Commerce Department Proposes Establishment of NOAA Climate Service

By Sheril Kirshenbaum | February 8, 2010 11:49 am

Well this is encouraging and I’ll be very interested to hear your reactions…

Straight from my inbox:

New office would target nation’s fast-accelerating climate information needs
NOAA launches as portal for climate science and services

Individuals and decision-makers across widely diverse sectors – from agriculture to energy to transportation – increasingly are asking NOAA for information about climate change in order to make the best choices for their families, communities and businesses. To meet the rising tide of these requests, U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke today announced the intent to create a NOAA Climate Service line office dedicated to bringing together the agency’s strong climate science and service delivery capabilities.

More and more, Americans are witnessing the impacts of climate change in their own backyards, including sea-level rise, longer growing seasons, changes in river flows, increases in heavy downpours, earlier snowmelt and extended ice-free seasons in our waters. People are searching for relevant and timely information about these changes to inform decision-making about virtually all aspects of their lives.

“By providing critical planning information that our businesses and our communities need, NOAA Climate Service will help tackle head-on the challenges of mitigating and adapting to climate change,” said Secretary Locke. “In the process, we’ll discover new technologies, build new businesses and create new jobs.”

“Working closely with federal, regional, academic and other state and local government and private sector partners, the new NOAA Climate Service will build on our success transforming science into useable climate services,” said Jane Lubchenco, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. “NOAA is committed to scientific integrity and transparency; we seek to advance science and strengthen product development and delivery through user engagement.”

Leaders from numerous public and private sector entities support the creation of NOAA Climate Service:

“Addressing climate change is one of our most pressing environmental challenges. Making climate science more easily accessible to all Americans will help us gain the consensus we need to move forward,” said Jim Rogers, CEO of Duke Energy. “The new NOAA Climate Service is a welcome addition. It will help bring people together so we can also bring about an economic recovery by more rapidly modernizing our nation’s energy infrastructure.”

“NOAA has consistently led the world in climate research and observation,” said Carol Browner, assistant to the president for energy and climate change. “Businesses, communities and governments will rely even more on its expertise and the critical information it provides to make informed decisions based on the best science available. Through NOAA’s improved climate services we will be better able to confront climate change, and the many challenges it presents for our environment, security, and economy.”

“The establishment of NOAA Climate Service will be an important step forward in helping the nation better understand and forecast the changing climate. The Navy’s Task Force Climate Change looks forward to working closely with NOAA Climate Service to ensure that both the nation and the Navy are best prepared for the future challenges posed by climate change,” said RADM Dave Titley, oceanographer of the Navy and director of the Navy’s Task Force Climate Change.

“NOAA’s reorganization to consolidate its formidable capabilities relating to climate science and services in a single office is an important step forward in the larger effort of harnessing relevant capabilities across all the executive branch agencies to help citizens and businesses plan for and cope with climate change,” said Shere Abbott, associate director for environment and energy at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.

To see what other leaders from government, business, science and environment are saying about NOAA Climate Service, and to get additional information, visit

Unifying NOAA’s climate capabilities under a single climate office will integrate the agency’s climate science and services and make them more accessible to NOAA partners and other users. Planning has been, and continues to be, shaped by input from NOAA employees and stakeholders across the country, with close consideration given to the recommendations of the NOAA Science Advisory Board, National Academies and National Academy of Public Administration.

NOAA Climate Service will encompass a core set of longstanding NOAA capabilities with proven success. The climate research, observations, modeling, predictions and assessments generated by NOAA’s top scientists – including Nobel Peace Prize award-winners – will continue to provide the scientific foundation for extensive on-the-ground climate services that respond to millions of requests annually for data and other critical information.

Thomas R. Karl, director of NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center, will serve as transitional director of NOAA Climate Service. New positions for six NOAA Regional Climate Services Directors will be announced soon and will provide regional leadership for integrating user engagement and on-the-ground service delivery within the Climate Service.

