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April 2022

In This Issue...
  • SCIPP Has a New Website Coming This Summer 
  • Concentrated and Intensifying Humid Heat Extremes in the IPCC AR6 Region 
  • NCA5 Public Engagement Workshops
  • SCIPP Hosted the First In-Person Advisory Committee Meeting in Three Years
  • SCIPP's Director Speaks at the "Resilient Futures Symposium" 
  • Researchers at Louisiana State University Presented During Agricultural Leadership Development Program
  • SCIPP's Climate Assessment Specialist Presented to Students at the University of Central Oklahoma
  • Tulsa Achieves a Class 1 Rating with FEMA's Flood Insurance Program 
  • Team Member Highlight: Evan Chladny
  • Upcoming SC-CASC Fire and Climate Series 
  • Climate Adaptation Summer Academy 


SCIPP Has a New Website Coming this Summer


To make our stakeholders' usability of the SCIPP website as effortless as possible, we have decided to move forward with a website redesign. While the new website won't be vastly different from the previous one, it will allow us to more readily disseminate research and remove any current barriers that make it difficult for our stakeholders to find what they need. Built entirely from scratch with our stakeholders in mind, the modernization of the website will prioritize simplicity and ease of information access. 

The new website will use the same link,, which is still fully functional until the final design is published. So keep your eye out for some exciting changes coming this summer.

If you'd like to give us any suggestions on what you'd like to see change on the new website: Click Here!

Visit Our Current Website

Research Results

Concentrated and Intensifying Humid Heat Extremes in the IPCC AR6 Region

Simone Speizer, former Research Associate with the Southern Climate Impacts Planning Program, recently published a study with three coauthors in the journal Geophysical Research Letters that explored the trends in “humid heat” across the globe. Instead of simply looking at temperature, Speizer also took into account moisture in the air using the wet-bulb temperature, a method that more accurately assesses the human health effects of heat.           

The study examined changes in extreme wet-bulb temperatures at a regional level, using the regions from the most recent IPCC AR6 report. Extreme wet-bulb temperatures were found to have increased in most land regions over the period of 1979-2019, with some areas warming slower or faster than the average. The authors also analyzed the distribution of extreme humid heat days across and within years. At the annual timescale, they observed a concentration of extreme wet-bulb temperatures in years with strong El Niño episodes. At the seasonal timescale, they found that some typically dry regions tend to have extreme humid heat days in close temporal proximity to each other and to rainfall events.

The socio-economic impacts of these changes and patterns were not examined in this study, but Speizer provided the following comments about why the study is important: Since our bodies are less capable (or even incapable if a certain temperature is reached) of evapotranspiration in humid heat, extremes can cause serious health effects in humans. Thus, it is important to understand the mechanical drivers of such events as well as their temporal patterns. This way, we are better able to prepare for and mitigate the effects of extremes in humid heat, especially as they become more severe.

Read the Publication Here

SCIPP Workshops

NCA5 Public Engagement Workshops


SCIPP's Climate Assessment Specialist, Darrian Bertrand, and coauthors of the Southern Great Plains chapter as part of the fifth National Climate Assessment (NCA5) led discussions during multiple public engagement workshops. 

The National Climate Assessment is a Congressionally mandated quadrennial report led by the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP). The report evaluates how climate change affects people and places in the United States. Thus, the Public Engagement Workshops allow the authors to gain direct insight from the general public. 

During these breakout sessions, participants discussed the chapter's key topics with chapter authors. Participants also advocated for some of their concerns, priorities, and values regarding climate change. This information allows the NCA5 report to represent the general public's sentiments as accurately as possible.

To learn more about the workshops, and see the agendas, click here

Image courtesy of on Twitter. © 2022

NCA5 Public Workshop Website

SCIPP Hosted the First In-Person Advisory Committee Meeting in Three Years


In March, the SCIPP team and its Advisory Committee met in New Orleans, Louisiana, for the first in-person committee meeting in over three years! Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, previous meetings had to be virtual, but everyone could finally convene again for this exciting week. 

This time allowed the new advisory committee to get acquainted with the SCIPP mission, purpose, and research engagement that is planned as part of our Phase IV grant. It was also an excellent opportunity to meet all the new staff and committee members who joined the team since the pandemic began. 

Advisory Committee Members


SCIPP's Director Speaks at the "Resilient Futures Symposium"

SCIPP's Director, Rachel Riley, was invited to speak at the University of Oklahoma's College of Architecture Resilient Futures Symposium. The symposium brought together speakers from many disciplines, including climate, architecture, environmental sustainability, and more, to discuss the many perspectives of resiliency from climate change with a focus on migration and habitation.

Ms. Riley spoke about the basics of climate change and future trends for the mid-to-late century across the United States. She also went into detail about how climate change is projected to impact Oklahoma. Riley’s 20-minute presentation is available for viewing by clicking here, and it will start at timestamp 36:50.

Several University of Oklahoma faculty members who are affiliated with SCIPP also presented at the symposium including Drs. Simone Domingue, Lauren Mullenbach and Randy Peppler.

