Advance Global Change Science
Understanding global change—including climate change—is critical to our Nation’s welfare and economic vitality. Research, supported by an array of increasingly sophisticated tools for collecting and analyzing data, can provide essential knowledge to governments, businesses, and communities as they plan for and respond to the many manifestations of climate and related global change, including sea level rise, ocean acidification, and the more severe heat waves, droughts, and other extreme events that pose an ever-growing risk to life, property, agriculture, and natural resources.
USGCRP conducts state-of-the-art research to understand the interactive processes that influence the total Earth system—which includes the atmosphere, oceans, land, ice, ecosystems, and people. We emphasize fundamental, use-inspired research that creates the scientific knowledge base to answer critical questions about the changing Earth system and how America and the world can respond to that change.
Though climate change is a central theme of our research, we have a broader mandate that urges a deeper integration of climate change with other critical dimensions of global change, including changes in land use and land cover and human alteration of key biogeochemical cycles. This broader view is essential for effective responses to global change because such decisions rarely involve climate change in isolation. Particularly at local scales and in the near term, stressors like urbanization and unsustainable agricultural practices can interact with climate change to affect ecosystems, water and food supplies, and human health.