News from the Columbia Climate School

Author: Upmanu Lall

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  • Penny Wise and Pound Foolish? NYC Budget Cuts Aggravated Flooding and Deaths

    Penny Wise and Pound Foolish? NYC Budget Cuts Aggravated Flooding and Deaths

    When drainage infrastructure isn’t maintained, even modest rainfall events can cause dangerous flooding.

  • Climate Through A Different Lens: Poverty, Inequality, Sustainability

    Climate Through A Different Lens: Poverty, Inequality, Sustainability

    Technology has brought us low-cost global communication, and also enabled a global economy. It has also brought us closer and further from each other. We now know more about other cultures. We also see the differences, and sharpen our sense of inequities. Perhaps, this, rather than a control of greenhouse gases, needs to be the…

  • Water, Water Everywhere, But Nary a Drop to Drink

    Water, Water Everywhere, But Nary a Drop to Drink

    It is a unique challenge of our generation that many in the developing world have cellular phones and TVs, but lack reliable access to water. Odd, perhaps, given that water is marketed as essential for life, a human right, and heart rending pictures of women and children walking miles to fetch water are routinely flashed…

  • Global Population Growth and Water Scarcity Q&A

    Global Population Growth and Water Scarcity Q&A

    Russell Sticklor with the Wilson Center’s Environmental Change and Security Program in Washington, DC. recently contacted me requesting my thoughts on a number of issues for an article he is writing on global population growth and water scarcity for the magazine, Outdoor America. I thought some of the comments might be interesting to our blog…

  • Himalayan Glacier Melt: The Real Problem

    Every day I hear scientists and media people talking about climate change in a way that is often sensational or misses the real challenges. This will be a series of blogs in which I will discuss a few of these cases. Lets start with: The Himalayan Glacier Melt

  • Water Problems: No Prediction Needed

    With Copenhagen heading for an apparent impasse, the world faces an uncertain and potentially dire climate future. Of particular concern is the inability to predict how rainfall across the globe may change in intensity, frequency and seasonality. If there are droughts in some places and floods in others, there will be direct impacts on agriculture,…

  • Punjab: Less Water, More Money (Part 3)

    In previous weeks, I began the story of declining groundwater tables in India. In the first post, I talked about the current system of subsidized energy, the need to change it, and the willingness of farmers to adapt to such changes. The second post talked about the possible benefits and methods of direct seeding for…

  • Punjab: Less Water, More Money (Part 2)

    Last week, I began the story of declining groundwater tables in India. I talked about the current system of subsidized energy, the need to change it, and the willingness of farmers to adapt to such changes. Even before changing the irrigation in the crop’s lifecycle, however, an initial step that farmers can take starts with…

  • Punjab: Less Water, More Money (Part 1)

    In an earlier blog, I highlighted the story of declining groundwater in many parts of India. This story is one of agricultural intensification and widespread groundwater pumping, facilitated by highly subsidized or free electricity. As the Government of India sought food security for the nation, it promoted the procurement of rice and wheat from the…

  • Penny Wise and Pound Foolish? NYC Budget Cuts Aggravated Flooding and Deaths

    Penny Wise and Pound Foolish? NYC Budget Cuts Aggravated Flooding and Deaths

    When drainage infrastructure isn’t maintained, even modest rainfall events can cause dangerous flooding.

  • Climate Through A Different Lens: Poverty, Inequality, Sustainability

    Climate Through A Different Lens: Poverty, Inequality, Sustainability

    Technology has brought us low-cost global communication, and also enabled a global economy. It has also brought us closer and further from each other. We now know more about other cultures. We also see the differences, and sharpen our sense of inequities. Perhaps, this, rather than a control of greenhouse gases, needs to be the…

  • Water, Water Everywhere, But Nary a Drop to Drink

    Water, Water Everywhere, But Nary a Drop to Drink

    It is a unique challenge of our generation that many in the developing world have cellular phones and TVs, but lack reliable access to water. Odd, perhaps, given that water is marketed as essential for life, a human right, and heart rending pictures of women and children walking miles to fetch water are routinely flashed…

  • Global Population Growth and Water Scarcity Q&A

    Global Population Growth and Water Scarcity Q&A

    Russell Sticklor with the Wilson Center’s Environmental Change and Security Program in Washington, DC. recently contacted me requesting my thoughts on a number of issues for an article he is writing on global population growth and water scarcity for the magazine, Outdoor America. I thought some of the comments might be interesting to our blog…

  • Himalayan Glacier Melt: The Real Problem

    Every day I hear scientists and media people talking about climate change in a way that is often sensational or misses the real challenges. This will be a series of blogs in which I will discuss a few of these cases. Lets start with: The Himalayan Glacier Melt

  • Water Problems: No Prediction Needed

    With Copenhagen heading for an apparent impasse, the world faces an uncertain and potentially dire climate future. Of particular concern is the inability to predict how rainfall across the globe may change in intensity, frequency and seasonality. If there are droughts in some places and floods in others, there will be direct impacts on agriculture,…

  • Punjab: Less Water, More Money (Part 3)

    In previous weeks, I began the story of declining groundwater tables in India. In the first post, I talked about the current system of subsidized energy, the need to change it, and the willingness of farmers to adapt to such changes. The second post talked about the possible benefits and methods of direct seeding for…

  • Punjab: Less Water, More Money (Part 2)

    Last week, I began the story of declining groundwater tables in India. I talked about the current system of subsidized energy, the need to change it, and the willingness of farmers to adapt to such changes. Even before changing the irrigation in the crop’s lifecycle, however, an initial step that farmers can take starts with…

  • Punjab: Less Water, More Money (Part 1)

    In an earlier blog, I highlighted the story of declining groundwater in many parts of India. This story is one of agricultural intensification and widespread groundwater pumping, facilitated by highly subsidized or free electricity. As the Government of India sought food security for the nation, it promoted the procurement of rice and wheat from the…