Us Global Change Research Program

Washington, DC, United States

Us Global Change Research Program

Washington, DC, United States
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Carter T.S.,Us Global Change Research Program | Carter T.S.,Brown University | Clark C.M.,Global Change Research Group | Fenn M.E.,U.S. Department of Agriculture | And 6 more authors.
Ecosphere | Year: 2017

We review the mechanisms of deleterious nitrogen (N) deposition impacts on temperate forests, with a particular focus on trees and lichens. Elevated anthropogenic N deposition to forests has varied effects on individual organisms depending on characteristics both of the N inputs (form, timing, amount) and of the organisms (ecology, physiology) involved. Improved mechanistic knowledge of these effects can aid in developing robust predictions of how organisms respond to either increases or decreases in N deposition. Rising N levels affect forests in micro- and macroscopic ways from physiological responses at the cellular, tissue, and organism levels to influencing individual species and entire communities and ecosystems. A synthesis of these processes forms the basis for the overarching themes of this paper, which focuses on N effects at different levels of biological organization in temperate forests. For lichens, the mechanisms of direct effects of N are relatively well known at cellular, organismal, and community levels, though interactions of N with other stressors merit further research. For trees, effects of N deposition are better understood for N as an acidifying agent than as a nutrient; in both cases, the impacts can reflect direct effects on short time scales and indirect effects mediated through long-term soil and belowground changes. There are many gaps on fundamental N use and cycling in ecosystems, and we highlight the most critical gaps for understanding potential deleterious effects of N deposition. For lichens, these gaps include both how N affects specific metabolic pathways and how N is metabolized. For trees, these gaps include understanding the direct effects of N deposition onto forest canopies, the sensitivity of different tree species and mycorrhizal symbionts to N, the influence of soil properties, and the reversibility of N and acidification effects on plants and soils. Continued study of how these N response mechanisms interact with one another, and with other dimensions of global change, remains essential for predicting ongoing changes in lichen and tree populations across North American temperate forests. © 2017 Carter et al.

Smith P.,University of Aberdeen | Davis S.J.,University of California at Irvine | Creutzig F.,Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change | Creutzig F.,TU Berlin | And 43 more authors.
Nature Climate Change | Year: 2016

To have a >50% chance of limiting warming below 2 °C, most recent scenarios from integrated assessment models (IAMs) require large-scale deployment of negative emissions technologies (NETs). These are technologies that result in the net removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. We quantify potential global impacts of the different NETs on various factors (such as land, greenhouse gas emissions, water, albedo, nutrients and energy) to determine the biophysical limits to, and economic costs of, their widespread application. Resource implications vary between technologies and need to be satisfactorily addressed if NETs are to have a significant role in achieving climate goals. © 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited.

Leibowitz S.G.,National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory | Comeleo R.L.,National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory | Wigington P.J.,National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory | Weaver C.P.,National Center for Environmental Assessment | And 3 more authors.
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences | Year: 2014

Classification can allow for evaluations of the hydrologic functions of landscapes and their responses to stressors. Here we demonstrate the use of a hydrologic landscape (HL) approach to evaluate vulnerability to potential future climate change at statewide and basin scales in the state of Oregon. The HL classification has five components: climate, seasonality, aquifer permeability, terrain, and soil permeability. We evaluate changes when the 1971-2000 HL climate indices are recalculated using 2041-2070 simulation results from the ECHAM (European Centre HAMburg) and PCM (Parallel Climate Model) climate models with the A2, A1b, and B1 emission scenarios. Changes in climate class were modest (4-18%) statewide. However, there were major changes in seasonality class for five of the six realizations (excluding PCM-B1): Oregon shifts from being 13% snow-dominated to 4-6% snow-dominated under these five realizations, representing a 56-68% reduction in snowmelt-dominated area. At the basin scale, simulated changes for the Siletz Basin, in Oregon's Coast Range, include a small switch from very wet to wet climate, with no change in seasonality. However, there is a modest increase in fall and winter water due to increased precipitation. For the Sandy Basin, on the western slope of the Cascades, HL climate class does not change, but there are major changes in seasonality, especially for areas with low aquifer permeability, which experiences a 100% loss of spring seasonality. This would reduce summer baseflow, but effects could potentially be mitigated by streamflow buffering effects provided by groundwater in the high aquifer permeability portions of the upper Sandy. The Middle Fork John Day Basin (MFJD), in northeastern Oregon, is snowmelt-dominated. The basin experiences a net loss of wet and moist climate area, along with an increase in dry climate area. The MFJD also experiences major shifts from spring to winter seasonality, representing a 20-60% reduction in snowmelt-dominated area. Altered seasonality and/or magnitude of seasonal streamflows could potentially affect survival, growth and reproduction of salmonids in these watersheds, with the greatest effects projected for the MFJD. A major strength of the HL approach is that results can be applied to similarly classified, ungaged basins. Information resulting from such evaluations can help inform management responses to climate change at regional and basin scales without requiring detailed modeling efforts. © Author(s) 2014.

