Two new papers find that the line that divides the moist East and arid West is edging eastward due to climate change—and the implications for farming and other pursuits could be huge.
News & Views
Columbia University and data-analytics firm Jupiter will collaborate on improved hurricane track simulations so that the public and private sectors can plan for weather and climate risks.
Researchers report a sharp drop in salinity in the North Atlantic Ocean over the last decade, providing the most detailed look yet at changing ocean conditions in the region.
The death of coral reefs is a more significant factor in the erosion of tropical coastlines than rising sea levels, says research by Lamont’s Alessio Rovere and an international team of scientists.
Citizen scientists are invited to contribute to a project led by Marco Tedesco, who’s investigating the properties of snow in the eastern U.S. and how that snow is changing over time.
Robertson, a Center for Climate and Life Fellow, is creating a forecasting system that will help societies adapt and become more resilient to the impacts of climate change.
Center for Climate and Life Fellow Chia-Ying Lee is examining how wind field asymmetries and variability impact tropical cyclone risk and how these can be included in risk models.
Rainfall changes caused by global warming will increase river flooding risks across the globe by the 2040s, says a new study. The increases will be greatest in the U.S., central Europe, Indonesia, and parts of India and Africa.
In coming decades, the effects of high humidity in many areas may surpass humans’ ability to work or, in some cases, even survive.
Center for Climate and Fellow Billy D’Andrea is trying to understand Easter Island’s climate history over the last few thousand years and how communities dealt with past climate change.
A new study shows that even minor deterioration of ice shelves can instantaneously hasten the decline of ice hundreds of miles landward.
Center for Climate and Life Fellow Pratigya Polissar is developing new tools to look at the history of plants and ecosystems on Earth over the past 20 million years.
A reporter from National Geographic joined paleoclimatologist Billy D’Andrea and his colleagues for an expedition to gather vital climate data in the Norwegian Arctic.
Columbia University climate scientists Peter de Menocal, director of the Center for Climate and Life, Radley Horton, and Kate Marvel discuss climate science and solutions.
Storms of intensities seen today, combined with a few meters increase in sea level, were enough to transport massive coastal boulders more than 100,000 years ago.
The warmer, more acidic waters caused by climate change influence the behavior of tiny marine organisms essential to ocean health.
The landlocked are surrounding the Dead Sea suffered long megadroughts in the past. Now, climate change threatens to inflict such conditions again on this already sere, volatile region.
Volcanic eruptions have been known to cool global climate, but they can also exacerbate the melting of ice sheets, says a new study.
A video filmed by Lamont marine biologist Andy Juhl reveals mature jellyfish under the Arctic sea ice, where they aren’t supposed to be.
A new white paper explores how advances in climate science can inform near-term investments in the global economy.
Humans migrated out of Africa to escape a drying climate, about 60,000 years ago, according to a new study in the journal Geology.
The better climate models become, the harder it is to use them. A team of Columbia scientists and their colleagues are working to fix that.
Hoaxes have been calling Irma a Category 6 hurricane, but there’s no such thing. Could there be, in the future?
It’s too soon to say there’s a connection, but searching for the fingerprints of climate change shouldn’t take too long.
Global warming-related rises in winter temperatures could significantly extend the range of one of the world’s most aggressive tree-killing insects.
Over the past day and a half, Hurricane Harvey’s winds have quickened from about 35 to 109 miles per hour. What’s driving this massive power-up?
A new study found that the northeastern U.S. is at particular risk for physical and economic effects of climate hazards.
Carbon capture and storage technologies are an essential tool for substantially reducing emissions of greenhouse gases to combat global warming.
It’s not unusual for ice shelves to calve, many in the climate community fear that the breaking of Larsen C may be a signal of other events to come.
A new initiative accelerates Columbia’s commitment to advance knowledge and solve some of the greatest scientific challenges facing the world today.
Scientists have found evidence for a possible abrupt change in the Sahel, a region long characterized by aridity and political instability.
Research by geophysicist Christine McCarthy reveals how glaciers move, what makes them speed up, and how they are contributing to sea level rise as the climate warms.
The Center has awarded nearly $1 million to four scientists whose research will improve understanding of how climate change impacts the essentials of human sustainability.
Self-pity is a luxury we can’t afford right now. We need science to inform our actions in a fast-changing world, and we need to keep asking questions.
Seager, a climate scientist at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, discusses his research on drought in the North American Southwest.
We’re working to understand and predict climate change variability and its impacts — and we’re devoted to applying this knowledge to solutions.
New research offers the first comprehensive model for understanding differences in sea level rise along North America’s East Coast.
A study co-authored by Michael Puma found food security risks for the entire globe hiding in the water use practices of major food producing nations.
On May 2, 2017, Lamont-Doherty and the Tamer Center for Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School co-host a Social Enterprise Leadership Forum.
Learn more about our research and initiatives at Earth Day Texas, the largest Earth Day celebration in the world, April 21-23, 2017 in Dallas.
Michael J. Puma, a Center for Climate and Life Fellow, discusses his new study on groundwater depletion worldwide and the implications for food security.
