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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Decade: 2000-2009
 Collection: Environmental Policy Collection
Trends in Emissions of Ozone-Depleting Substances, Ozone Layer Recovery, and Implications for Ultraviolet Radiation Exposure
This Synthesis and Assessment Product (SAP 2.4) focuses on the Climate models. Depletion of the stratospheric ozone layer by human-produced ozone-depleting substances has been recognized as a global environmental issue for more than three decades, and the international effort to address the issue via the United Nations Montreal Protocol marked its 20-year anniversary in 2007. Scientific understanding underpinned the Protocol at its inception and ever since. As scientific knowledge advanced and evolved, the Protocol evolved through amendment and adjustment. Policy-relevant science has documented the rise, and now the beginning decline, of the atmospheric abundances of many ozone-depleting substances in response to actions taken by the nations of the world. Projections are for a return of ozone-depleting chemicals (compounds containing chlorine and bromine) to their "pre-ozone-depletion" (pre-1980) levels by the middle of this century for the midlatitudes; the polar regions are expected to follow suit within 20 years after that. Since the 1980s, global ozone sustained a depletion of about 5 percent in the midlatitudes of both the Northern Hemisphere and Southern Hemisphere, where most of the Earth's population resides; it is now showing signs of turning the corner towards increasing ozone. The large seasonal depletions in the polar regions are likely to continue over the next decade but are expected to subside over the next few decades. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12023/
Climate Projections Based on Emissions Scenarios for Long-Lived and Short-Lived Radiatively Active Gases and Aerosols
This report focuses on the Climate Projections Based on Emissions Scenarios. The influence of greenhouse gases and particle pollution on our present and future climate has been widely examined. While both long-lived (e.g., carbon dioxide) and short-lived (e.g., soot) gases and particles affect the climate, other projections of future climate, such as the IPCC reports focus largely on the long-lived gases. This U.S. Climate Change Science Program Synthesis and Assessment Product provides a different emphasis. The authors examine the effect of long-lived greenhouse gases on the global climate based on updated emissions scenarios produced by another CCSP Synthesis and Assessment Product (SAP 2.1a). In these scenarios, atmospheric concentrations of the long-lived greenhouse gases leveled off, or stabilized, at predetermined levels by the end of the twenty-first century (unlike in the IPCC scenarios). However, the projected future temperature changes fall within the same range as those projected for the latest IPCC report. The authors confirm the robust future warming signature and other associated changes in the climate. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12025/
Atmospheric Aerosol Properties and Climate Impacts
This report critically reviews current knowledge about global distributions and properties of atmospheric aerosols as they relate to aerosol impacts on climate. It assesses possible steps to substantially reduce uncertainties in aerosol radiative forcing estimates. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12022/
Coastal Sensitivity to Sea-Level Rise: A Focus on the Mid-Atlantic Region
This document is part of the Synthesis and Assessment Products described in the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) Strategic Plan. The U.S. Government's CCSP is responsible for providing the best science-based knowledge possible to inform management of the risks and opportunities associated with changes in the climate and related environmental systems. To support its mission, the CCSP has commissioned 21 "synthesis and assessment products" (SAPs) to advance decision making on climate change-related issues by providing current evaluations of climate change science and identifying priorities for research, observation, and decision support. This Synthesis and Assessment Product (SAP), developed as part of the U.S. Climate Change Science Program, examines potential effects of sea-level rise from climate change during the twenty-first century, with a focus on the mid-Atlantic coast of the United States. Using scientific literature and policy-related documents, the SAP describes the physical environments; potential changes to coastal environments, wetlands, and vulnerable species; societal impacts and implications of sea-level rise; decisions that may be sensitive to sea-level rise; opportunities for adaptation; and institutional barriers to adaptation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12028/
Climate Models: An Assessment of Strengths and Limitations
This Synthesis and Assessment Product (SAP 3.1) focuses on the Climate models. Scientists extensively use mathematical models of Earth's climate, executed on the most powerful computers available, to examine hypotheses about past and present-day climates. Development of climate models is fully consistent with approaches being taken in many other fields of science dealing with very complex systems. These climate simulations provide a framework within which enhanced understanding of climate-relevant processes, along with improved observations, are merged into coherent projections of future climate change. This report describes the models and their ability to simulate current climate. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12024/
Thresholds of Climate Change in Ecosystems
This Report (SAP 4.2) focuses on the thresholds of Climate Change in Ecosystems. As defined in this Synthesis and Assessment Report, 'an ecological threshold is the point at which there is an abrupt change in an ecosystem quality, property, or phenomenon, or where small changes in one or more external conditions produce large and persistent responses in an ecosystem'.Ecological thresholds occur when external factors, positive feedbacks, or nonlinear instabilities in a system cause changes to propagate in a domino-like fashion that is potentially irreversible. This report reviews threshold changes in North American ecosystems that are potentially induced by climatic change and addresses the significant challenges these threshold crossings impose on resource and land managers. Sudden changes to ecosystems and the goods and services they provide are not well understood, but they are extremely important if natural resource managers are to succeed in developing adaptation strategies in a changing world. The report provides an overview of what is known about ecological thresholds and where they are likely to occur. It also identifies those areas where research is most needed to improve knowledge and understand the uncertainties regarding them. The report suggests a suite of potential actions that land and resource managers could use to improve the likelihood of success for the resources they manage, even under conditions of incomplete understanding of what drives thresholds of change and when changes will occur. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12029/
