Dr. Kristie Ebi, professor of global health and environmental and occupational health sciences at the University of Washington School of Public Health, co-authored a recently published report summarizing the first 25 years of accomplishments by the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP).
[Photo: Dr. Kristie Ebi]
Established by the Global Research Act of 1990, the USGCRP has provided strategic planning and coordination to 13 participating federal agencies working to advance the science of global environmental change.
Dr. Ebi is a member of the USGCRP National Research Council Advisory Committee and director of the School’s Center for Health and the Global Environment.
“The first 25 years of the USGCRP have been marked by a series of major accomplishments,” the authors wrote. “Unprecedented efforts have been made to observe the natural and built environments and to document changes. Equally important, impressive advances have been made in the understanding of global change and the capacity to model it.”
The report concluded that USGCRP has also made considerable strides in improving the availability of scientific knowledge to decision makers, according to the report. For example, it has documented substantial increases in heavy downpours in most regions of the United States over the past 50 years, which can cause flooding that overwhelms the existing infrastructure of sewers and roads. Awareness of such trends can help governments, businesses and citizens respond accordingly in many realms, including agriculture, conservation and human health.
Authors noted that the impacts of global change will become increasingly apparent in the next decades, and “the program will need to augment the knowledge base for exploring options to protect the nation’s interests in the face of accelerating global changes.”
Authors of the report worked under the guidance of the presidents and governing boards of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine.
Read the full report: http://globalchange.uw.edu/global-change-research-program/
Learn more about the U.S. Global Change Research Program: http://www.globalchange.gov/