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PIK in the Media

Please find selected media articles featuring or written by researchers from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) here. For articles published only in German, please see the German version of our website.

"Anders Levermann: The Great River Floods"

Radio Ecoshock (Canada) - Already today, fluvial floods are among the most devastating natural disasters. Rainfall changes caused by global warming will further increase river flood risks across the globe. Scientists from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) have now calculated the required increase in flood protection until the 2040s worldwide. PIK-scientist Anders Levermann contributed to the new study and speaks in an interview with Radio Ecoshock about the estimated future flood risks. Source: Radio Ecoshock (Canada), 01.02.2018.

"Anders Levermann: The Great River Floods" - Read More…

"It’s the big new idea for stopping climate change — but it has huge environmental problems of its own"

The Washington Post (USA) - Removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere becomes particularly important if the world misses its targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. But deploying BECCS technology on a scale needed to effect a significant dent in global emissions would use up massive amounts of water, fertilizer and land, a new study by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) claims. Lead author Vera Heck explains: “We could achieve substantial amounts of bioenergy potentials, but this would really come at the cost of extensive environmental damage in many other dimensions.” Source: The Washington Post (USA), 22.01.2018.

"It’s the big new idea for stopping climate change — but it has huge environmental problems of its own" - Read More…

"Why So Cold? Climate Change May Be Part of the Answer"

The New York Times (USA) - When the strong winds that circle the Arctic slacken, cold polar air can escape and cause extreme winter chills in parts of the Northern hemisphere. Already last year, a study by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research showed, that these weak states have become more persistent over the past four decades. “We’re trying to understand these dynamic processes that lead to cold winters", comments PIK-scientist Marlene Kretschmer in The New York Times. Source: The New York Times (USA), 03.01.2018.

"Why So Cold? Climate Change May Be Part of the Answer" - Read More…

"Why There's a Big Chill in a Warmer World"

Associated Press (USA) - "Anchorage, Alaska, was warmer Tuesday than Jacksonville, Florida. The weather in the U.S. is that upside down", starts the article by the major US news agency AP on the extreme winter chill in North America. A recent study by Marlene Kretschmer from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) on "winter cold extremes linked to high-altitude polar vortex weakening" is quoted for explanation. Source: Voice of America (USA), 02.01.2018.

"Why There's a Big Chill in a Warmer World" - Read More…

"EU must not burn the world's forests for 'renewable' energy"

The Guardian (UK) - "The European Union is moving to enact a directive to double Europe's current renewable energy by 2030. This is admirable, but a critical flaw in the present version would accelerate climate change, allowing countries, power plants and factories to claim that cutting down trees and burning them for energy fully qualifies as renewable energy", writes a group of internationally renowned scientists in the major British newspaper The Guardian. Among them is Wolfgang Lucht from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). He is co-chair of the research domain Earth System Analysis and member of the German Advisory Council on the Environment. The scientists conclude: "We encourage European legislators and other policymakers to amend the present directive because the fate of much of the world's forests is literally at stake." Source: The Guardian (UK), 14.12.2017.

"EU must not burn the world's forests for 'renewable' energy" - Read More…

"UN makes global bid to end 'rampant' pollution"

AFP (France) - Environment ministers from about 100 countries gathered in Nairobi to issue a clarion call against air, land and water pollution. "Nine million people die prematurely every year because of environmental intoxication - this is clearly a moral scandal," said PIK-director John Schellnhuber on the rampant pollution to the major French news agency Agence France Presse (AFP). Source: France 24 (France), 01.12.2017.

"UN makes global bid to end 'rampant' pollution" - Read More…

"Clima: a Berlino esperimento su 100 famiglie per ridurre CO2"

ANSA (Italy) - From this December, 100 private households in Berlin will be testing what climate action means in everyday life in the project "Climate-Neutral Living in Berlin". They will be supported by experts from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). The major Italian news agency ANSA reports on the kick-off of the living lab and cites PIK-scientist Fritz Reusswig, who is managing the project. Text in Italian. Source: ANSA (Italy), 30.11.2017.

"Clima: a Berlino esperimento su 100 famiglie per ridurre CO2" - Read More…

"Climat: le père du 2°C place son espoir dans la jeunesse"

AFP (France) - "We have chosen the wrong model for a happy life: comfort, consume... but this way of life doesn't make us happier", said the internationally renowned climate scientist and PIK-Director John Schellnhuber to the major French news agency Agence France Presse, with a view to the ongoing climate change. Text in French. Source: Magazine Goodplanet (France), 16.11.2017.

"Climat: le père du 2°C place son espoir dans la jeunesse" - Read More…

"Merkel to address climate talks amid calls for coal exit"

AP (USA) - "Germany as a climate champion could definitely get out of coal fairly quickly, but we keep on operating the dirtiest of all fossil fuels to export the excess power", said PIK-Director John Schellnhuber to the world's biggest news agency Associated Press, on the occasion of this year's UN climate conference. Source: Arkansas Online (USA), 15.11.2017.

"Merkel to address climate talks amid calls for coal exit" - Read More…

"China increasingly seen as important partner in climate cooperation"

Xinhua (China) - During COP23, PIK's chief economist Ottmar Edenhofer expected in an interview with the major Chinese news agency Xinhua, "that China and Germany step up cooperation in electric mobility, photovoltaic industry, and city planning to enable electronic mobility as well as to address congestion and local pollution", as the agency writes. Source: Xinhua News Network (China), 10.11.2017.