Weather and Climate Extremes in a Changing Climate. Regions of Focus: North America, Hawaii, Caribbean, and U.S. Pacific Islands
This document is part of the Synthesis and Assessment Products described in the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) Strategic Plan. Changes in extreme weather and climate events have significant impacts and are among the most serious challenges to society in coping with a changing climate. This Synthesis and Assessment Product (SAP 3.3) focuses on weather and climate extremes in a changing climate. Many extremes and their associated impacts are now changing. For example, in recent decades most of North America has been experiencing more unusually hot days and nights, fewer unusually cold days and nights, and fewer frost days. Heavy downpours have become more frequent and intense. Droughts are becoming more severe in some regions, though there are no clear trends for North America as a whole. The power and frequency of Atlantic hurricanes have increased substantially in recent decades, though North American mainland land-falling hurricanes do not appear to have increased over the past century. Outside the tropics, storm tracks are shifting northward and the strongest storms are becoming even stronger. It is well established through formal attribution studies that the global warming of the past 50 years is due primarily to human-induced increases in heat-trapping gases. Such studies have only recently been used to determine the causes of some changes in extremes at the scale of a continent. Certain aspects of observed increases in temperature extremes have been linked to human influences. The increase in heavy precipitation events is associated with an increase in water vapor, and the latter has been attributed to human-induced warming. No formal attribution studies for changes in drought severity in North America have been attempted. There is evidence suggesting a human contribution to recent changes in hurricane activity as well as in storms outside the tropics, though a confident assessment will require further study. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12026/
The North American Carbon Budget and Implications for the Global Carbon Cycle
A primary objective of the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) is to provide the best possible scientific information to support public discussion, as well as government and private sector decision making, on key climate-related issues. To help meet this objective, the CCSP has identified an initial set of 21 Synthesis and Assessment Products (SAPs) that address its highest priority research, observation, and decision support needs. This report-CCSP SAP 2.2-addresses Goal 2 of the CCSP Strategic Plan: Improve quantification of the forces bringing about changes in the Earth's climate and related systems. The report provides a synthesis and integration of the current knowledge of the North American carbon budget and its context within the global carbon cycle. In a format useful to decision makers, it (1) summarizes our knowledge of carbon cycle properties and changes relevant to the contributions of and impacts upon North America and the rest of the world, and (2) provides scientific information for decision support focused on key issues for carbon management and policy. Consequently, this report is aimed at both the decision-maker audience and to the expert scientific and stakeholder communities. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12021/
Abrupt Climate Change: Final Report
This document is part of the Synthesis and Assessment Products (SAP) described in the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) Strategic Plan. This report is meant to reduce uncertainty in projections of how the Earth's climate and related systems may change in the future. It provides scientific information for supporting the decision-making audience and the expert scientific and stakeholder community. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12027/
Scenarios of Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Atmospheric Concentrations
This and a companion report constitute one of twenty-one Synthesis and Assessment Products called for in the Strategic Plan for the U.S. Climate Change Science Program. These studies are structured to provide high-level, integrated research results on important science issues with a particular focus on questions raised by decision-makers on dimensions of climate change directly relevant to the U.S. One element of the CCSP's strategic vision is to provide decision support tools for differentiating and evaluating response strategies. Scenario-based analysis is one such tool. The scenarios in this report explore the implications of alternative stabilization levels of anthropogenic greenhouse gases (GHGs) in the atmosphere, and they explicitly consider the economic and technological foundations of such response options. Such scenarios are a valuable complement to other scientific research contained in the twenty-one CCSP Synthesis and Assessment Products. The companion to the research reported here, Global-Change Scenarios: Their Development and Use, explores the broader strategic frame for developing and utilizing scenarios in support of climate decision making. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12020/
Safeguarding the Ozone Layer and the Global Climate System: Issues related to hydrofluorocarbons and perfluorocarbons
This Special Report on Safeguarding the Ozone and the Global Climate System has been developed in response to invitations from Parties to the UNFCCC and the Montreal Protocol. It provides information relevant to decision-making in regard to safeguarding the ozone layer and the global climate system: two global environmental issues involving complex scientific and technical considerations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12053/
Land Use, Land-Use Change, and Forestry
