The climate has impacts in each of the other societal benefit areas. Coping with climate change and variability demands good scientific understanding based on sufficient and reliable observations. GEOSS outcomes will enhance the capacity to model, mitigate, and adapt to climate change and variability. Better understanding of the climate and its impacts on the Earth system, including its human and economic aspects, will contribute to improved climate prediction and facilitate sustainable development while avoiding dangerous perturbation to the climate system.