FY 2013 Federal Agency Climate Change Adaptation Plans: USGCRP's Summary of Research and Information Needs

In February 2013, Federal agencies for the first time prepared Climate Change Adaptation Plans. Upon release of the Plans, the U.S. Global Change Research Program’s (USGCRP) Adaptation Science Interagency Workgroup (ASIWG) conducted a review of the Plans to identify common themes across the agencies. This in-depth report outlines the most common research and information needs for adaptation throughout the Federal government. The report shares an analysis of the 27 Federal agency plans publicly available to the ASIWG in February 2013 when the development of this summary began. 

The research and information needs communicated across the plans are categorized into eight themes: Built Infrastructure; Communication and Training; Human Health; Natural Resources; Disaster Response; Regional Climate Information and Modeling; Observations and Monitoring; and Decision Support Tools and Resources.

Of the eight common themes ASIWG identified the needs related to built infrastructure (26 out of 27 plans), communication and training (24 out of 27 plans), and human health (22 out of 27 plans) were the most common, appearing in nearly every plan analyzed.

Most FY13 Agency Climate Change Adaptation Plans also highlighted the need of agencies for robust scientific information to inform climate change adaptation decisions and actions. Broadly, the need for research to inform the development of climate change adaptation communication tools, vulnerability analyses, and adaptation best-practices was frequently cited. More specifically, improved knowledge of certain specific systems, development of improved technologies, and expanded techniques to address specific modeling challenges were among the needs commonly cited.




Publication Date: August 2013

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