Climate Change affects us all. Why is it happening? What can be done to live with it and minimise its negative impact? This year, we are drawing focus to the science of climate change - to help us truly understand it as a global phenomenon.
In this virtual global edition, we want you to participate in the conversation - ask a question, share a concern, tell us about your own related research on our Facebook or Instagram posts. Should your comment be chosen, we will present it to the scientists on our Zoom panel for their views.
Prior to his 2016 appointment at the Stanford Woods Institute, Field was a staff member at the Carnegie Institution for Science (1984-2002) and founding director of the Carnegie’s Department of Global Ecology (2002-2016).
Field's research focuses on climate change, especially solutions that improve lives now, decrease the amount of future warming, and support vibrant economies. Recent projects emphasize decreasing risks from coastal flooding and wildfires. He has been deeply involved with national and international-efforts to advance understanding of global ecology and climate change. Field was co-chair of Working Group II of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) (2008-2015), where he led the effort on “Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation” (2012), and “Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability (2014). His widely cited work has earned many recognitions, including election to the US National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Max Planck Research Award, and the Roger Revelle Medal. Field is a member of the Board of Directors of World Wildlife Fund (US) and the Board of Trustees of the California Academy of Sciences. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Geophysical Union, and the Ecological Society of America.
He holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Harvard College and a Ph.D. in biology from Stanford.
Professor Malhi explores the functioning of the biosphere and its interactions with global change, including climate change. He has a particular fascination with and love for tropical forests, though he has recently been spotted in ecosystems ranging from savannas, the Arctic, tropical coral reefs and Oxfordshire's woodlands and floodplain meadows.
He looks at how natural ecosystems may be shifting in response to global atmospheric change, and how protecting or restoring natural ecosystems can help tackle climate change, and help adaptation to the consequences of climate change.
His team at the Environmental Change Institute is known for collecting intensive field data from fascinating but sometimes tough and remote forests. They have ongoing programmes of research in Asia, Africa, the Amazon and Andes regions, and Oxford's own Wytham Woods. A new recent focus has been on nature recovery and biodiversity restoration in the UK.
While addressing fundamental questions about ecosystem function and dynamics, his research findings are significant for conservation and adaptation to climate change. He is a Trustee of the Natural History Museum of London, President-Elect of the British Ecological Society, chairs a number of programmes on biodiversity at the Royal Society, and is a scientific advisor on nature restoration for the UK government and the government of Scotland.
He leads an active Ecosystem Dynamics research lab focussing on forest vegetation-atmosphere interactions, employing field studies, satellite remote sensing and ecosystem modelling.
He discovered the greenhouse effect of chlorofulorocarbons and other heat trapping pollutants gases. His findings on Non-CO2 global warming pollutants have led to several successful climate mitigation actions worldwide, including the formation of Climate and Clean Air Coalition by the United Nations to mitigate short lived climate pollutants.
He is the recipient of the prestigious 2021 Blue Planet Prize and the 2018 Tang Prize. He was Listed as Foreign Policy Magazine’s Top 100 Global Thinkers of 2014 and named 2013 Champion of the Earth Laureate for the Science and Innovation category, by the United Nations Environment Program. He served as the science advisor for Pope Francis' Holy See delegation to the UN's 2015 Paris climate summit. He leads University of California's Bending the Curve: Climate solutions education protocol, taught at many campuses around the world. He is elected to the Pontifical Academy of Science (council member); Royal Swedish Academy of Science, the US National Academy of Science and the World Academy of Sciences.
The planet is very likely to cross the major warming threshold of 1.5C in eight years (Xu, Ramanathan and Victor, Nature 2018). Based on IPCC reports and my personal analyses of weather extremes during the last 20 years, it is clear to me, climate change can move into all of our living rooms like COVID, by 2030. India has to develop urgent plans for adaptation to more severe weather extremes including intense monsoon rainfall and thus build the resilience to bounce back from the climate shocks during the next few decades. On top of this, India’s severe air pollution also contributes in a major way to regional climate change and extremes. The need for adaptation is most urgent for the one billion or more south Asians living in rural areas who have very little access to modern energy sources. Adaptation plans have to include impacts on public health, agriculture, forests and water.
There is time to accomplish these objectives which will contribute significantly to India’s sustainable development goals.
Prior to joining Scripps in 2017, she was a Senior Scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Her research focus is the high latitude North Atlantic and Arctic Oceans and their interaction with the atmosphere, sea-ice and the Greenland Ice Sheet.
Straneo has led 18 field expeditions to the Arctic and Greenland and collaborates extensively with climate and paleoclimate scientists, glaciologists and ice sheet modelers. She has recently chaired the Ocean Forcing Working Group for the Ice Sheet Modeling Intercomparison Project for the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change and is contributing author for the same report. Straneo is also co-chair of the Climate and Cryosphere Program (CliC) of the World Climate Research Program (WCRP) and a co-chair and founder of the Greenland Ice Sheet/Ocean Science Network (GRISO). She was a 2013 fellow of the Leopold Leadership Program from Stanford’s Woods Institute for the environment, was awarded the Sverdrup Award by the Ocean Sciences Section of the American Geophysical Union in 2016, and was invited to give the Keeling Lecture in 2018. Straneo obtained her Ph.D. in Physical Oceanography in 1999 from the University of Washington, USA, following a Laurea cum Laude in Physics in 1993 from the University of Milan, Italy.