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Donald F. Boesch
President, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science

Donald F. Boesch

Donald F. Boesch, an oceanographer, is president of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science and Vice Chancellor for Environmental Sustainability for the University System of Maryland.

Archive: Donald F. Boesch

Winds of change?

MMS had planned to conduct a lease sale for an area off Virginia in as soon as two years. That probably will and should be delayed.

By Donald F. Boesch | May 6, 2010; 09:05 AM ET | Comments (1)

For Earth's sake, energy next

My expertise extends neither to immigration or politics, but as an environmental scientist, I have to say that we are burning up precious time as well as excessive carbon as a result of the political jockeying in Congress.

By Donald F. Boesch | April 29, 2010; 10:24 AM ET | Comments (3)

Think carbon and nitrogen

In the spirit of the 1970s, passage of a bipartisan, comprehensive energy and climate change legislation in 2010 would be a good start for the next generation.

By Donald F. Boesch | April 20, 2010; 01:26 PM ET | Comments (0)

A mosaic?

I would hope that what we are seeing in the Obama Administration's recent announcements are the tiles in a mosaic that will be revealed, by stepping back, as a coherent picture upon completion.

By Donald F. Boesch | April 8, 2010; 03:41 PM ET | Comments (3)

Get off oil

Of course, total energy independence cannot be fully achieved, but there are many good reasons (security of energy supplies and costs to the economy among them) to reduce the U.S. dependence on imported oil.

By Donald F. Boesch | April 1, 2010; 03:34 PM ET | Comments (7)

A potential gap closer

The capture of carbon from CO2 emission streams and its permanent sequestration within geological formations has the potential to be an important gap closer in achieving the steep reductions in atmospheric emissions needed by the middle of this century in order to avoid dangerous climate change.

By Donald F. Boesch | March 26, 2010; 12:49 PM ET | Comments (5)

Fix the brakes first

As concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases continue to increase and warm the Earth there are numerous feedbacks that occur that can either moderate or accelerate the amount of warming.

By Donald F. Boesch | March 10, 2010; 07:07 AM ET | Comments (1)

The legal responsibility to address danger

The current proposals by EPA to regulate greenhouse gas emissions result directly from the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in 2007 that greenhouse gases are a form of air pollution subject to regulation under the Clean Air Act.

By Donald F. Boesch | February 26, 2010; 10:42 AM ET | Comments (6)

Missteps and moisture

Unfortunately, the news media seem more focused on controversy than on substance, contributing to the rampant confusion about "global weirding," as Tom Friedman calls it.

By Donald F. Boesch | February 18, 2010; 08:23 AM ET | Comments (16)

Both are needed

In an op-ed in the Post last month, fellow Planet Panelist Bjorn Lomborg opined that, rather than setting politically difficult limits on carbon emissions that drive up energy costs, governments should radically increase spending on research and development in green technologies.

By Donald F. Boesch | February 4, 2010; 09:21 AM ET | Comments (4)

A matter of when not if

Don't be confused, the significance of the stolen e-mails and the overstatement of the rapidity of melting of Himalayan glaciers is being overhyped.

By Donald F. Boesch | January 27, 2010; 09:14 AM ET | Comments (24)

Not a partisan issue

The Senate considered bipartisan cap-and-trade legislation by McCain(R)-Lieberman(D) in 2005 and Lieberman(D)-Warner(R) in 2008. Why can't it pass a bipartisan Kerry(D)-Graham(R) cap-and-trade/clean energy bill in 2010?

By Donald F. Boesch | January 23, 2010; 08:35 AM ET | Comments (4)

What happened to global cooling?

I thought I should provide an update of my initial posting on this question based on comments and new developments.Here is a great new video addressing the issue of the recent cold snap. Climate change deniers have in recent years...

By Donald F. Boesch | January 19, 2010; 08:51 AM ET | Comments (1)

Climate change, not change in the weather

Simply stated, weather is what we experience from one day to the next; climate is what we would normally expect. Both vary. Last Thursday the high temperature in Denver was a bone-chilling 14 F, but this Tuesday Denver approached a shirtsleeve-wearing 60 F.

By Donald F. Boesch | January 13, 2010; 09:10 AM ET | Comments (5)

Sooner than you think

The impacts of climate change are not just about a theoretical future, but are already being felt today. The federal report released last June, Global Climate Change Impacts on the United States, documented that increases in heavy downpours, rising temperature...

By Donald F. Boesch | January 7, 2010; 06:45 AM ET | Comments (12)

Being realistic

At the close of the Copenhagen Conference, I commented that the Copenhagen Accord reflected a lost opportunity, largely because the negotiations between two largest greenhouse gas emitters, the U.S. and China, were too little too late. With a holiday respite to clear the mind and a return of realism to balance my disappointment, this is how I now see it.

By Donald F. Boesch | December 30, 2009; 10:56 AM ET | Comments (0)

Too little, too late

By any objective measure the three-page Copenhagen Accord that the Conference failed to approve but simply "to take note" of has to be viewed as a lost opportunity.

By Donald F. Boesch | December 19, 2009; 03:58 PM ET | Comments (1)

Common but different responsibilities

The sharing of reductions of greenhouse gas emissions among nations is challenging because the emissions are so disproportionate.

By Donald F. Boesch | December 18, 2009; 08:35 AM ET | Comments (0)

What planet are they on?

I am in Maryland, not Copenhagen, but I am wondering whether anyone at COP15, other than the Saudi Arabian negotiator, is paying any attention at all to the Climategate/Swifthack (take your pick) e-mail controversy that has obsessed the media here.

By Donald F. Boesch | December 11, 2009; 04:20 PM ET | Comments (20)

A finding based on inescapable evidence

In April 2007 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that greenhouse gases are a pollutant subject to regulation under the Clean Air Act and ordered the EPA to re-examine its refusal to limit the emissions of these gases from vehicles.

By Donald F. Boesch | December 10, 2009; 08:15 AM ET | Comments (4)

Yes, no, maybe so

Perhaps the biggest challenge faced by the negotiators in Copenhagen will be how to weave together this veritable Babel of approaches into whole cloth in a way that can then be transitioned to binding commitments.

By Donald F. Boesch | December 2, 2009; 04:52 PM ET | Comments (0)

A purposeful distraction

The widely posted Climate Research Unit e-mails are being misrepresented by climate change deniers as evidence that the science supporting human-caused global warming is fatally flawed or, worse, corrupt.

By Donald F. Boesch | November 24, 2009; 07:35 AM ET | Comments (11)

Ball is in our court

As reported in the Post, the joint declaration between President Obama and Chinese President Hu yesterday included a hopeful clause that the Obama administration is likely to offer emission-reduction targets in Copenhagen if the Chinese offer its proposal as well....

By Donald F. Boesch | November 18, 2009; 09:45 AM ET | Comments (0)

Learn from Europe

I am late joining into this discussion and it is amazing how opinions among the Panelists diverge about the achievements of the Kyoto Protocol, particularly in Europe. A report released last week by the European Environmental Agency (EEA) claims that...

By Donald F. Boesch | November 18, 2009; 08:59 AM ET | Comments (1)

Not for avoiding dangerous climate change

Nuclear power can play some role in America's sustainable energy future in the long run, but don't count on it to slow climate change. Science is increasingly clear that global greenhouse gas emissions must peak within the next two decades...

By Donald F. Boesch | October 29, 2009; 08:36 AM ET | Comments (6)

Validate and verify

Last week, presidents of the 18 prominent American scientific societies wrote Senators a letter making it clear climate change is occurring and that greenhouse gases emitted by human activities are the primary cause. They noted the strong evidence that ongoing...

By Donald F. Boesch | October 26, 2009; 08:32 AM ET | Comments (0)

Doubts About Us, Not Warming

Scientific understanding of the biophysical process and consequences of global climate change will surely evolve as further discoveries are made and hypotheses are challenged. However, even a Skeptical Scientist would have to conclude without doubt that -- based on evidence,...

By Donald F. Boesch | October 15, 2009; 03:51 AM ET | Comments (40)

If Oslo Then Copenhagen

Yesterday, President Obama, while acknowledging that he did not feel that he deserved to be in the company of so many of the transformative figures, said that he would accept the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the American people....

By Donald F. Boesch | October 10, 2009; 09:29 AM ET | Comments (0)

Too Big To Fail

Following the 12 years since Kyoto, the climate change crisis ever more clearly presents a challenge that is too big to fail to meet. Nearly one-quarter of the increase in the atmospheric carbon dioxide levels since industrialization occurred after 1997, as...

By Donald F. Boesch | October 5, 2009; 12:57 AM ET | Comments (1)

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