Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory


Photo Essay: Land, Lava, People

On Hawaii, lava is a way of life. The whole island is made of the stuff. Eruptions from Kilauea volcano have been adding new land and wiping out old for all of human time, and far before. In recent decades, lava flows have wiped out communities and major roads. The latest eruption, which began in June 2014, now… read more

by |November 24, 2015

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
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
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
Fires on the island of Borneo are visible from space. (Photo: NASA)

Peat Fires Choking Southeast Asia Pose a New Threat to Global Climate

The Indonesian peat fires that have been choking cities across Southeast Asia with a yellow haze are creating more than a local menace—burning peat releases immense stores of CO2, contributing to global warming.

by |November 19, 2015
Subduction zone mechanics

Ancient Faults & Water Are Sparking Earthquakes Off Alaska

Ancient faults that formed in the ocean floor millions of years ago are feeding earthquakes today along stretches of the Alaska Peninsula, and likely elsewhere, a new study suggests.

by |November 16, 2015
As the project sets out to explore the Ross Ice Shelf it seems appropriate to include a photo of Minna Bluff,  a prominent volcanic promontory that sticks out close to McMurdo. The bluff was first identified by Capt. Scott in 1902 and is mentioned often in Antarctic exploration history. (Photo Nigel Brady)

Unlocking the Secrets of the Ross Ice Shelf

The Ross Ice Shelf is much like the Rosetta Stone. The historic stone inscribed in three scripts told the same story but in different tongues, so when matched together scholars could decode an ancient language. The Antarctic Rosetta Project also brings together three different “scripts,” each written by an Earth system; the ice, the ocean and the underlying bed each have a story to tell.

by |November 13, 2015
Jamie Collins, a research colleague of Jeff Bowman, measures ice thickness outside Palmer Station in Antarctica. The ice was about 70 cm thick. Photo: Jeff Bowman

Polar Ice, Penguin Tracks and Phytoplankton

Jeff Bowman, a postdoctoral research scientist at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, is in Antarctica for the field season studying how phytoplankton and bacteria interact. Follow his reports from Palmer Station.

by |November 10, 2015
Potential sea level rise in Guilford, CT. Source: Climate Central

In 2015: Hot, Wet and Opinionated

This year is shaping up to be the warmest year on record since 1880, according to new data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. And, perhaps not so coincidentally, a new poll says more people in the United States are coming around to the view that climate change is happening.

by |October 23, 2015