Description: In 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will publish its Fourth Assessment Report of the Scientific Basis of Climate Change (AR4). A significant portion of the AR4 will be the analysis of coupled general circulation model (GCM) simulations of the climate of the past century as well as scenarios of future climates under prescribed emission scenarios. Modeling groups worldwide have contributed to AR4, including three from the U.S., the Community Climate System Model (CCSM) project, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Goddard Institute for Space Sciences, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL). This collection of model results is providing a wealth of new information that will be used to examine the state of climate science, the potential impacts from climate changes, and the policy consequences that they imply. Our focus here is on the CCSM project. Although it is centered at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), the CCSM version 3 (CCSM3) was designed, developed, and applied in a uniquely distributed fashion with participation by many institutions. This model has produced some of the most scientifically complete and highest resolution simulations of climate change to date, thanks to the teamwork of many scientists and software engineers. Their contributions will become obvious as a steady stream of peer-reviewed publications appears in the scientific literature. Less obvious, however, is the largely hidden, unprecedented level of interagency cooperation and multi-institutional coordination that provided the direction and resources necessary to make the CCSM project successful. Contrary to the widely-held opinion that the US climate research effort in general, and the climate modeling effort in particular, is fragmented and disorganized (NRC 1998, 2001), the success of the CCSM project demonstrates that a uniquely US approach to model development can produce a world-class model.
Date: June 16, 2005
Creator: Bader, D C; Bamzai, A; Fein, J; Patrinos, A & Leinen, M
Item Type: Refine your search to only Article
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