Prepare the Nation for Change
Climate and related global change are affecting many facets of society, the economy, and the environment. Across America and around the world, people are making decisions to effectively minimize (mitigate) and prepare for (adapt to) global change.
When considering options to reduce the risks of global change, decision makers need access to timely and usable scientific information in order to understand a range of potential impacts, vulnerabilities, opportunities, and trade-offs. USGCRP's efforts to understand the causes and consequences of global change create a strong scientific foundation for informing and enabling decisions on adaptation and mitigation. We work to ensure that our science is translated and made available through tools, information, and practices that decision makers can understand and use. Moreover, we aim to help decision makers apply scientific information to the strategic choices they face.
Key elements of USGCRP’s work to prepare the Nation for global change include:
- Facilitating engagement between scientists and decision makers, with an emphasis on assessing decision maker needs and establishing new pathways for sustained dialogue.
- Providing access to relevant science through user-friendly information and tools that leverage information sharing across and within scales (from local to international) and sectors.
- Guiding and coordinating Federal science efforts to ensure they are relevant to societal needs.
- Informing Federal responses to global change through close, ongoing interaction with agencies and departments as they develop and implement climate change adaptation plans, as well as mitigation measures and policies, built upon sound scientific understanding. See our summary of the research and information needs identified in the FY 2013 Federal Agency Climate Change Adaptation Plans, or browse our resources for Federal adaptation planning and implementation.
Supporting Decisions at Multiple Scales
Because most adaptation and many mitigation decisions are made at local, state, and regional scales, it is important to deploy science and services that are tailored to decision making at these scales. USGCRP collaborates with Federal agency stakeholders at the local, state, and regional levels to co-produce tools and resources relevant to managing extreme weather events, climate variability, and future change. For example:
- Following Hurricane Sandy in October 2012, USGCRP and other Federal entities partnered with local decision makers in affected areas to develop a set of maps and other tools that illustrate coastal flooding risks associated with future sea level rise, intended to help communities plan for the future and build resilience through infrastructure.
- In 2013, USGCRP released an annotated bibliography of resources for monitoring and evaluating adaptation in coastal regions.
Connecting Adaptation & Mitigation
Some decision makers place high priority on adaptation planning while also working on strategies and policies to reduce carbon pollution. The process of identifying adaptation and mitigation synergies is a continuum that can start either from the adaptation side (for example, incorporating mitigation strategies in a flood risk reduction program) or from the mitigation side (for example, ensuring that renewable energy development projects are resilient to climate impacts). Through NCAnet, USGCRP collaborates with various agencies and organizations to conduct research on integrative adaptation and mitigation practices. Learn more about NCAnet's Adaptation and Mitigation Nexus (AMNex) Affinity Group.