Home > Meetings > BrownBag > Northern Region AWRA Alaska Northern-Region Meetings

Molly E Tedesche, AWRA Northern-Region Director

Dates and locations vary and are subject to change for the 2014-2015 talks, and we will make every attempt to keep you informed of any changes as they occur. We plan to send an email out the week prior to each talk, so if you have not been receiving emails and wish to, please contact Molly E Tedesche at (907) 474-1875 or metedesche@alaska.edu. We are also aiming to put each talk online via WebEx this year, so if you can't make it to the meeting, please contact us to sign up for WebEx access to the talk. Brownbag talks are from 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm on the first or second Wednesday of each month. We meet in the conference room at the Department of Natural Resources, 3700 Airport Way (across from the Airport Way Fred Meyer Store).

Wed, Feb 18th, 2015

Katrina E. Bennett, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Student
Los Alamos National Lab

Investigating snow cover depletion timing in boreal watersheds of Interior Alaska from remote sensing, in situ measurements, and statistical modeling

Snow cover depletion timing in boreal Interior Alaska is a fundamental process that affects multiple climatic, human, and ecological systems and is known to be changing in response to amplified climate warming. The lack of a high quality, spatially and temporally dense meteorological network in Alaska for use in basin-scale snowpack modeling necessitates alternative methods to estimate melt timing. This study provides an estimate of snow melt timing characteristics for 38 stations across Interior Alaska using the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) remote sensing snow cover extent (SCE) products and a nonlinear regression approach (2000-2012). The nonlinear model replicated the depletion curve with accuracy compared to observed data, and showed promise as a statistical tool to define melt timing. One index, the date of maximum snow depletion initiation, closely correlated with snow depth observed at climate stations (average rho=0.57, p-values < 0.001). The nonlinear model parameters were then predicted based on tree regression of climate and physiographic indices to estimate the year-to-year snow depletion timing. Important climate and physiographic variables identified were temperature, albedo, wind speeds combined with topographic features (slope and aspect). The SCE curve was estimated for 1979-2012, allowing for further analysis of snow melt metrics over time. The technique was also used to generate an Alaska-wide example of the variability in select melt timing indices, highlighting the unique response of boreal interior. The methods described in this work can be used to illustrate the pattern of snow cover depletion for river forecasting and water resource management.

Molly E Tedesche, MS
PhD Student
International Arctic Research Center
Water and Environmental Research Center
University of Alaska Fairbanks

Promoting K - 12 STEM education in rural and remote Alaska

Many elementary schools in the United States are not adequately preparing students for higher education science content, and in turn, for careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines. This may be especially true for underserved populations of students in rural and remote urban communities, such as those found in Alaska. Conventional methods of elementary science education may be less effective for students with unique cultural backgrounds or for those living with fewer resources than their peers, as are many young students in Alaska. As both a volunteer for the Girl Scouts of Alaska Rural Southwest program, as well as a CASE GK-12 (Changing Alaska Science Education) Fellowship recipient, I have worked to bring more science into classrooms and more interest into the sciences, in both urban Alaska (Fairbanks), as well as in more rural settings in the YK Delta and the in interior. As a hydrologist, I have worked to teach the unique importance of water and climate for the people of Alaska to my young students, and they have taught me the importance of applying such knowledge to local issues and culture. This type of education is important for building confidence in young students, as well as for developing critical thinking and leadership skills, so that they can be advocates for themselves and for their communities in the ever changing Arctic. It is my intent that these science education outreach activities will contribute in a small way to building the resiliency of young Alaskan students through education in the STEM disciplines.

Mar 12th, 2015 - Chena River Slough Flood Hazard Mapping Project Status Update - Doug Sims

April 2015 - Spring Snowpack Summary and River Breakup Forecast for Alaska - Scott Lindsey

June 11, 2015 - The High Latitude Satellite Proving Ground, and What it Means for Weather and Water Forecasting in Alaska - Eric Stevens, MS

July 9th, 2015 - TBA

August 13, 2015 - TBA

Northern Region Brown Bag Agendas and Available Abstracts

Please visit our previous years Northern Region Brown-Bag abstracts and talks. Information is kept on-line to better serve our speakers, members, and the public.

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