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Tirpak was the director of the Global Climate Change Policy Division at the United States Environmental Protection Agency in 1984–1992. He was the Coordinator of Science and Technology at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change for nine years. He was the head of the climate change unit at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) for three years. He has also worked on the Montreal Protocol, and held positions in industry with Texaco, Alcoa, and Braddock Dunn & McDonald. His awards include an EPA Gold Medal, a U.S. Government Senior Executive Service Award, and a President’s Commission on Personnel Interchange Award.
Tirpak is one of the coordinating lead authors of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with former US Vice President Al Gore. He advises national governments and industry as an associate of the International Institute for Sustainable Development in Canada, and a senior fellow at the World Resources Institute in Washington, D.C.
Tirpak was the Chairman of the International Scientific Steering Committee for Avoiding Dangerous Climate Change Symposium on Stabilisation of Greenhouse Gas Concentrations, which took place at the invitation of the British Prime Minister Tony Blair in February 2005.
- Global Warming
- Montreal Protocol
- Dennis Tirpak biography, World Resources Institute
- Dennis Tirpak biography, American Chemical Society
- Smith, Joel B.; Tirpak, Dennis A. (December 1989). The Potential Effects Of Global Climate Change On The United States. Report to Congress. United States Environmental Protection Agency. EPA-230-05-89-050.
- Hecht, Alan D.; Tirpak, Dennis (April 1995). "Framework Agreement on Climate Change: A Scientific and Policy History". Climatic Change. 29 (4): 371–402. Bibcode:1995ClCh...29..371H. doi:10.1007/BF01092424.
- Tirpak, Dennis (December 2008). "The Scientific Basis for National and International Policies, Instruments and Co-operative Arrangements" (PDF). IPCC.
- Black, Richard (3 February 2005). "Scientists' grim climate report". BBC News.