NOAA Launches Landmark Portal

NOAA is also unveiling today a new Web site – – that serves as a single point-of-entry for NOAA’s extensive climate information, data, products and services. Known as the NOAA Climate Portal, the site addresses the needs of five broadly-defined user groups: decision makers and policy leaders, scientists and applications-oriented data users, educators, business users and the public.

Highlights of the portal include an interactive “climate dashboard” that shows a range of constantly updating climate datasets (e.g., temperature, carbon dioxide concentration and sea level) over adjustable time scales; the new climate science magazine ClimateWatch, featuring videos and articles of scientists discussing recent climate research and findings; and an array of data products and educational resources.

Followed by this from Senator Snowe’s (R-ME) office:

Snowe Welcomes Decision to Create New National Climate Service at NOAA

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Ranking Member of the Senate Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries and Coast Guard U.S. Senator Olympia J. Snowe (R-Maine) today applauded the U.S. Department of Commerce’s decision to create a National Climate Service at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to further strengthen the agency’s climate science and service delivery capabilities. Senator Snowe learned of the decision in a one-on-one phone call with NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco earlier this morning and released the following statement:

“Today’s announcement that NOAA will create a National Climate Service represents a strong step forward for our Nation as we look to enhance our understanding of global climate change and its impacts on our economy, our communities, and our environment,” said Senator Snowe.  “I have long supported the formulation of a National Climate Service, and when I spoke with Dr. Lubchenco this morning, I pledged to work with her to ensure that this new office operates efficiently and effectively to provide pertinent and practical climate change data for local communities to make cost effective decisions for the American taxpayer.”

“With at least 13 Federal agencies contributing pieces of the climate research puzzle, the system we currently have for integrating their data suffers from excessive interagency review and lack of coordination. That is why I have supported legislation in the past to create a single point of focus for Federal climate research within NOAA,” added Senator Snowe.  “I am hopeful that this office will help ultimately achieve the goal of providing clear, concise guidance to our communities, states, and non-governmental decision makers that will give them and all U.S. citizens confidence in the predictions and projections that will help them understand and adapt to a changing climate.”


Comments (32)

  1. Andy Fox

    Yes, let’s funnel all info through one gateway, it will be easier to make sure that we don’t get conflicting data (i.e., anything that conflicts with the presupposition of AGW) released out into the wild.

    Are there really people out there who are ignoring what is going on with the AGW industry? Maybe this NOAA group will be like Baghdad Bob. “We are winning the war!” “There is no climategate! There is no Glacier gate! There is no Chinese temperature station missing data gate! There is no Russia data cherry-picking gate!”

    The best one of them all: “AGW scientists have integrity, and are intellectually honest!”

  2. Pete

    About tine. The governments been letting blog comnentors feel too much at liberty to make pseudo-science rubbish up.

  3. Andy Fox


    Yes, we don’t want anyone to have an independent opinion about anything. Everyone must parrot the government line. If they don’t we’ll crush them with – – – the government. Who cares about facts, especially inconvenient ones.

  4. @3 Andy Fox,

    This isn’t 1984. This is about a collective future where the PR machine of partisan special groups is influencing the public to think that climate change is being debated as politics lags behind and the planet is already in trouble.

    Will the world go on at warmer temperatures? Most definitely. But at the cost of losing biodiversity and the well-being of people living in nations that aren’t as wealthy as the US.

    So I care. And if NOAA and the Senate Commerce Committee are working to provide the public with a better connection to the scientists involved in the research, I applaud them.

  5. Andy Fox


    Your underyling data, what you base your premises on, is suspect. Only now is that becoming apparent. Partisan special groups had nothing to do with glacier scientists and the IPCC making up stuff about the Himalayas, for instance. It has been AGW partisan special interest groups that have been trying to brainwash everybody into thinking that man has something to do with warming, if it is happening.

