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Welcome to the 2008 Briefing Series for Members of Congress and Staff

This year's theme is "USGS Climate Change Science: Exploring the Past, Observing the Present, Forecasting the Future"

Previous Congressional Briefings

Climate Change: Impacts on Coastal Communities

U.S. coastal communities, environments, and economies are especially vulnerable to sea-level rise and other climate change impacts. At the same time, they face continuing challenges from population growth, coastal erosion and storms, and habitat loss. Coastal zone managers and policy-makers require sound information and science-based tools to prepare for and respond to changing coastal conditions in the coming decades. Come learn how the USGS and its partners are working to provide and apply the science needed to anticipate and address climate change impacts on our vulnerable coasts.

This briefing will address similar topics modified from presentations at the USGS congressional briefing held March 28, 2008.

Date: April 22, 2008


DOI logoKameran Onley
Acting Assistant Secretary for Water and Science
Department of the Interior


CSO logoBraxton Davis
Director of Science and Policy
South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control's Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management

USGSTodd Davison
NOAA Gulf Coast Service Center

USGSE. Robert Thieler
Research Geologist
U.S. Geological Survey

Time: 2:00 pm

406 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C

Congressional Sponsors:
Climate Change: Impacts on the Colorado River 
PDF (1.4 MB)
Powerpoints: Hosted by: The following links leave the USGS site.

Speaker Biographies

Kameran Onley

Kameran L. Onley is the Acting Assistant Secretary for Water and Science at the Department of the Interior (DOI). Additionally, she serves as the principal advisor to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary on environmental policy issues, Chair of the South Florida Ecosystem Restoration Task Force, and principal DOI member of the Interagency Committee on Ocean Science and Resource Management Integration. Prior to joining DOI, Kameran served as the Associate Director for Environmental Policy at the White House Council on Environmental Quality. She also led the Interagency Ocean Policy Group in the development of the President’s “U.S. Ocean Action Plan” and served as a co-chair of the Subcommittee on Integrated Management of Ocean Resources. Kameran received her B.A. degree from Seattle University in economics with a minor in biology, and an M.S. degree in agricultural economics from Clemson University.

Braxton Davis

Braxton Davis is the Director of Science and Policy for South Carolina’s Coastal Zone Management Program, where he leads long-term science and policy initiatives focused on shoreline management and ocean resource planning. Over the past five years, he has worked with NOAA and the Coastal States Organization (CSO) on several national studies related to coastal and ocean policy issues. For the past year, he served as Chair of CSO’s Climate Change Work Group, which is working to bring coastal States’ perspectives on climate change and related issues to the Federal government. Braxton has a B.S. degree in environmental sciences from the University of Virginia, an M.S. degree in biological sciences from Florida International University, and a Ph.D. in marine affairs from the University of Rhode Island.

Todd Davison

Todd Davison was hired by the NOAA Coastal Services Center (CSC) in August 2006 to manage NOAA’s Gulf Coast Service Center, located at the NASA Stennis Space Center. He is also the lead for CSC’s Hazards Team and plays a key coordination role for NOAA’s Community Resilience effort. Prior to joining NOAA, Todd was named Director of the FEMA Region IV Mitigation Division in 1996, and his service with FEMA dates back to 1985. Before that, he was employed by the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources for five years in floodplain and coastal zone management programs, where he helped develop and manage the Louisiana Flood Control Grant Program. Todd holds both B.S. and M.S. degrees in physical geography and geology from Louisiana State University and completed other graduate work at the University of Maryland.

E. Robert Thieler

E. Robert Thieler is a research geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey. Rob conducts research on the geologic framework and dynamics of the coastal zone. This includes understanding relationships between geology, sediment transport, and coastal erosion. He developed a widely used GIS software package for measuring shoreline change and worked with several State agencies to develop long-term shoreline change data for coastal management. Rob has completed preliminary assessments of coastal vulnerability to sea-level rise at the national scale and for 23 National Park Service units worldwide. He is also a lead author of a U.S. Climate Change Science Program report on sea-level rise and serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Coastal Research. Rob received his M.S. degree in environmental science and Ph.D. in geology from Duke University.

For information on the USGS Climate Change Science briefing series, please call 703-648-4455.

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