Latest News

Breakthrough in El Niño-Forecasting

07/02/13 - Irregular warming of the Eastern Pacific Ocean, dubbed El Niño by Peruvian fishermen, can generate devastating impacts. Being the most important phenomenon of contemporary natural climate variability, it may trigger floods in Latin America, droughts in Australia, and harvest failures in India. In order to extend forecasting from 6 months to one year or even more, scientists have now proposed a novel approach based on advanced connectivity analysis applied to the climate system. The scheme builds on high-quality data of air temperatures and clearly outperforms existing methods. The study will be published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
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Global Sustainability Summer School 2013: The cities of the future

07/01/2013 - What do the cities of the future look like? What role do they play for global climate change? What influence does the German energy transformation have worldwide? These questions are in the centre of the 2nd Global Sustainability Summer School on “COMPLEX(C)ITY – Urbanization and energy transition in a changing climate“ taking place from 1 to 12 July, sponsored by the Robert Bosch Foundation and jointly organised by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) and the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS). Junior scientists, well-known climate researchers and experts for urban development from all over the world – from Brazil to India, from Ghana to Mongolia –will meet in Potsdam for this purpose.
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First World Conference on Climate Impacts: Painting the Big Picture

05/27/2013 - Droughts, floods, crop failures, invading species and diseases – climate change impacts of today and tomorrow come with a raft of buzz words. But the science behind our understanding of the potential consequences of global warming is both much broader and much more fragmented.
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Carbon Dioxide Removal: Assessing potentials - and risks

06/24/2013 - With global greenhouse-gas emissions continuing to rise and a possibility that international cooperation in climate policy will continue to be delayed, a number of large-scale technical approaches have been suggested to counter strong climate change. Direct carbon dioxide removal (CDR) from the atmosphere is a measure that two groups of scientists at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impacts Research (PIK) are now looking into. Theoretically, it could make ambitious mitigation economically more feasible, increase the likelihood of achieving the 2-degrees warming threshold agreed by the international community, or lower atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations in the future to partially compensate for lack of mitigation today. The PIK projects are part of a programme financed by Deutsche Forschungs-Gemeinschaft on climate engineering that is starting this month.
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Floods in the light of climate change

06/21/2013 - The nationwide floods have been keeping the country´s attention for some time now. This week, the Minister for the Environment, Peter Altmaier, visited flooded regions near Dessau/Bitterfeld. He was accompanied by Friedrich-Wilhelm Gerstengarbe of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), who briefed him on the relation between climate change and extreme weather events, as well as a number of other high-ranking experts. In the previous weeks, Gerstengarbe and other PIK scientists have given several interviews on the subject, mainly on the question if climate change is one of the causes for the floods.
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Ups-and-downs of Indian monsoon rainfall likely to increase under warming

06/20/2013 - Day-to-day rainfall in India might become much more variable due to climate change – potentially putting millions of poor farmers and the country’s agricultural productivity at risk. The Indian monsoon is a complex system which is likely to change under future global warming. While it is in the very nature of weather to vary, the question is how much and whether we can deal with it. Extreme rainfall, for example, bears the risk of flooding, and crop failure. Computer simulations with a comprehensive set of 20 state-of-the-art climate models now consistently show that Indian monsoon daily variability might increase, according to a study just published by scientists of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.
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Top rank amongst European climate think tanks

06/19/2013 - Of all European think tanks focusing on climate change issues, the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) holds the first place, according to a new analysis. The ranking is based on the record of publications and events. It builds on actual data, not just a survey, the authors from the International Center for Climate Governance, Italy, point out.
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Art and science met in „climate city“ Bremerhaven

06/17/2013 - For two weekends, climate was in the center of attention in Bremerhaven. The festival ODYSSEE: KLIMA of the city theater Bremerhaven presented a number of artists and scientists, among them some experts from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research to introduce their projects.
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Summerly "Smartest Night of the Year"

06/11/2013 - Bright sunshine and a varied program attracted many visitors at this year´s 13th Long Night of Science at Potsdam´s Telegrafenberg. The Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research took part with a whole number of choices for curious people of all ages – this year for the first time in Berlin as well. The program included everything from a panel discussion on climate impacts in Germany to movies to crime fiction. Yet the historic buildings in the park turned out to be the night´s brightest star, considering the great weather.
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