State of the Planet

News from the Columbia Climate School

Icebridge Greenland

  • The Changing Upernavik Waterfront

    The Changing Upernavik Waterfront

    Project Background: Changing conditions in Greenland’s northwest glaciers over the last decade have led to a range of questions about water temperature and circulation patterns in the fjords where ocean water meets the glacial fronts.

  • The Art of Flying

    The Art of Flying

    Flying. It is something we are almost all familiar with, and yet I expect few of us have really sat back to appreciate the actual science of it. For the past 10 weeks we have been flying, not just a day or two a week but five or six days a week depending on the…

  • The ‘Glory’ in Clouds and Other Amazing Sights!

    The ‘Glory’ in Clouds and Other Amazing Sights!

    If you look carefully at the picture below you will see a small shadow of our plane completely encircled in a rainbow. This optical phenomenon, called a “glory,” can develop when the plane flies directly between the sun and a cloud below. Flying over the ice sheet in the far northeast of Greenland we saw…

  • Our Best Flight Yet

    Our Best Flight Yet

    Evidence of the retreat of glaciers since the last glacial maximum (check), flying over sites of ancient Inuit, Norse and present day settlements (check), and a personal recollection of my own past in this location (check).

  • Clues to Sea Level Rise Are Hidden In and Below Greenland’s Ice

    Clues to Sea Level Rise Are Hidden In and Below Greenland’s Ice

    Greenland is surrounded by a ring of high mountains that work like fingers encircling the ice to hold it in place. Ice sliding from between these “fingers” into the surrounding waters results in a major human impact – Sea Level Rise.

  • Midgard Glaciers hold the mark of Thor

    Midgard Glaciers hold the mark of Thor

    To Norse mythology Midgard is a place that is impassable, surrounded by a world of ocean. Thor, the hammer-wielding warrior god often traveled across to Midgard, and one imagines evidence of his fiery power remains in the highly charged rocks that are left behind. Magnetized rocks containing Thor’s energy and the fiery touch of his…

  • Clouding our Image

    Clouding our Image

    Even in idyllic Greenland some days start to feel like the movie “Groundhog Day”, however the turn of events today broke that thread. Over our two weeks in Kangerlussuaq we have ended our evenings with a science and weather report, and the hope of flying the program over both coasts. Each morning we wake up,…

  • The Sphinx of Greenland

    The Sphinx of Greenland

    I had been warned of Geikie. “If they fly to Geikie get on that flight” I had been told, but nothing more.

  • Connecting the past, the present and the future to understand climate

    Connecting the past, the present and the future to understand climate

    Over 100,000 years of Arctic climate data has been linked in the last two days of Ice Bridge missions. When you see the names DYE2, EGIG, GRIP, Ice Bridge and MABEL you view the elite list of Arctic science projects that deliver(ed) groundbreaking climate information through the last 50 years, and if all goes as…

Banner featuring a collage of extreme heat images.

Recent record-breaking heat waves have affected communities across the world. The Extreme Heat Workshop will bring together researchers and practitioners to advance the state of knowledge, identify community needs, and develop a framework for evaluating risks with a focus on climate justice. Register by June 15

  • The Changing Upernavik Waterfront

    The Changing Upernavik Waterfront

    Project Background: Changing conditions in Greenland’s northwest glaciers over the last decade have led to a range of questions about water temperature and circulation patterns in the fjords where ocean water meets the glacial fronts.

  • The Art of Flying

    The Art of Flying

    Flying. It is something we are almost all familiar with, and yet I expect few of us have really sat back to appreciate the actual science of it. For the past 10 weeks we have been flying, not just a day or two a week but five or six days a week depending on the…

  • The ‘Glory’ in Clouds and Other Amazing Sights!

    The ‘Glory’ in Clouds and Other Amazing Sights!

    If you look carefully at the picture below you will see a small shadow of our plane completely encircled in a rainbow. This optical phenomenon, called a “glory,” can develop when the plane flies directly between the sun and a cloud below. Flying over the ice sheet in the far northeast of Greenland we saw…

  • Our Best Flight Yet

    Our Best Flight Yet

    Evidence of the retreat of glaciers since the last glacial maximum (check), flying over sites of ancient Inuit, Norse and present day settlements (check), and a personal recollection of my own past in this location (check).

  • Clues to Sea Level Rise Are Hidden In and Below Greenland’s Ice

    Clues to Sea Level Rise Are Hidden In and Below Greenland’s Ice

    Greenland is surrounded by a ring of high mountains that work like fingers encircling the ice to hold it in place. Ice sliding from between these “fingers” into the surrounding waters results in a major human impact – Sea Level Rise.

  • Midgard Glaciers hold the mark of Thor

    Midgard Glaciers hold the mark of Thor

    To Norse mythology Midgard is a place that is impassable, surrounded by a world of ocean. Thor, the hammer-wielding warrior god often traveled across to Midgard, and one imagines evidence of his fiery power remains in the highly charged rocks that are left behind. Magnetized rocks containing Thor’s energy and the fiery touch of his…

  • Clouding our Image

    Clouding our Image

    Even in idyllic Greenland some days start to feel like the movie “Groundhog Day”, however the turn of events today broke that thread. Over our two weeks in Kangerlussuaq we have ended our evenings with a science and weather report, and the hope of flying the program over both coasts. Each morning we wake up,…

  • The Sphinx of Greenland

    The Sphinx of Greenland

    I had been warned of Geikie. “If they fly to Geikie get on that flight” I had been told, but nothing more.

  • Connecting the past, the present and the future to understand climate

    Connecting the past, the present and the future to understand climate

    Over 100,000 years of Arctic climate data has been linked in the last two days of Ice Bridge missions. When you see the names DYE2, EGIG, GRIP, Ice Bridge and MABEL you view the elite list of Arctic science projects that deliver(ed) groundbreaking climate information through the last 50 years, and if all goes as…