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Nobel Laureate speaks to Potsdam postgraduates

05/11/2012 - Nobel Laureate Mario Molina visited the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) this week. During the annual meeting of the institute's junior scientists (PhD Day), Molina talked about ways of communicating climate science findings. „The scientific community needs to better communicate the risks of climate change to decision makers in government,“ Molina said.
Nobel Laureate speaks to Potsdam postgraduates

Nobel Laureate Mario Molina in the auditorium.

There is consensus among experts that the risk of causing dangerous changes to the climate system increases rapidly if the average temperature rises more than two or two and a half degrees Celsius, and that the associated costs to the economy are likely to be significantly larger than the costs associated with adopting the necessary measures to minimize such risk,“ Molina underlined. With two other scientists he was awarded with the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work on the formation and decomposition of ozone in the atmosphere in 1995. Currently, Molina is professor at the University of California, San Diego and president of the „Centro Mario Molina“ in his home country Mexico.

 

For the roughly 100 postgraduates there was not only the opportunity to exchange ideas with „Mister Ozone“ Mario Molina. PIK guest scientist Ken Caldeira from the Department of Global Ecology at Carnegie Institute in Washington and professor at Stanford School of Earth Sciences talked about „intended and unintended consequences of geoengineering“ - one of several topics that were also discussed by the PhD students themselves. For the first time, this year's PhD Day was partly organized in an open discussion-format. Every 30 minutes dialogue partners switched to discuss topics like the role of scientists in public debates, CCS or biomass.

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