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on Land Use, Land-Use Change, and Forestry (SR-LULUCF) has been prepared in response to a request from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA). At its eighth session in Bonn, Germany, 2-12 Ju and technical implications of carbon sequestration strategies related to land use, land-use change, and forestry activities. The scope, structure, and outline of this Special Report was approved by the IPCC in plenary meetings during its Fourteenth Session. This Special Report examines several key questions relating to the exchange of carbon between the atmosphere and the terrestrial pool of aboveground biomass, below-ground biomass, and soils. Vegetation exchanges carbon dioxide between the atmosphere and the terrestrial biosphere through photosynthesis and plant and soil respiration. This natural exchange has been occurring for hundreds of millions of years. Humans are changing the natural rate of exchange of carbon between the atmosphere and the terrestrial biosphere through land use, land-use change, and forestry activities. The aim of the SR-LULUCF is to assist the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol by providing relevant scientific and technical information to describe how the global carbon cycle operates and what the broad-scale opportunities and implications of ARD and additional human-induced activities are, now and in the future. This Special Report also identifies questions that Parties to the Protocol may wish to consider regarding definitions and accounting rules. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12052/
Assessment of Knowledge on Impacts of Climate Change - Contribution to the Specification of Art. 2 of the UNFCCC: Impacts on Ecosystems, Food Production, Water and Socio-economic Systems
The purpose of this report is to compile and summarise the present knowledge on impacts of climate change as a basis for a consideration of what may constitute dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system under Article 2 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). An attempt will be made to associate projected global mean surface temperature and/or sea level changes with specific identified impacts and effects in order to assist a discussion on the operationalization of Article 2. The main emphasis will be on ecosystem effects, food production, water resources, and sustainable development. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12057/
Emissions Scenarios
This Report describes climate change scenarios that extend to the end of the 21st century and how they were developed. The scenarios cover a wide range of the main driving forces of future emissions, from demographic to technological and economic developments. The set of emissions scenarios is based on an extensive assessment of the literature, six alternative modeling approaches, and an "open process" that solicited wide participation and feedback from many groups and individuals. The SRES scenarios include the range of emissions of all relevant species of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and sulfur and their driving forces. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12050/
Science Perspectives on the CCSP Strategic Plan
Scientists offer comments on the Climate Change Science Program Strategic Plan digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12054/
Federal Water Pollution Control Act
The Clean Water Act (CWA) establishes the basic structure for regulating discharges of pollutants into the waters of the United States and regulating quality standards for surface waters. The basis of the CWA was enacted in 1948 and was called the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, but the Act was significantly reorganized and expanded in 1972. "Clean Water Act" became the Act's common name with amendments in 1977. Under the CWA, EPA has implemented pollution control programs such as setting wastewater standards for industry. We have also set water quality standards for all contaminants in surface waters. The CWA made it unlawful to discharge any pollutant from a point source into navigable waters, unless a permit was obtained. EPA's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program controls discharges. Point sources are discrete conveyances such as pipes or man-made ditches. Individual homes that are connected to a municipal system, use a septic system, or do not have a surface discharge do not need an NPDES permit; however, industrial, municipal, and other facilities must obtain permits if their discharges go directly to surface waters. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12056/
Preliminary Review of Adaptation Options for Climate-Sensitive Ecosystems and Resources
The U.S. Government's Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) is responsible for providing the best science-based knowledge possible to inform management of the risks and opportunities associated with changes in the climate and related environmental systems. To support its mission, the CCSP has commissioned 21 "synthesis and assessment products" (SAPs) to advance decision making on climate change-related issues by providing current evaluations of climate change science and identifying priorities for research, observation, and decision support. This Report-SAP 4.4-focuses on federally managed lands and waters to provide a "Preliminary Review of Adaptation Options for Climate-Sensitive Ecosystems and Resources." It is one of seven reports that support Goal 4 of the CCSP Strategic Plan to understand the sensitivity and adaptability of different natural and managed ecosystems and human systems to climate and related global changes. The purpose of SAP 4.4 is to provide useful information on the state of knowledge regarding adaptation options for key, representative ecosystems and resources that may be sensitive to climate variability and change. As its title suggests, this report is a preliminary review, defined as "the process of collecting and reviewing available information about known or potential adaptation options." digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12031/
Decision-Support Experiments and Evaluations using Seasonal-to-Interannual Forecasts and Observational Data: A Focus on Water Resources
This Synthesis and Assessment Product focuses on the connection between the scientific ability to predict climate on seasonal scales and the opportunity to incorporate such understanding into water resource management decisions. It directly addresses decision support experiments and evaluations that have used seasonal-to-interannual forecasts and observational data, and is expected to inform (1) decision makers about the relative success of experiences of others who have experimented with these forecasts and data in resource management; (2) climatologists, hydrologists, and social scientists on how to advance the delivery of decision-support resources that use the most recent forecast products, methodologies, and tools; and (3) science and resource managers as they plan for future investments in research related to forecasts and their role in decision support. It is important to note, however, that while the focus of this Product is on the water resources management sector, the findings within this Synthesis and Assessment Product may be directly transferred to other sectors. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12037/
