Climate Science

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
Researchers at the 925-ton boulder called "the bull." (Elisa Casella)

Giant Boulders on Bahamas Coast Are Evidence of Ancient Storms and Sea Level, Says Study

A new study says that storms of intensities seen today, combined with a few meters increase in sea level, were enough to transport coastal boulders weighing hundreds of tons more than 100,000 year ago.

by |November 1, 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
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How Climate Change Will Impact Investors

A new report explores how advances in climate science can inform near-term investments in the global economy.

by |October 11, 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
Introducing the Sustainability Science Program

The Earth Institute’s Newest Sustainability Program Begins in January 2018

Sustainability Science graduates will have the scientific know-how to help organizations improve their environmental performance.

by |August 31, 2017
A new study projects the spread of the destructive southern pine beetle through much of the northern United States and southern Canada. Darker colors here represent infestations in successively later decades. (Lesk et al., 2017)

Climate May Quickly Drive Forest-Eating Beetles North, Says Study

Over the next few decades, global warming-related rises in winter temperatures could significantly extend the range of the southern pine beetle, one of the world’s most aggressive tree-killing insects, through much of the northern United States and southern Canada, says a new study.

by |August 28, 2017
Nissan bangladesh-floods-2012crop

Hannah Nissan: Forecasting Climate to Help Save Lives

Hannah Nissan, a postdoctoral research scientist at the International Research Institute for Climate and Society, studies how better climate forecasting might help reduce the number of deaths from heat waves and improve agriculture and child nutrition.

by |July 24, 2017