Dr. Ken C. Taylor Jr.

Research Professor Hydrology
4b656e647269636b2e5461796c6f72406472692e656475
775-673-7375
775-673-7363
climate, ice, ice core, Paleoclimate

Professional Interests

Dr. Taylor is a Research Professor with the Division of Hydrologic Sciences in the Desert Research Institute. Much of his work has focused on understanding the causes of climate change. He has been involved with ice core paleoclimate studies since 1981 and has worked on every United States deep ice coring project during that time. Taylor is the Chief Scientist for the NSF funded WAIS Divide ice coring program in Antarctica. As Chief Scientist he is responsible for understanding and advocating for the two dozen different science projects that are involved with this program. This involves coordinating research, logistics, and drilling organizations, and working with the National Science Foundation to assure the program produces the most science possible with the resources that are available. He has been a public spokesperson for issues related to rapid climate change with numerous contributions to national print, radio and television media.

Research Areas

  • Ice Core
  • Antarctica
  • Climate Change

Research Projects

Currently my research is focused on understanding the causes of climate change. However, I have also worked on many other hydrology topics.

Dr. Ken Taylor with an ice core Dr. Ken Taylor inside an ice cave Dr. Ken Taylor in West Antarctica

I am the Chief Scientist for the WAIS Divide Ice Core project which is studying paleoclimate and ice dynamics in West Antarctica. This NSF funded multi-year multi-institution project recovered a record of record of climate change and the concentrations of atmospheric gases that extends back 68,000 years. We are using this record to improve our understanding of why climate changes have occurred in the past and how climate will change in the future. I also make electrical measurements on ice cores to identify annual layers. By counting the annual layers we help determine the relationship between the depth of the ice and the age of the ice.

Dr. Ken Taylor training with World Vision in Ghana Dr. Ken Taylor with the World Vision team

In 1999, I lead a project to train the staff of World Vision in Ghana how to use geophysical methods to locate favorable location for shallow water wells in rural areas. By using the methods we suggested World Vision was able to decrease the number of non-productive dry holes by 10 to 50%. In 2014 I continued this work by building a simplified transient electromagnetics instrument and training World Vision staff to use it. This should make their operations more efficient in the more challenging areas they are currently working in.

I led a project helping to determining why the water clarity at Lake Tahoe, a large mountain lake on the boarder of Nevada and California, is declining. This involved using an instrumented boat to determine the spatial and temporal distribution of turbidity, light attenuation and chlorophyll concentration in the lake. We also collected the particles responsible for the reduction of clarity and studied them with a Scanning Electron Microscope and Energy Depressive Spectrometry. We found strong link between urban development and lower near shore water quality. Mineral particles, not algae, are the primary cause of the reduced clarity. We also determined that existing regulations are inadequate to maintain the water clarity near the shore.

Publications & Presentations

2015

Buizert, C., Cuffey, K. M., Severinghaus, J. P., Baggenstos, D., Fudge, T. J., Steig, E. J., Sowers, T. A., Brook, E. J., Rhodes, R. H., Cheng, H., Edwards, L. R., Sigl, M., McConnell, J. R., Taylor, K. C. (2015). The WAIS-Divide deep ice core WDC06A-9 chronology: ?age and methane synchronization (29.6-68 ka), Climate of the Past, 11, 153-173, doi: 10.5194/cp-11-153-2015
Sigl, M., McConnell, J. R., Winstrup, M., Fudge, T., Cole-Dai, J., Ferris, D., Taylor, K. C., Buizert, C., Rhodes, R., McGwire, K. C., Welten, K., Woodruff, T., Dunbar, N., Iverson, N., Maselli, O. J., Pasteris, D. R., Muscheler, R. (2015). WD2014: A new reference chronology for ice cores from Antarctica?, Geophysical Research Abstracts, 17, (EGU2015-2782-1), EGU General Assembly 2015: Vienna, Austria, April 12, 2015-April 17, 2015
Sigl, M., Fudge, T. J., Winstrup, M., Cole-Dai, J., Ferris, D., McConnell, J. R., Taylor, K. C., Welten, K. C., Woodruff, T. E., Adolphi, F., Bisiaux, M. M. (2015). The WAIS Divide deep ice core WD2014 chronology-Part 2: Annual-layer counting (0-31 ka BP), Climate of the Past Discussions, 11, 3425-3474
Sneed, S. B., Mayewski, P. A., Sayre, W. G., Handley, M. J., Kurbatov, A. V., Taylor, K. C., Bohleber, P., Wagenbach, D., Erhardt, T., Spaulding, N. E. (2015). Instruments and Methods New LA-ICP-MS cryocell and calibration technique for sub-millimeter analysis of ice cores, Journal of Glaciology, 61, (226), 233
WAIS-Divide Project Members, Buizert, C., Brook, E. J., McConnell, J. R., Taylor, K. C. (2015). Precise interpolar phasing of abrupt climate change during the last ice age, Nature, 520, (7549), 661-665, doi: 10.1038/nature14401

