Andrew Dessler

Andrew Dessler

Professor

Director, Texas Center for Climate Studies; Reta A. Haynes Chair in Geosciences

Climate change, remote sensing, climate change policy

  adessler@tamu.edu

  (979) 862-1427

  Eller O&M 1210B

Research

Climate Impacts

My work has shifted towards the intersection of climate change and human society, with the goal of helping us better cope with the impacts of climate change.  This includes work quantifying climate extremes and how climate change can alter them, as well as analyzing how climate change will stress crucial energy, water, and other infrastructure and human systems.  This is a new area for me, so my ideas are still evolving.

Global Climate Physics

Most of my work over the first two decades of the 21st century has been on global climate physics. This includes estimating the magnitudes of the feedbacks (water vapor, cloud) as well as estimates of the climate sensitivity itself.  In all cases, the goal of this work is two-fold: improve our understanding of the physics of the atmosphere, and provide "yardsticks" with which to test of the validity and accuracy of global climate models.  I still have active projects going in this area, but this work will be phased out in the next few years.

Atmospheric Chemistry

I spent much of my early career studying the chemistry of the stratosphere. This included working on balloon- and aircraft-borne water vapor and ozone instruments as well as analyzing satellite measurements of the trace species that control stratospheric ozone chemistry.  Until recently, I continued working on stratospheric water vapor.  At this point, though, I really don’t work on the stratosphere anymore.

Climate Change Policy

I spent 2000 as a Senior Policy Analyst in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (photo). While there, I became aware of a profound lack of understanding among policymakers and the general public about how science works and how to interpret the conflicting claims one often hears in policy debates. Based on that experience, I wrote a book that uses examples from the climate change arena to explain how science is used and misused in the policy arena.

Education

Ph.D., Harvard University 1994

B.A., Rice University 1986

Additional Information

Books

Miscellaneous Stuff

I am a fellow of the AGU and AAAS
I am an editor of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society
I am President-elect of the AGU's Global and Environmental Change section

Links to Dessler's opeds and other outreach

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