The U.S Global Change Research Act of 1990
“What jumpstarted the U.S.’s efforts to develop a comprehensive research program to understand climate change?”
In the last decade of the 20th century, the U.S. Congress passed a revolutionary piece of legislation. The U.S Global Change Research Act of 1990 set forth multiple requirements, specifically:
- Establishing the Committee on Earth and Environmental Sciences to carry out global change research.
- Codifying the U.S. Global Change Research Program to create (in its own language) “a comprehensive and integrated United States research program which will assist the Nation and the world to understand, assess, predict, and respond to human-induced and natural processes of global change.”
- Evaluating the scientific content of the plan with the National Research Council and providing advice on future global change research priorities.
- Requiring the Council to submit a global change assessment at least every four years.
- Initiate dialogue on international climate agreements.
- Study the implications and consequences of growth and development in communities and assist state and local planning authorities with managing said growth while preserving “community character”.