Decadal and Regional Climate Prediction using Earth System Models
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Important Notice to Proposers
A revised version of the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG), NSF 13-1, was issued on October 4, 2012 and is effective for proposals submitted, or due, on or after January 14, 2013. Please be advised that, depending on the specified due date, the guidelines contained in NSF 13-1 may apply to proposals submitted in response to this funding opportunity.
Please be aware that significant changes have been made to the PAPPG to implement revised merit review criteria based on the National Science Board (NSB) report, National Science Foundation's Merit Review Criteria: Review and Revisions. While the two merit review criteria remain unchanged (Intellectual Merit and Broader Impacts), guidance has been provided to clarify and improve the function of the criteria. Changes will affect the project summary and project description sections of proposals. Annual and final reports also will be affected.
A by-chapter summary of this and other significant changes is provided at the beginning of both the Grant Proposal Guide and the Award & Administration Guide.
The consequences of climate variability and change are becoming more immediate and profound than previously anticipated. Important impacts have highlighted that climate variability and change can have significant effects on decadal and shorter time scales, with significant consequences for plant, animal, human, and physical systems. Such aspects include the onset of prolonged droughts on several continents, increased frequency of floods, loss of agricultural and forest productivity, degraded ocean and permafrost ecosystems, global sea level rise and the rapid retreat of ice sheets and glaciers, loss of Arctic sea ice, and changes in ocean currents.
The EaSM funding opportunity enables interagency cooperation on one of the most pressing problems of the millennium: climate change, how it is likely to affect our world, and how we can plan for its consequences. It allows the partner agencies -- National Science Foundation (NSF), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) -- to combine resources to identify and fund the most meritorious and highest-impact projects that support their respective missions, while eliminating duplication of effort and fostering collaboration between agencies and the investigators they support.
This interdisciplinary scientific challenge calls for the development and application of next-generation Earth System Models that include coupled and interactive representations of such things as ocean and atmospheric currents, human activities, agricultural working lands and forests, urban environments, biogeochemistry, atmospheric chemistry, the water cycle and land ice. This solicitation seeks to attract scientists from the disciplines of geosciences, social sciences, agricultural and biological sciences, mathematics and statistics, physics, and chemistry. Successful proposals will develop intellectual excitement in the participating disciplinary communities and engage diverse interdisciplinary teams with sufficient breadth to achieve the scientific objectives. We encourage proposals that have strong broader impacts, including public access to data and other research products of general interest, as well as educational, diversity, or societal impacts.
The long-term goals of this solicitation are to improve on and extend current Earth System modeling capabilities to:
- Achieve comprehensive, reliable global and regional predictions of decadal climate variability and change through advanced understanding of the coupled interactive physical, chemical, biological, and human processes that drive the climate system.
- Quantify the impacts of climate variability and change on natural and human systems, and identify and quantify feedback loops.
- Maximize the utility of available observational and model data for impact, vulnerability/resilience, and risk assessments through up/downscaling activities and uncertainty characterization.
- Effectively translate climate predictions and associated uncertainties into the scientific basis for policy and management decisions related to human interventions and adaptation to the projected impacts of climate change.
The following are specific areas of interest to the funding agencies for EaSM 2: (i) Research that has the potential to dramatically improve predictive capabilities; (ii) Prediction and attribution studies; (iii) Research that addresses critical issues linking relevant Earth system processes over a variety of spatial and temporal scales; (iv) Research that examines the relationships between climate variability and change to human and natural environments from the human perspective; (v) Development and applications of metrics, methods, and tools for testing and evaluating climate and climate impact predictions and their uncertainty characterization.
These subareas of particular interest are described in greater detail below under Program Description: Areas of interest.
Frequently Asked Questions: Decadal and Regional Climate Prediction Using Earth System Models (EaSM) (NSF 12-522)