Harbor Laboratory Centennial Celebration, focused on "How does Ocean Circulation matter for Climate Change?". Luanne Thompson organized the event with assistance from David Battisti and Julian Sachs.

The theme in 2007 was CO2, Biology, and Climate Change, which began with a public lecture by Richard Feely on climate stresses on marine ecosystems, and included the September Summer Institute on "Couplings Between the Climate System and Biogeochemistry."