2014

Buizert, C., Baggenstos, D., Brook, E., Cuffey, K. M., Fudge, T. J., Markle, B. R., McConnell, J. R., Rhodes, R., Severinghaus, J. P., Sowers, T. A., Steig, E. J., Taylor, K. C., WAIS-Divide Project Members (2014). Precise interhemispheric phasing of the bipolar seesaw during abrupt Dansgaard-Oeschger Events, AGU Fall Meeting: San Francisco, December 15, 2014-December 19, 2014, Abstract PP11E-05
Buizert, C., Cuffey, K. M., Severinghaus, J. P., Baggenstos, D., Fudge, T. J., Sigl, M., McConnell, J. R., Taylor, K. C. (2014). The WAIS-Divide deep ice core WD2014 chronology: 2. Methane synchronization (68-31 ka BP) and the gas age-ice age difference, Climate of the Past, Submitted
Buizert, C., Cuffey, K. M., Severinghaus, J. P., Baggenstos, D., Fudge, T. J., Steig, E. J., Markle, B. R., Winstrup, M., Rhodes, R. H., Brook, E. J., Sowers, T. A., Clow, G. D., Cheng, H., Edwards, R. L., Sigl, M., McConnell, J. R., Taylor, K. C. (2014). The WAIS Divide deep ice core WD2014 chronology: 2. Methane synchronization (31-68 ka BP) and the gas age-ice age difference, WAIS Divide Science Meeting: La Jolla, September 22, 2014-September 24, 2014
Fudge, T. J., Waddington, E. D., Conway, H., Ludin, J. M., Taylor, K. C. (2014). Interpolation methods for Antarctic ice-core timescales: application to Byrd, Siple Dome and Law Dome ice cores, Clim. Past Discuss, 10/64, 104-109, doi: 10.5194/cpd-10-65-2014
Marcott, S., Bauska, T., Buizert, C., Steig, E., Rosen, J., Cuffey, K., Fudge, T., Severinghaus, J., Ahn, J., Kalk, M., McConnell, J. R., Sowers, T., Taylor, K. C., White, J., Brook, E. (2014). Centennial-scale changes in the global carbon cycle during the last deglaciation, Nature, 616-619, doi: 10.1038/nature13799 Nature Publishing Group, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited. All Rights Reserved
McConnell, J. R., Dunbar, N. W., Köhler, P., Thomas, J. L., Chellman, N. J., Layman, L. R., Maselli, O. J., Pasteris, D. R., Sigl, M., Adkins, J. J., Baggenstos, D., Brook, E. J., Buizert, C., Burke, A., Cole-Dai, J., Fleet, L. G., Fudge, T. J., Knorr, G., Grieman, M., Marcott, S. A., McGwire, K. C., Mulvaney, R., Paris, G., Rhodes, R., Saltzman, E. S., Severinghaus, J. P., Steffensen, J. P., Taylor, K. C., Winckler, G. (2014). Accelerated deglaciation linked to volcanic eruptions 17.8k years ago, WAIS Divide Science Meeting: La Jolla, September 22, 2014-September 24, 2014
Sigl, M., Cole‐Dai, J., Ferris, D., Fudge, T. J., McConnell, J. R., Welten, K., Winstrup, M., Woodruff, T. E., Brook, E. J., Buizert, C., Dunbar, N., Iverson, N., Koffman, B., Maselli, O. J., McGwire, K. C., Muscheler, R., Pasteris, D. R., Sowers, T. A., Taylor, K. C. (2014). The WAIS Divide deep ice core WD2014 chronology: 1. Annual layer counting (0-31 ka BP), WAIS Divide Science Meeting: La Jolla, September 22, 2014-September 24, 2014
Sneed, S. b., Mayewski, P. S., Sayre, W. G., Handley, M. J., Kurbatov, A. K., Taylor, K. C., Wagenbach, P., Erhardt, T. (2014). New LA-ICP-MS cryocell and calibration technique for sub-millimeter analysis of ice cores, Journal of Glaciology, Accepted
Souney, J. M., Twickler, M. S., Hargreaves, G. M., Bencivengo, B. M., Kippenhan, M. J., Johnson, J. A., Cravens, E. C., Neff, P. D., Nunn, R. M., Orsi, A. J., Popp, T. J., Rhodes, J. F., Vaughn, B. H., Voigt, D. E., Wong, G. J., Taylor, K. C. (2014). Core handling and processing for the WAIS Divide ice-core project, Annals of Glaciology, 55, (68), doi: 10.3189/2014AoG68A008
WAIS-Divide-Project-Members, -. -., Taylor, K. C. (2014). Precise interhemispheric phasing of abrupt climate change, Nature, Accepted

