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US embassy continues citizen science and climate change program in St Vincent
Published on October 17, 2016 Email To Friend    Print Version

Participants of the citizen scientists workshop pose for a group photo with presenter Dr Gillian Bowser, and Deputy Public Affairs Officer Jeff Barrus at the conclusion of the session at the St Vincent and the Grenadines Community College

KINGSTOWN, St Vincent -- A three-country traveling program to promote ways ordinary “citizen scientists” can help observe and promote awareness of climate change in their communities, sponsored by the US Embassy to Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean and the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), recently visited St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG).

During her visit to SVG, program presenter Dr Gillian Bowser, research scientist at Colorado State University, met with science and geography students of the St Vincent and the Grenadines Community College.

After an engaging discussion on environmental issues facing SVG, Bowser led the students on an excursion outdoors where they observed ‎various specimens found in shrubs and plants on the campus, and photographed their finds.

Bowser also conducted a workshop for a group that was comprised of a number of environmental and non-governmental organizations, and members of the local hotel and tourism association. They collected specimens from various plants on the lush grounds of the venue, as well as from the beach.

“The US Embassy hosted this program because the nations of the Eastern Caribbean are highly sensitive to the impacts of climate change due to their small geographic size, low coastal elevations, and fragile landscapes,” said deputy public affairs officer Jeff Barrus. “These impacts can have far-reaching ramifications for regional economic growth and development, public health, and food security. We support efforts to build capacity within the region to adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change. This begins with widespread awareness of the problem by the general population.”

Bowser is a research scientist at Colorado State University where her research is focused on biodiversity, sustainability, and women’s scholarship. She has devoted much of her efforts to how climate change impacts resources and communities. A native of Brooklyn, New York, she earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology at Northwestern University, a Master of Science in Zoology at the University of Vermont, and a doctoral degree at the University of Missouri – St Louis. She worked with the National Park Service for over 20 years as a wildlife ecologist, including 11 years spent studying insects, bison and rodents at Yellowstone National Park.
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