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Elbe Flood

Riding the wave: ad hoc campaign collects unique data during the Elbe Flood

Scientists from AWI, GEOMAR, HEREON and UFZ are investigating the effects of the current floods on the Elbe and North Sea on short notice

[23. January 2024]  cientists from UFZ, HEREON, GEOMAR and AWI have mobilised on short notice to investigate how the flood affects the transport of pollutants and nutrients as well as the ecosystems from the Elbe to the German Bight. 

Ocean Eddies

Intensification of Arctic Ocean eddy activity under global warming

A new study presents results on the development of eddy activity in the Arctic Ocean

Abendsonne in der zentralen Arktis. Blick auf Treib- und Packeis von Bord des deutschen Forschungsschiffes Polarstern.
[10. January 2024]  In a new study, researchers from the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) investigated the long-term changes in the Arctic Ocean eddy activity in response to climate warming. The study reveals a remarkable surge in Arctic eddy activity in a warmer climate, a trend that is probably unparalleled when compared to other regions across the global ocean.

New findings on pockmarks in the North Sea

Dunkeles Wattenmeer
[21. December 2023]  A new study from the Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel (CAU) investigates crater-like depressions on the seabed, so-called pockmarks. Previous research has been assuming that they are caused by rising gases and liquids. However, the study published in Communications Earth & Environment proposes an alternative assumption: Instead of gases and liquids, vertebrates may be the key to explaining pockmarks. Dr. Jasper Hoffmann from the Alfred Wegener institute, Helmholtz centre for polar and marine research (AWI), was part of this project. The University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover and the Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde were also involved.

Ice core processing at the AWI ice laboratories

AWI, Alfred Wegner Institute, Germany, climate research, eastGRIP, ice core, science
[06. December 2023]  At the AWI ice laboratories, part of an ice core from the North Greenland Ice Stream (NEGIS) is currently being tested. The core was collected during “EastGRIP”, a joint project involving several international partners. Working together, they drilled to a depth of 2,668 metres, allowing them to penetrate the entire ice stream and reach the rocky substrate below. The analysis of the ice core is to yield new insights into the behaviour of ice streams and improve our grasp of how they could contribute to future sea-level rise. Another goal is to record past climatic conditions beneath the northeast section of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Numerous laboratories around the globe plan to analyse the data.

Climate research

Fossil CO2 emissions reach record high

If emissions remain this high, the remaining carbon budget to keep to the 1.5°C target will be used up in seven years

[Translate to English:] Low Centre Polygons
[05. December 2023]  The time left to reach the climate goals of the Paris Agreement is running out fast. This is the conclusion of the latest Global Carbon Budget, which is published annually by the Global Carbon Project (GCP). The GCP is an association of international scientists with a large German contingent, including amongst others LMU geographers Julia Pongratz and Clemens Schwingshackl, who are part of the core writing team, and AWI scientist Judith Hauck. According to the report, global carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel use will amount to 36.8 billion metric tons in 2023, a record high that exceeds the 2022 level by 1.1%.