Climate change to be discussed at Blackwater Falls

On June 7, the West Virginia conservation group Friends of Blackwater will host a day-long public conference at Blackwater Falls State Park Lodge, featuring more than a dozen expert speakers on the impacts of climate change on the Allegheny Highlands region.

Other sponsors of the “Climate Change and the Highlands: What’s at Stake What’s at Risk” conference are the West Virginia University Law School Center on Energy and Sustainability and the Potomac Conservancy.

Presenters at the June 7 event will include Dr. Lonnie Thompson, a West Virginia native and a renowned climatologist from The Ohio State University; Charles Bayless, former utility executive and president of West Virginia Tech in Montgomery; and Dr. Thomas Pauley, a distinguished Marshall University professor specializing in rare salamander species and their habitat in the Highlands.

Conference registration costs $65; limited scholarship assistance is available. For more information, call 304-345-7663, or e-mail outreach@saveblackwater org.

“This will be the first public event ever focusing on the impacts of climate change in West Virginia, said Tom Rodd, event organizer. “We are going to look at the risks from climate change to the economy and ecology of one of the most temperature-sensitive areas of ourstate.”

“People all over America are starting to have these kind of ‘climate change impacts’ events, whether it be looking at sea level rise on the coasts or drought in the West,” Rodd added. “West Virginians need to be part of that process, because climate change affects everyone – and a lot is at stake!”

Full information is on the web at