Category: Earth Sciences

Photo Essay: Open House at Lamont-Doherty

by | 9.17.2014 at 12:55pm | 1 Comment
globes 960

Bend a rock. Channel your historic ‘birthquake.’ Check out rocks, fossils, sediment cores and more at Lamont’s Open House on Saturday, October 11.

What Everyone Should Know About Climate Change

by | 9.17.2014 at 11:34am
Kroeker_Kristy UC Davis

Climate scientist William D’Andrea of the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory asked young scientists attending a symposium last October, “What do you wish everyone knew about climate change?” He turned the responses into this video, which covers the topic pretty well.

Is the Highest Climb Sustainable, and Who Pays the Price?

by | 9.16.2014 at 1:52pm
Khumbu Icefall, Everest, Photo: Mahatma4711

The Khumbu Icefall on Mount Everest is perhaps the most well-known and notoriously dangerous glacial feature on the planet. In a fresh post on the Glacier Hub blog, the Earth Institute’s Ben Orlove, writing with anthropologist Pasang Yangjee Sherpa of Penn State, recounts a recent workshop held in Kathmandu to address the issues raised by the tragic deaths last spring of 16 Nepalese guides who were preparing the trail for this year’s climbing expeditions.

The Columbia Geology Tour: Stories in the Stones

by | 9.15.2014 at 9:00am | 1 Comment
David Walker. Photo: Kim Martineau

For the last decade or so, Columbia University geologist David Walker has led students and colleagues on a tour of the geologic gems hiding within Columbia’s campus. Along the way, Walker finds evidence of how life on Earth has evolved over 4.5 billion years.

Photo Essay: Studying Fracking’s Effects, Up Close and Personal

by | 9.2.2014 at 1:38pm
Geochemist Beizhan Yan of Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory is studying the environmental effects. His vest carries sensors to record air quality and noise levels as  he walks.

Ten years ago, hydraulic fracturing barely existed. Today 45,000 fracked wells produce natural gas, providing energy for millions of homes and businesses, and nearly a quarter of the nation’s electricity. But scientists are far behind in understanding how this boom affects people near wells. Geochemists Beizhan Yan and James Ross of Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory are trying to fill in this gap.

Erosion, Then Explosion

by | 8.29.2014 at 10:00am
Illustration: Peters & Gaines, Nature, 2012

When viewing The Great Unconformity,
The result of a vast denudation,
One feels a new sense of enormity …
And above it lie critters crustacean!

Practicum Introduces Students to Earth Institute Research

by | 8.27.2014 at 3:59pm
hurricane

Each fall the Earth Institute offers a broad survey of the applications of frontier research to the practice of sustainable development through contributions from Earth Institute researchers and directors in the Earth Institute Practicum. The practicum provides an opportunity to learn about salient issues in sustainable development, sustainability management and environmental science from world-class faculty and researchers in these areas.

Faint Young Sun

by | 8.22.2014 at 10:31am
Image credit: Science online, J.F. Kasting

Through an ancient looking-glass,
Perhaps you’d see more H2 gas,
And if with denser gas collided,
Greater greenhouse warmth provided.

Reflections of a Changing North

by | 8.22.2014 at 8:48am
The Kullorsuaq waterfront. (Photo M. Turrin)

No one ever leaves the field the same way they entered it. Yes there is a new layer of mud on equipment, the expected wear and tear on your gear and your physical being. But also, an intangible shift in perspective.

Beneath an Icelandic Glacier, Another Eruption Brewing

by | 8.19.2014 at 3:14pm
An eruption pierces the glaciers at the Bárðarbunga volcano. Photo: Oddur Sigurdsson, Iceland Geological Survey

The 2,000-meter tall Bárðarbunga volcano in Iceland is at risk of eruption, an event that could send a cloud of ash and steam high into the atmosphere and cause extensive disruptions in air travel, among other effects, according to media reports. Earth Institute scientist Ben Orlove looks into it on the Glacier Hub blog.