2013

Buizert, C., Baggenstos, D., Brook, E., Cuffey, K., Fudge, T., Markle, B., McConnell, J. R., Rhodes, R., Severinghaus, J., Sowers, T., Steig, E., Taylor, K. C. (2013). Inter-Hemispheric Timing of the Thermal Bipolar Seesaw During Abrupt Dansgaard-Oeschger Events, WAIS Divide Science Meeting: La Jolla
Fudge, T., Taylor, K. C., Bay, R., Conway, H., Fitzpatrick, J., Kluskiewicz, D., McConnell, J. R., Voigt, D., Waddington, E. (2013). ECM of the Replicate Core: cm-scale depth registration and loss of signal below 3000 m, WAIS Divide Science Meeting: La Jolla
Fudge, T. J., Steig, E. J., Brook, E., Buizert, C., Conway, H., Ding, Q., Markle, B. R., McConnell, J. R., Schoenemann, S., Severinghaus, J., Sigl, M., Sowers, T., Taylor, K. C., Waddington, E. (2013). Abrupt climate change in West Antarctica and Greenland during the last deglacial warming, C33A-0658, AGU Fall Meeting: San Francisco, December 8, 2013-December 13, 2013
Mayewski, P. M., eta, Taylor, K. C. (2013). West Antarctica's sensitivity to natural and human-forced climate change over the Holocene, Journal of Quaternary Science, 26, (1), 40-48
Steig, E. J., et al., Taylor, K. C. (2013). Recent climate and ice-sheet changes in West Antarctica compared with the past 2,000 years, Nature Geoscience, 6, 372-275, doi: 10.1038/ngeo1778
Steig, E., White, J., Fudge, T., Taylor, K. C., Markle, B., Schoenemann, S., Ding, Q., Brook, E., McConnell, J. R., Buizert, C. (2013). Sensitivity of West Antarctica to climate and ice sheet variability on multiple timescales, C21E-03, AGU Fall Meeting: San Francisco, December 9, 2013-December 13, 2013
WAIS Divide Project Members, Taylor, K. C., et al., -. -. (2013). Onset of deglacial warming in West Antarctica driven by local orbital forcing, nature, 500, (7463), 440-444, Doi:10.1038/nature12376
WAIS-Divide Project, M., Sigl, M., McConnell, J. R., Maselli, O. J., Taylor, K. C., McGwire, K. C. (2013). Onset of deglacial warming in West Antarctica driven by local orbital forcing, Nature, 500, (7463), 440-444, doi: 10.1038/nature12376

