NCAR Highlights

NCAR Highlights

For the latest news releases, as well as fact sheets on NCAR science, lists of experts in NCAR’s various research fields, multi-media (movies, visualizations, illustrations, and photos), and recent press clippings visit the NCAR & UCAR News Center.

Press inquiries? Contact the Media Office.

Feature Stories

In today’s highly carbon-dependent world, human activity is a major contributor to global greenhouse gas emissions. From everyday choices about transportation, land use and management, to basic cultural norms, all contribute to both individual and, collectively, national emissions. Within NCAR’s community, physical and social scientists are bringing essential understanding of the global, regional, and local Earth-system dynamics to bear on identifying the effects of rising concentrations of greenhouse gas emissions. 

To meet the goals and objectives outlined in the NCAR strategic plan, the NCAR Earth System Laboratory (NESL) was dissolved on March 1, 2015, and its three internationally respected research divisions became the following three NCAR laboratories:

Atmospheric Observations & Modeling Laboratory (ACOM)

When it comes to conveying the excitement of a career in science to students, there is no substitute for direct interaction and involvement. Two years ago, the NCAR Earth Observing Laboratory (EOL), in collaboration with CLACE (Centro Latinoamericano para la Ciencia y Educacion) and its Nuestra Tierra Dinamica program, was awarded support from the NCAR Diversity Fund for “The NCAR Careers Diversity Project,” a series of activities designed to engage Latino and other K-12 students, and expose them to atmospheric research and related sciences.

Over the past 20 years, the effects of changing climate on indigenous people have increasingly grabbed the attention of the world’s decision makers and scientists. The recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s report on the impacts of climate change specifically considers how indigenous groups in different world regions will manage these changes, while the U.S. National Climate Assessment included for the first time a chapter devoted to these issues.

Most groups take pride in gaining recognition for their efforts. For the Health, Environment and Safety Services (HESS) at the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), however, this is not the case. “Success is best measured by not being noticed by the institution, it means we’re doing our jobs,” says Milenda Powers the team’s manager.

In 2000, Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame laid out a bold course of action for his nation to reach middle-income status by 2020.[1] Nicknamed “The Digital President,” Kagame’s plan focuses on Rwanda’s human capital, with special attention to its students, along with development of information technology and communications. Rwanda, and other African nations will require skilled scientists, technicians, engineers, and researchers to help these countries achieve their desired economic goals and intellectual capacity.

Prepping for the class refreshes a scientists view of the basics

Four Questions for Wen-Chau Lee 

UCAR’s University Visits in Scientific Interaction and Teaching program launched in 2013, and the first participants are returning from their time with university partners. We checked in with Wen-Chau Lee, a senior scientist in the Earth Observing Laboratory who also manages EOL’s Remote Sensing Facility.

Humans and their emissions have an undeniable effect on global, regional, and local climate; however, natural climate variability introduces shades of gray into the prediction of future effects of climate change. Extreme events such as “Snowmageddon,” the series of blizzards that hit the U.S. East Coast in 2009-2010, or even Colorado’s cooler-than-normal 2013 summer demonstrate deviations from typical climate patterns.

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NCAR & UCAR News

NCAR map shows ocean deoxygenation by time of emergenceA reduction in the amount of oxygen dissolved in the oceans due to climate change should be evident across large parts of the ocean between 2030 and 2040.
Image of sea surface temperatures that predict a heat waveThe formation of a distinct pattern of sea surface temperatures in the middle of the North Pacific Ocean can predict an increased chance of summertime heat waves in the eastern half of the United States up to 50 days in advance.
 map of risk in 50 citiesA multidisciplinary team of scientists studies the possible timing and location of Zika virus risk in the United States
An artist's rendering of the COSMIC satellites in spaceA constellation of six small satellites has made outsized contributions to our ability to forecast severe weather events, track climate change, and understand space weather.
Map showing a heat wave that struck the U.S. in late August, 2013Sweltering heat waves that typically strike once every 20 years could become yearly events across 60 percent of Earth's land surface by 2075.
A dry lake bed in ColoradoThe weather patterns that typically bring moisture to the southwestern United States are becoming more rare, an indication that the region is sliding into a drier climate state.