    This planet has been warming and cooling for billions of years, and there is nothing you or I can do about it. The Sahara desert used to be a verdant paradise. Shorelines have appeared and disappeared, and there is nothing you or I can do about it. It is sheer folly to spend our resources to try to “stop the wind”. If you think it is warming, and islands or cities are getting ready to disappear, put your money into helping people relocate.

    I am really surprised by all you secular humanists, who ardently believe in macro evolution. I would expect you to cheer any coming warming, for the all the opportunity of new life forms to evolve through adaptation to the new environment. Biodiversity has come and gone throughout the history of earth as well. Would some species go down? Yes, but new ones would arise. Maybe you really don’t believe this after all.

  6. Pericles

    Thanks for posting this interesting article, Sheril.

    I think that this proposed NOAA Climate Service is a good idea. Among other reasons, I think that presenting climate science research in a format like this will help people in general to better understand what is happening with climate, particularly how man’s various activities increasing atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations (e.g. carbon dioxide, methane) is affecting the world’s climate.

  7. Marshall

    Andy Fox:

    It’s hard to take you seriously when you write about ‘glacier scientists… making stuff up.” When was the last time you examined any glaciers yourself? Do you have any first-hand measurements or quantitative knowledge that conflicts with the scientific consensus about warming? Citations, please, preferably in the peer reviewed literature. It’s easy to post online, and much harder to get out there in the field and do real research. But that’s what it takes to make an informed statement here!

    I’m not a climate scientist myself – I’m a physicist – but I’ve visited glaciers on three continents, and seen for myself the clear and unambiguous signs of their retreat around the world. Take a look at the photos at and tell me if you still doubt that the world’s climate is changing.

    You also write about how biodiversity has come and gone, and seem to take that as an excuse for doing nothing (or worse, cheering the destruction of ecosystems?). Yes, ultimately evolution can fill newly-opened evolutionary niches. But to pretend that that process neatly mirrors extinctions shows a profound disregard for the timescales involved. Species can be wiped out in a decade or a year, yet it takes tens of millennia for new ones to evolve. Climate change does not threaten the existence of life on Earth itself, no – but it does threaten to leave us with a poorer, less diverse, less spectacular world for all the foreseeable future of humanity. That’s not a path I want to see our world go down.

  8. SLC

    Re Andy Fox

    I am really surprised by all you secular humanists, who ardently believe in macro evolution

    1. Well, Mr. Fox let the cat out of the bag. Not only is he an AGW denier but he’s also an evolution denier. Not at all surprising as many religious nutcases like him are multiple deniers.

    2. Gee, Mr. Fox must mean secular humanists like Ken Miller, Francis Collins, Francisco Ayala, and Charles Townes.

    By the way, it is my information that Ms. Kirshenbaum is not a secular humanist, but is, in fact at least nominally religious. Obviously, Mr. Fox is just another troll and Marc Morano wannabee.

  9. Andy Fox


    Do not address the point I raised, please just attack me.

  10. Robert E

    AF- You made a point somewhere? I’m having trouble finding it in your overstated, hysterical rhetoric.

  11. Andy Fox


    Where have you been? Maybe you need to be reminded of the recently uncovering of the Himalaya mountain bologna. Here, read this article:

    Here is a nice opinion piece from the Wall Street Journal

    Are you saying Marshall, because I am not the one taking the measurements, I cannot have an opinion about the evidence? This somehow disqualifies me from reviewing the conclusions of others? How about when the others admit they made stuff up, and I use that phrase with confidence, as demonstrated by the link above. How about when the evidence no longer exists? I should not be suspicious about someone advocating a certain position when the evidence is gone, a la chinagate. Has anyone ever heard of the missing evidence rule, or missing witness rule in legal evidentiary law? This is really arrogant of you to say that I should have no opinion.

    Your statement about how the world may be in 10,000 years is pure speculation. You think this, yes, but you have provided no first hand measurements to back this up, have you? 65,000,000 years ago, according to one recent theory, most species were wiped out in just a few months. We are not hurting now are we? Life recovered fairly well. There is my anecdotal evidence that you are wrong, that life will rebound just fine. Do you have any evidence, anecdotal or otherwise, that the temperature being just a few degrees hotter will have any kind of long term profound impact.

