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Opportunities to Improve Representation of Clouds and Aerosols in Climate Models with Classified Observing Systems: Proceedings of a Workshop: Abbreviated Version(2016)

The impact of aerosols on the atmosphere is widely acknowledged as one of the most significant and uncertain aspects of climate change projections. At the request of the Intelligence Community, the National Academies held a classified workshop in September 2015 that brought together scientists from the civil and intelligence communities to determine the usefulness of …

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The Power of Change: Innovation for Development and Deployment of Increasingly Clean Electric Power Technologies (2016)

A new report from the National Academies’ Board on Science, Technology, and Economic Policy asks an important question: rather than trade affordability and reliability for low emissions, is there a way to balance all three?

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The Future of Atmospheric Chemistry Research: Remembering Yesterday, Understanding Today, Anticipating Tomorrow (2016)

This report identifies priorities and strategic steps forward for atmospheric chemistry research for the next decade. A major goal is to develop improved predictive capability that foresees environmental changes and societal impacts to inform policy and other decisions.

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Attribution of Extreme Weather Events in the Context of Climate Change (2016)

Video and slides from the release briefing on the new report, Attribution of Extreme Weather Events in the Context of Climate Change, are now available online.

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Characterizing Risk in Climate Change Assessments: Proceedings of a Workshop (2016)

The U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP), in response to its legislative mandate, conducts periodic National Climate Assessments (NCA) to inform the nation about observed changes in climate, the current status of the climate, and anticipated trends for the future. The USGCRP has conducted three such assessments and intends to develop a sustained assessment process. …

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Enhancing Participation in the U.S. Global Change Research Program (2016)

As understanding of global change has evolved over the past decades, the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) has faced growing demands for actionable scientific information to help decision makers respond to changing climate conditions. In light of these challenges, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Committee to Advise the U.S. Global Change …

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Electricity Use in Rural and Islanded Communities: Summary of a Workshop (2016)

On behalf of the Quadrennial Energy Review (QER) Task Force, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine hosted a workshop on February 8-9, 2016, titled “Electricity Use in Rural and Islanded Communities.” The objective of the workshop was to help the QER Task Force public outreach efforts by focusing on communities with unique electricity …

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Next Generation Earth System Prediction: Strategies for Subseasonal to Seasonal Forecasts (2016)

Currently, the accuracy, skill, and scope of extended weather forecasts (those made two weeks to 12 months in advance) is limited. This report presents the vision that, in the next decade, subseasonal to seasonal forecasts will be as widely used as short-term weather forecasts are today.

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Assessment of Approaches to Updating the Social Cost of Carbon: Phase 1 Report on a Near-Term Update (2015)

The social cost of carbon (SCC) for a given year is an estimate, in dollars, of the present discounted value of the damage caused by a 1-metric ton increase in CO2 emissions into the atmosphere in that year; or equivalently, the benefits of reducing CO2 emissions by the same amount in that given year.

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Climate Change Adaptation Planning: Risk Assessment for Airports (2015)

TRB’s Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) Report 147: Climate Change Adaptation Planning: Risk Assessment for Airports provides guidance for practitioners to understand the specific impacts climate change may have on their airports. The guidebook may help practitioners develop adaptation actions and incorporate those actions into the airport’s planning processes.   Get the report

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Cost, Effectiveness, and Deployment of Fuel Economy Technologies for Light-Duty Vehicles (2015)

The light-duty vehicle fleet is expected to undergo substantial technological changes over the next several decades. New powertrain designs, alternative fuels, advanced materials, and significant changes to the vehicle body are being driven by increasingly stringent fuel economy and greenhouse gas emission standards. By the end of the next decade, cars and light-duty trucks will …

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Modeling the Health Risks of Climate Change: Workshop Summary (2015)

Climate change poses risks to human health through shifting weather patterns, increases in the frequency and intensity of heat waves and other extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and ocean acidification, among other environmental effects. Robust models that project the future health risks of climate change are needed to inform adaptation efforts, reduce adverse health …

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Overcoming Barriers to Deployment of Plug-in Electric Vehicles (2015)

