How Past Climates Inform our Future

Since 1975, the United States’ highest honor for early career scientists and engineers has been NSF’s Alan T. Waterman Award. One of this years’ laureates is Jessica Tierney, a paleoclimatologist at the University of Arizona. Dr. Tierney recently gave an online public lecture which discusses her research reconstructing past climate change in order to better understand what the future might hold. By studying past climates on Earth, such as “greenhouse worlds,” Dr. Tierney is improving our understanding of what a warmer world looks like and how weather and climate behave as carbon dioxide levels rise.

For archaeologists, Dr. Tierney’s work asks us to consider episodes in history where global mean temperatures changed significantly, based on paleoclimate records, to better understand environmental consequences and human responses. Dr. Tierney’s lecture is now available. Check it out!

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