Climate Scientists Pose for Pinup Calendar [Slide Show]

Columbia University showcases "the planet's hottest climate science, and the people behind it"

© Charlie Naebeck

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You probably think of computers when you hear the words “climate model.” But some intrepid media staffers at Columbia University had a different vision: Convince climate scientists there to model for a 2014 calendar. Surprisingly, 13 researchers decided to bare it all—well, their inspirations, if not their bodies—for the project. And, yes, Columbia calls it a “pinup” calendar.

On each page one of the researchers, dressed in high fashion, appears superimposed on an exotic landscape relevant to his or her work. For example, Tufa Dinku (Mr. April), decked out in suit and hat, sits on a grassy hillside in Ethiopia where he works to improve weather and climate forecasts in hopes of aiding agriculture and limiting disease.

>> View a slide show of the calendar photos

Short descriptions explain each person’s research and, in a geeky twist, many of the months include a “favorite chart” of the person photographed: whether it be mass extinctions, rainfall trends, the future of El Niño….

The pinup men and women come from Columbia’s International Research Institute for Climate and Society and the Lamont–Doherty Earth Observatory. All 13 can be seen in the accompanying slide show, with captions condensed from their descriptions. Closing out the calendar is Allegra LeGrande, standing atop a Greenland ice sheet on page 13, which is January 2015. Suggesting, perhaps, a sequel?

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