2012

Bisiaux, M. M., McConnell, J. R., Pasteris, D. R., Taylor, K. C., Edwards, R., Penner, J. E., Curran, M., Van Ommen, T., Smith, A., Neumann, T. (2012). Changes in black carbon deposition to Antarctica from two high-resolution ice core records, 1850-2000 AD, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 12, (9), 4107-4115
J, F. T., J., S. E., B, A. R., Edward, B., D, C. G., Jihong, C., Howard, C., M, C. K., David, F., R, M. B., A, S. T., W, S. S., D, W. E., C, W. J., Taylor, K. C., McConnell, J. R., Sigl, M. (2012). Deglacial Accumulation Rate and Temperature Change in Central West Antarctica, Eos Trans. AGU, Fall Meet. Suppl., Abstract GC24B-06: San Francisco
T.J., F., Howard, C., Trevor, P., Eric, S., Ed, W., James, W., Taylor, K. C., McConnell, J. R., Sigl, M. (2012). Abrupt accumulation changes and electrical stratigraphy from WAIS Divide, Open Science Meeting: Giens, France
T.J., F., Ryan, B., Ed, B., Christo, B., Gary, C., Jihong, C., Howard, C., Kurt, C., Neila, D., Dave, F., Joe, M., Ken, M., Jeff, S., Rachael, R., Michael, S., Todd, S., Eric, S., Bruce, V., Ed, W., Jim, W., McConnell, J. R., McGwire, K. C., Taylor, K. C., Sigl, M. (2012). Annual resolution and small delta age: a high precision timescale from WAIS Divide, Open Science Meeting: Giens, France

2009

Severinghaus, J. P., Beaudette, R., Headly, M. A., Taylor, K. C., Brook, E. J. (2009). Oxygen-18 of O2 Records the Impact of Abrupt Climate Change on the Terrestrial Biosphere, Science, 324, 1431-1434

2008

Ahn, J., Headly, M. A., Wahlen, M., Brook, E. J., Mayewski, P. A., Taylor, K. C. (2008). CO2 diffusion in polar ice: observations from naturally formed CO2 spikes in the Siple Dome (Antarctica) ice core, J. Glaciology, 54, 685-695, Submitted
Banta, J. R., McConnell, J. R., Frey, M. M., Taylor, K. C. (2008). Spatial and temporal variability in snow accumulation at WAIS Divide over recent centuries, Journal of Geophysical Research, 113, doi: 10.1029/2008JD01235
McGwire, K. C., Alley, R. B., Banta, J. R., Hargreaves, G. M., McConnell, J. R., Taylor, K. C. (2008). Dating annual layers of a shallow Antarctic Ice core with an optical scanner, Journal of Glaciology, 54, 831-838

2006

Taylor, K. C. (2006). History of Ice Core Science, A 2800 word invited article published in the Encyclopedia of Quaternary Science
Taylor, K. C. (2006). Ice Core Conductivity Studies, A 3,100 word invited article published in the Encyclopedia of Quaternary Science

2005

Bentley, C. R., Taylor, K. C., Shturmakov, A. J., Mason, W. P., Emmell, G. R., Lebar, D. A. (2005). Coring to the West Antarctic ice sheet bed with a new Deep Ice Sheet Coring (DISC) drill
Taylor, K. C. (2005). Results from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Project
Taylor, K. C. (2005). Computer Assisted Interpretation of Ice Core Annual Layers
Waddington, E. D., Conway, H., Steig, E. J., Alley, R. B., Brook, E. J., Taylor, K. C., White, J. W. (2005). Decoding the dipstick: Thickness of Siple Dome, West Antarctica, at the Last Glacial Maximum, Geology, 4, 33, 281-284, doi: ISI:000228127100011

2004

Taylor, K. C., Alley, R. B. (2004). Two-dimensional electrical stratigraphy of the Siple Dome (Antarctica) ice core, Journal of Glaciology, 50, 169, 231-235

1997

Taylor, K. C., Englin, J., Minor, T. (1997). Use of Advanced Methods to Select Favorable Locations for Water Wells in Ghana: A Final Project Report

1996

Taylor, K. C., Chesley, M., Matanawi, K., Minor, T. (1996). Selection of Favorable Sites for Shallow Water Wells in Ghana, 30

1990

Taylor, K. C., Hess, J. W., Wheatcraft, S. (1990). Final Report Evaluation of Selected Borehole Geophysical Methods for Hazardous Waste Site Investigations & Monitoring

1986

Wheatcraft, S., Taylor, K. C., Hess, J. W., Morris, T. (1986). Borehole Sensing Methods for Ground-Water Investigations at Hazardous Waste Sites, 69

1984

Wheatcraft, S., Taylor, K. C., Haggard, J. (1984). An Investigation of Electrical Properties of Porous Media, 109

Authors

Abstract