The Effects of Climate Change on Agriculture, Land Resources, Water Resources, and Biodiversity in the United States
This document is a part of the Synthesis and Assessment Products described in the U.S. Climate Change Science Program Strategic Plan. The report describes how climate affects the design, construction, safety, operations, and maintenance of transportation infrastructure and systems. The prospect of a changing climate raises critical questions regarding how alterations in temperature, precipitation, storm events, and other aspects of the climate could affect the nation's roads, airports, rail, transit systems, pipelines, ports, and waterways. Phase I of this regional assessment of climate change and its potential impacts on transportation systems addresses these questions for the region of the U.S. central Gulf Coast between Galveston, Texas and Mobile, Alabama. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12030/
Impacts of Climate Change and Variability on Transportation Systems and Infrastructure: Gulf Coast Study, Phase I
This document, part of the Synthesis and Assessment Products described in the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) Strategic Plan. Climate affects the design, construction, safety, operations, and maintenance of transportation infrastructure and systems. The prospect of a changing climate raises critical questions regarding how alterations in temperature, precipitation, storm events, and other aspects of the climate could affect the nation's roads, airports, rail, transit systems, pipelines, ports, and waterways. Phase I of this regional assessment of climate change and its potential impacts on transportation systems addresses these questions for the region of the U.S. central Gulf Coast between Galveston, Texas and Mobile, Alabama. This region contains multimodal transportation infrastructure that is critical to regional and national transportation services. The significance of various climate factors for transportation systems was assessed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12034/
Best Practice Approaches for Characterizing, Communicating, and Incorporating Scientific Uncertainty in Decision Making
This report discusses the current state of understanding about the characteristics and implications of uncertainty related to climate change and variability to an audience of policymakers, decision makers, and members of the media and general public with an interest in developing a fundamental understanding of the issue. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12036/
Integrated Land Ecosystem-Atmosphere Processes Study: Science Plan and Implementation Strategy
The iLEAPS Science Plan and Implementation Strategy defines the scientific objectives and key research issues of the land-atmosphere project of the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme. It also outlines a strategy for addressing the key research questions. The scope of iLEAPS research spans from molecular level processes - such as synthesis of volatile organic compounds in vegetation - to Earth System science issues, climate and global change. iLEAPS research emphasises the importance of connections, feedbacks and teleconnections between the numerous processes in the land-atmosphere interface. Due to the complexity and wide range of scientific issues, iLEAPS stresses the need for increased integrative approaches and collaboration, involving scientists from various disciplines, experimentalists and modellers, and international research projects and programmes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12010/
NOAA Reports Potent Greenhouse Gas Levels Off
This document provides a summary of a study by NOAA researchers and National Institute for Space Research in the Netherlands. According to the study, one of the atmosphere's most potent greenhouse gases, methane, may now have leveled off. Scientists aren't sure yet if this "leveling off" is just a temporary pause in two centuries of increase or a new state of equilibrium. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12014/
Reanalysis of Historical Climate Data for Key Atmospheric Features: Implications for Attribution of Causes of Observed Chan
This Climate Change Science Program Synthesis and Assessment Product addresses current capabilities to integrate observations of the climate system into a consistent description of past and current conditions through the method of reanalysis. In addition, the Product assesses present capabilities to attribute causes for climate variations and trends over North America during the reanalysis period, which extends from the mid-twentieth century to the present. This Product reviews the strengths and limitations of current atmospheric reanalysis products. It finds that reanalysis data play a crucial role in helping to identify, describe, and understand atmospheric features associated with weather and climate variability, including high-impact events such as major droughts and floods. Reanalysis data play an important role in assessing the ability of climate models to simulate the average climate and its variations. The data also help in identifying deficiencies in representations of physical processes that produce climate model errors. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12019/
NOAA Makes New Tree Ring Data Available
New data from tree rings from 500 sites around the world are now available from NOAA. These data are important because they provide climate scientists and resource managers with records of past climatic variability extending back thousands of years. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12016/
Future Climate Change Research and Observations: GCOS, WCRP and IGBP Learning from the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report
Learning from the authors of the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report and its findings to help guide future strategies for climate change observations and research was the key objective of a workshop organised jointly by the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS), the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP), and the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP) in Sydney, Australia, 4-6 October 2007. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12013/