  12. Andy Fox

    Robert E.

    ” It is sheer folly to spend our resources to try to “stop the wind”. If you think it is warming, and islands or cities are getting ready to disappear, put your money into helping people relocate.”

  13. Andy Fox

    Robert E.

    Oh, and, the more decentralized the voice of AGW, the better, because there is less chance of the kind of propaganda shenanigan that IPCC pulled.

    I hope my straightforwardness assisted you.

  14. bob

    Sheril, I look forward to you and Chris’ coming effort to build a bridge to Andy Fox.

  15. SLC

    Re Andy Fox

    Since Mr. Fox is an evolution denier, I will quote Richard Dawkins. One who rejects the Theory of Evolution is either ignorant, stupid, insane, or wicked (but he didn’t want to consider that). I wonder what else Mr. Fox denies. HIV/AIDS, cigarette smoking/lung cancer, CFCs/ozone depletion perchance?

    As for the issues raised by Mr. Fox, these have been addressed far better then I can by Tim Lambert over at the Deltiod web site. As Mr. Lambert demonstrates, Mr. Fox greatly exaggerates the .email and Himalaya glacier issues.

  16. CommonSense02

    Because we all know that the solution to all made-up problems is another government agency and MORE SPENDING with MORE BORROWING FROM CHINA. Do they need to be physically restrained to stop? Is that what it’s going to take?

  17. bilbo

    Whoa! After a few posts in the past about “I’m just na innocent bystander looking at the science objectively,” Andy Fox the Innocent Bystander Troll becomes Andy Fox the Raging Science Denialist! NICE!!!!

    Couple questions for ya, AFTRSD (if you can put aside your inevitable tone troll response to me for a moment):

    1.) Is the climate changing? (Yes or no shall do).

    2.) Are Himalayan glaciers meting (A simple yes or no will do).

    3.) Where did the H1N1 virus come from?

    4.) What other broadly-held tenets of modern science do you reject, and why?

  18. Yet another inconvenient truth:

    The sea ice data, cited from NSIDC, stops in 2007. 2008 and 2009 sea ice data and imagery, available to even the simplest of curiosity seekers at the publicly available NSIDC or even Cryosphere Today websites, is not included in the graphic. Mr. Scott chooses the historical satellite record minimum of 2007 as the endpoint for comparison. This leaves a reader who is “not in the know”, with the false impression that sea ice has not recovered in any way.

  19. Robert E

    @Fikes — you should take a look at the graphic in the article you linked to; it clearly shows a continued decrease in sea ice older than two years

    annual ice might be larger from one year to the next, but it’s not sticking around

  20. gillt

    Andy Fox: “I am really surprised by all you secular humanists, who ardently believe in macro evolution. I would expect you to cheer any coming warming, for the all the opport
    unity of new life forms to evolve through adaptation to the new environment.”

    Kook alert!!

  21. Andy Fox


    Thank you, I find your response legitimate, challenging and fair, in light of our completely different worldview perspective.

    My absence from the forums was unavoidable, I was just too busy. Probably will happen again, but at least I can grace you with my presence today.

    1 Climate changing — Maybe, but not because of man.

    2 Himalaya glaciers — possibly, but not because of man.

    3 H1N1 – evil cia plot. no just kidding. Didn’t it come from chickens? I consider the jump to be microevolution, if evolution at all. Some viruses structure can work against more than 1 species, I think. I just don’t believe that mutations can cause whole new organs to grow, i.e., fish develop working lungs. That is a stretch for me. That doesn’t mean that some species were not created with lungs to fill their spot in the biosphere.

    4) It depends on what other broadly held tenet the great scientists of the day are trying to cram down the public’s throats while ignoring any possible evidence to the contrary. Bradley Fikes reference above is another great example.

