Publication Date: 11 December, 2014
UCD Earth Institute is currently hosting the Science & Solutions for a Sustainable Environment conference in the O’Brien Centre for Science. This is a major event arising out of the Earth and Natural Sciences Doctoral Programme (ENS), and brings together over 70 graduate students. The conference involves a series of keynote speakers as well as presentations and posters from the ENS students themselves. Lying behind the conference is the recognition that science alone cannot enable us to use our planet’s resources more sustainably – a close interaction with society and policy-makers is also vital.
The conference was opened on 11th December by the UCD Registrar and Deputy President, Prof Mark Rogers. Welcoming the international audience to the O’Brien Centre for Science he highlighted the urgency of the challenges facing the environment today, as well as the importance of early career-stage researchers in helping to address these challenges.
The first of the keynote speakers for the conference, UC Davis’ Prof Isabel Montanez, also offered a stark reminder of these challenges. Pointing to the ongoing rises in atmospheric CO2 concentrations, she noted that we are now at a stage where previous ‘analogues’ or comparator periods in earth’s history are no longer valid ways of illustrating the consequences of ever-increasing levels of CO2.
Other keynote speakers included Professor Liam Dolan of Oxford University and Professor Owen Lewis of the Irish Green Building Council. Further details of the posters and presentations from the conference can be found at ssseconference.org/posters