The VCS Perspective
Thoughts from Executive Director Brendan O'Neill
What Does Hurricane Sandy Say About Climate Change?
A commentary written for the Vineyard Gazette regarding the "Frankenstorm" of late October, 2012.
Local Impacts: Liz Durkee's 15-Part Series
Originally published in the Vineyard Gazette, these articles by VCS Board Member and Oak Bluffs Conservation Agent Liz Durkee provide an excellent, accessible introduction to climate change issues as they pertain to life here on our island.
Global Climate Change on Martha's Vineyard: The Scientific Consensus
VCS staffer Jeremy Houser has created the following report on the causes, the significance, and the important impacts of global climate change on our Island. Primarily intended as an educational resource, this project strives to present the scientific consensus as clearly as possible, considering the broad range of possible outcomes and uncertainly in predictions. Given the severity of the impacts that become very likely if action is not taken to reduce carbon emissions, when discussing climate change there is no need for alarmism to motivate action.
***Vineyard Gazette article on impacts of sea level rise and the release of this report***
Part 1: Emissions Scenarios and Global Climate Change
Part 2: Sea Level Rise
Part 3: Human Health Impacts
*** Note: For printing, make sure to download the .pdfs to your hard drive and then open them with Acrobat Reader (double click the file icon). Print quality from the online viewer is very poor. The files can be downloaded from the online viewer page (under "File" tab) or from the bottom of this page. ***
Special thanks to the Edey Foundation for their grant supporting this project.
Phil Henderson's Rising Seas Awareness Presentation
VCS Board Member Phil Henderson has built an engaging presentation around a series of maps (called inundation maps) produced by Chris Seidel at the MV Commission depicting what current areas of the Island will be underwater in the future. Thanks to MV Productions, video is available online of the original presentation at the MV Senior Center.
Rising Seas: The Maps
See the very bottom of this page to download large, printable versions of the inundation maps featured in Phil's Rising Seas presentation (caution, very large files). Special thanks to Chris Seidel for her work in creating these.
Other locally-produced climate change videos
Climate Change: Building and Island Understanding: A two-part presentation (video courtesy of M.V. Productions) by environmental experts Bill and Margot Moomaw, hosted by VCS for a public event in 2012. The Moomaws discussed everything from climate change impacts to energy efficiency improvements for homeowners, all centered around a vision of how to "live deliberately."
An Island in Conflict: What to do about Climate Change: A short video by longtime VCS friend Marnie Stanton that looks at some of the most important local climate change issues, featuring an extensive interview with Islanders Chris Murphy and Liz Durkee, along with shorter excerpts from other local opinion leaders. Marnie touches on a variety of issues, but really focuses on the difficult decisions the Island faces as sea level rise and increased erosion complicate the business of coastal planning and managing development. Where should hard armoring of the coast be allowed, and where should we allow beaches to grow and recede naturally? How do we manage the competing interests of private business and property with the public good?
As with all our efforts, our climate change education and advocacy work is funded through the support of our members.
Please join today!
Useful resources from others
Confronting Climate Change in Massachusetts
A good short introduction to regional impacts and the science behind them from the Union of Concerned Scientists
The Union of Concerned Scientists
Climate change information from a scientific perspective, but still accessible to the general public.
The definitive source for up-to-date climate change info straight from the scientists in the field. Head here for the details if the UCS website left you wanting more.
Student's Guide to Global Climate Change
Information for K-12 students, teachers, and administrators from the US EPA.
This climate change blog from WGBH/WCAI, while no longer being updated, still contains a tremendous amount of information of local interest.
Surging Seas: Sea level rise analysis from Climate Central
One of the most ambitious and informative visualizations of sea level rise we've found anywhere. The project is still in development, and the website a little finicky at the moment -- for now, for example, you have to start from Vineyard Haven and move out from there. Use the + and - keys to zoom in and out, and the slider on the left to increase or decrease the sea level the graphic shows. The sea level it shows includes the increase due to sea level rise, high tide, plus storm surge.
The Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences