Australian Wildfires, Climate Change, and Why Your Choices Have Global Consequences

The scale of devastation caused by the wildfires in Australia is difficult to comprehend.  Who can picture over 26 million acres or 41,000 square miles, and over 5,500 buildings laid to waste?  The only way we can come close is by using satellite photos and videos. Smoke billows over areas far larger than the fire …

Experiencing Our Changing Earth

If the bridge by Our Changing Earth’s entry looks familiar, there’s a reason. According to recent freeway counts by FHI and Connecticut’s Department of Transportation, 51 million vehicles cross the Bulkeley Bridge every year. Chances are, you have been in one of them. This scale version of the Bulkeley Bridge actually bridges several themes from …

“Our Changing Earth” Explores Implications of Climate Change

A version of this commentary was previously published in the Journal Inquirer on Nov 5, 2019 Issuing a clear and compelling warning to residents of every country on every continent across the planet, the United Nations has delivered a comprehensive report outlining the stark “signs of harm caused by climate change. Coral reefs are dying, …

Reducing the Heat Island Effect, Even During Sweater Weather

The urban heat island effect (UHI) may not be at the forefront of your mind in November. This year-round phenomena is more noticeable in the summer, when cities are anywhere between 1.8 to 5.4°F warmer than surrounding rural areas, on an average day. A 2014 study found Hartford to be, on average, 2.5°F warmer than …

21 Day Earth Challenge: 21 and Done

It’s been three weeks since Science Straight Up nudged me toward swapping throwaway coffee cups with a reusable mug. How did I do? It was around the beginning of the third week that I cracked. Somehow I left both travel mugs at work, and in the midst of a particularly stressful morning, decided I could …

21 Day Earth Challenge: Flexing

Something that “Our Changing Earth” drives home is the need for resilience. Extreme weather events are increasing in frequency and intensifying in impact, and it is becoming more likely that we will be facing multiple hazards at once. The exhibit emphasizes preparing for natural disasters; could it hurt to be more flexible in our personal …

21 Day Earth Challenge: Mugs For Days

It’s been one week since we started the #21DayEarthChallenge and I am in it to win it. Day One: It’s not as if there were no mugs in my cupboards, and that fact has gnawed at me. Why has it been so difficult to open a door, take out a mug, and carry it when …

21 Day Earth Challenge: Our Changing Earth, Ourselves

Is there a better way to celebrate the opening of the Connecticut Science Center’s “Our Changing Earth” exhibit than to plunge right into the hard stuff and explore climate change? With a little levity, that’s exactly what we did at Science Straight Up, the adults-only happy hour event. Because I’m still an eight year-old at …

Planning a Greener Holiday Office Party

Tasked with planning the office holiday party, but don’t want to ruin it, Dwight Schrute style? It needs to be fun — but not so fun you get fired — and as environmentally sustainable as your budget will allow. After chatting with Trevor E. Furrer, Managing Partner of Riverhouse Hospitality, I have a better idea …