Obama Administration Formally Opening Nation’s ‘First Climate Science Center’
The U.S. Interior Department is holding a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday to officially open the Alaska Climate Science Center — the first of its kind in the nation, the Interior Department says.
Located at the University of Alaska-Anchorage, the center is the first of eight regional climate science centers the federal government plans to establish across the U.S.
The U.S. Geological Survey is taking the lead in establishing the centers.
According to the Fiscal 2012 U.S. Geological Survey budget proposal, “The Climate Science Centers will provide the scientific base for land and water management decisions related to changing climates.” The budget requests $11 million to complete the planned network of eight Climate Science Centers.
The Interior Department says the centers will work closely with government agencies and universities, using “existing science programs to build new capabilities.” The eight regional centers will provide data on the impacts of climate change and help land managers respond.
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced Alaska as the site of the first regional climate center last March: “With its rapidly melting Arctic sea ice and permafrost, and threats to the survival of Native Alaskan coastal communities, Alaska is ground zero for climate change,” he said at the time. “We must put science to work to help us adjust to the impacts of climate change on Alaska’s resources and peoples.”