News | Research

INSTAAR research is featured in thousands of news stories and more than 10,000 social media posts per year. Outlets include the New York Times, Washington Post, PBS NewsHour, National Public Radio, and as well as more regional news outlets like High Country News, 9News, and the Denver Post. Selected highlights are listed below. Additional stories are noted @INSTAAR on Twitter.

Icebergs, looking like tumbled walls of white, float in the Greenland Sea.

CU Boulder at AGU2023: From Earth to space (CU Boulder Today)

Dec. 8, 2023

From Dec. 11-15, tens of thousands of people from 100+ countries will gather in San Francisco for the 2023 meeting of the American Geophysical Union. Scientists from CU Boulder, including INSTAARs Anne Jennings, Ben Li, and Nicole Lovenduski, are tagged as Earth science experts in this CU Boulder Today resource on the conference.

A landscape restoration project in a grassy gully on Colorado's Western Slope. Adding rocky protection and planting native grasses and shrubs has increased plant growth, trapped storm sediment, and increased soil storage.

Rewetting the sponge: How to increase biological diversity, reduce greenhouse gases, and cool the environment (Cool Boulder)

Nov. 3, 2023

Tim Seastedt discusses how low-cost landscape restoration actions in Colorado can foster a more diverse and absorbent environment. These actions can rebuild soils and recharge soil water storage, increasing the ability of plants to perform evapotranspiration. Such changes provide many environmental benefits.

Panoramic view of icebergs off Greenland in the Greenland Sea

What 25-million-year-old ocean sediment can teach us about our planet’s future (CU Boulder Today)

Oct. 9, 2023

Anne Jennings and her colleagues spent two months on a ship off the coast of Greenland drilling sediment cores deep below the ocean floor. They were searching for clues that will help predict melting patterns of major ice sheets in our warming world.

A view of from above of Sky Pond in Rocky Mountain National Park.  Look carefully and you'll see researchers in a small inflatable boat, taking lake measurements and samples.

Why lakes turn green: Researchers will take a deep dive into the health of North America’s freshwater lakes

Oct. 3, 2023

Supported by a new five-year, $2.5 million grant from the National Science Foundation, a group of researchers at five universities will examine how rapidly warming temperatures and shorter winters can influence the growth and toxicity of lake algae. Isabella Oleksy, who studies aquatic ecosystems and recently joined INSTAAR, is leading the Colorado contingent at CU Boulder.

Julia Moriarty

Julia Moriarty named a D.O.E. Early Career Research Program scientist (Colorado Arts & Sciences Magazine)

Sept. 29, 2023

Julia Moriarty (INSTAAR & ATOC) was named a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Early Career Researcher, receiving multiyear funding. The program helps support the next generation of U.S. STEM leaders. She will be working to improve predictability of water quality following floods in coastal urban systems.

Field Technician Sammy Yevak takes a snow depth reading above the Tundra Lab. Photo by Gabriel De La Rosa.

Each spring, the Niwot Ridge snow survey ushers in a new season of fieldwork (LTER Network)

Sept. 28, 2023

Long-Term Ecological Research Network communicator Gabriel De La Rosa spent three intense days on Niwot Ridge collecting the hundreds of data points that are a record of change in the alpine.

George Aiken in the field, wearing a big backpack for carrying tall tubes.

Aiken Graduate Fellowships awarded

Sept. 19, 2023

INSTAAR is pleased to announce four George R. Aiken Graduate Fellowships for 2023. CU Boulder graduate students Mackensie Bowen, Allison Cook, Tim Higgins, and Millie Spencer received the awards, which come with funding to support their research over the next year.

Out of its nest box for the first time, a young chickadee squints in the sun and stretches its wings.

Chickadees crossbreed, despite biological barriers

Aug. 29, 2023

Researchers in the Taylor Lab study interactions between higher-elevation dwelling mountain chickadees and the closely related lower-elevation dwelling black capped chickadees. A recent study in Global Change Biology investigates barriers that prevent the two species from mating and what happens when they do mate and produce offspring.

A group of paleontologists, wearing backpacks and sun hats, walk down a gully of eroding sedimentary rocks with a open vista of grassy plains in front of them. Photo by Rick Wicker DMNS

Ecosystems after the asteroid

Aug. 21, 2023

Julio Sepúlveda (INSTAAR Fellow and GEOL Associate Professor) is part of a team of scientists from seven collaborating institutions who were awarded a new research grant that will fund an investigation of the ecological and environmental changes that occurred on land after the asteroid impact and mass extinction event at the Cretaceous/Paleogene (K/Pg) boundary.

Meredith Zettlemoyer kneels in a patch of alpine plants, a clipboard propped against her knee.

Scientists at the Mountain Research Station investigate changing behavior of an alpine plant

July 26, 2023

A group from the University of Georgia is looking at alpine cushion plants—compact green mounds with small leaves and ephemeral flowers that hug Niwot Ridge and are found in many alpine areas across the world. They are studying how the flowering time and reproduction of these plants is changing as the climate warms and snowmelt advances.