Environmental Policy Collection - Browse

ABOUT BROWSE FEED

Planning Climate and Global Change Research: A Review of the Draft U.S. Climate Change Science Program Strategic Plan

Description: A draft strategic plan for the Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) was released to the scientific community and the public in November 2002. At the request of the CCSP, the National Academies formed a committee to review this draft strategic plan; the results of this review are reported herein.
Date: 2003
Creator: Committee to Review the U.S. Climate Change Science Program Strategic Plan
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

Can Cities Reduce Global Warming?: Urban Development and the Carbon Cycle in Latin America

Description: This report includes case studies on urban development and the carbon cycle in the Americas. The authors intend to demonstrate the consequences of different pathways of urban development on the carbon cycle, and identify points of management and intervention aimed at designing less-carbon intensive development.
Date: 2005
Creator: Romero Lankao, Patricia; López Villafranco, Héctor; Rosas Huerta, Angélica; Günther, Griselda & Correa Armenta, Zaira
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

The National Tenth Five-Year Plan for Environmental Protection(Abstract)

Description: The State Council approved the National Tenth Five-Year Plan for Environmental Protection on 26 December 2001, requesting that loca1 governments and the various departments strengthen environmental protection in close relation with the economic restructuring; raise funds for environmental protection through multiple channels in connection with the expansion of domestic demand, and establish the mechanism of environmental protection with the government playing the dominant role with market promotion and public participation. The State Council emphasizes that local governments should undertake the major responsibilities of environmental protection. The governments at various levels should integrate the tasks of the Plan into the target responsibility system for provincial governors, mayors, and county heads. Periodic examination should be carried out on the targets of total pollutant discharge control and environmental quality. The implementation of the Plan should be inspected and reported on every year. The State Council requests that the relevant departments should provide guidance and support in implementing the Plan according to their respective responsibilities. The State Environmental Protection Administration should conduct coordinated supervision, management, and inspection of the implementation of the Plan.
Date: December 26, 2001
Creator: State Environmental Protection Administration
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

The National Eleventh Five-year Plan for Environmental Protection(2006-2010)

Description: The current plan is formulated on the basis of the Outline of the 11th Five-Year Plan for the Development of National Economy and Social Development and the Decision of the State Council on the Implementation of the Scientific Outlook on Development and Strengthening Environmental Protection [No.39 document of the State Council (2005)]. The current plan is an important part of the national 11th Five-Year Plan system, and aims at expounding the objectives, tasks, investments, and key policy measures in the field of environmental protection during the 11th Five-Year Plan period. The plan identifies the responsibilities and tasks of the government and the environmental protection departments at all levels, guiding and mobilizing the participation of enterprises and civil society and striving for environmentally friendly society.
Date: November 22, 2007
Creator: State Environmental Protection Administration
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

Report of Planning Workshop on MAIRS Mountain Zone Implementation

Description: Monsoon Asia Integrated Regional Study (MAIRS) is an IRS research program over monsoon Asia under START and the Earth System Science Partnership (ESSP). It was established to address questions about the coupled human and environment system in the monsoon Asia region. The vision of MAIRS is to significantly advance understanding of the interactions between the human and natural components of the overall environment in the monsoon Asian region and implications for the global earth system, in order to support strategies for sustainable development. Regional-scale studies of global change provide the knowledge base for undertaking vulnerability analyses, identification of hotspots of risk and studies of environmental degradation which are crucial for the sustainable development. Regions may manifest significantly different environmental dynamics, and changes in regional biophysical, biogeochemical and anthropogenic components may produce considerably different consequences for the earth system at the global scale. Regions are not closed systems and thus the linkages between regional changes and the global earth system are crucial. This specific report focuses on Planning Workshop on MAIRS Mountain Zone Implementation that held in China. Integrated Regional Studies (IRSs) should have relevance for people living in the regions and should provide a sound scientific basis for the sustainable development of the countries in the regions, and IRSs are also important from an earth system science perspective.
Date: June 2007
Creator: Manton, Michael & Ailikun
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

Our Changing Planet: The FY 2002 U.S. Global Change Research Program

Description: This document, which is produced annually, describes the activities and plans of the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP), which was established in 1989 and authorized by Congress in the Global Change Research Act of 1990. Strong bipartisan support for this inter-agency program has resulted in more than a decade's worth of scientific accomplishment. "Because there is considerable uncertainty in current understanding of how the climate system varies naturally and reacts to emissions of greenhouse gases and aerosols, current estimates of the magnitude of future warming should be regarded as tentative and subject to future adjustments (either upward or downward). Reducing the wide range of uncertainty inherent in current model predictions of global climate change will require major advances in understanding and modeling of both (1) the factors that determine atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases and aerosols, and (2) the so-called 'feedbacks' that determine the sensitivity of the climate system to a prescribed increase in greenhouse gases. There is also a pressing need for a global system designed for monitoring climate. Climate projections will always be far from perfect. Confidence limits and probabilistic information, with their basis, should always be considered as an integral part of the information that climate scientists provide to policy- and decision-makers. Without them, the IPCC SPM [Summary for Policymakers] could give the impression that the science of global warming is 'settled,' even though many uncertainties still remain. The emission scenarios used by the IPCC provide a good example. Human dimensions will almost certainly alter emissions over the next century. Because we cannot predict either the course of human populations, technology, or societal transitions with any clarity, the actual greenhouse gas emissions could either be greater or less than the IPCC scenarios. Without an understanding of the sources and degree of uncertainty, decision makers could fail ...
Date: September 2001
Creator: Subcommittee on Global Change Research, Committee on Environment and Natural Resources of the National Science and Technology Council
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

