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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced $5.6 million in funding for seven projects in ecological science in an effort to improve the power of Earth and environmental system models to predict weather and climate.      

“Improving Earth System Models is a critical step in mitigating risks to the nation’s energy infrastructures and supplies,” said Sharlene Weatherwax, DOE Associate Director of Science for Biological and Environmental Research. “By helping us to better understand how ecological systems behave within a complex Earth system, these investments in science will ensure that America remains at the forefront of energy science and technology.”

Selected projects cover a range of topics in terrestrial ecology, from better understanding of the role of permafrost thaw to the ecological recovery in tropical systems following extreme weather events.

The resulting experimental data and analysis from these investments will help improve Earth system models, which are large-scale representations of interacting components, such as the atmosphere, ocean, and terrestrial environment. Run on the world’s fastest supercomputers, the DOE models will use the insights gained from this research to improve predictive capabilities.

Projects were chosen by competitive peer review under the DOE Funding Opportunity Announcement on Terrestrial Ecological Sciences, sponsored by the Office of Biological and Environmental Research within the Department’s Office of Science.

Funding totals $5.4 million in Fiscal Year 2019 dollars for projects lasting three years in duration. A list of projects can be found here.