How can we understand and rise to the challenges of global environmental change? One clear answer is to understand the science of global change, not solely in terms of the process es that control changes in climate, the composition of the atmosphere, and biogeochemistry, but also in how ecosystems and human society interact with these processes and changes. Many research efforts have been launched, yet many opportunities for integration remain underexploited, and many fundamental questions remain about the links among human activities, current and future states of the global environment, and human welfare. This volume encourages a renewed commitment to understanding global change and sets a direction for research in the decade ahead. Through case studies the book explores what can be learned from the lessons of the past 20 years and what are the outstanding scientific questions, and what are the corresponding observational, monitoring and data needs. Highlights include:
* Research imperatives and strategies for investigators in the areas of atmospheric chemistry, climate, ecosystem studies, and human dimensions of global change.
* The context of climate change.
* Human responses to projected global change.
This book offers a comprehensive overview of global change research to date and provides a framework for answering urgent questions.