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InTheLoop | 10.09.2006

The weekly electronic newsletter for Berkeley Lab Computing Sciences employees

October 9, 2006

Report Looks at Effects of Global Warming on Transportation

In a report to be presented Thursday (Oct. 12) at a conference sponsored by the National Academies of Science, a group of climate experts including CRD's Michael Wehner describe a wide range of effects caused global warming on air, ground and water transportation. The report, “Climate Variability and Change with Implications for Transportation,” was co-authored by Thomas C. Peterson, Marjorie McGuirk and Tamara G. Houston of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Climatic Data Center, Andrew H. Horvitz of NOAA's National Weather Service, and Wehner.

According to the report, the changes projected to occur could seriously disrupt air, motor vehicle and rail transportation during hot weather, but make some forms of transport easier during cold weather. The potential effects on shipping range from fewer hazards due to ice in the winter to reduced capacity resulting from lower river levels due to drought.

Because the U.S. transportation system was built for the typical weather and climate experienced locally, moderate climate changes are expected to have little impact on transportation. “However, changes in weather and climate extremes can have considerable impact on transportation,” the report states. “Transportation-relevant measures of extremes have been changing over the past several decades and are projected to continue to change in the future. Some of the changes are likely to have a positive impact on transportation and some negative.”

Wednesday Talk to Examine Nuclear Energy Activities in the U.S.

Per Peterson, professor of nuclear engineering at UC Berkeley, will discuss “Current and Future Activities For Nuclear Energy in the United States” at noon Wednesday, Oct. 11, in 290 Hearst Memorial Mining Building, UC Berkeley. The U.S. is currently re-examining nuclear power as a means to combat global warming, and DOE is part of an international group considering a Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP).

Here's the abstract for Wednesday's talk:
“Currently, nuclear energy provides 70 percent of all non-fossil energy produced in the United States. Nuclear plants operate in base load and compete directly with environmentally problematic coal electricity production while wind—the most rapidly expanding source of renewable energy—is intermittent and dominantly displaces a fraction of clean natural gas consumption that would otherwise occur. Strong competition has emerged at the local and state levels for hosting new nuclear power plants, and, to date, construction license application plans for 26 new nuclear power plants have been announced by U.S. utilities. This talk will review these recent activities, as well as other issues of importance in evaluating the potential future role of nuclear power in the U.S.”

The free talk is part of the CITRIS Research Exchange series (http://www.citris-uc.org/RE-fall2006) and will also be broadcast live online at mms://media.citris.berkeley.edu/webcast.

Job Posting: ESnet Seeking Network Engineer/Software Developer

ESnet has an immediate opening for a network engineer/software developer in the Network Engineering Group (NEG). Under the guidance of senior network engineers, the person in this position will provide support for NEG responsibilities, including design and implementation of ESnet's routing and switching architecture, network services (such as MPLS, Virtual Circuits and IP multicast), network security, network monitoring, network measurements, line/site upgrades and the configuration of ESnet routers and switches. On a rotating basis, the person will serve as principal point of contact for the network and resolve escalated trouble calls. The holder of the position will also participate in either an established or a new software development project for ESnet. More information on the posting can be found at http://jobs.lbl.gov/LBNLCareers/details.asp?jid=19507&p=1.

About Computing Sciences at Berkeley Lab

The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) Computing Sciences organization provides the computing and networking resources and expertise critical to advancing the Department of Energy's research missions: developing new energy sources, improving energy efficiency, developing new materials and increasing our understanding of ourselves, our world and our universe.

ESnet, the Energy Sciences Network, provides the high-bandwidth, reliable connections that link scientists at 40 DOE research sites to each other and to experimental facilities and supercomputing centers around the country. The National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) powers the discoveries of 6,000 scientists at national laboratories and universities, including those at Berkeley Lab's Computational Research Division (CRD). CRD conducts research and development in mathematical modeling and simulation, algorithm design, data storage, management and analysis, computer system architecture and high-performance software implementation. NERSC and ESnet are DOE Office of Science User Facilities.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory addresses the world's most urgent scientific challenges by advancing sustainable energy, protecting human health, creating new materials, and revealing the origin and fate of the universe. Founded in 1931, Berkeley Lab's scientific expertise has been recognized with 13 Nobel prizes. The University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the DOE’s Office of Science.

DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.energy.gov.