Hi there! I’m Dan, and I’m a climate scientist. My main area of expertise is the behavior of stratospheric aerosols and how they interact with atmospheric chemistry and with the surface climate. I am currently an Assistant Professor at Cornell University in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Science and a Cornell Atkinson Faculty Fellow. I’ll soon add more info about graduate and post-graduate positions, as I work to spin up my group. Reach out if you’re interested! Find out more about our research philosophy at Cornell here.
My research is currently mainly focused on studying Stratospheric Aerosol Injections, a form of climate intervention that aims to partially, temporarily, offset the effects of climate change by means of injecting sulfate precursors in the stratosphere in order to reflect a small part of the incoming solar radiation and thus reduce global temperatures. I’m also interested in other climate intervention methods (Marine Cloud Brightening, Cirrus Thinning) and I continue studying the effect of past and present volcanic eruptions on climate. If you are curious about climate intervention, you can find a primer our group wrote here intended for a general audience.
I work to improve our understanding of how different deployment strategies would impact the surface climate differently, and how (and if!) we can minimise these impacts. Climate engineering is not to be intended as a way to avoid getting to zero emissions as fast as possible, but I strongly believe we need to explore it as a complementary measure to reduce some of the unavoidable impacts that climate change might have on our lives. You can read about my opinion on the ethic of researching Climate engineering in a few pieces I wrote with other people in the last years:
- This perspective I coauthored on the topic of moral hazard.
- This opinion piece we wrote in 2021.
- The draft position statement on Climate Intervention from the American Geophysical Union, for which I was part of the expert panel.
- Solar radiation modification is risky, but so is rejecting it: a call for balanced research.
- I try to introduce all of my talks explaining the whys of my research, many of them are recorded. In particular this, which I gave as part of the Climate Crisis and Future Generations Labont Seminar series for the Sant’Anna Institute, goes more in depth in discussing my perspective on the ethics of this endeavour.
My research spans various topics (links to selected publications):
- The interactions between aerosols and atmospheric dynamics (1), (2), (3) and chemistry (4) (5) (19)
- The physical mechanisms and sources of uncertainties (6), (14) in aerosols microphysics and aerosol-clouds interaction (7),(16) in climate models.
- The space of possible strategies (8),(17),(19) for controlling various climate metrics through injections at different locations and times of year (9),(18)
- The impacts on ecosystems (10),(11) and surface climate (11) (12)
- The international governance aspect of climate engineering (13), and the integration of climate engineering in more inclusive, comprehensive scenarios of future climate change (15)
(A more comprehensive list of my publications can be found here)
I am currently co-chair of the Geoengineering Model Intercomparison Project (GeoMIP), and participate actively in other MIPs: ISA-MIP and CCMI. I am a research collaborator for the Solar Radiation Management Governance Initiative (SRMGI), which aims to put developing countries at the centre of the geoengineering conversation. I am also the external co-chair of the Whole Atmosphere Worging Group of the Community Earth System Model (CESM), and remain interested in model development and model validation based on past (and future) opportunities.
I also try to be active in communicating climate science and the risks of climate change to a broader audience - visit my Science Communication page to look at some examples.
You can contact me ad dv224 -at- cornell dot edu. If you have questions about what I do or my publications - or if you are a student looking for advices on how to navigate the academic environment - don’t hesitate to contact me!
In my free time (as if!) I love practicing historical fencing and hiking around nature with my husband (both the fencing and the hiking), reading SciFi and comics and running.