Field Notes: Volume 2, Issue 6

Dear Friends,

As we settle back into our fall routines, those of us in the Northern Hemisphere are hard-pressed to forget a summer where record-high temperatures threatened ecosystems and economies worldwide. In the Southern Hemisphere, ozone depletion pulled weather zones further south, affecting rainfall patterns, ocean currents, sea-surface temperatures and public health. 

Climate change is a critical challenge for our century, and WINGS Fellows and Flag Carriers are at the leading edge of climate science and discovery. High-achieving botanists, biochemists, astrobiologists, forest ecologists, glaciologists - they represent many fields because it will take many remarkable minds to find sustainable solutions. Their work is revolutionizing our understanding of our magnificent yet endangered world, paving the way for women and girls in science, and giving us hope and heroes. 

Our Flag Carrier program, which supports expeditions focused on scientific results, has helped place multiple climate pioneers in the field this past year. This month alone we have two Flag Carriers studying climate change in the Arctic. Terrie Williams, a comparative ecophysiologist investigating “how animals survive” in a changing world, is in Greenland researching the effects of warming oceans and retreating ice on the iconic narwhal. Sunniva Sorby, a member of the first all-female expedition to the South Pole in 1993, embarks next week on her 9-month overwintering project in Svalbard, Norway, to record extreme climate change events. You can sign up here to receive her weekly updates.

Back in New York City, the adventures continue – with a book club and author Q&A hosted by the WINGS Junior Council; an Explorer Talk and new film on ocean plastic pollution; and a webinar customized for our Fellows and Flag Carriers on intellectual property rights and bridging the gap in the number of patents awarded to women. WINGS advances the work of women overcoming insurmountable obstacles to blaze new trails in their fields. Thank you for supporting our mission and amplifying their voices. They deserve to be heard.

Yours in discovery,
Beth Nixon
Chair, Board of Directors

Laura KaufmannComment