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      Dr. Steven Businger to Speak on “Severe Weather in a Warming World”

      MA’ALAEA, HI – A free presentation titled “Severe Weather in a Warming World” will be offered by Dr. Steven Businger on Wednesday, August 7 at The Sphere at Maui Ocean Center, as part of Maui Nui Marine Resource Council’s monthly meeting. The talk takes place from 5:30 pm to 7 pm. Doors open at 5 pm.

      This presentation is open to the public and admission is free. Seating is limited so advance reservations are recommended. For reservations, visit http://bit.ly/hurricanetalk

      Dr. Businger is the Professor and Chair of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Hawaii and has devoted the past 30 years to researching the evolution and structure of destructive atmospheric storms.

      “My talk will cover the evolution of recent hurricanes and other severe weather events that have threatened Hawaii, including how and why they form, how their structure affects the hazards they produce, and the role that a warming climate may play in these events,” said Dr. Businger. “I will also cover the similarities and differences between hurricanes and kona lows (a winter half year phenomenon).”

      “We are offering this presentation because hurricanes have a profound impact on Maui’s coastal areas, causing erosion, storm surges and damage to homes and property – and possibly to coral reefs,” said Robin Newbold, co-founder and Chair of Maui Nui Marine Resource Council. “The weather and the future of our reefs are inextricably linked.”

      “Right now, we are fortunate to have our local coral reefs providing an estimated $377.1 million worth of protection from storm surges and big waves to Maui’s coastlines every year, according to a recently released study from the U.S. Geological Survey, The Nature Conservancy and UC-Santa Cruz,” noted Newbold.

      “However, coral bleaching caused by warming ocean temperatures can make corals weak and brittle, and more likely to be broken off in strong waves,” said Newbold. “If the height of our corals is reduced, we can expect more storm-related damage along our coasts. If sea level rises, it will also be harder for corals to break up big waves.”

      “Please attend this talk to learn about hurricanes and severe weather events in Hawaii, so we can all be better prepared and safer,” says Newbold.

      A nonprofit Maui-based organization working for healthy coral reefs and clean ocean water, Maui Nui Marine Resource Council hosts monthly meetings on the first Wednesday of each month featuring guest presenters speaking on issues, ideas and new advances relating to Maui County’s nearshore ocean environment. The meetings are free and open to all. Maui Ocean Center generously donates space for these monthly meetings at The Sphere, its new high-tech facility featuring advanced audio and visual projection and comfortable movie-style amphitheater seating.

      About Dr. Steven Businger:
      Dr. Steven Businger is Professor and Chair of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Hawaii. He has made notable contributions to the atmospheric sciences in several important, yet diverse areas. For the past 30 years Professor Businger has been active in researching the evolution and structure of destructive atmospheric storms, resulting in fundamental contributions to our understanding of the formation of storm systems in cold air streams and in the tropics (e.g., Kona lows and tropical cyclones). To date he has over 80 peer-reviewed journal publications, published 2 academic textbooks, and seven book chapters.

      Dr. Businger was elected Fellow of the American Meteorological Society (AMS) in 2010. He is an AMS Certified Consulting Meteorologist, and in 2011 Professor Businger received the UH Mānoa Chancellor’s Citation for Meritorious Teaching.

      About Maui Nui Marine Resource Council:
      An award-winning, community-based organization, Maui Nui Marine Resource Council is celebrating 11 years of working for healthy coral reefs, clean ocean water and abundant native fish. Maui Nui Marine Resource Council co-founded and co-manages Hui O Ka Wai Ola, a unique volunteer-based ocean water quality monitoring program that gathers data at 39 shoreline locations in South and West Maui. Maui Nui Marine Resource Council is working to restore clean ocean water at Ma’alaea Bay, through a pilot program to use oysters to improve ocean water quality in Ma’alaea Harbor and through upslope projects in the adjoining Pohakea Watershed. The organization also sponsors visitor education programs to encourage respect, protection and responsible use of our local coral reefs. To learn more visit www.mauireefs.org.

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