Climate Change Science Institute at Oak Ridge National Laboratory releases FY 2015 annual report

The year 2015 will go down in the record books for many reasons, chief among these that it was a year of extremes: extremes in politics; extremes in violence (in and out of politics); and extremes in weather, including devastating droughts and temperature and precipitation extremes.

Urban-CAT—improving resiliency one community at a time

Two Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) institutes, the Climate Change Science Institute (CCSI) and the Urban Dynamics Institute (UDI), have joined forces to address one of the most pressing problems facing midsize cities today: how best to allocate scarce resources to deal with climate change. The solution they have devised is a unique web-based decision support tool, the Urban Climate Adaptation Tool, or Urban-CAT.

Shih-Chieh Kao—geography as destiny

It has often been said that “biology is destiny” or “anatomy is destiny.” Greek philosopher Heraclitus famously said “character is destiny.” But when it comes to climatology and climate scientists, geography may well be destiny. CCSI scientist Shih-Chieh Kao, team leader of the Hydrologic Systems Analysis Team in the Environmental Science Division, is a good example of this. Kao was born and raised on Taiwan, an island nation in the extreme western Pacific. The eastern two-thirds of Taiwan are very mountainous, and only about 20% of the land is “usable.” Not only is it subject to three or four hurricanes per year, but because it is situated in a complex seismic zone, it is also subject to earthquakes.

NGEE-Arctic—putting a face on climate change

Scientists have long known about the fragility of the Arctic, where temperatures are rising at a rate twice that of the global average, but how those vulnerabilities will play out in the coming years is not well understood.

CCSI contributes to formation of Lorentz BioPanel and action plan

Keith Kline of the Environmental Science Division and Climate Change Science Institute (CCSI) recently participated in a groundbreaking workshop that resulted in the creation of the Lorentz BioPanel. The Lorentz Biopanel vision is to support policies and decisions that facilitate achievement of sustainable development goals by overcoming barriers to a biobased economy.