073110_Climate_Report - Informing an Effective Response to...

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state, and local policies that has prompted many state and business leaders to call for the development of a more predict- able and coherent policy environment at the federal level. This report, part of the congressionally requested America’s Climate Choices suite of studies, identiFes the types of decisions that need to be made about climate change and assesses the information and reporting systems needed to both inform and evaluate responses. Framework for Measuring Progress Although the many non-federal efforts to reduce emissions and/or adapt to future climate changes carry considerable potential to reduce risks related to climate change, there is currently no comprehensive way to assess the effectiveness of those efforts. Even the federal response is difFcult to evaluate as there is no clear, accessible, and coordinated roadmap on federal responsibilities and policies. In addition, the number of agencies beginning to respond to climate change has expanded far beyond the core research func- tions of the U.S. Global Change Research program to include agencies such as those with responsibility for infrastructure, security, and housing. The federal government should learn from the different approaches to climate related decision-making used by other levels of government and the private sector, and A cross the nation, people, businesses, organiza- tions, and governments are making decisions in response to climate change. As of June 2010, twenty-three states have established targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. A number of major cities, including Los Angeles and New York, have also announced strong emission reduction plans. Private compa- nies are taking signiFcant steps to reduce their carbon footprints and pursue new low-carbon markets. Citizens are making decisions about whether to make their homes and transportation modes more energy efF- cient, and also whether to support climate and energy policies. Similarly, plans to adapt to the impacts of climate change are also underway. Municipal managers and resource managers are among those on the front lines, considering how a range of potential climate impacts might affect the resources, infrastructure, and people they protect and manage. Alaskans face imminent adaptation choices as some villages threatened by sea-level rise and other consequences of climate change consider relocating. Industries that will be affected by climate change—for example, insurance and agriculture—are assessing potential effects on operations, supply chains, and products. The diverse climate change responses to date have resulted in a patchwork of regional, Demand for information to support climate-related decisions has grown rapidly as people, organizations, and governments have moved ahead with plans and actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to adapt to the impacts of climate change. Today, however, the nation lacks comprehensive, robust, and credible information systems to inform climate choices and evaluate
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This note was uploaded on 10/24/2011 for the course IE 334 taught by Professor Gard during the Spring '11 term at Lehigh University .

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073110_Climate_Report - Informing an Effective Response to...

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