"China increasingly seen as important partner in climate cooperation" - Read More…

"Counting the true costs of climate change"

Phys.org (UK) - Hundreds of millions of people will be affected by climate change impacts and their implications for health or migration already within the next few decades, sectors that so far often get overlooked in this context. This is one of the insights of the Impacts World Conference organised by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) in Germany this week. About 500 scientists from 67 countries were gathering at the conference with the title “Counting the true costs of climate change” to push climate impact research to the next level. Source: Phys.org (UK), 11.10.2017.

"Counting the true costs of climate change" - Read More…

"Coal formation almost plunged Earth into a snowball state"

The Daily Mail (UK) - A new study shows: While burning coal today causes Earth to overheat, about 300 million years ago the formation of that same coal brought our planet close to global glaciation. "The amount of CO2 stored in Earth's coal reserves was once big enough to push our climate out of balance. When released by burning the coal, the CO2 is again destabilizing the Earth system", says study author Georg Feulner from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). Source: The Daily Mail (UK), 10.10.2017.

"Coal formation almost plunged Earth into a snowball state" - Read More…

"A brief history of CO2 emissions"

Short film - Fossil energy sources are millions of years of stored solar energy. Its exploitation provided us short-term economic growth. Yet through the burning of fossil fuels, in just 250 years humans have increased CO2 quantity in the atmosphere by 40 percent - to levels last seen four million years ago. Hence the Earth already heated up by 1° Celsius - and will continue to do so by up to 4° with unconstrained emissions. An animated short film, developed under scientific lead by Elmar Kriegler and based upon data research by Lavinia Baumstark, both from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), shows: The time to act is now! Released at 13.09.2017.

"A brief history of CO2 emissions" - Read More…

"Irma leaves trail of destruction in Caribbean"

CBC Radio (Canada) - Have we ever seen a Hurricane like Irma? In an interview with Canada's major public broadcasting radio CBC, Anders Levermann explains the connections between the ongoing human-caused climate change and the hazardous storms striking the Carribean (from minute 11.10). Levermann is Co-Chair of the Research Domain Sustainable Solutions at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). Source: CBC Radio (Canada), 08.09.2017.

"Irma leaves trail of destruction in Caribbean" - Read More…

"The likelihood of floods is changing with the climate"

The Economist (UK) - Already in 2015, a study by researchers from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) detected a clear upward trend in the past few decades towards more record-breaking heavy rainfall events. The increase was found to be consistent with rising global temperatures. The major British newspaper The Economist now highlights this and other studies providing evidence for an increased likelihood of severe flood events. Source: The Economist (UK), 31.08.2017.

"The likelihood of floods is changing with the climate" - Read More…

"Debate over climate and hurricanes is getting louder and louder"

The Washington Post (USA) - A warmer atmosphere can hold more water vapor. This was favouring extreme rainfall events "because they tend to occur with moisture-saturated air masses", explains Stefan Rahmstorf in an article on hurricanes by the major US newspaper The Washington Post. Stefan Rahmstorf is Co-Chair of the Research Domain Earth System Analysis at the Potsdam-Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). Source: The Washington Post (USA), 30.08.2017.

"Debate over climate and hurricanes is getting louder and louder" - Read More…

"Why Harvey is stuck near Texas"

Bloomberg (USA) - Hurricane Harvey had a devastating impact on Texas. For several days, the giant storm persisted nearly stationary. Earlier this year, a study by scientists around Stefan Rahmstorf from the Potsdam-Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) delivered further evidence, that climate change might weaken giant airstreams circling the Earth, thus favouring stationary weather conditions. The major US news agency Bloomberg reports. Source: Bloomberg (USA), 30.08.2017.

"Why Harvey is stuck near Texas" - Read More…

"Is tropical storm Harvey linked to climate change?"

The Guardian (UK) - Will stationary storms like Harvey become more common in the future? Giant airstreams circle Earth's Northern hemisphere in huge turns between the tropics and the Arctic. When these planetary waves slow down, extreme weather conditions can stay longer in a given location, explains Stefan Rahmstorf from the Potsdam-Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) in an article by the major British newspaper The Guardian. Source: The Guardian (UK), 29.08.2017.

"Is tropical storm Harvey linked to climate change?" - Read More…

"Power demand to peak in Europe summers, not winters"

France 24 (France) - A new study from the Potsdam-Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) projected the effect of climate change on European electricity consumption. Energy demands will rise due to increased indoor air conditioning in hotter summers, especially in Southern Europe. Leonie Wenz was lead author of the study and explains the results in an article by the major French news agency AFP, as released by the TV channel France 24. Source: France 24 (France), 28.08.2017.

"Power demand to peak in Europe summers, not winters" - Read More…

"Electricity demand in Southern Europe to soar"

The Guardian (UK) - A new study shows: future warming due to greenhouse gas emissions will change electricity consumption patterns in Europe. Daily peak loads in Southern Europe will increase and overall consumption will shift from the North to the South. Anders Levermann from the Potsdam-Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) was part of the research team, and comments on the results in an article by the major British newspaper The Guardian. Source: The Guardian (UK), 28.08.2017.

"Electricity demand in Southern Europe to soar" - Read More…

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