    If this science were so overwhelming, there wouldn’t be any contrary evidence, or if there were, it would be so trivial that AGW scientists would take the bull by the horns. Instead they show a trend of concealing and obfuscating. This indicates to me 1) the sheer lack of integrity of the AGW movement, because the AGW scientists are so invested in the movement, and will do anything to make sure their face is saved 2) Behind closed doors, AGW scientists are concerned that they are wrong.

    Now a question or two for you:

    1) Is CO2 a poison, or plant food?
    2) Have c02 levels been as high or higher than the current levels in the history of the world?
    3) Was there really scientific evidence that the himalayan glaciers would melt away by 2035, or did they IPCC exaggerate to push their agenda,
    4) Did the East Anglia CRU email scandal reveal that AGW scientists acted without integrity?
    5) Have their been other instances of AGW organizations acting without integrity, by cherry picking data, or making up data?
    6) Are CO2 levels a trailing or leading indicator of planet warmth?

    Obviously I don’t find Richard Dawkins’ opinion to be too authoritative. That would be like me quoting Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity to you. Furthermore, any man to definively say that no God exists, when our knowledge is so limited, is simply foolish. We can’t explain how the brain works, there are plenty of diseases we don’t know how to cure, we don’t have a grip on the fundamental building blocks of matter, people are now questioning whether certain constants we have always accepted are true, such as the speed of light, no one has been to the center of the earth, and we don’t know how far the universe extends. Oh but we know there is no God. ok, whatever. But I digress. You are really arrogant and condescending, but not too articulate. It sure is easy to hide behind your pseudonym when you are throwing ad hominem attacks. Why don’t you give your real name? I did.

  22. Robert E.
    @Fikes — you should take a look at the graphic in the article you linked to; it clearly shows a continued decrease in sea ice older than two years

    That is another issue, and doesn’t answer my point: The NOAA article used outdated information that made the condition of the ice look worse than it is. One would think that after all this controversy, NOAA would check its facts and how they’re represented to make sure they’re accurate and not misleading.

    What’s especially egregious is that the NOAA article went out of its way to rebuke skeptics, saying:

    “When you’re in a court of law, you have to swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. The people who have been focusing on the ‘cooling’ have not been telling the whole truth”

    It seems NOAA holds skeptics to a higher standard than it accepts for itself.

  23. Tristan Croll

    bob@14: I do believe you just won the Internet.

  24. SLC

    Re Andy Fox

    Mr. Fox totally misrepresents Dr. Dawkins view as to the existence of god. Dr. Dawkins has never said that god doesn’t exist. His position is that he has seen no evidence of his existence and has therefore tentatively concluded that, in the absence of such evidence, he probably does not exist. However, unlike the creationists, he has stated that his conclusion would change if such evidence were to be found. This is unlike the position of creationists like Kurt Wise who have stated that no evidence will convince them that the theory of evolution provides an explanation for the existence of the various life forms observed on the earth.

  25. Busiturtle is a win-win. AGW advocates get a convenient URL and AGW skeptics get an easy target. As any hunter knows, it’s a lot easier to hit a sitting duck.

  26. Andy Fox


    A little bit of hedging, I think. A distinction without a difference, I also think.

  27. SLC

    Re Andy Fox @ #26

    If Mr. Fox doesn’t see the difference between the positions of Dr. Dawkins and Prof. Wise, then he is totally obtuse. Of course, that will be no surprise to anyone who reads his comments on this thread.

  28. SLC

    Re Andy Fox

    By the way, when is Mr. Fox going to apologize to Ms. Kirshenbaum for inaccurately calling her a secular humanist?

  29. bilbo

    Andy Fox:

    The climate is changing….”maybe?” Himalyan glaciers are melting…”possibly?” The H1N1 virus is product of evolution….”but maybe not?” Your impotence is highlighted best in the evasiveness of your answers.

    Now to your questions:

    1) Is CO2 a poison, or plant food?

