The Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC), which includes the World Data Center (WDC) for Atmospheric Trace Gases, is the primary global-change data and information analysis center of the Department of Energy (DOE). More than just an archive of data sets and publications, CDIAC has¾since its inception in 1982¾enhanced the value of its holdings through intensive quality assurance, documentation, and integration. Whereas many traditional data centers are discipline-based (for example, meteorology or oceanography), CDIAC's scope includes potentially anything and everything that would be of value to users concerned with the greenhouse effect and global climate change, including concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other radiatively active gases in the atmosphere; the role of the terrestrial biosphere and the oceans in the biogeochemical cycles of greenhouse gases; emissions of CO2 and other trace gases to the atmosphere; long-term climate trends; the effects of elevated CO2 on vegetation; and the vulnerability of coastal areas to rising sea level.
CDIAC is located within the Environmental Sciences Division (ESD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. CDIAC is co-located with ESD researchers investigating global-change topics, such as the global carbon cycle and the effects of carbon dioxide on vegetation. CDIAC staff are also connected with current ORNL research on related topics, such as renewable energy and supercomputing technologies.
CDIAC is supported by the Environmental Sciences Division (Jerry Elwood, Acting Director) of DOE's Office of Biological and Environmental Research. CDIAC's FY 1999 budget was 2.2M dollars. CDIAC represents the DOE in the multi-agency Global Change Data and Information System. Bobbi Parra, and Wanda Ferrell on an interim basis, is DOE's Program Manager with responsibility for CDIAC.
CDIAC comprises three groups, Global Change Data, Computer Systems, and Information Services, with seventeen full-time and part-time staff. The Global Change Data group is responsible for identifying and obtaining databases important to global-change research, analyzing data, compiling needed databases, providing data management support to specific programs (e.g., NARSTO), and preparing documentation to ensure the long-term utility of CDIAC's data holdings. The Computer Systems group provides computer system support for all CDIAC and WDC activities, including designing and maintaining CDIAC's computing system network; ensuring compliance with ORNL/DOE computing security regulations; ensuring long-term preservation of CDIAC data holdings through systematic backups; evaluating, developing, and implementing software; ensuring standards compliance; generating user statistics; providing Web design, development, and oversight; and providing systems analysis and programming assistance for scientific data projects.
The Information Services group responds to data and information requests; maintains records of all request activities; assists in Web development and maintenance; and produces CDIAC's newsletter, CDIAC Communications, catalog, glossary, and educational materials. The following section provides further details on CDIAC's organization.