04/28/2017 - Price peaks of wheat on the world market are mainly caused by production shocks such as induced for example by droughts, researchers found. These shocks get exacerbated by low storage levels as well as protective trade policies, the analysis of global data deriving from the US Department of Agriculture shows. In contrast to widespread assumptions, neither speculation across stock or commodity markets nor land-use for biofuel production were decisive for annual wheat price changes in the past four decades. This finding allows for better risk assessment. Soaring global crop prices in some years can contribute to local food crises, and climate change from burning fossil fuels and emitting greenhouse gases is increasing weather variability.
On the 6th of April 2017, RD2 student Julia Lutz successfully defended her PhD thesis 'Application and improvement of the Statistical Analogue Resampling Scheme STARS' at the University of Bonn.
31/03/2017 - In a policy brief for the G20, an expert group urges the governments of the world's leading economies to track progress on the state of food security and, based on this, to scale investment opportunities and target their interventions. Hermann Lotze-Campen, head of the research domain Climate Impacts and Vulnerabilities at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, contributed to this report which is part of the Think Tank 20 (T20) process under Germany’s G20 presidency.
03/26/2017 "We should eat more vegetables": In a conversation with Friederike Schmitz, the agricultural economist Benjamin Bodirsky from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research talks about the environmental and climatic consequences of agricultural production, about nitrogen and methane, food waste, meat consumption and good nutrition.
03/10/2017 - As a part of the T20 process - a collaboration of global think tanks and high-level experts to provide analytical depth to G20 discussions - Hermann Lotze-Campen wrote a blog entry: "In praise of free trade".
02/28/2017 - RD2 Senior Scientist Dr. Hagen Koch received a visiting professorship at the UNIVERSIDADE FEDERAL DE PERNAMBUCO (UFPE) in Recife/Brazil. The visiting professorship is financed by the Pró-Reitoria para Assuntos de Pesquisa e Pós-Graduação (Propesq) of the UFPE.
03/03/2017 - Die Zugriffszahlen der ersten beiden Monaten dieses Jahres auf das Bildungsportal 'KlimafolgenOnline-Bildung.de' zeigen, dass das Portal bei den Lehrkräften gut ankommt! So gab es im Januar mehr als 1200 und im Februar über 2250 interessierte Besucher.
On the 20th of January 2017, RD2 PhD student Boris Prahl successfully defended his PhD thesis on "Damage Functions for the Estimation of Storm Loss and their Generalization for Climate-Related Hazards" at Freie Universität Berlin.
Our RD2 PhD student Judith Stagl successfully defended her PhD thesis "'Ecosystems' exposure to climate change – Modeling as support for nature conservation management" on 12th January 2017 at Potsdam University.
2017/02/10 - This week, all scientists and staff of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) gathered for their annual roadshow of scientific achievements and discussions of future projects. Packed with presentations and debates, PIK´s Research Days are an unequalled opportunity to share insights and shape the future course of the institute.
01/23/2017 - Some of the most distinguished international climate experts are gathering in Potsdam this week for a symposium of the Earth League, a self-organized initiative of leading researchers on global change. During two days, they will discuss how the Great Transformation towards sustainability can be brought about. The success of the Paris climate agreement aiming at completely decarbonizing our economies within a few decades is by no means ensured; fulfilling its objectives requires a ratcheting-up of ambitions through social, political and economic progress.
01/19/2017 - Some of the most important crops risk substantial damage from rising temperatures. To better assess how climate change caused by human greenhouse gas emissions will likely impact wheat, maize and soybean, an international team of scientists now ran an unprecedentedly comprehensive set of computer simulations of US crop yields. The simulations were shown to reproduce the observed strong reduction in past crop yields induced by high temperatures, thereby confirming that they capture one main mechanism for future projections. Importantly, the scientists find that increased irrigation can help to reduce the negative effects of global warming on crops – but this is possible only in regions where sufficient water is available. Eventually limiting global warming is needed to keep crop losses in check.
01/19/2017 - Our guest scientist Chantal le Mouël from INRA (SMART-LERECO, Rennes, France) presented CIRAD and INRA's new foresight exercise on 'Land use and food security in 2050'.
01/05/2017 - Our guest scientist Gerard W. Wall, who is a Plant Physiologist from the US Arid-Land Agricultural Research Center, has held a presentation on the "Thermal Regime Agronomic Cereal Experiment" (TRACE)
01/03/2017 - The 'Süddeutsche Zeitung' published a guest article 'Lob des Freihandels' by Professor Hermann Lotze-Campen on the benefits of free trade for climate change adaptation and world-wide food security.
23/12/2016 - Groundwater has contributed greatly to increasing food security by ensuring water availability for irrigation at critical times. Today, 43 percent of global food production depends on groundwater use. However, water reserves are not endless, and climate change puts additional pressure on groundwater management. A new transdisciplinary and international research group on Water Management in the Future Earth Framework will address these challenges, co-chaired by Anne Biewald of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). As part of the Sustainable Water Future Programme, several research groups will bring together the best international expertise to drive solutions to the world’s water problems.
12/19/2016 - Benchmarks to guide countries in ratcheting-up their ambition to remain well-below 2°C and pursue 1,5°C in an equitable manner are critical but not yet determined in the context of the Paris Agreement. A new study published in Nature Climate Change analyzes the national climate targets needed to meet the 1.5°C and 2°C goals according to five different equity principles, and how these compare with the current climate pledges.
16/12/2016 - The holiday season is in full swing and many enjoy the opportunity to feast – or to make new year resolutions for a healthier diet. What we eat is more than a private decision – the agriculture and land use sector is one of the central players in ambitious climate change mitigation efforts. Yet, mitigation policies in agriculture may conflict with food security. A team of scientists from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research analyzed the impacts on food prices under mitigation policies – targeting either incentives for producers or consumer preferences. They show that policy instruments to mitigate climate change with an educational approach to change food preferences can avoid unwanted impacts of climate change mitigation measures on food security.
New EU H2020 Project - European Calculator: trade-offs and pathways towards sustainable and low-carbon European Societies kick-off meeting in Potsdam
11/29/2016 - Prof. Dr. Jürgen Kropp, Deputy Chair of RD2, has invited all partners of the new H2020 project "EU Calculator: trade-offs and pathways towards sustainable and low-carbon European Societies" to Potsdam for a kick-off meeting from 12th to 14th December 2016.
A final joint conference of the European funded FP7 projects TESS, PATHWAYS, ARTS and BlueCity took place between the 13 and 14 October 2016 in Rotterdam.