Energy & Environment

Interior Dept. creates climate change committee

Interior Dept. creates climate change committee

The Obama administration is creating an advisory committee on climate change to advise the federal government on future operations.

The Interior Department announced the new bureaucracy in a recent federal registry notice along with a call for nominations by Nov. 19 to seat the 25-member board.

The notice specifically states membership will be comprised of state and local government employees, non-governmental organizations, Native American tribes, academia, individual landowners and business interests.

“In addition, the committee may include scientific experts, and will include rotating representation from one or more of the institutions that host the (Interior Department) Climate Science Centers,” the notice said.

The climate centers were created to provide scientific information to help land, water, wildlife and cultural resource managers to monitor and adapt to climate change on regional and local levels.

The National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center will serve the scientific needs of managers of fish, wildlife, habitats, and ecosystems as they plan for a changing climate.

The new committee will be chosen by Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and will meet two to four times a year. Federal lobbyists need not apply, and government employees will be required to file an annual financial disclosure report.

The committee will advise on a national strategy to identify “key science priorities to advance management of natural resources in the face of climate change.”

Advice will also be given on how to ensure high standards of scientific quality and integrity, and the committee will evaluate the performance of the climate science centers.

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