Earth Sciences Archives - State of the Planet

American Geophysical Union 2022: Key Research From the Columbia Climate School

A guide to some of the most provocative and groundbreaking talks at the world’s largest gathering of earth and space scientists.

by |November 29, 2022
drawing of marie tharp with topography profile

Google Doodle Celebrates Marie Tharp, Who Mapped the Ocean Floor

Tharp co-published the first world map of the ocean floors and helped prove the theory of continental drift.

by |November 28, 2022

A Study Offers New Insights Into the Record 2021 Western North America Heat Wave

Several weeks during summer 2021 saw heat records in the western United States and Canada broken not just by increments, but by tens of degrees, an event of unprecedented extremity. To what degree was it climate change, bad luck, or a combination?

by |November 24, 2022

Iron-Rich Dust From South America Played Role in Last Two Glacial Periods, Says Study

Dust from the land that gets blown into the ocean appears to influence natural climate swings. A new study looks into where much of that dust came from in the past 260,000 years.

by |November 22, 2022

Permafrost Emissions Must Be Factored Into Global Climate Targets, Says Study

As the Arctic melts, permafrost there has the potential to send huge amounts of carbon into the atmosphere, but exactly how much is up for grabs, depending on what we do to stem climate change in coming years.

by |October 17, 2022

Study Upsets Models of How Lake Drainage Within Glaciers May Influence Sea Level

Sudden plunges of lake waters from glacial surfaces to ice-sheet beds may not speed up the movement of Greenland’s tidewater glaciers, as previously thought.

by |October 14, 2022

Highlights From the 2022 Lamont Open House

Visitors played with glacial goo, watched trash cans erupt with water and ping pong balls, and performed hands-on science experiments — all while learning how Lamont researchers help us understand our planet.

by |October 10, 2022

Preparing for Volcanic Eruptions at Okmok Volcano, Alaska

Researchers are working at a remote ranch in the Aleutians, commuting by helicopter to the brim of a volcano to perform maintenance on their monitoring equipment.

by |October 3, 2022
Paul olsen

You Asked: Dinosaurs Survived When CO2 Was Extremely High. Why Can’t Humans?

Our expert says: Although carbon dioxide levels have been much higher in the past, they generally increased slowly, giving plants and animals time to adapt. When the rate of climate change was staggeringly fast, like today, there were big problems.

by |September 20, 2022
ocean at sunset

Catching the Next Eruption of Axial Volcano

Diary entries from a research expedition that deployed seismometers on the ocean floor in hopes of recording the next eruption of a submarine volcano.

by Theresa Sawi |September 19, 2022