As noted above, the committee does not envision that national policy makers would cease to utilize America’s top scientists for guidance in regarding climate science and its implications for America’s interests. The committee anticipates that that connection will remain as ever. Similarly, we anticipate that interdisciplinary research will continue to thrive. Joint research projects that foster the development of integrated Earth system models that incorporate the state of the science in multiple disciplines and explore the joint implications for both biogeophysical and human-Earth systems will not be affected. Similarly, direct communications between climate modelers and research users of climate data, such as those in the IAV community, will not be interrupted, although researchers needing access to knowledge about how to access and use existing data products would find this climate translator skill set potentially helpful. Regardless of whether the current communications pathways between national decision makers and collaborative researchers are deemed adequate or not, the growing demand for climate data products would benefit from trained certified professional climate translators who could help establish and maintain two-way communications between climate scientists and data product users.
Recommendation 12.1: To promote the effective application of climate models, the United States should develop climate interpretation certification and continuing education programs to train a cadre of climate interpreters who can facilitate the interpretation of climate model output into usable information for a variety of decision makers and communicate user needs to climate modelers.