Climate & Carbon Sciences Program Area

CESD Expert Writes About the Dangers of Sluggish Tropical Cyclones for Nature Magazine

Climate Models

CESD research scientist Christina Patricola weighed in this summer on new research indicating a global slowdown in the rate at which tropical cyclones move over a region. Because the amount of tropical-cyclone-related rainfall that any local area might experience is inversely proportional to this translation speed, these findings could have important implications for regional rainfall…

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EESA Scientists Are First to Directly Measure Methane’s Increasing Greenhouse Effect at the Earth’s Surface

Scientists have directly measured the increasing greenhouse effect of methane at the Earth’s surface for the first time. A research team from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) tracked a rise in the warming effect of methane — one of the most important greenhouse gases for the Earth’s atmosphere — over a…

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EESA Research Shows Impact of Environmental Changes on Microbes in Arctic Soils

New Berkeley Lab research published in the journal Nature Communications Thursday explores the impact of a changing climate on Arctic ecosystems with permanently frozen soils. As the Arctic continues to warm at about twice the rate of the rest of the world, scientists expect these frozen soils known as permafrost to thaw, activating microbes capable…

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Negron-Juarez et al. find that most ESMs show carbon uptake bias for tropical forests

Palm tree forest at El Yunque National Forest in Puerto Rico. Photo by Deb Agarwal. September 13, 2014.

Robinson Negrón-Juárez, Charles Koven, William Riley, Ryan Knox, and Jeff Chambers, researchers in EESA and CESD, published a letter in Environmental Research Letters showing that most earth system models (ESM) overpredict tropical forest biomass in response to increased forest productivity. In contrast, observations show that as tropical forest productivity increases, trees do not continue to store CO2 at…

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Which processes most strongly govern terrestrial carbon cycle feedbacks in Earth system models?

Graphic comparing various turnover times for carbon in vegetation and soil carbon pools.

ESMs (Earth system models) are crucial in estimating climate sensitivity, but show large uncertainty in carbon cycle feedbacks. A key step of reducing this uncertainty is to identify the processes that govern carbon-climate and carbon-concentration feedbacks driven by changes in terrestrial carbon stocks. Are these changing carbon stocks driven by changes to inputs, or changes…

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New Research: Feedback between Permafrost Carbon and Climate

Image of journal cover

Charlie Koven, scientist in Climate and Ecosystem Sciences Division, discusses newly published research results in LBNL’s News Center today. As global warming causes soil temperatures to increase, some of the billions of tons of carbon frozen in Arctic permafrost will will be released into the atmosphere, and accelerate climate change. This is a big unknown. Now there’s a…

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