Stay Connected

NOAA Research Scientist Profiles

Meet Our Scientists

Krasting, John
SuperUser Account
/ Categories: Profile, Climate, Ecosystems

Krasting, John

Understanding the Relationship Between Earth's Climate and Ecosystems

John Krasting has always been naturally curious about the weather and its different patterns. His love of weather eventually led him to study the complexities of the Earth’s climate system. A former television meteorologist, Krasting now works in the Climate and Ecosystems Group in the NOAA Geophyscial Fluid Dynamics Laboraotry in Princeton, N.J. A New Jersey native, his research interests include developing and using computer models to study how the climate system and the carbon cycle interact with each other. He uses these computer models to understand how these relationships work today and how they might change over time.


Why does your research matter?

The Earth’s climate system and ecosystems have complex interactions with each other. Each year, the amount of carbon that flows through the biosphere depends partly on natural modes of climate variability, such as El Nino. I study how these interactions occur in the climate system with the aid of computer modeling. I help to develop computer models that couple climate and the carbon cycle. I run experiments with these models to study past, present, and future climate scenarios which will be a key part of the upcoming Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in 2014.

What do you enjoy the most about your work?

The coupling of a fully-interactive carbon cycle model to a climate model is still a relatively new advancement in our field. I love the feeling of excitement when I learn something new about the way the Earth's climate system interacts with carbon cycle. I find a lot of satisfaction in knowing that my work will help others understand these interactions in more ways than just through observations.

Where do you do most of your work? In a lab? In field studies?

Most of my work is done at my computer terminal. I am constantly looking at the climate model results, working with computer model code, and monitoring climate simulations that are running on NOAA's new research and development high-performance computing system located at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee.

What in your lab could you not live without?

"I love the feeling of excitement when I learn something new about the way the Earth's climate system interacts with carbon cycle."

Our high-speed data networks are a crucial element in enabling me to do my work. My experiments generate terabytes of data in Tennessee and that data has to make its way back to Princeton for storage and analysis. I am always impressed at our ability to transfer such large amounts of data so quickly.

If you could invent any instrument to advance your research and cost were no object, what would it be? Why?

Our present day computers at NOAA are state-of-the-art. Even with this technology, there are still some elements of the climate system that we cannot fully resolve given our computational constraints. For example, the role of clouds is still a source of uncertainty in climate projections. The ability to consistently run a global cloud-resolving model that is coupled to carbon-cycle model would be a tremendous achievement. GFDL is working on this task today.

When did you know you wanted to pursue science?

I ask a lot of questions. I always have. When I was growing up, I was always fascinated by the weather and found myself asking "why." I can't recall an exact moment when I decided to become a scientist; it's always been with me.

What's at the top of your recommended reading list for someone wanting to explore a career in science?

Andrew Revkin is a phenomenal science writer for the New York Times. His articles are always relevant, insightful, and can help people learn more about hot science topics.

What is your personal favorite book?

It's hard to pick just one. I love reading about 20th century history.

What part of your job as a NOAA scientist did you least expect to be doing?

I never knew that there were so many opportunities with NOAA to talk about my science. I enjoy speaking to school groups, training school teachers, and giving talks at national meetings about my work. Science is most beneficial to the world when it is shared.

Do you have an outside hobby?

I'm a meteorologist at heart. I love tracking exciting weather in and around New Jersey, and I drop everything when a thunderstorm rolls into town. I also love animals, so I like to spend time with my pets and volunteer at a local animal shelter here in Princeton.

What would you be doing if you had not become a scientist?

Before coming to NOAA, I was a television meteorologist in New York City and Philadelphia. It was a lot of fun, and it was exciting.

Who is your favorite historical scientist and why?

Benjamin Franklin was an intriguing man. I would love to sit down with him and have a beer (preferably one that he had brewed himself!) Benjamin Franklin was truly a multi-disciplinary scientist. He studied just about everything that piqued his curiosity.


A GFDL scientist since 2009, Krasting studied at Rutgers University, earning a bachelor of science degree in meteorology in 2003 and a Ph.D. in atmospheric science in 2008. NOAA logo.

Previous Article Knutson, Tom
Next Article Bender, Morris


NOAA Research Scientists

  • All
  • Profile
  • Air Quality
  • Arctic
  • Climate
  • Ecosystems
  • Fisheries & Seafood
  • Great Lakes
  • Marine Science
  • Weather
  • Ocean Exploration
  • Women in Research
  • In The Spotlight


    Phone: 301-713-2458
    Address: 1315 East-West Highway Silver Spring, MD 20910

    Stay Connected


    Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) - or "NOAA Research" - provides the research foundation for understanding the complex systems that support our planet. Working in partnership with other organizational units of the NOAA, a bureau of the Department of Commerce, NOAA Research enables better forecasts, earlier warnings for natural disasters, and a greater understanding of the Earth. Our role is to provide unbiased science to better manage the environment, nationally, and globally.


    Can't Find What You Need?
    Send Feedback
    Copyright 2018 by NOAA Terms Of Use Privacy Statement
    Back To Top