State of the Planet

News from the Columbia Climate School

Category: Earth Sciences134

  • Shaking Out Some Money

    That rumbling you feel is not necessarily a passing subway. New York City and the surrounding region gets a surprising number of small earthquakes, and a 2008 study from the region’s network of seismographs, run by Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, suggests that the risk of a damaging one is not negligible. This week, the federal government announced a major upgrade…

  • Turning CO2 Into Stone

    A power plant in Iceland is set to become the first in the world to try turning carbon dioxide emissions into solid minerals underground, starting this September.

  • Down by the River, Running Out of Water

    Too little water for too many people is a growing problem in poor countries–and in thriving suburban Rockland County, N.Y., just north of New York City. A new website, Water Resources in Rockland County, lays out the case, and neatly puts it into global context. The site is run by the Earth Institute’s Center for International Earth Science Information Network…

  • Pondering the Deep

    Another world lies beneath the Hudson River, as scientists have shown using pulses of sound to map the bottom. In recent years, the bathymetry maps developed at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and Stony Brook University have turned up hundreds of shipwrecks and a new channel off Battery Park City, drawing interest from treasure hunters and mariners…

  • The Heat is On: Can Mass Transit Adapt?

    Even on a sunny day, nearly 13 million gallons of water are pumped from New York City subways. As global warming brings rising sea levels and stormier weather, more flooding is expected for New York’s transit system. To adapt, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority needs to develop a master plan that lays out the costs of…

  • Arsenic in Bangladesh Water, Then and Now

    Back in the summer of 1997 while working for a small newspaper focusing on UN development issues, I traveled to Bangladesh to see how far this often overlooked country tucked away in a corner between India and China had fared since its independence 25 years ago. At the time the only stories which came out…

  • Suburban Seismology

    Three minor earthquakes struck North Jersey last month. Yes, Jersey. Turns out the state known for its turnpikes and shopping malls also has a major geological landmark: the Ramapo Fault, which crosses into New York and Pennsylvania. “Earthquakes are not unexpected here,” seismologist Won-Young Kim told The New York Times. “It’s just an indication that…

  • Pole of Inaccessibility

    Hidden beneath 2.5 miles of ice, the Gamburtsev Mountains in eastern Antarctica are the most mysterious peaks on Earth. Michael Studinger, a scientist at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, helped lead a recent expedition to map these invisible mountains using geophysical instruments. He will speak this Sunday about his trip. He answers a few questions here: Q:…

  • Foot Forward

    In 1968, 14-year-old Paul Olsen of suburban Livingston, N.J., and his friend Tony Lessa heard that dinosaur tracks had been found in a nearby quarry. They raced over on their bikes.  “I went ballistic,” Olsen recalls. Over the next few years, the boys uncovered and studied thousands of tracks and other fossils there, often working into the night.  It opened the…

  • Shaking Out Some Money

    That rumbling you feel is not necessarily a passing subway. New York City and the surrounding region gets a surprising number of small earthquakes, and a 2008 study from the region’s network of seismographs, run by Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, suggests that the risk of a damaging one is not negligible. This week, the federal government announced a major upgrade…

  • Turning CO2 Into Stone

    A power plant in Iceland is set to become the first in the world to try turning carbon dioxide emissions into solid minerals underground, starting this September.

  • Down by the River, Running Out of Water

    Too little water for too many people is a growing problem in poor countries–and in thriving suburban Rockland County, N.Y., just north of New York City. A new website, Water Resources in Rockland County, lays out the case, and neatly puts it into global context. The site is run by the Earth Institute’s Center for International Earth Science Information Network…

  • Pondering the Deep

    Another world lies beneath the Hudson River, as scientists have shown using pulses of sound to map the bottom. In recent years, the bathymetry maps developed at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and Stony Brook University have turned up hundreds of shipwrecks and a new channel off Battery Park City, drawing interest from treasure hunters and mariners…

  • The Heat is On: Can Mass Transit Adapt?

    Even on a sunny day, nearly 13 million gallons of water are pumped from New York City subways. As global warming brings rising sea levels and stormier weather, more flooding is expected for New York’s transit system. To adapt, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority needs to develop a master plan that lays out the costs of…

  • Arsenic in Bangladesh Water, Then and Now

    Back in the summer of 1997 while working for a small newspaper focusing on UN development issues, I traveled to Bangladesh to see how far this often overlooked country tucked away in a corner between India and China had fared since its independence 25 years ago. At the time the only stories which came out…

  • Suburban Seismology

    Three minor earthquakes struck North Jersey last month. Yes, Jersey. Turns out the state known for its turnpikes and shopping malls also has a major geological landmark: the Ramapo Fault, which crosses into New York and Pennsylvania. “Earthquakes are not unexpected here,” seismologist Won-Young Kim told The New York Times. “It’s just an indication that…

  • Pole of Inaccessibility

    Hidden beneath 2.5 miles of ice, the Gamburtsev Mountains in eastern Antarctica are the most mysterious peaks on Earth. Michael Studinger, a scientist at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, helped lead a recent expedition to map these invisible mountains using geophysical instruments. He will speak this Sunday about his trip. He answers a few questions here: Q:…

  • Foot Forward

    In 1968, 14-year-old Paul Olsen of suburban Livingston, N.J., and his friend Tony Lessa heard that dinosaur tracks had been found in a nearby quarry. They raced over on their bikes.  “I went ballistic,” Olsen recalls. Over the next few years, the boys uncovered and studied thousands of tracks and other fossils there, often working into the night.  It opened the…