In the past few years, interest in plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) has grown. Advances in battery and other technologies, new federal standards for carbon-dioxide emissions and fuel economy, state zero-emission-vehicle requirements, and the current administration’s goal of putting millions of alternative-fuel vehicles on the road have all highlighted PEVs as a transportation alternative. Consumers are …

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Review of the Draft Interagency Report on the Impacts of Climate Change on Human Health in the United States (2015)

Climate change poses risks to human health through shifting weather patterns, increases in the frequency and intensity of heat waves and other extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and ocean acidification, among other environmental effects. Robust models that project the future health risks of climate change are needed to inform adaptation efforts, reduce adverse health …

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Review of the U.S. Global Change Research Program’s Update to the Strategic Plan Document (2015)

This report reviews a draft update to the U.S. Global Change Research Program’s 2012 Strategic Plan, finding that overall the Program is moving forward well and that the draft Update identifies a number of critical research questions and strategies to address needs for science-based information on global change. However, the report notes that the draft …

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Climate Intervention Reports (2015)

A new two-volume report finds that proposed climate intervention technologies are not ready for wide-scale deployment and are no substitute for reductions in carbon dioxide emissions and adaptation efforts to combat climate change.

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Including Health in Global Frameworks for Development, Wealth, and Climate Change: Workshop Summary (2014)

Including Health in Global Frameworks for Development, Wealth, and Climate Change is the summary of a three-part public webinar convened by the Institute of Medicine Roundtable on Environmental Health Sciences, Research, and Medicine and its collaborative on Global Environmental Health and Sustainable Development. Presenters and participants discussed the role of health in measuring a country’s …

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New Report: Reducing Risk on the East and Gulf Coasts (2014)

A new report from the National Research Council calls for a strategic national vision for reducing risk from coastal storms and flooding, the cost of which has risen dramatically over the past several decades as more people and property are in harm’s way. Learn more in this Report in Brief, slideshow, and a new video.

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Report: Can Earth’s and Society’s Systems Meet the Needs of 10 Billion People? (2014)

This new report summarizes a workshop held in October 2013 that explored how to sustainably increase the world’s population to 10 billion while simultaneously increasing people’s well-being and standard of living.

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Climate Change Educational Partnership Workshop Summary (2014)

The Center for Engineering, Ethics, and Society at the National Academy of Engineering summed up three workshops in a new publication, The Climate Change Educational Partnership. The workshops explored the varied social and technical dimensions found in the relationships among climate, engineered systems, and society.

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Linkages Between Arctic Warming and Mid-Latitude Weather Patterns: Workshop Summary (2014)

Read a summary and highlights of a 2013 workshop on the connections between Arctic warming and mid-latitude weather patterns, to discuss gaps in understanding, and to explore future research needs.

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Opportunities to Use Remote Sensing in Understanding Permafrost (2014)

Climate change is causing widespread thawing and degradation of permafrost, which has associated impacts on infrastructure, ecosystems, and the global carbon cycle. Data are needed to observe and monitor permafrost and for input into models that project permafrost change. This interactive table presents current and future remote sensing techniques and the available and desirable spatial and temporal resolution of the relevant remote sensing products.

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Responding to Oil Spills in the U.S. Arctic Marine Environment (2014)

The risk of a serious oil spill in the arctic is escalating due to potential increases in shipping traffic and oil and gas activities. To provide an effective response effort in challenging Arctic conditions–and minimize impacts on people and sensitive ecosystems–a full range of oil spill response technologies is needed. This report assesses the current …

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Workshop Summaries from the Climate Change Education Roundtable (2014)

Two new reports summarize workshops convened by the Climate Change Roundtable Series, Climate Change Education: Engaging Private Forest Owners on Issues Related to Climate Change and
Climate Change Education: Preparing Future and Current Business.

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Review of the National Science Foundation’s Division of Atmospheric and Geospace Sciences (AGS) Draft Science Goals and Objectives (2014)

The National Science Foundation’s Division on Atmospheric and Geospace Sciences (AGS) supports research to achieve the nation’s scientific and education goals in the atmospheric sciences. At AGS’ request, this letter report reviews an AGS draft goals and objectives document that sets forth missions, long-term goals, and the means to achieve those goals, for the years …

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The Arctic in the Anthropocene: Emerging Research Questions (2014)

With rapid change unfolding throughout the Arctic, the need for actionable Arctic science has never been greater. This new report identifies emerging research questions important for understanding how environmental and societal transitions will affect the Arctic and the rest of the world.