Jones C.D.,UK Met Office | Ciais P.,CEA Saclay Nuclear Research Center | Davis S.J.,University of California at Irvine | Friedlingstein P.,University of Exeter | And 19 more authors.
Environmental Research Letters | Year: 2016

Natural carbon sinks currently absorb approximately half of the anthropogenic CO2 emitted by fossil fuel burning, cement production and land-use change. However, this airborne fraction may change in the future depending on the emissions scenario. An important issue in developing carbon budgets to achieve climate stabilisation targets is the behaviour of natural carbon sinks, particularly under low emissions mitigation scenarios as required to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement. A key requirement for low carbon pathways is to quantify the effectiveness of negative emissions technologies which will be strongly affected by carbon cycle feedbacks. Here we find that Earth system models suggest significant weakening, even potential reversal, of the ocean and land sinks under future low emission scenarios. For the RCP2.6 concentration pathway, models project land and ocean sinks to weaken to 0.8 ±0.9 and 1.1 ±0.3 GtC yr-1 respectively for the second half of the 21st century and to -0.4 ±0.4 and 0.1 ±0.2 GtC yr-1 respectively for the second half of the 23rd century. Weakening of natural carbon sinks will hinder the effectiveness of negative emissions technologies and therefore increase their required deployment to achieve a given climate stabilisation target. We introduce a new metric, the perturbation airborne fraction, to measure and assess the effectiveness of negative emissions. © 2016 Crown copyright and IOP Publishing Ltd.

Duggan B.,Us Global Change Research Program | Duggan B.,University Corporation for Atmospheric Research | Tilmes C.,NASA | Aulenbach S.,University Corporation for Atmospheric Research | And 5 more authors.
CEUR Workshop Proceedings | Year: 2015

Earth Science informatics involves collaboration between multiple groups of people with diverse specializations and goals, often using variations in terminology to refer to common re- sources. The uniformity of the resource identifiers often does not cross organizational boundaries. Because of this, permanent, widely used, unambiguous identifiers for resources are elusive. We examine real world cases of changing and inconsistent identifiers which inherently work against persistence and uniformity. We also present a solution which mediates factors in these situations; namely the creation of lexicons: mappings of sets of terms to URIs which are curated within the Global Change Information System (GCIS). We discuss aspects of the GCIS which facilitate the use of lexicons: An information model which disambiguates re- sources, a Restful API which provides metadata through content-negotiation, and a strategy for long term curation of URIs, including mechanisms for handling changes to URIs and variations in terms used by different communities while providing persistent URIs and preserving relationships between resources. We provide working definitions of terms, contexts, and lexicons, and relate them to the practical challenges of disambiguation and curation. We also discuss the mechanisms employed and architecture of the GCIS, and how these choices facilitate representation of persistent identifiers and mappings of them to identifiers used colloquially within various earth science communities of practice.

Ramapriyan H.K.,Science Systems And Applications Inc. | Goldstein J.C.,ICF International | Goldstein J.C.,Us Global Change Research Program | Hua H.,California Institute of Technology | And 3 more authors.
Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics) | Year: 2016

Information quality is of paramount importance to science. Accurate, scientifically vetted and statistically meaningful and, ideally, reproducible information engenders scientific trust and research opportunities. Therefore, so-called Highly Influential Scientific Assessments (HISA) such as the U.S. Third National Climate Assessment (NCA3) undergo a very rigorous process to ensure transparency and credibility. As an activity to support the transparency of such reports, the U.S. Global Change Research Program has developed the Global Change Information System (GCIS). Specifically related to the transparency of NCA3, a recent activity was carried out to trace the provenance as completely as possible for all figures in the NCA3 report that predominantly used NASA data. This paper discusses lessons learned from this activity that traces the provenance of NASA figures in a major HISA-class pdf report. © Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016.

Tilmes C.,Us Global Change Research Program
Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics) | Year: 2012

Global climate change is a topic that has become very controversial despite strong support within the scientific community. It is common for agencies releasing information about climate change to be served with Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests for everything that led to that conclusion. Capturing and presenting the provenance, linking to the research papers, data sets, models, analyses, observation instruments and satellites, etc. supporting key findings has the potential to mitigate skepticism in this domain. The U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) is now coordinating the production of a National Climate Assessment (NCA) that presents our best understanding of global change. We are now developing a Global Change Information System (GCIS) that will present the content of that report and its provenance, including the scientific support for the findings of the assessment. We are using an approach that will present this information both through a human accessible web site as well as a machine readable interface for automated mining of the provenance graph. We plan to use the developing W3C PROV Data Model and Ontology for this system. © 2012 Springer-Verlag.

Ma X.,Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute | Zheng J.G.,Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute | Goldstein J.C.,University Corporation for Atmospheric Research | Goldstein J.C.,Us Global Change Research Program | And 10 more authors.
Environmental Modelling and Software | Year: 2014

The National Climate Assessment of the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) analyzes and presents the impacts of climate change on the United States. The provenance information in the assessment is important because the assessment findings are of great public and academic concern and are used in policy and decision-making. By applying a use case-driven iterative methodology, we developed information models and ontology to represent the content structure of the recent National Climate Assessment draft report and its associated provenance information. We tested the ontology by using it in pilot systems serving information about instances of chapters, scientific findings, figures, tables, images, datasets, references, people, and organizations, etc. in the draft report, as well as interrelationships among those instances. The results successfully help users trace provenance in the draft report, such as finding all the journal articles from which a figure in the report was derived. The provenance information in our work was maintained in the context of the "Web of Data". In addition to the pilot systems we developed, other tools and services are also able to retrieve and utilize the provenance information. Our work is part of a Global Change Information System coordinated by the USGCRP that will eventually cover provenance information for the entire scope of global change research. Such a system will greatly increase understanding, credibility and trust in the global change research and foster reproducibility of scientific results and conclusions. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

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