Each month, the scientists at the American Museum of Natural History select four student-submitted questions to answer online. Here's what top scientists have to say about global climate change. 

Zarion J., Grade 10 asks: What do you think the future of our planet will be? Will it be hot from global warming or will we have another ice age?

Geologist Edmond Mathez answers:

Dear Zarion, I wish I could tell you what the future will bring, but no one knows for sure how global warming will play out. In fact, not knowing is one of the problems. Global warming is a significant risk to society. On the one hand, we do not know exactly what will happen. On the other, we realize that what could happen could be serious... find out more about climate change.  

Armano B., Grade 6 asks: What are the most important things kids can do to prevent global warming?

Geologist Edmond Mathez answers:

Dear Armano, Thank you for your question. It's a really good one. There is no single solution, so let me give you three things that kids can do... continue reading what you can do to help minimize global warming.

Chase H., Grade 3 asks: When and how did the ice age end? Could another one start?

Geologist Ro Kinzler answers:

Dear Chase, I like how your question addresses both the past and the future of ice ages. It turns out that we are most likely in an "ice age" now... read more about ice ages past, present, and future. 

Tess S., Grade 6 asks: Since global warming is affecting the polar bears, how can we help them to not go extinct?

Richard Pearson, Biodiversity Scientist, answers:

Hi Tess, Global warming is affecting many species on our planet, including polar bears. Some species can respond to the changing global climate by changing their distribution — the area that a species lives and moves within. For example, many species of birds in North America are moving their distributions northward as the climate changes... find out how global warming affects animals — and what you can do. 

Hannah H., Grade 6 asks: Will the world ever be all underwater because of all the ice melting?

Geologist Edmond Mathez answers:

Dear Hannah, Thank you for your question. The simple answer is no. The whole world will never be underwater. But our coastlines would be very different... learn more about melting ice and rising sea levels.

Do you have a question to send to the scientists at the American Museum of Natural History? Ask it here. Find answers to selected questions here.