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Successful forecast of onset and withdrawal of the Indian Summer Monsoon

Successful forecast of onset and withdrawal of the Indian Summer Monsoon

11/14/2016 - A team of scientists of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) was able to predict the withdrawal of the Indian Summer Monsoon 70 days in advance and therefore much earlier than previously possible. While their assessment on the expected onset earlier this year already proved correct, the actual weather observations from NOAA now confirm that their unprecedentedly early forecast on the monsoon withdrawal was accurate as well. The heavy summer rains are of crucial relevance for agriculture and accordingly for millions of people on the subcontinent. The improved monsoon predictions are based on a cutting-edge methodology developed at the Potsdam Institute.

Successful forecast of onset and withdrawal of the Indian Summer Monsoon - Read More…

What can Earth‘s past tell us about future global warming?

What can Earth‘s past tell us about future global warming?

11/09/2016 - A new analysis of more than 700,000 years climate history shows that with ongoing greenhouse gas emissions our planet might warm even more than previously predicted. In the past, Earth’s temperatures varied strongly, driven by a variety of factors including CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. This provides valuable information for assessing the climate effect of modern times’ burning of fossil fuels. A study now published in Science Advances indicates that human-caused warming might even exceed earlier projections by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). This would mean that we can emit even less CO2 to meet the temperature target of the Paris Agreement: keep warming below 2 degrees.

What can Earth‘s past tell us about future global warming? - Read More…

German government reappoints Schellnhuber to advisory council

German government reappoints Schellnhuber to advisory council

11/10/2016 - The Federal Cabinet appointed the German Advisory Council on Global Change (WBGU) for its next term - five of the nine Council members have been reappointed, among them PIK director Hans Joachim Schellnhuber and Dirk Messner, Director of the German Development Institute (DIE). For new positions, four women were appointed. With this cast, the council will work for the German government until 2020.

German government reappoints Schellnhuber to advisory council - Read More…

"The world has to move forward without the US"

"The world has to move forward without the US"

11/09/2016 - Science cannot expect positive climate action from President-elect Donald Trump, says Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. "The world has now to move forward without the US on the road towards climate-risk mitigation and clean-technology innovation," he states.

"The world has to move forward without the US" - Read More…

German climate action plan postponed

German climate action plan postponed

11/09/2016 - In stark contrast to previous plans, the German Federal Government did not pass its much debated climate action plan "Klimaschutzplan 2050" today. "Germany missed a major opportunity - an opportunity for businesses, since the climate mitigation plan would have offered a framework for developing clean technologies, and an opportunity for reforming the European Emissions Trading System," says Ottmar Edenhofer, chief economist of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. The government might adopt a revised version of the plan next Wednesday, yet there's uncertainty about how the new document will look like.

German climate action plan postponed - Read More…

The Potsdam Institute at COP22 in Marrakech

The Potsdam Institute at COP22 in Marrakech

11/09/2016 - Researchers from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) are attending the current UN climate summit COP22 in Marrakesch from November 7 to 18. Amongst other events, PIK Director Hans Joachim Schellnhuber will speak at a side-event of the German Advisory Council on Global Change on the science-policy dialogue to reach Paris targets. PIK chief economist Ottmar Edenhofer will discuss the potential of the Paris Agreement in a side event with colleagues from Arizona State University, Harvard Kennedy School and others.

The Potsdam Institute at COP22 in Marrakech - Read More…

Close exchange with Japan

Close exchange with Japan

07/11/2016 - During a visit to Japan, Hans Joachim Schellnhuber further deepened the collaboration between the country´s scientific and political experts and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). In July, PIK director Schellnhuber had visited Fukushima and held a keynote at the International Forum for Sustainable Asia and the Pacific (ISAP). This time he elaborated concrete scientific exchange and policy advice.

Close exchange with Japan - Read More…

Climate Change in Germany - New Report

Climate Change in Germany - New Report

11/03/2016 - From mean temperatures to weather extremes: the probably most comprehensive compendium on climate change in Germany was presented in Berlin today. 126 authors describe the possible impacts and adaptation strategies on different natural environments, economic sectors and areas of life. The report, a product of the German Climate Climate Service Center, is designed as a complement to the work of the IPCC and will be published a few days before the next UN climate-conference in Marrakech.

Climate Change in Germany - New Report - Read More…

Paris Agreement risks and opportunities: ADVANCE project presents findings in Brussels

Paris Agreement risks and opportunities: ADVANCE project presents findings in Brussels

10/24/2016 - To meet the climate stabilization targets of the Paris Agreement, the greenhouse gas emission reduction plans so far presented by nations worldwide have to be substantially improved. While renewables can almost fully decarbonize the power sector, aiming at a 1.5 degrees Celsius limit for global warming would require major additional efforts to also reduce emissions from demand sectors, for instance through a shift to electric and hydrogen vehicles. These are just some of the findings presented at the final meeting of the ADVANCE project this Monday in Brussels. The Acronym stands for “Advanced Model Development and Validation for Improved Analysis of Costs and Impacts of Mitigation policies”, an unprecedented research effort funded by the European Union.

Paris Agreement risks and opportunities: ADVANCE project presents findings in Brussels - Read More…

Eminent Brazilian Climate Scientist visits PIK

Eminent Brazilian Climate Scientist visits PIK

19/10/2016 - Carlos A. Nobre, one of the world-leading researchers on the Amazon rainforest and, among several high-ranking engagements, Member of the UN-Secretary General's Science Advisory Board on Global Sustainability, visited the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.

