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US National Assessment
of the Potential Consequences
of Climate Variability and Change
Charge for the National Assessment
Synthesis Team

January 27, 1998



The National Assessment Overview and Foundation Reports were produced  by the National Assessment Synthesis Team, an advisory committee chartered under the Federal Advisory Committee Act, and were not subjected to OSTP's Information Quality Act Guidelines. The National Assessment was forwarded to the President and Congress in November 2000 for their consideration.

Charge for the National Assessment Synthesis Team: The National Assessment Synthesis Team will be formed under the auspices of the Subcommittee on Global Change Research (SGCR), within the purview of the Committee on Environmental and Natural Resources (CENR) and under the National Science and Technology Council (NSTC). Its membership is to be drawn from government, academia, and private enterprise, and it is meant to have broad responsibilities for the design and conduct of the national effort to assess the consequences of climate variability and climate change for the United States. Specifically, the National Assessment Synthesis Team will:

  • Consult with the NAWG in the preparation of a National Assessment Plan for review and approval by the CENR and NSTC. This plan will: (i) outline the overall strategy, content, methodologies and implementation plans for the National Assessment, (ii) detail the structure of and methodology for incorporating regional, sectoral, and national perspective and concerns, (iii) establish the key schedule and a time table for the total assessment, and (iv) describe the review process for the Assessment to assure scientific excellence, openness, and broad participation;

  • Define, in collaboration with the NAWG and the Federal agencies, the climate scenarios to be used in the National Assessment. Such scenarios should take into account the scenarios of the IPCC;

  • Make, in concert with the NAWG, the final selection of sectors and regions to be covered in the National Assessment;

  • Develop templates for sectoral and regional assessments cooperatively with the NAWG;

  • Oversee the sectoral assessments;

  • Maintain cognizance of the regional assessments and results in order to incorporate their results in a final Synthesis Report;

  • Prepare a final Synthesis Report, which draws on the results of all regional, sectoral, and national analyses available, and which addresses the questions (such as those included in the attached letter from Dr. John H. Gibbons) of most interest to the stakeholder communities and of the federal agencies through the SGCR, CENR, and NSTC; and

  • Organize, within the framework of the Terms of Reference noted above and this Charge, the Synthesis Team activities so that the Synthesis Report and the companion sectoral and regional assessment reports are completed, externally reviewed, and submitted to the SGCR so that these reports can be completed and published by January 1, 2000.

cc: Letter of January 8, 1998 from Dr. John H. Gibbons, Assistant to the President for Science and Technology, to the Chair of the Subcommittee on Global Change


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