NOAA Sets the El Niño Prediction Straight
El Niño is an abnormal warming of the ocean temperatures across the eastern tropical Pacific that affects weather around the globe. El Niño episodes usually occur approximately every four-five years. NOAA researchers and scientists are presently monitoring the formation of a possible weak El Niño and predict that the United States could experience very weak-to-marginal impacts late winter to early spring 2002. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12015/
A Strategy for Climate Change Stabilization Experiments with AOGCMs and ESMs
This report outlines a strategy for the new AOGCM/ESM modeling components in terms of aerosols/atmospheric chemistry and carbon cycle/dynamic vegetation components that are under development and implementation in ESMs that involves a proposed experimental design that integrates impacts and scenarios (represented in IPCC WG2 and WG3, respectively) and physical climate science (WG1). We summarize with a suite of recommendations for the joint WGCM, AIMES and IPCC communities. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12012/
Science Plan and Implementation Strategy
This Science Plan and Implementation Strategy sets out the research agenda for the second phase of IGBP. The document describes the IGBP strategy for producing high quality, unbiased, credible, fundamental scientific research in the area of global change: a strategy centered on ten projects, to be carried out by the several thousand scientists worldwide who are part of the IGBP network. Further, the document describes how the organization will communicate the results of this research to different audiences, in order to realize its vision: "to provide scientific knowledge to improve the sustainability of the living Earth". digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12011/
Temperature Trends in the Lower Atmosphere: Steps for Understanding and Reconciling Differences
This Synthesis and Assessment Product is an important revision to the conclusions of earlier reports from the U.S. National Research Council and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Previously reported discrepancies between the amount of warming near the surface and higher in the atmosphere have been used to challenge the reliability of climate models and the reality of human-induced global warming. Specifically, surface data showed substantial global-average warming, while early versions of satellite and radiosonde data showed little or no warming above the surface. This significant discrepancy no longer exists because errors in the satellite and radiosonde data have been identified and corrected. New data sets have also been developed that do not show such discrepancies. This Synthesis and Assessment Product is an important revision to the conclusions of earlier reports from the U.S. National Research Council and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. For recent decades, all current atmospheric data sets now show global-average warming that is similar to the surface warming. While these data are consistent with the results from climate models at the global scale, discrepancies in the tropics remain to be resolved. Nevertheless, the most recent observational and model evidence has increased confidence in our understanding of observed climatic changes and their causes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12017/
Global Land Project: Science Plan and ImplementationStrategy
The Global Land Project (GLP) Science Plan and Implementation Strategy represents the joint research agenda of IGBP and IHDP to improve the understanding of land system dynamics in the context of Earth System functioning. This plan is therefore a first critical step in addressing the interaction between people and their environments. It is part of the broader efforts to understand how these interactions have affected, and may yet affect, the sustainability of the terrestrial biosphere, and the two-way interactions and feedbacks between different land systems within the Earth System. GLP will play a clear role in improving the understanding of regional and global-scale land systems, as well as promoting strong scientific synergy across the global change programmes. This Science Plan and Implementation Strategy develops a new integrated paradigm focused on two main conceptual aspects of the coupled system: firstly, it deals with the interface between people, biota, and natural resources of terrestrial systems, and secondly, it combines detailed regional studies with a global, comparative perspective. GLP takes as its points of departure ecosystem services and human decision making for the terrestrial environment. These topics are at the interface of the societal and the environmental domains, and serve as conceptual lenses for the research plan. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12009/
Global Change and Mountain Regions: The Mountain Research Initiative
The strong altitudinal gradients in mountain regions provide unique and sometimes the best opportunities to detect and analyse global change processes and phenomena. Meteorological, hydrological, cryospheric and ecological conditions change strongly over relatively short distances; thus biodiversity tends to be high, and characteristic sequences of ecosystems and cryospheric systems are found along mountain slopes. The boundaries between these systems experience shifts due to environmental change and thus may be used as indicators of such changes. The higher parts of many mountain ranges are not affected by direct human activities. These areas include many national parks and other protected environments. They may serve as locations where the environmental impacts of climate change alone, including changes in atmospheric chemistry, can be studied directly. Mountain regions are distributed all over the globe, from the Equator almost to the poles and from oceanic to highly continental climates. This global distribution allows us to perform comparative regional studies and to analyse the regional differentiation of environmental change processes as characterised above. Therefore, within the IGBP an Initiative for Collaborative Research on Global Change and Mountain Regions was developed, which strives to achieve an integrated approach for observing, modelling and investigating global change phenomena and processes in mountain regions, including their impacts on ecosystems and socio-economic systems. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12006/
The Surface Ocean - Lower Atmosphere Study: Science Plan and Implementation Strategy