Eminent Brazilian Climate Scientist visits PIK - Read More…

Edenhofer advises Volkswagen on sustainability issues

Edenhofer advises Volkswagen on sustainability issues

09/30/2016 - Volkswagen appointed a sustainability council - one of the members is Ottmar Edenhofer, chief economist of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. The new body will meet for the first time at the end of October in Berlin. VW is selling more cars than any other corporation worldwide. The company is currently under pressure because of manipulations of diesel engines' emission measurements.

Edenhofer advises Volkswagen on sustainability issues - Read More…

Crash of seemingly stable social systems: new dynamics detected

Crash of seemingly stable social systems: new dynamics detected

09/30/2016 - From Facebook to international climate agreements like the Paris accord that is currently in the ratification process, the stability of complex social networks is still poorly understood. To better assess system crash likelihood, an international team of scientists now proposes a new mathematical system dynamics model. One key factor for system collapse is individual action based on local information, the study finds. When a member of the network - be it a person or a state - observes friends or allies to leave the system, it likely opts out as well. Small perturbations can hence have huge impacts.

Crash of seemingly stable social systems: new dynamics detected - Read More…

New Artist in Residence: Amy Howden-Chapman

New Artist in Residence: Amy Howden-Chapman

09/29/2016 - From sea-level rise to the "cultural costs of climate change" - Amy Howden-Chapman from New Zealand ist this year's guest artist at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). Since 2011, PIK's "Artist in Residence" program is realized in cooperation with the Artists in Berlin program of DAAD and since 2015 also in close collaboration with the City of Potsdam.

New Artist in Residence: Amy Howden-Chapman - Read More…

Climate games

Climate games

26/09/2016 - The author of the 1972 classic “The Limits of Growth”, Dennis Meadows, who has often been dubbed the godfather of the environmental movement, visited the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research for some talks and to present his new book, “The Climate Change Playbook”. He introduced a number of metaphorical games to communicate climate change in a playful way.

Climate games - Read More…

Top scientists: Abandoning the Paris Agreement would harm America and the World

Top scientists: Abandoning the Paris Agreement would harm America and the World

09/23/2016 - In an unprecedented move, 375 renowned scientists including 30 Nobel Laureates have warned the US presidency candidates not to shun the Paris climate agreement. In an open letter published this week, the scholars emphasize that human-caused global warming including its negative impacts is “not a belief, it is a physical reality”. All signers are members of the eminent US National Academy of Sciences, including the director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Hans Joachim Schellnhuber.

Top scientists: Abandoning the Paris Agreement would harm America and the World - Read More…

Extreme events and planetary waves: new index approach

Extreme events and planetary waves: new index approach

09/22/2016 - Both heat waves like 2010 in Russia or cold spells like 2014 in the US have a common feature – they appeared together with certain patterns of gigantic airstreams in the atmosphere. This so called jetstream circles around the globe in waves swinging up and down between the Tropics and the Arctic. These large meandering planetary waves can have huge impacts – the economic damages of the 2014 cold spell at the US east coast with record-breaking cold temperatures for instance were estimated up to 5 billion Dollars.

Extreme events and planetary waves: new index approach - Read More…

Climate impacts on amphibians and reptiles

Climate impacts on amphibians and reptiles

09/07/2016 - How does climate change affect amphibians and reptiles – animals whose body temperature depends directly on ambient temperature? A team of international scientists, involving the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) and WWF Germany, analyzed the peer reviewed literature on the subject of the past ten years – their findings were now published in Royal Society Open Science.

Climate impacts on amphibians and reptiles - Read More…

Edenhofer ranked amongst Germany’s top economists

Edenhofer ranked amongst Germany’s top economists

09/06/2016 - In a ranking of Germany’s “most influential economists”, Ottmar Edenhofer, chief economist of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, was placed amongst the top researchers in the field. The grouping published by the renowned daily ‘Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung’ (FAZ) is based on data on the scientific, political and media impact of the individual researchers. Edenhofer, who also directs the Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change and is a Professor at Technische Universität Berlin, is the only economist with a focus on climate who scored this high in the ranking.

Edenhofer ranked amongst Germany’s top economists - Read More…

Friends of PIK: Simonis honoured, Stock nominated

Friends of PIK: Simonis honoured, Stock nominated

28/07/2016 - The Society of Friends and Promoters of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research has honoured its longstanding president Udo Simonis for his tremendous efforts and made him honorary chairman. Manfred Stock took over the lead of the society. The tribute took place during festive symposium on biodiversity, and the institute´s scientists applauded their old and new supporters of their work. The symposium was organized by the research domain Transdisciplinary Concepts & Methods.

Friends of PIK: Simonis honoured, Stock nominated - Read More…

New interactive climate spirals online

New interactive climate spirals online

07/27/2016 - Global-mean temperatures are breaking one record after the other since instrumental observations began. Driven by burning of fossil fuels and deforestation, carbon dioxide concentrations have also soared to unprecedented levels. In fact, today's CO2 concentrations are higher than they have ever been over the last 800 thousand years. Scientists from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) and the University of Melbourne now put all these elements together to provide a set of new interactive Climate Spiral visualizations.

New interactive climate spirals online - Read More…

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