Events encourage climate awareness

Guest speakers will lecture today on the dangers of global climate change and how the community can get involved to prevent future damage at the first annual Global Climate Challenge from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at the Cullen Performance Hall.

"There is scientific evidence that the Earth’s atmosphere is warming, and it’s believed to be because of human activity," Peter Bishop, associate professor of strategic foresight, said. "An event like this could help raise awareness."

As part of raising awareness, the UH Global Climate Change is part of national teach-in organization on global warming solutions, Focus the Nation. According to its Web site, Focus the Nation’s mission is to raise national awareness among students through workshops and panels.

Aside from raising awareness, speakers will give advice on how individual contributions can improve the community. Speakers will include state Sen. Rodney Ellis, D-Houston, and Houston Advanced Research Center President Robert Harris.

The climate change event will also feature a fair from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. outside of the Cullen Performance Hall that will showcase an alternative-fuel car. Global warming has become a social concern shown through films, such as the 2006 documentary An Inconvenient Truth, directed by former Vice President Al Gore, and Web sites, such as

The Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture, the UH Law Center, the College of Technology, the Cullen College of Engineering and the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics are also participating in the challenge.

"It is important for students to understand the dangers of (global) warming," Bishop said. "If it continues, 200 years down the line our planet will be in real trouble."

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