The School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Presents Dr. Kim Prather, University of California San Diego
Unraveling the Impacts of Humans and Oceans on Clouds and Climate
Nearly 50 years ago, it was proposed that microbes in the ocean can regulate planetary health by maintaining a homeostatic balance through the exchange of chemical species with the atmosphere. Ocean microbes have been coined the canaries in the coal mine as they show rapid adaptive responses to our changing climate. When waves break, ocean microbes are transferred into the atmosphere and profoundly influence human and planetary health.
This presentation will focus on recent studies aimed at advancing the understanding of the control of ocean biology on the atmosphere, clouds, and climate. Highlights will be presented of a novel laboratory mesocosm approach developed in the NSF Center for Aerosol Impacts on Chemistry of the Environment (CAICE) that transfers the full complexity of the ocean/atmosphere system into the laboratory. A discussion will be presented on new insights that have been obtained using this approach as well as next steps that are being taken to unravel human versus microbial impacts on the rapidly changing Earth system.