SCIPP Researchers at Louisiana State University Presented During Agricultural Leadership Development Program

SCIPP Investigator Dr. Barry D. Keim and Climate Research Director Dr. Vincent Brown continued their engagement with the Louisiana State University (LSU) AgCenter Agricultural Leadership Development Program by presenting a talk titled, "Extreme Events in a Changing Climate". LSU's program was designed to enhance leadership in rural Louisiana by preparing practitioners dedicated to agriculture for future challenges in the industry.

Reaching this group is extremely important because the weather and climate heavily impact agriculture across Louisiana and beyond. It also opens lines of communication between scientists and the agriculture industry.

SCIPP's Climate Assessment Specialist Presented to Students at the University of Central Oklahoma

SCIPP's Climate Assessment Specialist, Darrian Bertrand, was a guest lecturer for the University of Central Oklahoma's Environmental Health class. She presented an overview of climate change and health, including how increased temperature and rainfall can affect human well-being. The class of undergraduate students was very engaged and passionate about climate change and health impacts.

Darrian was then asked to participate on a panel of judges for UCO's Master of Public Health in Community Engagement comprehensive oral examinations for students who chose climate change as a topic. The students highlighted current issues in Oklahoma relating to climate change and demonstrated a comprehensive project outline to address the problems with tangible solutions that incorporated community engagement and input.

New Policy Summary

Tulsa Achieves a Class 1 Rating with FEMA's Flood Insurance Program

The City of Tulsa, Oklahoma, recently achieved a significant disaster resilience milestone and obtained a National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Class 1 rating. Many people and organizations have collaborated over the years to work toward the rating, with SCIPP being one of them. SCIPP funded three interns over two summers to assist the Disaster Resilience Network in their efforts to understand what the citizens of west Tulsa knew about their level of flood risk. Due to this research and the thorough contributions of countless other organizations, the City of Tulsa has turned a corner on floodplain management. 

The Class-1 designation is the highest rating that the NFIP can give and a title only held by one other city in the country, Roseville, California. The rating is based on four categories: public information, mapping and regulations, flood damage reduction, and warning and response. 

The City of Tulsa attained this rating through a comprehensive stormwater management program, floodplain development regulations, consistent drainage maintenance, and more. 

The Class-1 rating also means a 45% reduction in premiums, giving Tulsans the cheapest flood insurance premiums in the nation. 

To watch a video further explaining SCIPP's contributions to the Class 1 Rating, watch this video from NOAAClimate.

Image courtesy of the National Flood Insurance Program on © 2022
Read the Full City of Tulsa Press Release

SCIPP Team Member Highlight

Evan Chladny is the SCIPP Climate Communications Assistant located at the University of Oklahoma. He is a new edition to the team as of January 2022 and is excited to start working with researchers and stakeholders! Evan is currently a Sophomore working on his B.S. in Meteorology with a Minor in Mathematics. His responsibilities on the team include communicating vital climate research, maintaining the SCIPP social media pages, and helping with cross-organization collaboration.

Evan's professional interest is the Meteorological aspect of climate studies, including the impact of climate change on extreme weather events. He is also interested in climate change adaptation, or building infrastructure designed to withstand the increasing severity of natural disasters.

Outside of work, Evan was born and raised in Kansas City before coming to OU in the Fall of 2020. Since he was a kid, weather and storms have also been a passion of his. He is a certified storm chaser with the National Weather Service, but also enjoys storm photography. 

From Our Partners

Fire and Climate Change Webinar Series 


SCIPP's partners at the South Central Climate Adaptation Science Center (SC-CASC) are hosting a webinar series focused on the direct connection between the changing climate and fire weather. The series will also include indigenous fire perspectives and practices. 

Tribal partners of the SC-CASC and their resource managers are eligible to attend, as well as United States Forest Service staff. A complete list of those who can participate is listed on their information page for the webinar.  

The series will have various sessions from May 3rd to May 24th. If you have further questions about the series, please email
Register Here

Upcoming Events

Climate Adaptation Summer Academy  

This June, SCIPP will welcome more than 20 students from all 4 states of the region for an all-expenses-paid academy on climate adaptation. 
Throughout the Summer Academy, students will hear from a variety of speakers on topics including but not limited to: climate-related hazards in the South-Central U.S.; social factors and equity in climate adaptation, climate policy, administrative authorities and their responsibilities, and planning and development skills. Additionally, students will learn about disciplines involved in climate adaptation and have the opportunity to engage with professionals who can help provide direction for those interested in pursuing a career in climate adaptation or a related field. Activities related to each topic will be incorporated throughout the academy, and one day will include a field trip where students learn local planning practitioners’ perspectives on climate adaptation approaches in the region.

To read more about the event, visit the news story on our website! 
News Story

Follow SCIPP On Social Media

For the latest climate news, follow SCIPP on Facebook and Twitter. Research updates and other news may also be found on our website.
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University of Oklahoma
120 David L. Boren Blvd., Suite 2900
Norman, OK 73072-7305

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FAX: 405-325-7282

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Southern Climate Impacts Planning Program · 120 David L. Boren Blvd, Suite 2900 · Norman, OK 73072 · USA

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