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Dr. Laurence Kalkstein is President of Applied Climatologists, Inc.  His academic
career spans over 40 years and appointments at three universities: UCLA, the
University of Delaware, and the University of Miami. He received his undergraduate
degree from Rutgers University and his Masters and Ph.D. from Louisiana State

His team works closely with international weather, environmental, and health
agencies on projects dealing with weather and public health issues.  Recent
collaborations involve detailed evaluations of how “cool cities solutions”, such as
reflective roofing and paving products and additional urban tree canopy cover, can
alter heat wave meteorology and mitigate health problems during excessively hot
weather.  Much of this work is funded by the 3M Corporation, which manufactures a
number of products, such as highly reflective roof granules, that are used in urban
cool solutions planning. His newest 3M collaboration involves quantifying the impact
of pollution-absorbing granules upon air quality, and how these can decrease the
number of government-mandated pollution exceedance days in urban areas.

Kalkstein serves as Chief Heat Science Advisor for the Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation
Resilience Center as part of the newly-formed Extreme Heat Resilience Alliance
(EHRA).  This is an ambitious endeavor to rank heat waves based upon their negative
health impacts in many urban areas around the world.  The Synoptic Climatology Lab
is taking the lead in developing and implementing the methodology to achieve this
goal, and operating websites have been established for six cities, including Athens,
Greece, in collaboration with the National Observatory of Athens/Institute for
Environmental Research and Seville, Spain with cooperation from local government
agencies. The scope of this project will be expanded significantly in 2023 to include a
nationalization of the ranking system for Greece and the introduction of the system to
other cities worldwide.​

Kalkstein also serves as principal investigator and co-founder of the Los Angeles
Urban Cooling Collaborative
(LA UCC; consisting of university, governmental, and
non-profit partners) which has developed a comprehensive neighborhood plan to
lessen urban heat island negative health impacts in that city; LAUCC received a two-
year grant from the U.S. Forest Service to pursue this research.  In addition, LAUCC
recently received a grant from the California Department of Forestry and Fire
Protection to understand how urban forestry can reduce the risk of increased human
morbidity during excessively hot events. ​
Additionally, Kalkstein’s lab is presently working with various urban areas in the U.S.
to quantify heat-health relationships, updating existing watch warning systems for

National Weather Service Offices, and instituting plans to develop LAUCC-like
“cool cities collaboratives” within these areas.  One of these collaborations is with the
Wisconsin Heat Health Network, which is funding efforts to specifically evaluate
heat-health relationships for Madison and Milwaukee, WI. This collaborative includes
the Wisconsin Division of Public Health, University of Wisconsin and its UniverCity
, cities of Madison and Milwaukee, and Dane County, WI.  Kalkstein is part
of a similar collaborative in the Philadelphia area, where his laboratory will undertake
a major heat/hospital admissions initiative with funding from local agencies and

Kalkstein and his colleagues have also developed the first cold advisory system for
cattle, or CANL (Cold Advisory for Newborn Livestock). This system, now in
operation at a number of National Weather Service Offices in the Northern Plains,
advises ranchers when weather conditions are unsuitable for young livestock. 
Kalkstein has worked extensively with a large number of non-profit environmental
organizations to evaluate the impact of climate and climate change on human health. 
This includes a funded collaboration with the Natural Resources Defense Council, to
evaluate the impact of climate change upon heat-related negative health outcomes, the
Union of Concerned Scientists, to determine if the hottest air masses are becoming
more frequent and oppressive, the Cool Roof Rating Council, to evaluate how
differing roof surfaces can alter meteorology, and the Global Cool Cities Alliance,
where he serves as Technical Advisor.

He has served as lead author on IPCC Working Group II chapters relating to climate
change and human health; he received recognition for this work from the Nobel Peace
Prize Committee in 2007 with Al Gore and the other lead authors.  Kalkstein has
served as rapporteur and expert team member for several UN World Meteorological
Organization panels on extreme weather and human health, and was part of the team
to develop a comprehensive assessment of climate extremes and mortality which was
published in the journal Weather, Climate, and Society.

​Through a Fulbright Fellowship, Dr. Kalkstein was assigned as the American Team
Leader on a U.S. Civilian Research and Development Foundation contract (CRDF),
and has collaborated with the Russian Team Leader (Dr. Elena Grigorieva) to develop
a detailed climatology of eastern Russia, along with the health impacts of this extreme
climate. Both teams met in Birobidzhan, Russia to promote air mass-based
methodologies that have been developed at the Synoptic Climatology Laboratory.  He
has also worked extensively with the Korea Meteorological Administration on
climate/health issues and air mass classifications for major cities in that country, and

has worked jointly with the World Health Organization and World Meteorological
Organization on weather/health assessment projects in Italy and China.​​


Dr. Kalkstein is past president of the International Society of Biometeorology, the
largest biometeorological organization in the world. The ISB deals with wide-ranging
research involving the impact of weather upon animals, plants, and human health and
well-being. Throughout his career, he has published approximately 175 peer-reviewed
manuscripts, monographs, and book chapters in leading climatological, geographical,
and medical journals and has been editor for two major climatological journals:
Climate Research and the International Journal of Biometeorology. Most important,
he has been collaborating with a number of his former graduate students and other
young colleagues who have provided invaluable support in meeting the varied
research demands of the Synoptic Climatology Laboratory. Many of these individuals
are now professors at major institutions such as the University of Oklahoma, Kent
State University, University of Virginia, U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and
California State University, Los Angeles, and have developed major national and
international reputations themselves. Others have undertaken successful careers at
government or private institutions such as Environment Canada, the National Climatic
Data Center, the Scripps Institute of Oceanography, and the U.S. Geological Service.
These collaborations are perhaps the most satisfying success stories of the Synoptic
Climatology Laboratory.

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