A report by Columbia University and Willis Re says that the average annual loss from severe convective storms was $11.23 billion for the period 2003-2015.
Center for Climate and Life Fellow Park Williams studies trees and climate. In this video he talks about his research, why it’s important, and what inspires him.
Atmospheric scientist Adam Sobel takes a look at what’s behind the California dam crisis that forced nearly 200,000 people to evacuate.
How did our climate system behave the last time it warmed up like it’s doing today?
Changes in the annual summer monsoon that drops rain onto East Asia likely altered the course of early human cultures in China, say the authors of a new study.
Two scientists who untangled the forces that drive El Niño, the world’s most powerful weather cycle, won the 2017 Vetlesen Prize for achievement in Earth sciences.
The four new Fellows are a diverse group of junior and mid-career scientists with research interests spanning a range of climate topics and regions.
Evidence buried in Greenland’s bedrock shows that the Greenland Ice Sheet nearly disappeared for an extended time in the last million years or so.
Floats deployed by Lamont scientists will find areas where warmer than normal water could put the Ross Ice Shelf at risk.
In the far north, climate is warming two to three times faster than the global average. How will these changes affect tundra and boreal forests?
Park Williams explains the influence of climate change on droughts and wildfires in the western United States.
23 million years ago, the Antarctic ice sheet was shrinking quickly. A new study by Lamont scientists sheds light on the cause of that ancient melt.
A new study says that human-induced climate change has doubled the area affected by forest fires in the U.S. West over the last 30 years.
As the Southwestern U.S. grows hotter, the risk of long-lasting megadroughts rises, passing 90% this century if greenhouse gas emissions continue at their current pace.
Figuring out how the global food system might respond to disturbances will ensure that everyone has safe, reliable access to the food they need.
The Center for Climate and Life will support three new fellows to conduct innovative, impactful research relevant to our mission.
Lamont’s Ryan Abernathey and Richard Seager are investigating how processes in the ocean create extreme weather and climate conditions over land.
In a new study, Lamont’s Michael Previdi and Lorenzo Polvani found that the effect of rising temperatures on snowfall in Antarctica has so far been overshadowed by the frozen continent’s large natural climate variability.
Scientist Park Williams, recipient of a Climate and Life Fellowship, is examining the influence of climate change on droughts and wildfires.
The heavy rains and flooding in Louisiana have been devastating. Can we attribute the severity of it to climate change? How you measure that depends on the questions you ask.
Join pro-surfing legend Kelly Slater at his Surf Ranch as part of a new fundraising campaign that benefits WSL PURE and the Center for Climate and Life.
Powerful tropical cyclones like the super typhoon that lashed Taiwan in July are expected to become even stronger as the planet warms.
A new study shows how Antarctic sea ice migration may be more important for the global ocean circulation than anyone realized.
In a recently published study, scientists demonstrated that two years after injecting CO2 underground at a pilot test site in Iceland, almost all of it has been converted into minerals.
Scientists working at the power plant demonstrated how CO2 emissions pumped into the earth could be chemically changed to a solid within months.
Earth’s own large-scale iron fertilization experiments over 500,000 years show adding iron to the equatorial Pacific surface has little effect.
Maureen Raymo, a marine geologist and paleoceanographer whose name is connected with key theories about how ice ages wax and wane and how sea levels change, has been elected to the National Academy of Sciences.
The World Surf League is providing $1.5 million in first-year funding for ocean science at Lamont as part of an innovative new philanthropy called WSL PURE.
A new citizen science project turns surfers and other ocean enthusiasts into the eyes of scientists studying the world’s coral reefs.
Mesoscale turbulence is where most of the kinetic energy in the oceans can be found, and it may play powerful roles in the global climate.
Using computer models, scientists compared our expected future with a scenario in which ozone-depleting substances had never been regulated.
A new study uses sediment cores to track the expansion and retreat of glaciers through time and finds they are more sensitive than realized.
Much of the modern understanding of climate has been shaped by pioneering studies done at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.
The Indonesian peat fires that have been choking cities across Southeast Asia are creating more than a local health menace—they’re releasing immense stores of CO2.
Using tree rings, a new drought atlas maps the reach and severity of dry and wet periods across Europe and the Mediterranean over the past 2,000 years.
As global temperatures rise, knowing just how far Greenland’s ice sheet shrank in the past could help scientists predict sea level rise in the future.
Ancient pollen is providing new insights into historic droughts in Southern California, including how a series of mega-droughts that changed the ecological landscape.
Since the late 1980s, the Southern Ocean’s rate of CO2 uptake appeared to have stagnated, alarming scientists. New data shows a recovery.
A new study of tree rings from Mongolia dating back more than 1,000 years confirms that recent warming in central Asia has no parallel in any known record.
A team of oceanographers says much of the heat trapped in the atmosphere by greenhouse gases is being soaked up and stored by the oceans–at least for now.
During the second half of the 21st century, the U.S. Southwest and Great Plains will face drought worse than anything seen in times ancient or modern, a new study says.