Andrew Carnegie

The Carnegie Institution for Science is a private organization that conducts basic research for the benefit of humanity.

Other News

February 14, 2017 — Science News covered work by Greg Asner and the Carnegie Airborne Observatory's discovery of more than  30 forest types in Peru. more »

Ken Caldiera was named one of Bill Gates' "Favorite Fanatics" of 2016 for his climate research and outreach. more »

Greg Asner and the Carnegie Airborne Observatory discover the largest living tree in the global tropics in Borneo. more »

— Dan Rather interveiws Chris Field about climate change. The interview was published by the Huffington Post. more »

In Memoriam

Jeanette Snyder Brown


Recent News

High-tech maps of tropical forest diversity identify new conservation targets

New remote sensing maps of the forest canopy in Peru test the strength of current forest protections and identify new regions for conservation effort, according to a report led by Carnegie’s Greg Asner published in Science.

Asner and his Carnegie Airborne Observatory team used their signature technique, called airborne laser-guided imaging spectroscopy, to identify preservation targets by undertaking a new approach to study global ecology—one that links a forest’s variety of species to the strategies for survival and growth employed by canopy trees and other plants. Or, to put it in scientist-speak, their approach connects biodiversity and functional diversity. more »

Rainfall variation complicates nitrogen runoff management

New research from two Carnegie scientists has serious implications for the development of management strategies to reduce nutrient runoff in waterways and coastal areas.

Human activities, including agriculture and fossil fuel use, have completely altered the biochemical cycle of nitrogen. In this cycle, nitrogen circulates in various forms through terrestrial, aquatic, and atmospheric systems. In the United States, the amount of nitrogen originating from human sources, particularly fertilizer, is four times the amount that comes from natural sources. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that 28 percent of streams and 20 percent of lakes around the country experience high nitrogen levels. more »

How fast will we need to adapt to climate change?

What would we do differently if sea level were to rise one foot per century versus one foot per decade? Until now, most policy and research has focused on adapting to specific amounts of climate change and not on how fast that climate change might happen. Using sea-level rise as a case study, researchers at DGE have developed a quantitative model that considers different rates of sea-level rise, in addition to economic factors, and shows how consideration of rates of change affect optimal adaptation strategies. If the sea level will rise slowly, it could still make sense to build near the shoreline, but if the sea level is going to rise quickly, then a buffer zone along the shoreline might make more sense. more »

New Tools Assess the Future of Wind Power

Using software tools developed by Near Zero, a research group hosted by the DGE, a team of researchers has completed the largest expert survey yet on any energy technology, in this case wind energy. Near Zero conducts research and assessment of energy and climate issues, focusing on integrating quantitative analysis with expert judgment. In this way, they inform decision-making to accelerate the global transition to a near-zero emission energy system. To support this work, Near Zero has developed open-source software tools to examine where experts agree and disagree and why. more »

Grassland tuned to present suffers in a warmer future

One of the world’s longest-running, most comprehensive climate change experiments produced some surprising results. The extensive experiment subjected grassland ecosystems to sixteen possible future climates and measured many aspects of ecosystem performance and sustainability. This study, appearing in the September 5, 2016, Early Online Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, reports on 17 years of plant growth, an important bellwether of ecosystem health. Plant growth varied tremendously from year to year, reaching a peak under conditions near the average over the last several decades. As conditions move away from the averages, as happens with climate change, plant growth fell. more »