You are here

The Early Detection of Global Change

Vertical Tabs


Session Description: 

Overview & Relevance:
The definition of research on early detection of global environmental change is research conducted for the purpose of documenting changes in varied Earth System parameters that are consistent with the expected/predicted consequences of natural and human-induced changes in global forcing.

The intent of early detection research is to:
1. Document the earth system changes that area result of processes that are global in nature
2. Differentiate those changes due to human-induced forcing factors from those due to natural forcing factors
3. Establish the causal linkages between the changes in forcing factors and Earth system responses

To be consistent with the goals of the US Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) the research should thus encompass both detection and attribution of the cause of observed changes in the earth system.

Early detection research may involve the use of existing records (e.g., historic climate records) to identify human-induced signal of change in forcing factors. It may also involve the development and implementation of new ground and space-based sensors (e.g., EOS) to augment and extend existing Earth system records for the purpose of documenting expected changes in the future. In either case, , early detection research in the USGCRP is considered focused if its primary intent involves documenting global environmental changes that are a consequence of natural and human-induced changes. Forcing factors for expected changes must be global in nature. The impact of these changes should be measurable at the local, regional, and global scales. Strategies for detecting changes may be applied at all of these scales.

This session followed these broad themes:
• Science
• Technology
• Policy

Workshop Topic (s): 
  • Atmospheric Composition
  • Climate Variability and Change (including Climate Modeling)
  • Ecosystems
  • Land-Use/Land-Cover Change