State of the Climate

Three UC Santa Barbara professors selected to serve as authors on the Fifth National Climate Assessment
Sonia Fernandez
NOAA satellite image for larger view of Hurricane Katrina

NOAA satellite image for larger view of Hurricane Katrina taken Aug. 28, 2005, as the storm’s outer bands lashed the Gulf Coast of the United States a day before making landfall. (NOAA)

Three UC Santa Barbara professors — Halley Froehlich, Eric Masanet and Lint Barrage — have been selected by the United States Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) to serve as authors for the Fifth National Climate Assessment, or NCA5. The document, which is  released every four years, is created with the intention of giving decisionmakers the best information on the changing state of the climate and its effects on both human and natural systems.

“The Fifth National Climate Assessment is currently in development,” said Froehlich, an assistant professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology. “It will synthesize and analyze the impacts of climate change in the United States for anyone interested in this area of research or people wanting to know what is likely to happen under the best and worst-case scenarios to the part of the U.S. they call home.”

Over the next few months, Froehlich, Masanet and Barrage will join hundreds  of U.S. colleagues in crafting the document, utilizing their expertise in their respective fields to help shape the country’s climate outlook in fields as diverse and wide-ranging as energy production and use, the natural environment, food production, biodiversity, human health and welfare. Four previous National Climate Assessments have been released since 2000.

Masanet, Froehlich, Barrage and colleagues would not be able to do this work without the help of the public; the document is at the public engagement stage, in which virtual workshops will be held to gather thoughts on climate change-related issues. The information gathered  will help authors decide which topics to discuss. The workshops are free and open to the public.

The workshop on the Economics chapter takes place on January 31, 2022 at 9 a.m. PST. The workshop on the Southwest chapter, takes place on February 4, 2022 at 10 a.m. PST. The workshop on the Mitigation chapter takes place on February 7, 2022 at 10 a.m. PST. To join these, and other workshops go to NCA5 Engagement Workshops.

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