Biodiversité: Quelle Recherche Dans 15 Ans?: Enjeux, Chercheurs, Contextes

Description: Proceedings of a meeting of the French Institute of Biodiversity (IFB), setting a course of research for the next fifteen years. The IFB, composed of government agencies, research organizations, and NGOs, is a scientific interest group promoting scientific research in biodiversity. The IFB is devoted to coordinating research on biodiversity in all natural and social sciences, to promoting biodiversity research at the national, European, and international levels, and to disseminating knowledge and providing educational outreach to the general public.
Date: October 2006
Creator: Institut Français de la Biodiversité
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

Carbon Monoxide from California Fires

Description: Large fires can be blamed for some polluted air. In addition to ash and smoke, fires release carbon monoxide into the atmosphere as they burn. This false-color image shows the atmospheric column of carbon monoxide, with yellow and red indicating high levels of pollution. (The gray areas show where no data were taken, likely due to cloud cover.) The data were taken by the Measurements Of Pollution In The Troposphere (MOPITT) instrument aboard NASA's Terra satellite for the period October 26-31, 2003.
Date: November 4, 2003
Creator: NASA Earth Observatory
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Curious Pacific Wave

Description: This brief article discusses about a massive swell of water that was buffeting South America. Kelvin waves are warm bumps in the Pacific Ocean, characterized by a gentle yet massive swell of warm water. Usually not much happens when a Kelvin wave arrives -- beach combers experience a bit of extra rain, perhaps, and slightly warmer surf. Nevertheless, scientists pay careful attention to them because these gentle waves occasionally herald something far more powerful: the next El Niño.
Date: March 5, 2002
Creator: Science@NASA
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

Plausible Biological Cause For Major Climate Events

Description: Scientific news article about Snowball Earth eras. These are times when ice periodically covered the globe, and the era called the Cambrian Explosion, which produced the first fossils of almost all major categories of animals living today.
Date: August 10, 2001
Creator: Kennedy, Barbara
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

Land Use, Land-Use Change, and Forestry

Description: 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.
Date: 2000
Creator: Working Group III of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
Item Type: Book
Partner: UNT Libraries

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

Description: 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.
Date: November 2003
Creator: Hare, William
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

Emissions Scenarios

Description: 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.
Date: 2000
Creator: Working Group III of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
Item Type: Book
Partner: UNT Libraries

Federal Water Pollution Control Act

Description: 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.
Date: November 27, 2002
Creator: United States. Congress. House
Item Type: Text
Partner: UNT Libraries

Safeguarding the Ozone Layer and the Global Climate System: Issues related to hydrofluorocarbons and perfluorocarbons

Description: 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.
Date: 2005
Creator: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
Item Type: Book
Partner: UNT Libraries

Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage

Description: This report provides information for policy makers, scientists and engineers in the field of climate change and reduction of CO2 emissions. It describes sources, capture, transport, and storage of CO2, as well as the costs, economic potential, and societal issues of the technology, including public perception and regulatory aspects.
Date: 2005
Creator: Working Group III of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
Item Type: Book
Partner: UNT Libraries

Scenarios of Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Atmospheric Concentrations

Description: 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.
Date: 2007
Creator: U.S. Climate Change Science Program and the Subcommittee on Global Change Research
Item Type: Book
Partner: UNT Libraries

Coastal Sensitivity to Sea-Level Rise: A Focus on the Mid-Atlantic Region

Description: 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.
Date: January 2009
Creator: U.S. Climate Change Science Program and the Subcommittee on Global Change Research
Item Type: Book
Partner: UNT Libraries

Climate Models: An Assessment of Strengths and Limitations

Description: 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.
Date: July 2008
Creator: Climate Change Science Program (U.S.). Subcommittee on Global Change Research.
Item Type: Book
Partner: UNT Libraries

Thresholds of Climate Change in Ecosystems

Description: 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.
Date: January 2009
Creator: U.S. Climate Change Science Program and the Subcommittee on Global Change Research
Item Type: Book
Partner: UNT Libraries

Weather and Climate Extremes in a Changing Climate. Regions of Focus: North America, Hawaii, Caribbean, and U.S. Pacific Islands

Description: 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 ...
Date: June 2008
Creator: U.S. Climate Change Science Program and the Subcommittee on Global Change Research.
Item Type: Book
Partner: UNT Libraries

Trends in Emissions of Ozone-Depleting Substances, Ozone Layer Recovery, and Implications for Ultraviolet Radiation Exposure

Description: 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.
Date: November 2008
Creator: US Climate Change Science Program and the Subcommittee on Global Change Research.
Item Type: Book
Partner: UNT Libraries