This summer, many people are not going to the beaches of southern Europe, but to northern Germany. Insa Meinke works where the others go on vacation. She heads the North German Coastal and Climate Office at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht and researches how climate change is affecting the region in particular.
Time and again, extremely heavy rains devastate entire regions. And due to climate change, they will continue to storm into our lives with greater frequency. Extreme-weather researcher Michael Kunz from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) wants to find out when such events occur more frequently and what impact they have on urban areas.
COVID-19 is turning our mobility behavior upside down. We are cycling more and walking more often. When it comes to vacations, Germans are discovering RVs for trips to the North or Baltic Seas. Just how sustainable this new mobility is and how it will affect the climate, however, is too early to predict.
For many people who suffer from an allergy, climate change makes life even more difficult. Take pollen allergy, for example: the season starts much earlier because of the mild winters, the pollen count is usually higher - and lasts longer. Even extreme weather conditions can lead to severe allergies, for example for those suffering from asthma.
Climate change is certain. However, a better understanding of the so-called climate variability would allow us to calculate how high the warming could be in coming decades. Andrew Dolman and his team at the Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI) are working with complex data material from sea and ice.
Two thirds of the earth's surface is covered by water. Oceans play an important role to us humans - they are food sources, heat stores, trade routes and one of the most important stores of carbon dioxide (CO2). In particular, seagrass meadows along the coasts absorb a lot of CO2, but this ecosystem is sensitive to the effects of climate change and could lose much of its storage function.
Dust-dry soils, low water in rivers, risk of forest fires - that was seen in many places in Germany in 2018 and 2019. There was significantly less rainfall than the long-term average and high temperatures, so there was talk of drought years. Spring 2020 was also drier than the average of previous years. But when does one actually speak of drought?
When stars explode, particles are hurled into space, which then rain down on Earth as neutrons. Scientists use this process to measure soil moisture. One of these scientists is Leipzig physicist Martin Schrön. He wants to use this to help farmers and environmentalists improve their response to climate change.
Die Ozeane verändern sich mit dramatischer Geschwindigkeit. Das könnte Auswirkungen auf das Leben aller Meeresorganismen haben, in einer Weise, die Wissenschaftler noch nicht vollständig verstehen. Deshalb versuchen Willi Rath und das Team „Ozeandynamik“ am GEOMAR die stetig wachsende Menge generierter Daten über Mikroorganismen nutzbar zu machen.