With the advance of observational capabilities, computational power, and scientific research, there is both an opportunity for scientific progress in the study of the Earth system and a need to manage the data and information generated about it.
As computational capabilities improve, data volume will continue to grow at an accelerating rate. It is crucial to continue to collect and store these records, but this increased output will also present data management challenges.
Addressing this data-volume challenge will require advanced technology to link users to the various data providers and cloud-based tools to facilitate collaboration. In the coming decade, USGCRP will take a leadership role in coordinating these networks, by providing shared data access, analytic capabilities, and modeling frameworks to support integrated research and decision support.
The Global Change Information System (GCIS)
The local to global scale impacts of climate variability and change, as well as the broader issue of global change, have fueled a growing public demand for timely and accessible information about present and future changes. Having scientific information about causes and effects of global changes helps people make informed decisions in their lives, businesses, and communities.
The USGCRP will address this need by establishing an interagency Global Change Information System (GCIS), a comprehensive web-based system which will deploy and manage global change information. The GCIS will include information from fundamental observational and modeling data and research, to news, tools and applications, and a wealth of climate and global change resources.
The GCIS will have three major components:
- An information organization that harmonizes and integrates data sources from across the USGCRP, including data, scientific publications, maps, images, models, etc. as well as the process, people, agencies, organizations, projects, etc. responsible for creating those items
- An architecture that allows other websites and applications to easily and directly search and access GCIS data through well-defined standards-based interfaces
- A single web-based Global Change Portal that delivers authoritative, accessible, usable, and timely information for climate and global change for use by scientists, decision makers, and the public
Metadata Access Tool for Climate and Health (MATCH)
The Metadata Access Tool for Climate and Health (MATCH) is a searchable online clearinghouse for standardized information—or “metadata”—about more than 9,000 Federally-created datasets related to climate change, the environment, and human health.
This new tool will help researchers and public health professionals search for, access, and integrate these datasets—many of which were previously in incompatible formats—revealing hidden relationships between climate change and human health and informing mitigation and adaptation policies and strategies. Download the MATCH fact sheet here.
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