Mar./2010
(STRATEGIC PROPOSALS)
Synthetic Study on Forecast Models of Regional Environment and Ecosystems -Towards the planning of adaptation measures for climate change-/CRDS-FY2009-SP-10
Executive Summary

Effects of global climate change on regional ecosystems should be forecasted by observation and modeling. Such study is necessary to accelerate revitalization and preservation of ecosystems and to contribute for regional sustainability. In order to facilitate it, the promotion of the synthetic study is proposed, synthesizing following two issues. At first, creation of knowledge & technology and support for problem solving will be synthesized. Furthermore, each ecosystem model will be synthesized into a basin area model.

It is the social expectation that environmental problems, which may effect on the human activities and to threaten the survival, are resolved, and science and technology are expected to contribute to resolving them. The research field for the resolution is environmental sciences. Even though problems are on the regional level or on the global level, it can be said that environmental sciences have no reason of their existence unless they aim at problem solving.

Climate change is the most problem among the environmental problems facing humanity at the present time. How an ecosystem, the base of life in the regional society, shifts by climate change? Which of adaptation measures for preventing these shifts should be chosen? For these serious questions, science and technology must provide an answer.

In light of the above, the synthetic study should be promoted on development of models for estimating effects of climate change on a region and to plan the adaptation measures. Details of the study are as follows:

First, focused on a basin area which is for water and material circulations, human life and economic activities, some land, freshwater , and ocean ecosystems are selected which have a close relation to social activities such as primary industries and human living. Then, trends in climate change and the distribution of biological species is observed, as well as a model representing the response process of biological species against the multiple stresses is built up, and trends in change of biological diversity and ecosystem services are simulated. Based on these results, some measures to protect and control the ecosystem are planned, and some concrete actions to revitalize and conserve the ecosystem are promoted. And finally, combining each ecosystem model, the total system of a basin area will be confirmed.

In order to promote the study, participation of various stakeholders is necessary, such as ecologists, engineering scientists, engineers, local governments and residents.

Against climate change, many efforts have been accumulated until now mainly on global measures. In order to enhance actions against this issue, the efforts in each region should be strengthened. Science and technology will develop to contribute for problem solving as well as creation of knowledge through the promotion of the proposed approach focusing on region. At the same time, the approach will realize the conservation of living base and sustainability in the regional society. Moreover, it will contribute to the global sustainability by providing methods and tools developed in Japan applicable to studies in foreign countries and regions.