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The Nexus of Biofuels, Climate Change, and Human Health: Workshop Summary (2014)

Liquid fuels are a major part of modern life. They supply energy for ground, water, and air transportation as well as power for industrial and farming machinery. But fossil fuels – the dominant liquid fuel in use for well over a century – have many disadvantages. The use of fossil fuels has obvious health downsides, …

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A Review of the Draft 2013 National Climate Assessment (2013)

A Review of the Draft 2013 National Climate Assessment (2013) Mandated by the Global Change Research Act, the National Climate Assessment is produced every four years by the U.S. Global Change Research Program. This NRC report evaluates the draft 2013 National Climate Assessment. It provides both practical suggestions for immediate improvements to the document, and …

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Abrupt Impacts of Climate Change: Anticipating Surprises (2013)

abruptcoverBoth abrupt changes in the physical climate system and steady changes in climate that can trigger abrupt changes in other physical, biological, and human systems present possible threats to nature and society. This report summarizes current knowledge on potential abrupt changes to the ocean, atmosphere, ecosystems, and high latitude areas, and calls for action to help anticipate future abrupt changes and reduce their impacts.

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Review of the Federal Ocean Acidification Research and Monitoring Plan (2013)

The world’s ocean has already experienced a 30% rise in acidity since the industrial revolution, with acidity expected to rise 100 to 150% over preindustrial levels by the end of this century. Potential consequences to marine life and also to economic activities that depend on a healthy marine ecosystem are difficult to assess and predict, …

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Transitions to Alternative Vehicles and Fuels (2013)

Read/Purchase the Report Transitions to Alternative Vehicles and Fuels (2013) For a century, almost all light-duty vehicles (LDVs) have been powered by internal combustion engines (ICEs) operating on petroleum fuels. Energy security concerns over petroleum imports and the effect of greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions on global climate are driving interest in alternatives. This report assesses the …

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A National Strategy for Advancing Climate Modeling (2012)

A new report lays out a strategy for advancing climate models to deliver climate projections at the scale and level of detail desired by decision makers. Evolving to a more unified climate modeling enterprise—in particular by developing a common software infrastructure shared by all climate researchers—could help speed progress.
Learn more about the report at a free webinar on September 28 at 1:30 pm EST.

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A Review of the USGCRP’s Draft Strategic Plan (2012)

This report reviews a draft 10-year strategic plan for the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) as part of the National Research Council’s long history as an independent advisor to USGRCRP. 

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Lessons and Legacies of International Polar Year 2007-2008 (2012)

International Polar Year 2007-2008 (IPY) was an intense, coordinated field campaign of observations, research, and analysis. IPY engaged the public to communicate the relevance of polar research to the entire planet, strengthened connections with the Indigenous people of the Arctic, and established new observational networks. Overall, IPY was an outstanding success. Activities at both poles …

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Sea-Level Rise for the Coasts of California, Oregon, and Washington: Past, Present, and Future (2012)

A new report from the National Research Council provides the first comprehensive regional projections of sea-level rise for the U.S. west coast. Watch this video for the main findings of the report.

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Security Implications of Social Stress from Climate Change (2012)

Evidence of global climate change beyond the bounds of past experience has raised expectations of new stresses on societies around the world. A new report, Climate and Social Stress: Implications for Security Analysis focuses on the U.S. security risks that might arise when climate-related events—including droughts, heat waves, and storms—exceed the capacity of affected populations to cope.

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Strategies for Improving Arctic Sea Ice Projections (2012)

Satellite data show that during each of the past six summers, sea ice cover has shrunk to its smallest level in three decades and that the ice is composed of more thin first-year ice instead of thicker multi-year ice.  A growing number of stakeholders need accurate sea ice projections.

