Local NPR for the Cape, Coast & Islands 90.1 91.1 94.3
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Now in Europe, international cryosphere and climate research hub coming to UMass Amherst

Cryosphere research is conducted.
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Cryosphere research is conducted.

The international office of the Climate and Cryosphere (CliC), now based in Switzerland, is relocating this fallto the campus of the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

The office's mission is to coordinate and communicate about the many projects underway around the world, studying the impact of rising temperatures on the Earth’s frozen regions known as the cryosphere.

Two UMass Amherst geosciences professors, Rob DeConto, director of the School of Earth and Sustainability and Raymond Bradley, will lead the project.

Bradley, who is also director of the Climate System Research Center, said the project will coordinate activities that are going on in different institutions.

"So, for example, there's a whole bunch of different places where they're developing models to simulate what will happen as ice sheets and glaciers recede, how that will affect sea level change and impact coastal communities," Bradley said.

Other research focuses on the recession of snow and ice in mountain environments, Bradley said, "and how that will affect communities and water resources and natural hazards and in mountainous areas."

Whether or not you live near a glacier, Bradley said, everyone will feel the impact of melting ice and snow.

The project is currently based in Geneva. An international steering committee with scientists from around the world will provide oversight.

NASA and the National Science Foundation provided grants of $2.5 million to support locating and staffing the project at UMass for at least the next five years.

Jill Kaufman has been a reporter and host at NEPM since 2005. Before that she spent 10 years at WBUR in Boston, producing "The Connection" with Christopher Lydon and on "Morning Edition" reporting and hosting. She's also hosted NHPR's daily talk show "The Exhange" and was an editor at PRX's "The World."