NSF Report Describes Signs of Global Climate Change

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has released a report on global climate change, titled "Solving the Puzzle: Researching the Impacts of Climate Change around the World," that describes how, over nearly 60 years, researchers have found signs of a changing climate in nearly every corner of the globe, from the icy expanses of Earth's polar regions to its equatorial ecosystems.

Climate change research and education has been identified as a presidential priority area, and the report's release coincides with the recent announcement of the President Obama's fiscal year 2010 budget for NSF, which includes an increase of approximately $250 million for climate research, which would double the foundation's investment in climate research.

The report explores the contributions and on-going activities of NSF-funded researchers in science and engineering fields including ecology, glaciology, atmospheric science, behavioral science, and economics. The report addresses the climate change "puzzle" piecewise—devoting chapters to the sky, sea, ice, land, life and people components of Earth's climate system.

Each chapter includes highlights that capture the findings of several NSF-funded investigators, from those who have discovered new evidence of Earth's changing climate, to others who have developed cutting-edge approaches for reducing the human influence on Earth's climate, in research areas such as alternative energy and economics.

NSF also launched a Foundation-wide Climate Change Education program aimed at improving K-12 to graduate education in climate change science and increasing the public's understanding of climate change and its consequences.

A PDF version of the report is available here.