November 16, 2015

Happy 25th birthday,
Global Change Research Act!

Twenty-five years ago today, the Global Change Research Act was signed into law by President George H.W. Bush. This landmark legislation mandated the interagency U.S. Global Change Research Program, which was first proposed as a part of President Reagan’s final budget. Since then, USGCRP has worked to fulfill its purpose to “assist the Nation and the world to understand, assess, predict, and respond to human-induced and natural processes of global change.” Today Dr. John Holdren, the President’s Science Advisor, reflected on the Program’s progress since 1990.

Over the next year, we’ll be highlighting some of USGCRP’s major accomplishments on our website, Twitter, and Facebook using #USGCRP25. We’ll also have a number of opportunities to join in the conversation about the future of USGCRP and climate change research. The first of these will be a public comment period on the Update to the USGCRP Strategic Plan, anticipated to start later this year. In the meantime, read on for more information about activities underway at USGCRP…

Sustaining the National Climate Assessment

The agencies and working groups of USGCRP have been busy on a number of reports and activities that support the sustained National Climate Assessment process. As reported in the last newsletter, we received 190 nominations for the Federal Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment and the process of finalizing the committee is moving forward. We’ll soon have another opportunity for public comments on the topics for the Fourth National Climate Assessment and invite attendees at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting to join us for a town hall meeting focusing on the USGCRP and National Climate Assessment.

A number of topical reports and assessments are also underway, with the U.S. Department of Agriculture set to release their report Climate Change, Global Food Security, and the U.S. Food System later this year, the USGCRP Climate Change and Human Health Working Group finalizing The Impacts of Climate Change and Human Health in the United States: A Scientific Assessment for release in 2016, and the Carbon Cycle Interagency Working Group beginning preparations for the Second State of the Carbon Cycle Report with sessions at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting in December and a public forum and topical workshops planned for early 2016.

New on GlobalChange.gov:
Highlights from recent editions of Our Changing Planet


Since 1989, USGCRP has submitted annual reports to Congress called Our Changing Planet. These reports highlight the progress and accomplishments in interagency activities and the status of USGCRP research activities. Now when you explore topics like extreme events, the carbon cycle, and adaptation on globalchange.gov, you’ll also find highlights from recent editions of Our Changing Planet. These highlights represent the broad spectrum of USGCRP activities that extend from Earth system observations, modeling, and fundamental research through synthesis and assessment, decision support, education, and public engagement.
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About Us

The U.S. Global Change Research Program coordinates and integrates global change research across 13 Federal agencies to most effectively serve the Nation and the world.