Columbia University Professor to Kick-Off Climate Change Lecture Series at Carleton College

September 14, 2007
By Sam Friedman '09

Columbia University professor Wallace Broecker will give a lecture entitled “How to Terminate a Glacier Period” on Wednesday, Sept. 19 at 7:30 p.m. in Boliou Hall room 104 of the Carleton College campus. The presentation is free and open to the public.

Broecker’s appearance kicks-off a year-long lecture series focusing on climate change sponsored by Carleton’s Environmental and Technology Studies (ENTS) program. A leading global scholar in the field of climate change, Broecker is the Newberry Professor of Earth and Environmental Science at Columbia University. Among his accomplishments is his ground-breaking research connecting global climate change to oceanic cycles. Specifically, Broecker has played a major role in uncovering the trends of ocean thermohaline circulation, demonstrated in “Broecker's Conveyor Belts.”

Broecker was also one of the first researchers to suggest that past changes in the planet’s climate may have occurred in as short a time period as twenty years. In recent political debates about climate change, Broecker has argued that increased greenhouse gases in the Earth’s atmosphere produce a potential danger. He has written articles for the popular press and testified before Congressional committees about his research.

Broecker is the first of seven speakers to participate in the 2007-08 ENTS lecture series, which will include a number of notable scholars and leaders from different disciplines concerned with climate change. Carleton’s ENTS program grew out of the conviction that the College has a responsibility to respond to the grave threats posed to natural ecosystems by patterns of human development. ENTS students and faculty seek to explore the relationships between human and nonhuman worlds with the intention of better understanding how these worlds interact and may coexist.

For more information about Broecker’s appearance and the ENTS program, contact Adam Smith, ENTS educational associate, at