Eastern students discuss effects of climate

By Katie Dunn, Staff Writer

Inside the JFK library on Dec. 1, Eastern’s Global Environmental Politics class displayed their posters on climate change in the Pacific Northwest.

The class is run by Vandana Asthana, associate professor of government.

Asthana said because of class sizes, the last time her class did a poster project display was in 2010.

This year she has 18 students in her class, who in teams of three were able to produce six posters.

Asthana said this display is meant to educate people on climate change and to make them aware of how they are being impacted.

Poster subjects varied from freshwater, fisheries, ocean water levels, agriculture, forests and the overall influence climate change is having.

Government 402 student Riley Wyatt said that he had fun working on the project.

“I come from a sort of rural agricultural background so it was kind of fun getting to talk to some people back home about this stuff and getting their thoughts on it,” said Wyatt. “It was pretty eye opening.”

Wyatt’s group’s poster is on how climate change affects agriculture.

“Agriculture is being affected in a lot of ways,” said Wyatt. “Increases in CO2, while it can be detrimental because of increased temperatures, can actually be a good thing in certain areas. It helps with soil fertilization.”

Wyatt said one of the negative influences is increased temperature because it causes dairy cows to produce less milk.

Bronti DeRoché’s group’s poster focuses on the impact climate change has on forests in the Pacific Northwest.

DeRoché said that it is harder to tell how the forests are being affected because the changes are slow, but that it is more dangerous because it is easier to ignore.

“[The students] acknowledge the uncertainty of science and risk, but they also believe that the available science does suggest that climate change is happening therefore we should make effort to make people aware and to look at mitigation opportunities,” said Asthana.