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In Hawaii, Living With Lava

When the most recent eruption of Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano started last June, Melvin Sugimoto at first did not think much of it. Hawaii, where he has lived all his life, is made entirely of hardened lava, and Kilauea, perhaps the world’s most active volcano, has been adding more off and on for the last 300,000 years. “Lava is… read more

by |November 24, 2015
Antarctic ice video

Exploring Beneath Earth’s Changing Ice Sheets

If just the West Antarctic Ice Sheet were to melt, it would raise global sea level by 6 meters. That’s more than a theoretical problem. West Antarctica is losing ice mass, and scientists are worried.

by |November 24, 2015
Artistic impression of latitudinally more widespread auroras under a geomagnetic field much weaker than today's. (Huapei Wang, with source files courtesy of NASA's Earth Observatory/NOAA/DOD)

Earth’s Magnetic Field: Just Returning to Normal?

Earth’s magnetic field is getting weaker, but it may simply be coming down from an abnormally high intensity rather than being a sign of an impending geomagnetic reversal.

by |November 23, 2015
An electric car charging station in Amsterdam. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

U.S. Could Cut Per Capita Greenhouse Emissions 90% by 2050, Says Report

The report says it is possible to revamp the energy system in a way that reduces per capita carbon dioxide emissions from 17 tons per person currently to 1.7 tons in 2050, while still providing all the services people expect, from driving to air conditioning.

by |November 23, 2015
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From Copenhagen to Paris: Low Expectations

As we head to Paris, the expectations are profoundly lower. The national commitments that countries are putting on the table do not add up to nearly enough to keep us within 2 degrees; instead the plan is to come back every five years and hopefully do better. … It is still mathematically possible to stay within 2 degrees, but the odds of actually doing so seem to be receding by the month.

by |November 23, 2015
Global registered refugees have surpassed 50million, the highest numbers since World War II.

How Bad Will this El Niño Be? Worse Than You May Think

Today’s El Niño is unfolding over a world that is in many ways more vulnerable than the world of 1997-1998. Just as today’s climate continues to generate extremes without historical precedent, we are starting to see elements of social vulnerability also without historical precedent. That is an alarming combination.

by |November 20, 2015

Student Profile: Stav Gilutz

For Stav Gilutz, the MPA in Environmental Science and Policy program offered the perfect mix of hard sciences and networking opportunities to complement her legal background and interest in environmental activism. She hopes to apply her skills to management of an environmental non-profit.

by |November 20, 2015
Penguins in West Antarctica

Climate Is Changing Fast in West Antarctica

Fast-rising temperatures on the Antarctic Peninsula are having an impact on the ice and marine life, and providing clues about future ecosystem changes elsewhere.

by |November 20, 2015
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From Copenhagen to Paris: Likely to Fail Again?

All of the pledges made in Paris will be voluntary. However, countries have not always fulfilled their pledges in the past, and it isn’t obvious that this agreement is going to cause countries to behave very differently in the future.

by |November 20, 2015
ROSETTA's temporary home in Antarctica. (credit Matt Siegfried)

In One Simple Line of Data You Can Read a Full Story

The lines of data are slowly creeping across our Ross Ice Shelf GIS map and with each new line comes an improved understanding of Ross Ice Shelf. What can you learn from a ‘snapshot’ of data? A radar contains a nice story.

by |November 19, 2015