Forces of Change

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Carol Baldwin Carole Baldwin
Dr. Carole Baldwin is an authority on marine biology and a role model for young women interested in scientific careers. Learn more about her deep-sea research and her exploration of the Galápagos Islands that led to the discovery over a dozen species of fishes never identified before!

David Adamec David Adamec
Did you know that there are scientists at NASA who never fly in space shuttles nor study the solar system? Dr. David Adamec is an Oceanographer working at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland. He is finding new ways of seeing and understanding the Earth’s ocean using NASA satellites.

Terry Erwin Terry Erwin
If you discovered over one thousand new species of sub-tropical insects, what would you name them? Dr. Terry Erwin, Curator in the Entomology Department at the Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum faced this dilemma when his revolutionary field research in the tropical canopy led to the discovery of thousands of new insect species.


Is El Nino Responsible for Mild Winter Weather in Parts of the United States?

January 4, 2007

Crocuses are pushing out of the ground in New Jersey. Ice fishing tournaments in Minnesota are being canceled for lack of ice. And golfers are hitting the links in Chicago in January. Much of the Midwest and the East Coast are going through a remarkably warm winter, with temperatures running 10 and 20 degrees higher than normal in many places. What could be causing this milder than normal winter weather season?

Meteorologists say the warm spell is due to a combination of factors: El Nino, a cyclical warming trend now under way in the Pacific Ocean, can lead to milder weather, particularly in the Northeast; and the jet stream, the high-altitude air current that works like a barricade to hold back warm Southern air, is running much farther north than usual over the East Coast.