Scientists at Columbia University’s Earth Institute will present important new work on global climate, air pollution, agriculture and other issues at the Feb. 16-20 meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, in Vancouver, B.C. Click hyperlinks for scientist contacts and other information. Background materials will be posted just before the meeting at… read more

While the New Jersey bill failed, it is going to be discussed in New Jersey’s Senate Environment Committee on Monday, January 30, 2012. The discussion is not yet over regarding New Jersey’s public forests. The discussion about ecosystem productivity over time also continues in the forum of the Native Tree Society. Specifically, this post was picked… read more

Earthquakes that have shaken an area just outside Youngstown, Ohio, in the last nine months are likely linked to a disposal well for injecting wastewater used in the hydraulic fracturing process, say LDEO seismologists.

Over the first 22 days aboard the R/V Marcus G. Langseth, we’ve zigged and zagged our way over a 360×240 mile region of the Pacific plate, first dropping instruments to the seafloor, and then shooting airguns to them (see previous posts). The final step is to recover a subset of the instruments:  34 ocean-bottom seismometers… read more

In the previous post, I outlined the argument lighting up parts of the New Jersey legislature and the human elements of its ecological communities. Briefly, one reason some people are using to promote logging on public lands is the perception that old trees and forests are dying of old age. While there are other arguments… read more

With round-the-clock shifts, there are precious opportunities for Santa to slip onto a research ship unseen. But slip in he did, leaving treats and gifts around the R.V. Langseth to brighten our day.

The NoMelt experiment aims to image the structure of an oceanic plate, including its deepest reaches up to 70 km beneath the seafloor.  One of our primary means to do so is to create sound (acoustic) waves in the ocean from the ship, and record those waves at receivers on the seafloor, after they have… read more

Oceanic plates are born at mid-ocean ridges, where hot mantle rocks are brought very close to the surface, partially melt, and then cool and crystallize. The newly formed rocks move outwards from the mid-ocean ridge, making way for the next batch of hot rock rising from below. Inch by inch, over millions of years, oceanic… read more

Research presented by Earth Institute scientists at the 2011 American Geophysical Union fall conference generated a lot of attention from the media. Much of it came from a press conference held to discuss findings by Steve Goldstein from the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and his colleagues on the potential for future drying up of the Dead Sea.

Oceans turned more acidic during a period of great warming some 56 million years ago, causing an extinction of bottom-dwelling marine species known as foraminifera, a scenario that may be happening again now, only much more quickly.

There was a nice article in the NY Times on the Adirondack State Park whose title initially focused readers on how climate change could alter the park’s ecosystems. However, by the time you get to the end of the article, and luckily for us, you get to know Jerry Jenkins, one of the best naturalists… read more

A half-dozen Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory scientists were to be honored by the American Geophysical Union at its annual fall conference in San Francisco tonight.

Along the Woodlark Rift in eastern Papua New Guinea, continents are breaking apart, “like a snake opening its mouth.” Geologic processes that are still a mystery are actively stretching the crust and pushing huge masses of rock, formed under immense pressures as deep as 100 kilometers below, to the surface.

The last major drought to hit the northeastern U.S. lasted three years and shrunk New York City’s reservoirs by nearly three quarters. But as bad as that drought was, the region has seen at least three dry spells in the last 6,000 years that were far worse, says Dorothy Peteet, a climate scientist at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. Peteet presented new results from her Hudson River work Monday at a press conference at the AGU’s fall meeting in San Francisco.

      An international team of scientists drilling deep under the bed of the Dead Sea has found evidence that the sea may have dried up during a past warm period analogous to scenarios for climate change in coming decades. With nations in the volatile region already running short on water, the finding could be a… read more