Kevin Krajick

Kevin Krajick is the Earth Institute's senior editor for science news. A native of upstate New York, he started in journalism at his high-school newspaper in the late 1960s. He has since reported from all 50 U.S. states and 30-some countries, covering science, criminal justice, immigration and other areas. His work has been featured in Newsweek, National Geographic, The New Yorker, Science, Smithsonian and many other publications. He was a 1981 finalist for the National Magazine Award for Public Service for his reporting on organized crime's links to the toxic waste-disposal industry. He is two-time winner of the American Geophysical Union's Walter Sullivan Award for Excellence in Science Journalism. His 2001 book "Barren Lands" is the true account of how prospectors discovered diamond mines in Canada's remote far north. Krajick holds degrees in comparative literature and journalism from Columbia University. He lives on the Upper West Side of Manhattan with his wife and two teen daughters.

Recent Posts

Researchers have discovered a region of highly compacted sediments that could increase earthquake and tsunami danger off Washington and northern Oregon. (Courtesy University of Texas Institute for Geophysics

Ocean Sediments Off Pacific Coast May Feed Tsunami Danger

Tightly packed sediments help the Cascadia Subduction Zone generate large earthquakes, and could boost its ability to trigger a large tsunami.

by |November 20, 2017
In the Peruvian Amazon, a researcher studies a fire set by farmers in order to clear land. (Kevin Krajick/Earth Institute)

Where Is All That Carbon Dioxide Going?

Concurrent with the announcement that human carbon emissions reached a new peak this year, Galen McKinley, a researcher at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, discusses the difficulties of tracking the sources and destinations of carbon dioxide.

by |November 13, 2017
heat maps of United States

National Climate Report: Q&A With Authors

Every four years Congress is provided with a state-of-the-art report on the impacts of climate change on the United States. The next National Climate Assessment is scheduled for 2018, but its scientific findings are scheduled to be published today. Here, two of its authors explain what to expect.

by |November 3, 2017
Kiro samples the walls of the cave.

In Biblical Land, Searching for Droughts Past and Future

Human-influenced climate warming has already reduced rainfall and increased evaporation in the Mideast, worsening water shortages. Up to now, climate scientists had projected that rainfall could decline another 20 percent by 2100. But the Dead Sea cores suggest that things could become much worse, much faster.

by |October 31, 2017
Near the foot of Israel's Mount Sodom, Lamont geoscientist Steven Goldstein (left) and Mordechai Stein of the Geological Survey of Israel inspect a salt cave thought to be 6 million to 7 million years old.

Photo Essay: The Dead Sea, Living Waters and Megadrought

Thousands of years before Biblical times, during a period when temperatures were unusually high, the lands around the Dead Sea now occupied by Israel, Jordan and surrounding nations suffered megadroughts far worse than any recorded by humans. Warming climate now threatens to return such conditions to this already hard-pressed region.

by |October 31, 2017
A jellyfish passes directly in front of the camera.

Under the Sea Ice, Behold the Ancient Arctic Jellyfish

A video reveals mature jellyfish under the Arctic sea ice, where they aren’t supposed to be.

by |October 23, 2017
core repository at lamont-doherty

Ancient Humans Left Africa to Escape Drying Climate, Says Study

Ancient humans migrated out of Africa to escape a drying climate, says a new study—a finding that contradicts previous suggestions that ancient people were able to leave because a then-wet climate allowed them to cross the generally arid Horn of Africa and Middle East.

by |October 5, 2017
A researcher climbs a deposit left by massive volcanism in what is now Siberia 252 million years ago. The eruptions may have led to catastrophic environmental changes, says a new study. (Courtesy Linda Elkins-Tanton)

Study Bolsters Volcanic Theory of Ancient Extinction

A team of scientists has found new evidence to bolster the idea that the Permian Extinction, which occurred 252 million years ago, was caused by massive volcanic eruptions in what is now Siberia.

by |October 4, 2017
In the chilly 24-hour daylight of a spring night, Lamont-Doherty climatologist William D’Andrea surveys Borgpollen, an inland bay on the island of Vestvagoya. Connected to the Atlantic Ocean by a series of passages, the bay once was home to Vikings and their seagoing ships. Some of the islands’ best crop and grazing land is in surrounding hills and valleys, but it was often marginal, depending on weather.

Photo Essay: Climate Change, Sea Level and the Vikings

A thousand years ago, powerful Viking chieftans flourished in Norway’s Lofoten Islands, above the Arctic Circle. In an environment frequently hovering on the edge of survivability, small shifts in climate or sea level could mean life or death. People had to constantly adapt, making their living from the land and the sea as best they could.

by |September 26, 2017
Out on the water, D’Andrea (right) and William & Mary student Moussa Dia assemble a mechanism that they will use to take a core of the bottom.

What the Vikings Can Teach Us About Adapting to Climate Change

The rise of the Vikings was not a sudden event, but part of a long continuum of human development in the harsh conditions of northern Scandinavia. How did the Vikings make a living over the long term, and what might have influenced their brief florescence? Today, their experiences may provide a kind of object lesson on how changing climate can affect civilizations.

by |September 26, 2017