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Suggested Citation:"Executive Summary." National Research Council. 1988. Our Changing Planet: A U.S. Strategy for Global Change Research : a Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18703.
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Suggested Citation:"Executive Summary." National Research Council. 1988. Our Changing Planet: A U.S. Strategy for Global Change Research : a Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18703.
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Page 4

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Executive Summary • Global changes can have tremendous impact on human welfare. These changes may stem from natural processes that began millions of years ago. Responding to these changes without a strong scientific basis could be futile and costly. • This report presents an initial strategy for a comprehensive, long-term U. S. Global Change Research Program. • The goal of the Program is to provide a sound scientific basis for developing national and international policy on global change issues. • The scientific objectives of the Program are to monitor, understand, and ultimately predict global change. • The Program is broad in scope, encompassing the full range of earth system changes, including climatic, volcanic, seismic, ecological, and biological changes. The Program addresses both natural phenomena and the effects of human activity. Global warming, an issue that has received much public attention this past year, is an important element of this Program. • The Program is described in terms of the following seven integrated and interdisciplinary science elements (see Appendix B for amplification) in order to provide a view of global change activities from the interdisciplinary level instead of from the traditional single-discipline or single- agency level: 1. Biogeochemical Dynamics 2. Ecological Systems and Dynamics 3. Climate and Hydrologic System

4. Human Interactions 5. Earth System History 6. Solid Earth Processes 7. Solar Influences The Program's goals, objectives, and strategy are consistent with other national and international global change research program plans, including those of the U. S. National Acad- emy of Sciences' Committee on Global Change and the International Council of Scientific Unions' International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme. In FY 1989, funding for focused global change research activities totals $133.9 million. The President's FY 1990 budget proposes a funding level of $190.5 million. This budget will enable the Program to expand and accelerate its research activities in all areas of global change. A more detailed research plan will be developed in 1989. This strategy was developed by a U. S. Federal interagency group, the Committee on Earth Sciences (CES) of the Federal Coordinating Council for Science, Engineering, and Technology (FCCSET), under the directive of the Presi- dent's Science Advisor. The CES consists of Federal agencies with programmatic responsibilities related to global change issues. There are thirteen CES members. Seven CES members are Federal agencies conducting research in global change.

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