in the Blue Hills
Photo Credit: Lisa Tringali
Spring Speakers Series
Climate Change in
the Blue Hills
The Blue Hills Climate Action Coalition invites the community to explore how climate change will alter the Blue Hills and surrounding communities. Experts from organizations in and around the reservation will reveal how the warming climate will affect the watershed, woodlands, birds, food production and other flora and fauna of the Blue Hills area. The series’ aim is to raise public awareness about the local impacts of climate change and
showcase the groups in the Blue Hills area working to address them. Each lecture will take place at 6:30 pm on the dates listed below. To sign up click on link below each session. The issues and organizations featured in the series are:
Thursday, February 18
Recording Blue Hills Weather: What do the Climate Trends Tell Us?
Blue Hills Observatory and Science Center
The Blue Hill Observatory is the longest continually operating weather observatory in the entire country. This makes it an excellent climate study resource. Don McCasland, Program Director at Blue Hill Observatory and Science Center, will discuss the long-term homogeneous methods the center uses to collect climate data. The data, dating back to the mid-19th century, reveals important trends of warming temperature, shorter winters, greater extremes, and how it relates to climate data from other sites.
Thursday, March 4
A Local Farm’s Approach to Climate Change
Brookwood Community Farm
How most food is grown and transported has significant impacts on the climate and global
warming. Approximately 20% of global greenhouse gas emissions is directly related to food production. But you can make a difference! Learn how you can reduce your carbon footprint by eating locally and choosing food from local and sustainable farms. Brookwood Community Farm’s farm manager Sara Rostampour will discuss Brookwood’s commitment to sustainable practices and how you can become a member to its “community supported agriculture” program.
Thursday, March 18
Birds and Climate Change
Although the rise of sea levels due to climate change have fairly direct impacts on coastal bird populations, changes in temperature and precipitation patterns also raise less obvious challenges for breeding birds in the Blue Hills and Massachusetts as a whole. This presentation, by Dr Jon Atwood, Director of Bird Conservation for Mass Audubon, will give an overview of the impacts that changing climate conditions will likely have in bird populations in the Blue Hills, and suggest steps to address these problems.
Thursday, April 1
Managing Climate Impacts on Diverse Plant Collections
Mary May Binney Wakefield Arboretum
The Mary May Binney Wakefield Arboretum is a 25 acre property that lies within the much
larger Blue Hills and Neponset River ecosystem. The arboretum’s plant collection includes a very broad range of both native and non native species. This allows a unique opportunity to study the impacts of a changing climate on a variety of species. Arboretum Director Debbie Merriam will highlight some of the observations of the cascading impacts of a changing climate on plant species and its management strategy to adapt to these changes.
Thursday, April 15
At the Foot of the Hills: Water and Watersheds in a Warming World
Neponset River Watershed Association (NepRWA)
Climate change is here, and waterways like the Neponset River and the neighborhoods around them are already seeing real impacts. NepRWA Executive Director, Ian Cooke, and Advocacy Director, Kerry Snyder, will discuss the major "water changes" that communities face, the risks they pose, and the potential local solutions to protect the environment, and public health and safety.
Thursday, April 29
Wetlands and Vernal Pools of the Blue Hills: Who lives there,
what do they do, and how will climate change affect these species?
Friends of the Blue Hills
Permanent and temporary freshwater wetlands are critically important communities in Southern New England. They are home to some of the most unusual and unique plant and animal species in our area. These wetlands also provide vital ecosystem services upon which we depend. In this informal talk, UMass Biologist Rick Kesseli will look at some of the unique creatures in these systems, discuss what they do and why they are important, and peek into the future at how human activities and climate change might impact these communities.
The Climate Change in the Blue Hills speakers series is sponsored by the Blue Hills Climate
Action Coalition, whose members include Bike Milton, Blue Hill Observatory and Science
Center, Brookwood Community Farm, Canton Residents for a Sustainable, Equitable Future, Eleanor Cabot Bradley Estate, First Parish Milton U.U., Friends of the Blue Hills, Mary May Binney Wakefield Arboretum, Mass Audubon, Milton Public Library, Milton For Peace, Milton Change Makers. Neponset River Greenway Council, Neponset River Watershed Association, Quincy Climate Action Network, Sustainable Milton, Sustainable Canton, and the Trustees of the Reservations.