SOLAS (Surface Ocean - Lower Atmosphere Study) is a new international research initiative that has as its goal: To achieve quantitative understanding of the key biogeochemical-physical interactions and feedbacks between the ocean and the atmosphere, and of how this coupled system affects and is affected by climate and environmental change. Achievement of this goal is important in order to understand and quantify the role that ocean-atmosphere interactions play in the regulation of climate and global change. The domain of SOLAS is focussed on processes at the air-sea interface and includes a natural emphasis on the atmospheric and upper-ocean boundary layers, while recognising that some of the processes to be studied will, of necessity, be linked to significantly greater height and depth scales. SOLAS research will cover all ocean areas including coastal seas and ice covered areas. A fundamental characteristic of SOLAS is that the research is not only interdisciplinary (involving biogeochemistry, physics, mathematical modelling, etc.), but also involves closely coupled studies requiring marine and atmospheric scientists to work together. Such research will require a shift in attitude within the academic and funding communities, both of which are generally organised on a medium-by-medium basis in most countries. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12007/
Land-Ocean Interactions in the Coastal Zone: Science Plan and Implementation Strategy
Coastal zones play a key role in Earth System functioning, by contributing significantly to the life support systems of most societies. Human activities modifying riverine hydrology and riverine material fluxes to the coastal zone, have increased in both scale and rate of change in the last 200 years. The underlying processes that drive changes to coastal systems occur at a multiplicity of temporal and spatial scales. These changes alter the availability of ecosystem goods and services. However, disciplinary fragmentation impedes our ability to understand the regional and global changes that affect coastal systems, and thus limits our ability to guide management and decision making. Progress has been made in understanding the changes in Earth System processes that affect the coastal zone, and the role of coastal systems in global change. This includes identifying proxies that describe the state of coastal systems under existing conditions and change scenarios. Typologies have been developed to assist in the interpolation of results into areas where primary information is lacking. This has enabled a first-order up-scaling to a global synthesis. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12008/
Uses and Limitations of Observations, Data, Forecasts, and Other Projections in Decision Support for Selected Sectors and Regions
This Synthesis and Assessment Product (SAP), Uses and Limitations of Observations, Data, Forecasts, and Other Projections in Decision Support for Selected Sectors and Regions. This is part of a series of 21 SAPs produced by the CCSP aimed at providing current assessments of climate change science to inform public debate, policy, and operational decisions. This SAP focuses on the use of climate observations, data, forecasts, and other projections in decision support. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12035/
Effects of Climate Change on Energy Production and Use in the United States
This document, part of the Synthesis and Assessment Products described in the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) Strategic Plan. Climate affects the design, construction, safety, operations, and maintenance of transportation infrastructure and systems. The prospect of a changing climate raises critical questions regarding how alterations in temperature, precipitation, storm events, and other aspects of the climate could affect the nation's roads, airports, rail, transit systems, pipelines, ports, and waterways. Phase I of this regional assessment of climate change and its potential impacts on transportation systems addresses these questions for the region of the U.S. central Gulf Coast between Galveston, Texas and Mobile, Alabama. This region contains multimodal transportation infrastructure that is critical to regional and national transportation services. Historical trends and future climate scenarios were used to establish a context for examining the potential effects of climate change on all major transportation modes within the region. Climate changes anticipated during the next 50 to 100 years for the central Gulf Coast include warming temperatures, changes in precipitation patterns, and increased storm intensity. The warming of the oceans and decline of polar ice sheets is expected to accelerate the rate of sea level rise globally. The effects of sea level rise in most central Gulf Coast counties will be exacerbated by the sinking of the land surface, which is accounted for in this assessment. The significance of these climate factors for transportation systems was assessed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12032/
Annual Report on the Environment, the Sound Material-Cycle Society and the Biodiversity 2009
The white paper on comprehensive environmental policy describes the role of Japan's economy in a sound global environment. In the first part, the report describes current the environmental conditions of the Earth and of Japan, human activities in Japan and overseas, their environmental impacts, and the pathway to the environmental century. The second part of the white paper reports on various measures. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12064/
Japan's Initiative on Climate Change
Japan's Initiative on Climate Change defines the current state of climate change, summarizes diplomacy related to international environmental cooperation, and international climage change policy, with an outlook to the future. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12063/
Marine Ecosystems and Global Change
