News from the Columbia Climate School


From snow to rain? Not so much.

Venkat Lakshmi and CWC Director Upmanu Lall

Venkat Lakshmi, Professor and Chair, Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences, University of South Carolina, presented some of his work to the Columbia University community during a Columbia Water Center Seminar on March 4th.

One of the models Professor Lakshmi discussed dealt with the Influence of the Land Surface in Hydrometeorology.  The model looked at the affects of snow cover on rainfall variability in the North American Monsoon Systems, in the Southern Rocky Mountain region.

Soil moisture and surface temperature were measured, with the support of satellite data, to determine their relationship to the monsoon or rainy season in the study area.

The results of this research showed that contrary to what might have been expected, snow cover does not have a significant impact on the amount of rainfall during the summer monsoon season.

Learn more about Dr. Lakshmi’s work here.

Science for the Planet: In these short video explainers, discover how scientists and scholars across the Columbia Climate School are working to understand the effects of climate change and help solve the crisis.
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