On every continent and ocean, Earth Institute field researchers are studying the dynamics of climate, geology, natural hazards, ecology and other subjects with direct applications to the challenges facing humanity.
Declassified spy satellite images are beginning to provide the first consistent look at how glaciers across the Himalayas are changing and what future water supplies might look like for millions of people.
Twenty-three million years ago, the Antarctic Ice Sheet began to shrink, going from an expanse larger than today’s to one about half its modern size. Ancient fossilized leaves retrieved from a lake bed in New Zealand now show for the first time that carbon dioxide levels increased dramatically over a relatively short period of time as the ice sheet began to deteriorate.
On Oct. 5, several small mountain countries with glaciers—Austria, Bolivia, and Nepal—undertook an important step in advancing global action on climate change. They helped the Paris Climate Agreement reach the threshold to enter into force and become legally binding.
A 4,000-foot-high mountainside collapsed in Glacier Bay National Park this week in a massive landslide that spread debris for miles across the glacier below. Scientists at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory are studying it to improve understanding of landslide risks.
To understand how quickly ice from glaciers can raise sea level or how moons far across the solar system evolved to hold vast, ice-covered oceans, we need to be able to measure the forces at work. A new instrument designed and built at Lamont does just that.
Air pollution, both outdoors and indoors, causes millions of premature deaths each year. The deaths are mainly caused by the inhalation of particulate matter, especially black carbon. But black carbon not only has impacts on human health, it also affects visibility, harms ecosystems, reduces agricultural productivity and exacerbates global warming.
Nicolás Young studies glaciers and ice sheets, and how they’ve changed in the past. His work earned him the Blavatnik Award for Young Scientists last fall, which came with a $30,000 prize. You can hear him talk about his research in this new video, produced by the Blavatnik Family Foundation.
A new study uses sediment cores to track the expansion and retreat of glaciers through time, and finds that they are retreating quickly and are more sensitive to temperature change than previously realized.
With new data, scientists can track back what glaciers did in the past, and how it is related to climate change. This provides a link to predict what could be happening in the next 100, 200, 500 years.