The ocean is a vital component of the metabolism of the Earth and plays a key role in global change. In fact, the oceans cover so much of the Earth's surface that our planet has been described as the Water Planet, and it could be argued that its most extensive ecosystems are marine. Marine ecosystems are inextricably involved in the physical, chemical, biological and societal processes of global change. It is impossible to describe and understand the Earth system without understanding the ocean, the special characteristics of the environment that it provides for life, the changes that it is undergoing and the manner in which these changes interact with the total Earth System. Understanding the functioning of marine ecosystems and how they respond to global change is also essential in order to effectively manage global marine living resources, such as fisheries. The GLOBEC project is an international response to the need to understand how global change will affect the abundance, diversity and productivity of marine populations, from zooplankton to fish, that comprise a major component of oceanic ecosystems. GLOBEC's goal is to advance our understanding of the structure and functioning of such ecosystems, their major subsystems, and responses to physical forcing so that a capability can be developed to forecast the response of marine ecosystems to global change. This volume in the IGBP Science Series, "Marine Ecosystems and Global Change", gives topical examples of the scientifi c problems that GLOBEC is tackling, the innovative approaches adopted, and some selected scientific achievements. It has been written at a time when GLOBEC is in the mid-phase of its implementation. The ultimate achievements of GLOBEC research will be presented in a final synthesis at the end of the project. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12042/
Global Change and the Earth System: A planet under pressure
The PAGES research community works toward improving our understanding of the Earth's changing environment. By placing current and future global changes in a long term perspective, they can be assessed relative to natural variability. Since the industrial revolution, the Earth System has become increasingly affected by human activities. Natural and human processes are woven into a complex tapestry of forcings, responses, feedbacks and consequences. Deciphering this complexity is essential as we plan for the future. Paleoenvironmental research is the only way to investigate Earth System processes that operate on timescales longer than the period of instrumental records. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12041/
Environmental Variability and Climate Change
The PAGES research community works toward improving our understanding of the Earth's changing environment. By placing current and future global changes in a long term perspective, they can be assessed relative to natural variability. Since the industrial revolution, the Earth System has become increasingly affected by human activities. Natural and human processes are woven into a complex tapestry of forcings, responses, feedbacks and consequences. Deciphering this complexity is essential as we plan for the future. Paleoenvironmental research is the only way to investigate Earth System processes that operate on timescales longer than the period of instrumental records. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12040/
Circumpolar Arctic Vegetation [Map]
The Circumpolar Arctic Vegetation Map shows the types of vegetation that occur across the Arctic, between the ice-covered Arctic Ocean to the north and the northern limit of forests to the south. Environmental and climatic conditions are extreme, with a short growing season and low summer temperatures. As one moves southward (outward from map's center in all directions), the amount of warmth available for plant growth increases considerably. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12044/
IPCC Expert Meeting on the Science of Alternative Metrics: Meeting Report
This extended report of the IPCC Expert Meeting on the Science of Alternative Metrics that was held in Oslo 18-20 March 2009 is provided in response to an invitation from the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties under Kyoto Protocol (UNFCCC AWG-KP) to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to undertake further technical assessment of alternative common metrics which are used to calculate the CO2 equivalence of anthropogenic emissions by sources, and removals by sinks, of greenhouse gases listed in Annex A to the Kyoto Protocol. The outcome of the expert meeting was an agreed set of key conclusions and recommendations to UNFCCC in response to the request of the AWG-KP as well as more specific recommendations to the scientific community regarding research needs and ones relevant to the scoping of the IPCC's Fifth Assessment Report (AR5). These were presented to the IPCC Plenary in a short report at its 30th session in Antalya, 21-23 April 2009. The current full report of the expert meeting amplifies those conclusions and recommendations and includes the extended abstracts of the meeting presentations as well as a general bibliography. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc11872/
Global Environmental Change and Human Health: Science Plan and Implementation Strategy
It is widely, often intuitively, understood that human societies and the well being and health of their populations depend on the flow of materials, services and cultural enrichment from the natural world. Nevertheless, to date there has been little formal description and study of the relationships between global environmental changes and human health, and of the ways in which social institutions and processes modulate those relationships. For several human-induced global environmental changes, particularly changes to the world's climate system and to the ultraviolet radiation-filtering functions of the stratosphere, there has been a recent increase in research into the main health risks. But for most other global environmental changes little formal research on the risks to human health has been carried out. Indeed, among the practitioners of the various scientific disciplines engaged in studying the processes and impacts of global environmental changes - including environmental sciences, ecology, geography, economics, etc. - there has been relatively little recognition that ecosystem disruptions, species extinctions, degradation of food-producing systems, the perturbation of cycling of elements and nutrients, and the spread of cities pose risks to the well being and health of human populations. This science plan and implementation strategy proposes to address this gap in knowledge and research. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc11877/
Towards Sustainable Global Health
