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Advancing the Science of Climate Change

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Advancing the Science of Climate Change

A strong, credible body of scientific evidence shows that climate change is occurring, is caused largely by human activities, and poses significant risks for a broad range of human and natural systems, concludes this panel report from the America’s Climate Choices suite of studies. As decision makers respond to these risks, the nation’s scientific enterprise can contribute both by continuing to improve understanding of the causes and consequences of climate change, and by improving and expanding the options available to limit the magnitude of climate change and adapt to its impacts. To make this possible, the nation needs a comprehensive, integrated, and flexible climate change research enterprise that is closely linked with action-oriented programs at all levels.

The report recommends that a single federal entity or program be given the authority and resources to coordinate a national research effort integrated across many disciplines and aimed at improving both understanding and responses to climate change. The U.S. Global Change Research Program, established in 1990, could fulfill this role, but it would need to form partnerships with action-oriented programs and address weaknesses in its current program. A comprehensive climate observing system, improved climate models and other analytical tools, investment in human capital, and better linkages between research and decision making are also essential to a complete understanding of climate change.

Advancing the Science of Climate Change, Report in Brief
The members of the Panel on Advancing the Science of Climate Change are:

Dr. Pamela A. Matson (Chair), Stanford University
Dr. Thomas Dietz (Vice Chair), Michigan State University
Dr. Waleed Abdalati, University of Colorado at Boulder
Dr. Antonio J. Busalacchi, Jr., University of Maryland, College Park
Dr. Ken Caldeira, Carnegie Institution of Washington
Dr. Robert W. Corell, H. John Heinz III Center for Science, Economics and the Environment
Dr. Ruth S. DeFries, Columbia University
Dr. Inez Y. Fung, University of California Berkeley
Dr. Steven Gaines, University of California Santa Barbara
Dr. George M. Hornberger, Vanderbilt University
Dr. Maria Carmen Lemos, University of Michigan
Dr. Susanne C. Moser, Susanne Moser Research & Consulting
Dr. Richard H. Moss, World Wildlife Fund
Dr. Edward A. Parson, University of Michigan
Dr. A. R. Ravishankara, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Dr. Raymond W. Schmitt, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Dr. B. L. Turner, II, Arizona State University
Dr. Warren M. Washington, National Center for Atmospheric Research
Dr. John P. Weyant, Stanford University
Dr. David A. Whelan, The Boeing Company