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SPECIAL: What saved the West Antarctic Ice Sheet 10,000 years ago will not save it today

 Stronger evidence for a weaker Atlantic overturning
The retreat of the West Antarctic ice masses after the last Ice Age was reversed surprisingly about 10,000 years ago, scientists found. This is in stark contrast to previous assumptions. In fact, it was the shrinking itself that stopped the shrinking: relieved from the weight of the ice, the Earth crust lifted and triggered the re-advance of the ice sheet. However, this mechanism is much too slow to prevent dangerous sea-level rise caused by West Antarctica’s ice-loss in the present and near future. Only rapid greenhouse-gas emission reductions can. Read more...

Schellnhuber presents "10 Must-Knows on Climate" at COP23

Schellnhuber presents "10 Must-Knows on Climate" at COP23

11/13/2017 - From accelerating sea-level rise and ocean acidification to increasing risks of extreme weather events and the "collision course" with Earth’s climatic tipping points - PIK director Schellnhuber presented "10 Must-Knows on Climate Change from Science" today at COP23 in Bonn, together with UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa, Wendy Broadgate from Future Earth, and Johan Rockström from the Earth League. They addressed policymakers and the public to show that achieving the Paris Agreement is necessary and possible. "Some crucial climate-change facts tend to get lost in the noise of daily deliberations - even at an event such as the UN climate summit. So it is important to remind everyone of the very reason why ten thousands of people meet in Bonn: unprecedented risk to humanity due to global warming, as revealed by science", says PIK director Schellnhuber.

Schellnhuber presents "10 Must-Knows on Climate" at COP23 - Read More…

Schellnhuber and the Californian Governor Jerry Brown meet in Oslo

Schellnhuber and the Californian Governor Jerry Brown meet in Oslo

10.11.2017 - Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), will meet California's Governor Jerry Brown, America's climate protection vanguard, at the Academy of Sciences in Oslo. Together with scientists from all over the world they will discuss what politicians need from the scientific community in order to address pressing challenges such as climate change. The meeting in Oslo on November 10th aims at strengthening the dialogue between science and politics on environmental and climate issues.

Schellnhuber and the Californian Governor Jerry Brown meet in Oslo - Read More…

 On COP23 and the coalition negotiations in Berlin:"Stabilizing the climate, modernizing Germany"

On COP23 and the coalition negotiations in Berlin:"Stabilizing the climate, modernizing Germany"

11/10/2017 - "If we stabilize the climate, we will also establish more stability in the world. This requires national pioneers. Germany will lose its position as a role model if it does not quickly and effectively reduce its emissions of greenhouse gases, which have so far stagnated at a high level. The phasing out of coal is an indispensable step in this respect." This was the message from leading scientists at yesterday's press conference of the German Climate Consortium (DKK) at the Humboldt University in Berlin. In a statement on the UN Climate Change Conference and the current negotiations on forming a new German government, leading climate scientists addressed policymakers and the public, including the director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Mojib Latif from the Helmholtz Centre for Oceanography Kiel (GEOMAR), Monika Rhein from the Institute for Environmental Physics at the University of Bremen and Gernot Klepper from the Institute for World Economy at the University of Bremen.

On COP23 and the coalition negotiations in Berlin:"Stabilizing the climate, modernizing Germany" - Read More…

Cities can cut greenhouse gas emissions far beyond their urban borders

Cities can cut greenhouse gas emissions far beyond their urban borders

11/07/2017 - Greenhouse gas emissions caused by urban households’ purchases of goods and services from beyond city limits are much bigger than previously thought. These upstream emissions may occur anywhere in the world and are roughly equal in size to the total emissions originating from a city’s own territory, a new study shows. This is not bad news but in fact offers local policy-makers more leverage to tackle climate change, the authors argue in view of the UN climate summit COP23 that just started. They calculated the first internationally comparable greenhouse gas footprints for four cities from developed and developing countries: Berlin, New York, Mexico City, and Delhi. Contrary to common beliefs, not consumer goods like computers or sneakers that people buy are most relevant, but housing and transport – sectors that cities can substantially govern.

Cities can cut greenhouse gas emissions far beyond their urban borders - Read More…

Many PIK scientists at COP23 in Bonn

Many PIK scientists at COP23 in Bonn

03/11/2017 - A number of experts from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) will take part in the climate summit COP23, taking place from November 6-17 in Bonn and presided by Fiji. PIK director Hans Joachim Schellnhuber will present the ten things you need to know about climate change, together with UNFCCC´s Patricia Espinosa, for example. At a side event with experts from the ETH Zürich, the ACT Alliance and Bread for the World, PIK´s chief economist Ottmar Edenhofer will discuss how to implement equity in the framework of the Paris Agreement.

Many PIK scientists at COP23 in Bonn - Read More…

Hermann Lotze-Campen appointed to AgMIP’s new Executive Committee

Hermann Lotze-Campen appointed to AgMIP’s new Executive Committee

10/23/2017 - The Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Program (AgMIP) has just established an Executive Committee, reflecting the growing impact of scientific contributions of AgMIP. The new members are internationally recognized leaders for their sustained scientific and technical contributions to agricultural sciences. From the Potsdam Institute of Climate Impact Research (PIK), Hermann Lotze-Campen, Chair of Research Domain Climate Impacts and Vulnerabilities and Professor of Sustainable Land Use and Climate Change at Humboldt University Berlin, was appointed as a new member to the Executive Committee.

Hermann Lotze-Campen appointed to AgMIP’s new Executive Committee - Read More…

“The Father of the 2 Degrees Limit”: Schellnhuber receives Blue Planet Prize

“The Father of the 2 Degrees Limit”: Schellnhuber receives Blue Planet Prize

10/19/2017 - The world’s most prestigious award for pioneers in environmental science was given to Hans Joachim Schellnhuber this week in Tokyo. He is Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), a member of the Leibniz Association. The Blue Planet Prize, coming along with 50 million yen, honors outstanding thinkers who help to meet challenges of planetary dimensions. It is awarded by the Asahi Glass Foundation and handed over in presence of Japan’s Imperial Prince and Princess. Schellnhuber received the prize for establishing a new field of science, Earth System Analysis, and introducing most influential concepts including the notion of tipping elements in the climate system. The second recipient is Gretchen Daily of Stanford University, USA, who was honored for her research about biodiversity and natural capital.

“The Father of the 2 Degrees Limit”: Schellnhuber receives Blue Planet Prize - Read More…

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