Global health has in recent years drawn increasing scientific, political and popular attention not only due to global epidemics themselves,but also because of the social activities and environmental conditions that shape health threats and influence those who are affected. The study dealswith the issue of 'Sustainable Global Health'which has evolved from the realization that there will be no alleviation of poverty without success in control of serious public health threats, no economic prosperity and sustainability without a healthy workforce, and no social stability and peace as long as people have to suffer from insufficient health services, from malnutrition, from HIV/AIDS pandemics, or from lack of safe water. The study addresses a broad range of issues related to human health at regional and global levels. It includes the theme of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) as a tool for the private sector to exercise responsibility and interest in using the workplaces as a route and as means for education, and for a wide participation of every citizen in securing his or her individual health and well-being. Highlighted throughout the study are integrated approaches towards sustainable health.These approaches shed light on both the importance of multilevel health governance and the understanding of human health as an issue of human security in responding to health threats. Furthermore,the study emphasizes the links between the phenomena of global environmental change, which often further increases pressure on health systems, and the crucial role urban areas play in this realm. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc11878/
Global Carbon Project: The Science Framework and Implementation
Carbon cycle research is often carried out in isolation from research on energy systems and normally focuses only on the biophysical patterns and processes of carbon sources and sinks. The Global Carbon Project represents a significant advance beyond the status quo in several important ways. First, the problem is conceptualised from the outset as one involving fully integrated human and natural components; the emphasis is on the carbon-climate-human system (fossil-fuel based energy systems + biophysical carbon cycle + physical climate system) and not simply on the biophysical carbon cycle alone. Secondly, the development of new methodologies for analysing and modelling the integrated carbon cycle is a central feature of the project. Thirdly, the project provides an internally consistent framework for the coordination and integration of the many national and regional carbon cycle research programmes that are being established around the world. Fourthly, the project addresses questions of direct policy relevance, such as the management strategies and sustainable regional development pathways required to achieve stabilisation of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Finally, the Global Carbon Project goes beyond the traditional set of stakeholders for a global change research project by seeking to engage the industrial and energy sectors as well as the economic development and resource management sectors in the developing regions of the world. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc11874/
The Global Water System Project: Science Framework and Implementation Activities
Water plays a key role in the development and functioning of society by serving as a basic resource for activities such as irrigation, livestock production, fisheries, aquaculture, and hydroelectric power. Adequate water use in house-holds, businesses and manufacturing is a prerequisite of economic growth. Since many of the world's diseases are waterborne, we need clean water and sanitation for reducing the incidence of these diseases. And, most significantly, water provides habitat and sustenance for a rich diversity of plant and animal species that make up aquatic and riparian ecosystems, providing the basis for many of the goods and services received by society. Society is forcing unprecedented changes on global water resources through worldwide abstraction and pollution of water. Society also has a pervasive indirect impact because anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions are causing long-term global changes in weather extremes and climate. Changes in the global water system are difficult to understand with simple cause-effect relationships because of the intense and complex linkages and feedbacks between different parts of the system. These changes and linkages also sometimes lead to abrupt changes in water systems such as the eutrophication of coastal aquatic systems, loss of biodiversity, the exceedance of safe water supply in urban areas, or intense competition between different water sectors for remaining water resources. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc11879/
What Can Be Learned From Champions of Ozone Layer Protection for Urban and Regional Carbon Management in Japan?
The document contains the opening addresses of the conveners and presentation slides of the presenters in the Tokyo Office of the National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES) event. The conference was organized around the idea of introducing two important groups to each other to stimulate new ideas to break through barriers for carbon management, a major environmental and social challenge in the 21st Century. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc11876/
Climate Literacy: The Essential Principles of Climate Science
This guide aims to help individuals and communities know and understand Earth’s climate, the impacts of climate change, and approaches to adaptation or mitigation. The guide aims to promote greater climate science literacy by providing an educational framework of principles and concepts. The guide can serve educators who teach climate science as a way to meet content standards in their science curricula. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc11961/
Endangered Species Act of 1973
The Endangered Species Act (ESA) provides a program for the conservation of threatened and endangered plants and animals and the habitats in which they are found. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) of the Department of the Interior maintains a worldwide list which, as of Feb. 20, 2008, included 1574 endangered species (599 are plants) and 351 threatened species (148 are plants). Species include birds, insects, fish, reptiles, mammals, crustaceans, flowers, grasses, and trees. Anyone can petition FWS to include a species on this list. The law requires federal agencies, in consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and/or the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries Service, to ensure that actions they authorize, fund, or carry out are not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of any listed species or result in the destruction or adverse modification of designated critical habitat of such species. The law also prohibits any action that causes a "taking" of any listed species of endangered fish or wildlife. Likewise, import, export, interstate, and foreign commerce of listed species are all generally prohibited. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc11967/
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