    If you asked a high school freshman, they could answer this tepidly stupid question that is a staple of ignorant denialist shills. Can you remember basic biology class, Andy, or is forgetting basic biology a prerequisite to your brand of halfwit science denial? It probably is. I urge you to go relearn the equations and biology of photosynthesis and cellular respiration, and you will have your answer.

    But since you won’t (because ignorant fools lack the capacity for self-education), the answer is, very clearly: both. Plants don’t use CO2 as “food” (you even phrased your question incorrectly – nice one, idiotic denialist), but they do use it to make food. Glucose, specifically.

    This is why no climate scientist denies that an increase in CO2 inputs to the atmosphere can increase plant growth (which it already has). It’s simply basic biology. But as anyone with half a brain knows, that’s an irrelevant point to the whole of climate science.

    CO2 is also a poison to many organisms to a degree. If you deny this, try hooking up a canister of CO2 to yourself and see what happens. You will die, and the coroner will name hypercapnia as the cause of death. And you will have been killed by your own ignorant denialist lunacy.

    More relevantly, CO2 also undergoes chemical transformations in the ocean to Carbonic Acid, which has already been shown to be directly responsible for the death of marine life. (This, by the way, is just an added nasty effect of CO2 emissions completely decoupled from climate change).

    But of course, what really matters is that climate science doesn’t hinge on CO2 being a “poison” or “plant food” – it deals with CO2 as a greenhouse gas. Which I’m sure you’ll greedily deny.

    That’s irrelevant, of course – because your question #1 was a stupid denialist strawman only. And I just slit its throat.

    2) Have c02 levels been as high or higher than the current levels in the history of the world?

    Can you show us where this is a predicate to the scientific foundation of climate change (using the peer-reviewed literature)? (You likely already know the answer – it involves rates of release – but I want to make sure you undertand the science you’re trying to argue. Show us the evidence to make your question relevant, and I will dignify it with an answer.

    3) Was there really scientific evidence that the himalayan glaciers would melt away by 2035, or did they IPCC exaggerate to push their agenda

    There is scientific evidence that some Himalyan glaciers are already gone (we’ve watched them disappear, and the entire villages now lacking water sources as a consequence are a testament)….but since you admitted to not know whether or not said glaciers are even melting, your ignorance here was expected.

    4) Did the East Anglia CRU email scandal reveal that AGW scientists acted without integrity?

    I’ve seen nothing conclusive yet outside of allegation. In fact, the recent investigation of Michael Mann found no evidence to support these allegations (beyond Mann having a dirty mouth), and even produced hard evidence that destroyed the denialist claim that Mann deleted emails. It was fun to watch denialists celebrate the announcement of this investigation greedily and now pull a full 180 to denounce it just because its findings didn’t play into their confirmation bias.

    But for argument’s sake, let’s pretend the opposite reality occurred. Let’s pretend the investigation of Michael Mann proved that he was involved in gross braches of integrity, and they threw out every climate paper he had ever written. Can you prove to use that this would disprove the 30-year body of work, involving 1,000s of independent articles supporting climate change? Nope.

    5) Have their been other instances of AGW organizations acting without integrity, by cherry picking data, or making up data?

    Actually, I haven’t seen anything conclsuive to support any of those allegations. If an “organization” has made an error or a slip-up, they quickly acknowledge it and retract it from what I’ve seen, and (take note: important part) the science hasn’t suffered from it.

    Now, since you would clearly view “AGW organizations” acting without integrity as fodder to argue that their claims are false in light of your question, let’s look at the track record of skeptic organizations acting without integrity. You know, things like:

    1.) Fossil fuel industries funding and ghostwriting skeptic reports and skeptic organizations.

    2.) Fossil fuel company executives serving as the directors for skeptic organizations (conflict of interest, anyone?)

    3.) Skeptic organizations fabriacting petitions against AGW and forging scientists’ signatures on them….which became a highly-publicized incident that put a massive blemish on the skeptic movement.

    4.) Too many “cherry-picks” from the skeptic community to count.

