UH professor offers talks on effects of climate shift
A Hawaii professor is giving three public talks to pass on information on climate change from former Vice President Al Gore and his team of scientists.
Joshua Cooper, who teaches world politics and human rights at Maui Community College and global futures and environmental politics at the University of Hawaii-West Oahu, attended Gore's training session in Nashville, Tenn., earlier this month.
"It was pretty phenomenal," said Cooper, who will conduct three days of talks, today through Saturday, sponsored by the Hawaii Institute for Human Rights. Renowned climate change scientists and educators explained 260 slides and answered questions on all the issues, he said of the Nashville training.
The sessions were based on Gore's documentary, "An Inconvenient Truth," showing the effects of global warming and possible solutions.
Cooper said his talk and slides will focus on causes of climate change, signs of change on the planet and how they affect humans.
He said he will tell students what they can do to start sustainable living practices and carry them on into careers.
As an example, he said he got rid of his car on Earth Day last year and now walks to UH from Kapahulu or takes the bus or rides a bike.
His first talk was scheduled at 3:30 p.m. today in Science 10A, Maui Community College, on "The Climate Crisis: Our Moral Call to Action."
He will discuss "Climate Change in the Pacific: What Can We Do," at 11:30 a.m. Friday in D-102, University of Hawaii-West Oahu.
His final talk will be at 4 p.m. Saturday at Hawaii Community College in UCB Room 100.
Besides his faculty jobs, Cooper has worked summers the past four years at the United Nations with the government of Tuvalu.
He said he has been working at the U.N. in a working group on indigenous peoples and a subcommittee on promotion and protection of human rights.
"Global warming is not just about the environment," he said, but also about how it affects humans.
Sea level rise from global warming has already affected Tuvalu, an atoll between Hawaii and New Zealand with 10,000 people, he said.
"It will be the first (Pacific island) to disappear," Cooper said.
He said he is working with Tuvalu on a Pacific summit to raise awareness of issues related to climate change and possible solutions.
The theme, he said, is "Today Tuvalu and Tomorrow Honolulu."