Climate Change

Using Google to Track the Effects of Climate Change

The internet’s vast quantities of information and its popularity among people all over the globe represent a tempting and enormous data pool for researchers. Political strategists, economists, and epidemiologists mine internet usage data to learn about human behaviors and cultural trends, producing interesting results (though sometimes flawed; see Butler 2013). Could scientists who study climate change use similar online data-mining tools to better understand and track the effects of climate change? A recent paper by Proulx and colleagues argues just that.

Culture and Arctic Climate Change: A scoping workshop to explore integrative frameworks

This workshop is motivated by the appreciation that our knowledge of the human role in the Arctic system over millennia can be refined and greatly improved through better integration of Arctic archeology, ice
core and other re-constructions of climate parameters and studies of the contemporary Arctic environment. The two-day workshop will bring together researchers working across a range of disciplines in order to explore the complex relationship between the dynamic Arctic environment and long-term human cultural responses.

"Polluters Talk. We Walk." NGO's Make Themselves Heard at COP 19

“Polluters talk, we walk” was the chant two weeks ago, as thousands of climate change activists walked out of the 19thUnited Nations Council of Parties (COP 19) conference a day before negotiations were scheduled to end. A spokesman for Oxfam blamed negotiators for insufficient outcomes to limit global temperature rise to 2 degrees Celsius as outlined by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

First United Nations Resilience Academy Held in Bangladesh

By Elizabeth Tellman

Densely populated, and with 80% of its area located on a floodplain within 8 meters of sea-level1, Bangladesh is one of the world’s most flood-prone nations.  As such it’s an appropriate setting for a series of two United Nations University Resilience Academies that convene experts in research, policy and practical applications to help developing nations deal with the effects of climate change.

Global Decadal Hydroclimate Variability in Observations and Models, with Richard Seager of Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory

Richard Seager is the Palisades Geophysical Institute/Lamont Research Professor at the Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University.  He studies climate variability on seasonal and millenial scales and is particularly interested in periods of extended drought through history. Most recently he has focused on the causes of North America drought and its connection to oceanic temperature variations.

When Evolved Behaviors Backfire

Frogs that eat holiday lights, birds that eat plastic, and beetles attempting to mate with beer bottles are all examples of organisms that have fallen victim to what biologists call “evolutionary traps.”  Whereas natural selection typically produces organisms that behave in ways to maximize their fitness, resulting in more offspring passing their genes onto the next generation, human actions sometimes short-circuit the process…

Global Food Security

Research published in Science has highlighted the potentially deleterious effects of climate change on global food security. As defined by the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, food security has a number of components.  These include food availability, access and utilization…

The Importance of Model Resolution in Global Change Biology

Biologists increasingly realize that understanding the impact of global change on biological processes requires accounting for fine-grain environmental variability (Potter, Arthur Woods, & Pincebourde, 2013). Similarly, climatologists have found that increasing the resolution of climate models typically produces better simulations of climate and precipitation…


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