US Climate Change Science Program Updated January 2006

Overview of the U.S.
Climate Change Science Program
CCSP Fact Sheet 1, January 2006



This Fact Sheet also is available as PDF file. Hardcopies can be ordered from the online GCRIO catalog.

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For a historic overview of the program's budget, see Funding for Global Change Research under the CCSP and USGCRP, Fiscal Years 1989 - 2006

The U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) was launched in February 2002 as a collaborative interagency program, under a new cabinet-level organization designed to improve the government wide management of climate science and climate-related technology development.The CCSP incorporates and integrates the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) with the Administration’s U.S. Climate Change Research Initiative (CCRI).

The USGCRP was established by the Global Change Research Act of 1990 to enhance understanding of natural and human-induced changes in the Earth’s global environmental system; to monitor, understand, and predict global change; and to provide a sound scientific basis for national and international decision making.

The CCRI builds on the USGCRP, with a focus on accelerating progress over a 5-year period on the most important issues and uncertainties in climate science, enhancing climate observation systems, and improving the integration of scientific knowledge into policy and management decisions and evaluation of management strategies and choices.

The Climate Change Science Program combines the near-term focus of the CCRI with the breadth of the long-term USGCRP.

Vision and Mission of the Climate Change Science Program

Climate and climate variability play important roles in shaping the environment, natural resources, infrastructure, the economy, and other aspects of life in all countries of the world. Human-induced changes in climate and related environmental systems, and the options proposed to adapt to or mitigate these changes may have substantial environmental, economic, and societal consequences. Because of the pervasiveness of the effects of climate variability and the potential consequences of human induced climate change and response options, decision makers in public and private sector organizations need reliable and readily understood information, including a clear understanding of the reliability limits of such information, to make informed judgments and decisions.

A nation and the global community empowered with the science-based knowledge to manage the risks and
opportunities of change in the climate and related environmental systems.

Over the past 15 years, the United States has invested heavily in scientific research, monitoring, data management, and assessment for climate change analyses to build a foundation of knowledge for decision making.The seriousness of the issues and the unique role that science can play in helping to inform society’s course give rise to CCSP’s guiding vision.

The core precept that motivates the CCSP is to provide the best possible scientific knowledge to help to manage climate variability and change and related aspects of global change.

Facilitate the creation and application of knowledge of the Earth’s global environment through research, observations, decision support, and communication.

CCSP Management Structure

Fundamentally, the CCSP integrates U.S. Government-supported research on climate and global change, as conducted and sponsored by 13 departments and agencies. The CCSP adds significant integrative value to the individual Earth and climate science missions of its participating agencies and departments, and their national and international partners. A critical role of the interagency program is to coordinate research and integrate and synthesize information to achieve results that no single agency, or small group of agencies, could attain.

In February 2002, the President created a new Cabinet-level management structure, the Committee on Climate Change Science and Technology Integration, to oversee the more than $3 billion annual investment in the combined federal climate change research and technology development programs. The management structure places accountability and leadership for the science and technology programs in the relevant cabinet departments. The relevant research continues to be coordinated through the National Science and Technology Council in accordance with the Global Change Research Act of 1990.

The CCSP interagency governing body, the CCSP Interagency Committee, provides overall management direction and is responsible for ensuring the development and implementation of an integrated interagency program. It oversees and directs all aspects of the program, including setting top-level goals for the program and determining what products will be developed and produced to meet those goals .Through this structure, the CCSP also coordinates with the Climate Change Technology Program (CCTP) to address issues at the intersection of science and technology.

Climate Change Science and Technology Management Structure.
Climate Change Science and Technology Management Structure. (Click for larger image.)

This fact sheet was generated by the Climate Change Science Program Office in collaboration with an interagency working group composed of representatives of the 13 Federal agencies participating in the U.S. Global Change Research Program.


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