Climate

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Climate is one of the key drivers for all ecosystems and ecosystems have important feedbacks on climate. Over half the LTER sites have climate as a component in their main working hypotheses. The main functions of the LTERClimate Committee are to

  1. Help coordinate intersite research activities related to climate
  2. Provide climatic analyses to support LTER ecologists
  3. Provide intersite services such as standardization of meteorological observation and consultation on climatic matters

STRATEGIC VISION OF THE LTER CLIMATE COMMITTEE

November 27, 1998

DEFINITION OF THE ISSUE

Climate is one of the key drivers for all ecosystems and ecosystems have important feedbacks on climate. Over half the LTER sites have climate as a component in their main working hypotheses. The main functions of the LTERClimate Committee are to 1) help coordinate intersite research activities related to climate, 2) provide climatic analyses to support LTER ecologists, 3) provide intersite services such as standardization of meteorological observation and consultation on climatic matters.

STATUS OF THE LTER REGARDING THE ISSUE

The Climate Committee (and former Meteorology Committee) has been operating continuously since the inception of the LTER program in 1980. It has attempted to meet the functions outlined above. The Committee has at least one representative from each site. Some sites have more than one representative because these sites are more interested in atmosphere/ecosystem interaction. The Committee performs most of its work by e-mail but from time to time holds workshops on particular matters. Since the beginning of the program the Committee has held four workshops on scientific issues, two on observation standardization, and has participated in several meetings and workshops in conjunction with other LTER Committees. The Climate Committee works most closely with the Data Managers Committee.

FIVE-YEAR OBJECTIVES (VISION)

The most important objective for the next five years is to help the Committee on the Synthesis of Ecosystem Effects of Climate Change (CSEECC) bring its products to fruition. The most important product of CSEECC is anticipated to be a book in the Oxford LTER series. Other objectives include assisting other LTER committees and synthesis areas meet their objectives. Apart from the Data Managers Committee the Climate Committee is potentially most closely associated with the San Diego Super Computer Initiative and the Technology Committee.

STRATEGIC PLAN TO MEET OBJECTIVES

The Climate Committee will continue its operations as it has in the past. There will be a number of extra meetings in relation to the CSEECC work. CSEECC plans to hold a meeting in conjunction with the Spokane ESA in the summer of 1999. There will be a series of workshops on climate variability and ecosystem response at the 2000 ASM. These workshops will be organized around different time scales. The Committee will also respond to other LTER Network issues and needs related to atmosphere/ecosystem interaction as they arise.

NEEDS TO ACHIEVE THE OBJECTIVES

Needs to fulfill the objectives fall into several categories:

  1. Continued Network Office support at the same level as in the past for Standing Committees.
  2. If needs arise (comparable to the need to hold a meeting to discuss observation standards) a proposal will be made to the Network Office for such support.
  3. CSEECC has considered a proposal to the Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis as well as one to the Network Office.
  4. Separate proposals to NSF will be prepared (as in the past) to facilitate any cross site studies that are of too broad a scope to be supported by the Network Office.

 

Current Climate Committee membership