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Climate Change, the Indoor Environment, and Health (2011)

The indoor environment affects occupants’ health and comfort. Poor environmental conditions and indoor contaminants are estimated to cost the U.S. economy tens of billions of dollars a year in exacerbation of illnesses like asthma, allergic symptoms, and subsequent lost productivity. Climate change has the potential to affect the indoor environment because conditions inside buildings are …

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Climate Stabilization Targets (2011)

  Read/Purchase the Report Climate Stabilization Targets: Emissions, Concentrations, and Impacts Over Decades to Millennia (2011) Emissions of carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels have ushered in a new epoch where human activities will largely determine the evolution of Earth’s climate. Because carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is long lived, emissions reductions choices …

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Future Science Opportunities in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean (2011)

A report from the Academies’ Polar Research Board looks out over the next couple of decades to identify key questions that will drive scientific research in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean and presents opportunities to be leveraged to sustain and improve the science program.

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Global Change and Extreme Hydrology (2011)

Read/Purchase the Report Global Change and Extreme Hydrology (2011) As climate change warms the atmosphere, Earth’s hydrology is shifting—with the potential to make floods and droughts more extreme. There is now a pressing need for decision-makers to better understand the ongoing changes in hydrologic extremes in order to make preparations for changing conditions. This report …

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National Security Implications of Climate Change for U.S. Naval Forces (2011)

Read/Purchase the Report National Security Implications of Climate Change for U.S. Naval Forces (2011) In response to the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO), the National Research Council appointed a committee operating under the auspices of the Naval Studies Board to study the national security implications of climate change for U.S. naval forces. In conducting this study, …

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Policy Options for Reducing Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissi

Reducing Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions from U.S. Transportation (2011)

Read/Purchase the Report Policy Options for Reducing Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions from U.S. Transportation (2011) TRB Special Report 307: Policy Options for Reducing Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions from U.S. Transportation examines the potential for policies to yield major changes in transportation energy use and emissions trends by policy measures targeting cars and light …

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Understanding the Earth’s Deep Past (2011)

Read/Purchase the Report Understanding the Earth’s Deep Past: Lessons for Our Climate Future (2011) A better understanding of how Earth will respond to future climate change could be gained by looking tens of millions of years back into Earth’s past, this National Research Council report finds. Without a reduction in emissions, by the end of …

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Driving and the Built Environment (2010)

Read/Purchase the Report Driving and the Built Environment: The Effects of Compact Development on Motorized Travel, Energy Use, and CO2 Emissions — Special Report 298 (2010)TRB Special Report 298: Driving and the Built Environment: Effects of Compact Development on Motorized Travel, Energy Use, and CO2 Emissions examines the relationship between land development patterns and vehicle …

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Intraseasonal to Interannual Climate Prediction and Predictability (2010)

Read/Purchase the Report Assessment of Intraseasonal to Interannual Climate Prediction and Predictability (2010) Accurate forecasts of climate conditions over time periods of weeks to a few years—called intraseasonal to interannual timescales—can help people plan agricultural activities, mitigate drought, and manage energy resources. However, current forecast systems have limited ability on these timescales because models for …

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Monitoring Climate Change Impacts: Metrics at the Intersection of the Human and Earth Systems (2010)

This report from the National Research Council identifies seventy-one metrics that when taken together may give advance warning of climate-related changes and their impacts across a range of both local and global scales. Currently, many observing systems capture elements of how climate is changing, such as direct measurements of atmospheric and ocean temperature. However, these …

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Ocean Acidification (2010)

Read/Purchase the Report Ocean Acidification: A National Strategy to Meet the Challenges of A Changing Ocean (2010) Excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere—in addition to contributing to climate change—is absorbed by the ocean, making sea water more acidic and leading to a suite of changes in ocean chemistry. Preliminary evidence suggests ocean acidification will have …

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Verifying Greenhouse Gas Emissions (2010)

Read/Purchase the Report Verifying Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Methods to Support International Climate Agreements (2010) Agreements to limit emissions of greenhouse gases are currently the focus of international negotiations, and with such accords will come the need to accurately estimate these emissions, monitor their changes over time, and verify them with independent data. This report identifies …

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The America’s Climate Choices Series

Produced at the request of Congress, the America’s Climate Choices series of reports provides authoritative analyses to inform and guide responses to climate change across the nation.  The reports were produced by committees of experts convened by the National Research Council to address the [statement of task], and their findings were peer reviewed. The series …

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