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Alan Robock

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Alan Robock
Alma mater
  • Fellow of the American Geophysical Union
  • Fellow of the American Meteorological Society
  • Jule G. Charney Award (2015) Edit this on Wikidata
Websitehttp://people.envsci.rutgers.edu/robock/ Edit this on Wikidata

Alan Robock (born 1949) is an American climatologist. He is currently a Distinguished Professor in the Department of Environmental Sciences at Rutgers University, New Jersey.[1] He advocates nuclear disarmament and, in 2010 and 2011, met with Fidel Castro during lecture trips to Cuba to discuss the dangers of nuclear weapons.[2][3][4] Alan Robock was a 2007 IPCC author, a member of the organisation when it was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, "for their efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man-made climate change, and to lay the foundations for the measures that are needed to counteract such change".[5][6]

Life and work[edit]

Robock has a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin (1970), a S.M. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1974) and a Ph.D. from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1977) in Meteorology under advisor Edward Norton Lorenz.[7][1]

In 2011, he and Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, among others, were part of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences panel, to discuss and advise the Vatican on climate engineering.[8] Robock was a lead author in Working Group I for the 2013 published Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (Chapter 8).[9] In 2017, Robock published an open letter in the Huffington Post, addressed at Donald Trump, warning him about nuclear weapons, and nuclear winter.[10] In 2022, Robock, along with seven other recipients, was presented with the Future of Life Award. The honor was bestowed for Robock's efforts to reduce the risk of nuclear war by developing and popularizing the science of nuclear winter.[11]


Robock has researched nuclear winter,[12][13][14][15][16] the Toba catastrophe theory,[17] the little ice age, the effect of volcanic eruptions on climate, soil moisture, human impacts of climate change, regional atmosphere-hydrology modeling, and geoengineering. In 2022, an analysis led by Lili Xia and Alan Robock of Rutgers University quantified the effects of nuclear war on global food production in the journal Nature Food. The study estimates that with their current number of warheads, a nuclear war between the US and Russia could generate 150 million tons of soot, thanks to massive fires ignited by explosions. The soot would quickly cover the globe and block incoming sunlight, creating the equivalent of a shade and causing drastic global cooling. Crops and livestock would wither and die in the cold and dark. The research concludes that nuclear winter could result in an estimated 5 billion deaths from famine if global calorie production drops by 90 percent.[18]



  1. ^ a b "Alan Robock". Rutgers University. Retrieved 16 February 2013.
  2. ^ "Fidel and Nuclear Winter".
  3. ^ "Asiste Fidel a conferencia scientifica de Alan Roblock". Granma. 2010-09-15. Retrieved 2022-04-04.
  4. ^ "Alan Robock Home Page".
  5. ^ a b "Working Group II: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability". IPCC. 2007.
  6. ^ a b "The Nobel Peace Prize 2007". Nobel Prize. 2007.
  7. ^ a b "Sigma Xi Distinguished Lecturers, 2008-2009", Sigma Xi. Retrieved January 29, 2019.
  8. ^ Hans Joachim Schellnhuber (2011). "Geoengineering: The good, the MAD, and the sensible". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 108 (51). PNAS: 20277–20278. Bibcode:2011PNAS..10820277S. doi:10.1073/pnas.1115966108. PMC 3251148. PMID 22160718.
  9. ^ IPCC (2013). "Fifth Assessment Report: Working Group I (Chapter 8)". IPCC.
  10. ^ "An Open Letter to President-Elect Trump about Nuclear Weapons and Nuclear Winter". Huffington Post. 2017.
  11. ^ "Future Of Life Award". Future of Life Institute. Retrieved 2022-08-22.
  12. ^ Robock, Alan; Luke Oman; Georgiy L. Stenchikov; Owen B. Toon; Charles Bardeen & Richard P. Turco (2007). "Climatic consequences of regional nuclear conflicts" (PDF). Atmos. Chem. Phys. 7 (8): 2003–12. Bibcode:2007ACP.....7.2003R. doi:10.5194/acp-7-2003-2007.
  13. ^ Robock, Alan; Luke Oman & Georgiy L. Stenchikov (2007). "Nuclear winter revisited with a modern climate model and current nuclear arsenals: Still catastrophic consequences" (PDF). J. Geophys. Res. 112 (D13): D13107. Bibcode:2007JGRD..11213107R. doi:10.1029/2006JD008235.
  14. ^ Toon, Owen B.; Richard P. Turco; Alan Robock; Charles Bardeen; Luke Oman & Georgiy L. Stenchikov (2007). "Atmospheric effects and societal consequences of regional scale nuclear conflicts and acts of individual nuclear terrorism" (PDF). Atmos. Chem. Phys. 7 (8): 1973–2002. Bibcode:2007ACP.....7.1973T. doi:10.5194/acp-7-1973-2007.
  15. ^ Toon, Owen B.; Alan Robock; Richard P. Turco; Charles Bardeen; Luke Oman & Georgiy L. Stenchikov (2007). "Consequences of regional-scale nuclear conflicts" (PDF). Science. 315 (5816): 1224–5. doi:10.1126/science.1137747. PMID 17332396. S2CID 129644628.
  16. ^ Toon, Owen B.; Alan Robock; Richard P. Turco (December 2008). "Environmental consequences of nuclear war". Physics Today. 61 (12): 37–42. Bibcode:2008PhT....61l..37T. doi:10.1063/1.3047679.
  17. ^ Robock, A.; Ammann, C. M.; Oman, L.; Shindell, D.; Levis, S.; Stenchikov, G. (2009). "Did the Toba volcanic eruption of ~74 ka B.P. produce widespread glaciation?". Journal of Geophysical Research. 114 (D10): D10107. Bibcode:2009JGRD..11410107R. doi:10.1029/2008JD011652.
  18. ^ Walsh, Bryan (2022-08-17). "What could a nuclear war do to the climate — and humanity?". Vox. Retrieved 2022-08-22.
  19. ^ "List of Fellows", American Meteorological Society. Retrieved May 28, 2017.
  20. ^ "AAAS Fellows", American Association for the Advancement of Science. Retrieved March 22, 2018.
  21. ^ "For important contributions to understanding the global climate system, including the climate impacts of soil moisture, of snow and ice, and of stratospheric aerosols.", American Geophysical Union. Retrieved March 22, 2018.
  22. ^ "Alan Robock Wins Prestigious American Meteorological Society Award", (November 24, 2014). Rutgers University. Retrieved May 28, 2017.
  23. ^ "Future Of Life Award". Future of Life Institute. Retrieved 2022-08-22.

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