Jordan’s worsening water crisis a warning for the world

Dwindling water supplies and a growing population will halve per capita water use in Jordan by the end of this century. Without intervention, few households in the arid nation will have access to even 40 liters (10.5 gallons) of piped water per person per day. Low-income neighborhoods will be the hardest hit, with 91 percent […]

Seven Years of Agricultural Productivity Growth Lost Due to Climate Change

Despite important agricultural advancements to feed the world in the last 60 years, a new study shows that global farming productivity is 21% lower than it could have been without climate change. This is the equivalent of losing about seven years of farm productivity increases since the 1960s. The future potential impacts of climate change […]

Aquaculture’s promise and peril

Despite aquaculture’s potential to feed a growing world population while relieving pressure on badly depleted oceans, the industry has been plagued by questions about its environmental impacts. Lindsay Filgas & Rob Jordan A Stanford-led team of researchers conducted a review on the past 20 years of global aquaculture, finding that freshwater aquaculture has grown dramatically […]

The future of America’s drinking water

In 2020 wildfires ravaged more than 10 million acres of land across California, Oregon and Washington, making it the largest fire season in modern history. Across the country, hurricanes over Atlantic waters yielded a record-breaking number of storms. While two very different kinds of natural disasters, scientists say they were spurred by a common catalyst […]

Research and policy in a changing Arctic

“A climate in crisis,” President Biden said in his inauguration speech, is among a cascade of challenges in a “winter of peril and possibility.” Few places face more urgent threats from climate change than the Arctic, which is warming more than twice as fast as anywhere else on Earth. Sea ice has radically declined since the 1970s. […]

Q&A: What does it mean to be a woman in the geosciences?

Stanford Earth recently transitioned the Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) into its Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiative. As part of an effort to celebrate and discuss identity, six Stanford Earth community members talk about how their identities as women have informed and impacted their careers. In the 1920s, when Mary Balch Kennedy was completing her coursework as […]

Climate change caused one-third of historical flood damages

In a new study, Stanford researchers report that intensifying precipitation contributed one-third of the financial costs of flooding in the United States over the past three decades, totaling almost $75 billion of the estimated $199 billion in flood damages from 1988 to 2017. The research, published Jan. 11 in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of […]

The science behind extinction

A collection of research and insights from Stanford experts who are deciphering the mysteries and mechanisms of extinction and survival in Earth’s deep past and painting an increasingly detailed picture of life now at the brink. An estimated 8 million animal and plant species live on planet Earth. But extinction rates are accelerating. Gorillas, gazelles, frogs, rhinos and […]

In a warming world, Cape Town’s ‘Day Zero’ drought won’t be an anomaly

Today, the lakes around Cape Town are brimming with water, but it was only a few years ago that South Africa’s second-most populous city made global headlines as a multi-year drought depleted its reservoirs, impacting millions of people. That kind of extreme event may become the norm, researchers now warn. Using new high-resolution simulations, researchers […]