EPA Climate Change Research
Methods, Models, Tools, and DatabasesModels
- Climate Change and Watersheds Model (BASINS-CAT)
BASINS is a multi-purpose, environmental analysis system that integrates a geographical information system (GIS), national watershed data, and state-of-the-art watershed modeling tools, including the Hydrologic Simulation Program (HSPF) FORTRAN model, into one package. BASINS CAT extends the existing capabilities of BASINS to facilitate watershed-based assessments of the potential implications of climate variability and change on water and watershed systems using the HSPF model.
BASINS CAT provides flexible capabilities for creating climate change scenarios allowing users to quickly assess a wide range of what if questions about how weather and climate could affect their systems. BASINS CAT does not provide climate change data for specific regions and watersheds. Combined with the existing capabilities of HSPF for assessing the effects of land-use change and management practices, BASINS CAT can be used to assess the coupled effects of climate and land-use change, and to guide the development of effective management responses.
Community Multi-scale Air Quality Model (CMAQ)
CMAQ is an air quality model and software suite designed to model multiple pollutants at multiple scales. CMAQ allows regulatory agencies and state governments to evaluate the impact of air quality management decisions, and gives scientists the ability to probe, simulate, and understand chemical and physical interactions in the atmosphere.
- CMAQ Aerosol Module
CMAQ version 5.0 includes a complete redesign of the aerosol module eliminating unnecessary dependencies and duplications across modules.
CMAQ for Air Toxics and Multipollutant Modeling
In the past, chemical mechanism and air quality development have focused on Criteria Air Pollutants (CAPs) such as ozone and primary inorganic particulate matter. CMAQ also has the capacity to predict concentration and deposition of many Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs) or air toxics.
- CMAQ Aerosol Module
Water Erosion Prediction Project Climate Assessment Tool (WEPPCAT)
WEPPCAT provides a flexible capability for creating user-determined climate change scenarios for assessing the potential impacts of climate change on sediment loading to streams using the USDA’s Water Erosion Prediction Project (WEPP) Model. In combination with the existing capabilities of WEPP for assessing the effectiveness of management practices, WEPPCAT also can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of strategies for managing the impacts of climate change.
MARKet ALlocation (MARKAL)
MARKAL is a data-driven, energy system optimization model. Given the structure of the energy system to be modeled and data to characterize each of the technologies and resources used, MARKAL then calculates the least costly set of technologies over time to satisfy the specified demands, subject to various user-defined constraints. Outputs of the model include a determination of the technological mix at intervals into the future, estimates of total system cost, energy demand (by type and quantity), estimates of criteria and GHG emissions, and estimates of energy commodity prices.
Integrated Climate and Land use Scenarios (ICLUS)
In many cases, it is impossible to determine the impact of climate change without consideration of land use and land cover dynamics. The ICLUS project is developing scenarios broadly consistent with global-scale, peer-reviewed storylines of population growth and economic development, which are used by climate change modelers to develop projections of future climate.
Geos-CHEM LIDORT Integrated with MARKAL for the Purpose of Scenario Exploration (GLIMPSE)
GLIMPSE is a tool to find US policy scenarios that simultaneously improve air quality human health, reduce impacts to ecosystems, and mitigate climate change. It is designed to be fast -- to allow decision-makers to explore a range of options, as well as comprehensive -- to avoid unintended consequences.
Regional Climate Downscaling
Global Climate Models (GCMs) are used to study Earth's climate system and to simulate how climate may change in the future. Regional Climate Models (RCMs) are used to simulate Earth's climate system at a higher spatial resolution over a limited area. To meet the growing need for regional climate projections to support impact assessments, EPA is developing regional climate modeling capabilities using the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model to dynamically downscale GCM simulations.
Remote Sensing Information Gateway (RSIG)
RSIG offers a new way for users to get the multi-terabyte, environmental datasets they want via an interactive, Web browser-based application. A file download and parsing process that now takes months will be reduced via RSIG to minutes.
Freshwater Biological Traits Database
The Freshwater Biological Traits Database has data for nearly 4000 North American macroinvertebrate taxa, and includes habitat, life history, mobility, morphology and ecological trait data. The traits data were gathered from multiple sources, which are listed on the web site under, "Data Source". Data gathering efforts focused on data that were published or otherwise well-documented by trustworthy sources, accessible, appropriate for the regions being studied, in a standardized format that could be analyzed or easily converted to a format that could be analyzed, and ecologically relevant to the gradients being considered.