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Climate change: Scientists tap nature, space and society


IMAGE: Eco-data enables enables forest management programs and inform climate mitigation plans.
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Credit: Source: Crowther Lab / ETH Zurich

Three scientists share their research from the natural, physical, and social sciences on novel responses to climate change.

Thomas Crowther will identify long-disappeared forests available for restoration across the world. He will describe how data from thousands of soil samples collected by local scientists in 1.2 million locations reveal the world’s most abundant population of soil organisms in arctic and sub-arctic regions and the most dominant populations of plants and animals in tropical regions. Our understanding of current and future biogeochemical cycles is essential for the prediction of climate change.

Laura Duncanson will point to two recent NASA laser missions – the ICESat-2 satellite and the Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) – and their contributions to mapping global forest biomass, to guide forest management programs and inform climate mitigation plans. Duncanson will show how data from forests located both in boreal, tropical and temperate areas can improve carbon measurements.

Matto Mildenberger will explain how perceived experiences with climate change in the United States can be linked to political shifts in Congress, culture and society. He will demonstrate how public opinion shapes political incentives to mitigate climate change.


Thomas Crowther, Assistant Professor Environmental Systems Science, ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Understanding Carbon Cycle Feedbacks to Predict Climate Change


Laura Duncanson, Assistant Professor, University of Maryland, College Park; NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, USA

Spaceborne Data: Mapping and Monitoring the Carbon Content of Earth’s Forests


Matto Mildenberger, Assistant Professor Comparative Politics, Environmental Politics, Pub-lic Opinion and Methodology, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA, USA



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