From the Director's Desk
Fiscal Year 1999 was a busy and productive one for the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). This report summarizes quite a few new and updated data and information products, and the "What's Coming in FY 2000" section describes our plans for the first fiscal year in the third millennium (or the final fiscal year of the second millennium, depending on how you feel about this issue).
In addition to the "core" CDIAC activities, such as quality-assuring and documenting databases on such global-change topics as emissions and atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases, and long-term climate records, this report contains a new section to highlight four special "focus areas": AmeriFlux, Free-Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE), NARSTO, and Ocean Data.
CDIAC's continued its effort in data management for AmeriFlux, the long-term study of carbon fluxes between the terrestrial biosphere of the Western Hemisphere and the atmosphere. Tom Boden took over the reins (following Antoinette Brenkert's move to Washington, D.C., and her departure from CDIAC), assisted by Susan Holladay. Please visit CDIAC's AmeriFlux home page (http//cdiac.esd.ornl.gov/programs/ameriflux/); also note the discussion of CDIAC's AmeriFlux activities in the "Focus Areas" section in this annual report. Tom also prepared several new and updated databases in CDIAC's traditional area of greenhouse-gas emissions and atmospheric concentrations, such as the fossil-fuel CO2 emissions database, which he and Gregg Marland maintain (http://cdiac.esd.ornl.gov/trends/emis/em_cont.htm); the famous Keeling Mauna Loa CO2 data (http://cdiac.esd.ornl.gov/trends/co2/sio-mlo.htm); and the global, multi-investigator, ALE/GAGE/AGAGE database of trace gases (http://cdiac.esd.ornl.gov/ndps/alegage.html).
During FY 1999, CDIAC began a focus on FACE (Free-Air Carbon Dioxide Enrichment), the most sophisticated experimental approach to date for studying the effects of elevated CO2 on vegetation. CDIAC's new FACE home page (http://cdiac.esd.ornl.gov/programs/FACE/face.html) begins the process of integrating the thirty-something FACE sites around the world. In collaboration with researchers at The Ohio State University, CDIAC also published numeric data packages that bring together results from many published CO2-enrichment studies of woody and herbaceous vegetation.
CDIAC also continued its focus on the operation of the NARSTO Quality Systems Science Center (staffed by Les Hook, Tom Boden, Meng-Dawn Cheng, and Sig Christensen), to provide quality-assurance guidance for research on tropospheric ozone and particulates.
In the Ocean Data area, Alex Kozyr, assisted by Linda Allison, continued to quality-assure and document databases on ocean carbon (http://cdiac.esd.ornl.gov/oceans/home.html). As part of that effort, too, Forrest Hoffman maintained the web site for the Ocean Drifters project (http://drifters.doe.gov/); Forrest also maintains the web site for the multi-agency Global Change Data and Information System (http://www.gcdis.usgcrp.gov/) and the U.S. National Assessment of the Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change (http://www.nacc.usgcrp.gov/).
This report also notes the several climate databases that Dale Kaiser, assisted by Linda Allison, produced during the year. A section on CDIAC's computing systems describes the many changes and enhancements to our systems (most of which were not inspired by the Y2K issue) implemented by Tommy Nelson and Jim Simmons. For many of our customers, the first line of contact with CDIAC is through our Information Services group (Sonja Jones, Karen Gibson, and Marvel Burtis); this report summarizes CDIAC's user statistics.
On a sad note, right after the end of the fiscal year, CDIAC's talented secretary Dana Griffith (who also had a hand in preparing several databases for publication) left CDIAC for the private sector. We'll all miss Dana, and we wish her the best. And we welcome Dana's replacement Gloria Taylor (previously with the ORNL Distributed Active Archive Center) to CDIAC.
Although most of our customers aren't aware of this (unless they study our mailing address), about a year ago CDIAC moved from the "charming" confines of Building 1000 to more modern quarters in nearby Building 1509. The move, and all the logistics associated therewith, went smoothly thanks to the heroic efforts of Dana Griffith, working with our division's Linda Armstrong and Linda Jennings and the Instrumentation and Controls Division's Randy Smith and Ed Stanford. Not only people and the contents of offices had to be moved, as well as our inventory of printed documents, but also our computing network had to be moved in a manner that minimized disruption to our own work and our communications with the outside world.
I would like to acknowledge the guidance and support of Bobbi Parra, CDIAC's Program Manager in the DOE's Office of Biological and Environmental Research; Roger Dahlman, who has oversight of CDIAC's AmeriFlux and FACE work; Wanda Ferrell, who oversees CDIAC's NARSTO effort; Anna Palmisano, who manages CDIAC's Ocean Data project; and all the other DOE global change program managers (Pat Crowley, Jerry Elwood, John Houghton, Peter Lunn, Rick Petty, and Mike Riches).
Robert M. Cushman