L.A.'s Climate Future: What's Coming and What Choices We Face

L.A.'s Climate Future: What's Coming and What Choices We Face

An Oppenheim Lecture featuring UCLA Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences & Institute of the Environment and Sustainability Professor Alex Hall.


About the Lecture

Scientists have been warning about the global impacts that climate change will bring over the coming decades — but what do those impacts mean for Los Angeles? Do they spell doom for life as we know it in our California paradise? To answer these questions, Professor Alex Hall presented an Oppenheim Lecture on the results of his ground-breaking research on the local impacts of global climate change in the Los Angeles region on May 15, 2013.

By downscaling global climate models to very high resolutions, Professor Hall’s work makes climate change relevant to everyone by predicting what the climate will be at the neighborhood level, where people live, work, and play. He predicts the changes that will take place across the Los Angeles landscape by 2050 and 2100, from warmer temperatures and more frequent extreme heat events, to reduced snowfall in the region’s mountain ranges and more frequent, larger fires. This work is of critical interest to anyone who needs to prepare this region for the inevitable changes in climate: fire departments, public health officials, electric and gas utilities, businesses, and water and flood control agencies. Dr. Hall also makes it clear that while some climate changes are inevitable, what we do as a society can avoid some of the most extreme climate changes that “business as usual” will bring.

About Alex Hall

Dr. Hall is an associate professor in UCLA’s Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences and a member of UCLA’s Institute of the Environment and Sustainability, where he is the faculty director of the UCLA Center for Climate Change Solutions. He is a member of the executive committee of theUCLA-JPL Joint Institute for Regional Earth System Science and Engineering.

He is an internationally recognized climate scientist and member of the Fifth Annual Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Change (IPCC), and the international body that the United Nations relies on for climate predictions. He is a currently a lead author of the IPPC report’s chapter on Climate Phenomena and their Relevance for Future Regional Climate Change. His previous work on the 2007 IPPC reports includes helping to develop the global climate models used by the IPPC.

He is a recipient of the NSF Graduate Fellowship (1993-1996), the NASA Earth System Science Fellowship (1996-1998), the Lamont Fellowship (1999-2001), and the NSF CAREER award (2002-2007).