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Climate Variability & Change

Demand for agricultural decision support systems serving a climate change time scale in the Gulf States is increasing, yet lingering uncertainties blur the continuity and effectiveness of climate impacts assessment results and are still hampering decision-making. This project will focus on the three major steps of the climate impacts assessment process for agricultural decision support and adaptation. First, an accurate historical baseline climate is required to characterize present-day mean climate and variability. Second, a climate impacts assessment model must be calibrated to capture climate impacts on agriculture during the historical period, providing foundational justification for stakeholder acceptance of the model as representative of farm-level conditions. Finally, future climate scenarios must be generated as input to the impacts assessment model, simulating agricultural output under plausible future conditions for comparison to the baseline period. A wide range of approaches in each of these steps leads to many possible permutations and many potential results even for the same assessment task. This project will assess uncertainties throughout the end-to-end climate impacts assessment process, distinguishing between factors and choices with minimal consequences and those factors and choices that determine actionable outcomes. Project results will improve decision support by increasing the efficiency of climate impacts assessments and presenting tools for more robust characterization of uncertainties for stakeholders’ risk analysis and the development of adaptations strategies. Project evaluations will focus on climate impacts, decision support, and adaptation strategy development for peanuts and the broader agricultural sector of Florida and Alabama; Gulf Coast States where the project team has long-standing relationships providing decision support to stakeholders through the Southeast Climate Consortium (SECC). This project directly addresses the agriculture and climate application areas of NASA’s Applied Sciences Program, and uses impacts assessment models to span time scales in a manner informative to the weather applications area as well.

PI: Alex Ruane / NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies

NASA GISS Office: 304 Armstrong Hall

Phone: +1 212 678 5640 Fax: +1 212 678 5648

Email: aruane@giss.nasa.gov

http://www.ccsr.columbia.edu/?id=aboutus_people

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Started: Sep 27, 2010

Last Activity: Dec 07, 2010

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