    5.) etc. etc. etc.

    Somehow I can’t stop laughing that you can’t see the hypocrisy of this “question” slapping you across your ignorant face, denialist trash.

    6) Are CO2 levels a trailing or leading indicator of planet warmth?

    SLC absolutely humiliated a skeptic on a recent thread here who posed this question (so much so that the denialist left), so I urge you to go read that exchange. It involves feedbacks (which I”m sure you also deny…which I hope you do, because it exposes more of yuor hypocrisy regarding question #1), so go read up on those first.

    (And by the way, climate science has evaluated this years ago. You can read the climate literature, too).

    Keep ’em coming, denialist.

  30. Busiturtle


    Let’s assume man made CO2 is held constant. What variability in total CO2 levels would we anticipate in the atmosphere? What variability in global temperatures would we anticipate?

  31. bilbo

    Your question has already been answered by climate scientists, Busiturtle….and you’re ignoring feedbacks. Again.

    Which, of course, is part of your general problem: you don’t understand the science you’re trying to debunk.

  32. Andy Fox


    One of your own admits there has been no statistically significant warming since 1995.

    In fact, as I stated earlier in this discourse, the data is suspect

    Feedback mechanisms are thought to have a negligible and maybe even neutral effect.

    Look Bilbo and SLC, I know it may be hard to confront the reality that you have been sold a bill of goods. You are alarmists by nature, and you are looking for some reason to tell everyone else how to live, and to show that you are better than everyone else. But this sympathy for what you are going through right now is why I don’t call you names and belittle you, but seek to change your mind through logic and reasonable debate, even in the face of your contempt


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About Sheril Kirshenbaum

Sheril Kirshenbaum is a research scientist with the Webber Energy Group at the University of Texas at Austin's Center for International Energy and Environmental Policy where she works on projects to enhance public understanding of energy issues as they relate to food, oceans, and culture. She is involved in conservation initiatives across levels of government, working to improve communication between scientists, policymakers, and the public. Sheril is the author of The Science of Kissing, which explores one of humanity's fondest pastimes. She also co-authored Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future with Chris Mooney, chosen by Library Journal as one of the Best Sci-Tech Books of 2009 and named by President Obama's science advisor John Holdren as his top recommended read. Sheril contributes to popular publications including Newsweek, The Washington Post, Discover Magazine, and The Nation, frequently covering topics that bridge science and society from climate change to genetically modified foods. Her writing is featured in the anthology The Best American Science Writing 2010. In 2006 Sheril served as a legislative Knauss science fellow on Capitol Hill with Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) where she was involved in energy, climate, and ocean policy. She also has experience working on pop radio and her work has been published in Science, Fisheries Bulletin, Oecologia, and Issues in Science and Technology. In 2007, she helped to found Science Debate; an initiative encouraging candidates to debate science research and innovation issues on the campaign trail. Previously, Sheril was a research associate at Duke University's Nicholas School of the Environment and has served as a Fellow with the Center for Biodiversity and Conservation at the American Museum of Natural History and as a Howard Hughes Research Fellow. She has contributed reports to The Nature Conservancy and provided assistance on international protected area projects. Sheril serves as a science advisor to NPR's Science Friday and its nonprofit partner, Science Friday Initiative. She also serves on the program committee for the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). She speaks regularly around the country to audiences at universities, federal agencies, and museums and has been a guest on such programs as The Today Show and The Daily Rundown on MSNBC. Sheril is a graduate of Tufts University and holds two masters of science degrees in marine biology and marine policy from the University of Maine. She co-hosts The Intersection on Discover blogs with Chris Mooney and has contributed to DeSmogBlog, Talking Science, Wired Science and Seed. She was born in Suffern, New York and is also a musician. Sheril lives in Austin, Texas with her husband David Lowry. Interested in booking Sheril Kirshenbaum to speak at your next event? Contact Hachette Speakers Bureau 866.376.6591 For more information, visit her website or email Sheril at


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