GMD's mission involves answering key scientific questions in three areas of research -- Climate Forcing, Ozone Depletion, and Air Quality. By asking critical scientific questions and conducting detailed and carefully designed research addressing these three themes, GMD scientists provide a basis for assessing the prospects of change in the global climate or in the health of the atmosphere, both of which can significantly affect human health and wellbeing across the globe. GMD is dedicated to acquire, evaluate, and make available accurate, long-term records of atmospheric gases, aerosol particles, and solar radiation in a manner that allows the causes of climate change to be understood.
For more information, you can read the GMD Operating Plan.
Here's a look at some of our key research areas and the groups within GMD.
ESRL/GMD Research Themes
GMD conducts sustained observations and research related to global distributions, trends, sources and sinks of atmospheric constituents that are capable of forcing change in the climate of the Earth. This research will advance climate projections and provide scientific policy-relevant, decision support information to enhance society's ability to plan and respond.
GMD conducts research on the depletion of the global stratospheric ozone layer and Antarctic ozone hole through global surface-based monitoring of total-column ozone, ultraviolet radiation, and ozone-depleting gases, including those regulated by the Montreal Protocol. Continued surveillance is necessary in order to verify the expected recovery of the ozone layer.
GMD monitors levels of air quality elements such as tropospheric ozone, carbon monoxide and aerosol particles in non-source regions which may be affected by long range transport from distant sources of industrial pollution. This large-scale transport affects baseline air quality which must be monitored in order to determine the importance of regional sources that may impact the environment and public health.