About Cornell Climate Change

About Cornell Climate ChangeThe climatechange.cornell.edu website provides a comprehensive, interdisciplinary gateway to climate change events, initiatives, research, student courses and organizations, and public engagement at Cornell University.

Human-induced climate change is one of the biggest challenges faced by our generation, and Cornell researchers are involved with many aspects of addressing this challenge regionally and globally.  In addition to climate scientists who document climate change trends and develop models to project the future, others at Cornell are working on ways to build resilience to climate change in our communities, farms, and natural landscapes.  Cornell engineers are working on energy solutions to slow the pace of climate change, while those in the social sciences and humanities provide perspective on the economic issues and human impacts that inform policy decisions.

Cornell scientists are involved with all aspects of climate change research, including finding ways to reduce its impacts on our ecosystems, farms, health, economy, and communities.

The initiative is guided by faculty and staff involved with several programs:

  • The Cornell Climate Change Program Work Team (PWT) was formed in 2010 and currently has more than sixty five members comprised of Cornell faculty, staff, extension educators from around New York State, and external stakeholders who are working to advance climate change research and outreach programs. The PWT provides a mechanism through which faculty and extension educators connect with stakeholders to identify the needs surrounding climate change impacts and opportunities in New York State, create educational materials, and design learning experiences that address these needs. You can view the list of Climate Change PWT members at the Cornell Cooperative Extension website.
  • The Cornell Institute for Climate Smart Solutions (CICSS) is focused on supporting farmers of New York and beyond with decision tools for strategic adaptation to climate change, so that they are better able to cope with potential negative effects of climate change, and are better able to take advantage of any opportunities that it might bring.
  • The Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) system extends Cornell University’s land-grant programs to citizens all across New York State. With a presence in every county and New York City, and through the work of approximately 700 educators and nearly 60,000 volunteers, CCE puts research into practice by providing educational programs and research-based resources that help solve real-life problems. Development of this website was supported by the CCE Statewide Energy and Climate Change Team. Members of the public can contact educators in their local CCE office for more information about climate change.
  • The Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future’s (ACSF) Climate Change Focus Group began in 2008 and currently has 17 interdisciplinary faculty members from across campus, representing disciplines such as: climate science, ecology, agriculture, engineering, economics, history, and social sciences, that guide research and teaching at the University.

Cornell University is deeply committed to the issue of climate change, and of achieving climate neutrality on campus. The University is on a mission to eliminate or offset net carbon emissions from our Ithaca campus by 2050. The Cornell campus decreased greenhouse gas emissions by 32% since 2008. The blueprint for this goal is the award-winning Cornell Climate Action Plan (CAP), which brings together students, faculty, and staff on matters of research, education, stewardship and outreach. Annual greenhouse gas reporting will be submitted to the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) and the US EPA.