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Abrupt Climate Change

Earth's climate has changed many times and in many different ways over geologic history. These changes have most often played out over many thousands of years.

Today, however, human activity—primarily in the form of increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere—is putting slow, inexorable pressure on the planetary system that governs Earth's climate. This is raising concerns that the climate could respond in abrupt and unexpected ways, shifting temperature or precipitation patterns in ways that may make it difficult for human society to adapt.

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From Oceanus Magazine

Getting to the Bottom of the Greenland Ice Sheet

Greenland—the world’s largest island—is also home to one of the world’s largest ice sheets (after Antarctica). If Greenland’s two-mile-thick ice…

Ocean Circulation and a Clam Far From Home

In my first year of graduate school, I was stumped by a big question on my final exam in biological…

The Coral-Climate Connection

Are the climate changes we perceive today just part of the Earth system’s natural variability, or are they new phenomena…

Fresher Ocean, Cooler Climate

Large and climatically sensitive regions of the North Atlantic Ocean have become less salty since the late 1960s, a trend that could alter global ocean circulation and spur climate changes by the 21st century.