National weather conference to take place at South Shore |

National weather conference to take place at South Shore

Griffin Rogers

A national weather conference is set at South Shore this week, giving the public a chance to learn more about climate change and the creation of more efficient transportation.

Operation Sierra Storm, sponsored by Tahoe South, will be Wednesday through Friday. It will feature presentations about climate change and the environment from scientists and experts, according to a news release.

“OSS was revitalized last year to engage the meteorologist media segment, which has significant influence with out potential visitors,” Carol Chaplin, executive director of the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority, said in an email.

The conference will be geared toward informing television meteorologists.

“This is an opportunity for us to build relationships with them through educational opportunities relevant to both their profession and our destination,” Chaplin said.

Two free presentations will be available to the public Friday.

Virgil Welch, special counsel for the California Air Resources Board, will provide the first free presentation, which will address a national study on creating more low-carbon and environmentally beneficial transportation systems.

Welch will speak from 7:45-8:45 a.m. at Harveys.

William Collins, a senior scientist at UC Berkeley and 2007 Nobel Peace Prize winner, will lead the second free presentation and speak about climate change at 9 a.m. Collins is also the keynote speaker of the conference.

Speakers whose presentations will not be open to the public include Duane Waliser of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Julie Regan of the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency and Jeff Piotrowsk, a storm chaser.

How Lake Tahoe communities adapt to climate change is an important topic that has garnered national interest, said Jeff Cowen, public-information officer for the TRPA.

“Lake Tahoe has been at the leading edge of environmental sciences for many years,” he said in an email, “and we recognize that we are on a world stage when it comes to the effects of climate change.”