Dr. Donald Boesch - Climate Change Research and Assessment


action plan cover U.S. National Assessment of the Potential Consequences of Climate Variability & Change

The first National Assessment, completed in 2000, provided a detailed understanding of the consequences of climate change for the nation and examined the possible coping mechanisms that exist to adapt to climate change.  The assessment included regional activities, sectoral activities and a broad synthesis.  The five sectoral assessments include agriculture, coastal areas and marine resources, forests, human health and water resources.  I co-chaired (with Dr. Don Scavia, Federal co-chair) the panel that undertook the Coastal Areas and Marine Resources Assessment . 

Our report, The Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change on Coastal Areas and Marine Resources,was published as NOAA Coastal Ocean Program Decision Analysis Series #21 and may be viewed and downloaded from the NOAA website (Adobe Acrobat Reader required).  The Overview report of the National Assessment, Climate Change Impacts on the United States: The Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change, is also accessible via the web.

Pew Center on Global Climate Change

With my colleagues, Victoria Coles, David Kimmel and David Miller I prepared section entitled Ramifications of Climate Change for Chesapeake Bay Hypoxia that is in the Pew Center on Global Climate Change report, presently the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, Regional Impacts of Climate Change in the United States: Four Case Studies.
Scientific American
article on the report.
National Wetlands Newsletter on Global Warming and Coastal Dead Zones

md climate report cover

Maryland Commission on Climate Change

In April, 2007, Governor Martin O'Malley created a Commission on Climate Change. I chaired the Scientific and Technical Working Group, one of three working groups that served the Commission. The Commission released its Climate Action Plan in August 2008. Chapter 2 of the plan is a Comprehensive Assessment of the Impacts of Climate Change in Maryland, which I edited based on the contributions of the STWG. It is available as the stand-alone report Global Warming and the Free State.

      Don Boesch

Don Boesch testifying before Senate Environment and Public Works Committee

Climate Change and the Chesapeake Bay

The Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee (STAC) of the Chesapeake Bay Program, of which I am a member, is preparing a report on Climate Change and the Chesapeake Bay: State-of-Science Review and Recommendations.

On September 26, 2007 I testified at a hearing of the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works on an Examination of the Impacts of Global Warming on the Chesapeake Bay.

On June 23, 2009 I provided testimony at a field hearing of two subcommittees of the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee on Impacts of Climate Change on the Chesapeake Bay.

Federal Climate Change Research and Information

On November 14, 2007 I testified at a hearing of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation on Improving the Federal Climate Change Research and Information Program.

Environmental Sustainability in the University System of Maryland

Chancellor William E. Kirwan has launched an Environmental Sustainability Initiative for the University System of Maryland to mobilize the efforts of the member institutions to address climate change. As the System’s Vice Chancellor for Environmental Sustainability I am contributing to the direction and coordination of these efforts.

National Climate Change Impacts Assessments

I was a member of two groups that prepared national-level syntheses of climate change impacts:

  • Committee on Ecological Impacts of Climate Change under the National Research Council. The Committee has prepared a short, high-level report that presents a balanced summary of key examples of observed impacts of climate change on a variety of ecosystems. The report (free pdf download available) is being used to derive dissemination products in the form of a public brochure and a teaching guide.
  • Committee to Prepare a Unified Synthesis Product under the U.S. Global Change Research Program. The Committee’s report synthesizes the information contained in the 21 Synthesis and Assessment Products, the recent IPCC reports, and other recent results appearing in the scientific literature. By doing so, it provides a single coherent analysis of the current understanding of climate change science, summarizes the contributions of the USGCRP, and identifies important gaps in the science. The report, Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States, is available here.
acc report

America's Climate Choices


I recently served as a member of the National Research Council's Committee on America's Climate Choices examining the serious and sweeping issues associated with global climate change, including the science and technology challenges involved, and providing advice on actions and strategies the nation can take to respond. The Committee's report includes findings and recommendations based on the work of four panels addressing limiting the magnitude of future climate change, adapting to its impacts, advancing science, and informing effective actions and actions.

 Related Links: