UC San Diego Students Join Annual U.N. Climate Meeting

The conference is the first since President Trump announced his intention to leave the Paris climate agrement

Monday, November 6, 2017
By Maureen Cavanaugh, Michael Lipkin
Credit: Associated Press
Above: Fiji's prime minister Voreqe 'Frank' Bainimarama speaks at the opening of the COP 23 Fiji UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn, Germany, on Nov. 6, 2017.

Thousands of scientists and diplomats from around the world gathered in Bonn, Germany on Monday for the latest United Nations climate conference, the first since President Trump announced intentions for the U.S. to leave the historic Paris climate agreement.

Scripps Institution of Oceanography graduate student Tashiana Osbore will be among them.

“I will be like a kid in a candy shop, to be honest, though maybe a little more put together than that,” she said. “It’s really important to have policy that’s informed by strong science.”

Osborne is one of more than a dozen UC San Diego students attending at the conference, known as COP23. Osborne studies atmospheric rivers which are ribbons of moist air that flows from the ocean toward land. These atmospheric rivers are a major factor for California floods. Osborne is researching how California’s topography influences the rivers when they reach land.

Osborne will present some of her findings at a press conference in Bonn, and she said she wants to get as close as she can to the ongoing international emissions negotiations.

“I’m really interested in looking at the climate science I do on a global scale,” she said. “A lot of the issues the world is facing today need to be tackled that way.”

Osborne spoke to KPBS Midday Edition before her trip about the questions she hopes her research can answer and what it will be like as an American scientist in Bonn during the Trump administration.