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Deprecated[59610] Southwest Climate Science Center

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Drought and wildfire pose enormous threats to the integrity of natural resources that land managers are charged with protecting. Recent observations and modeling forecasts indicate that these stressors will likely produce catastrophic ecosystem transformations, or abrupt changes in the condition of plants, wildlife, and their habitats, in regions across the country in coming decades. In this project, researchers will bring together land managers who have experienced various degrees of ecosystem transformation (from not yet experiencing any changes to seeing large changes across the lands they manage) to share their perspectives on how to mitigate large-scale changes in land condition. The team will conduct surveys...
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The fast pace of change in coastal zones, the trillions of dollars of investment in human communities in coastal areas, and the myriad of ecosystem services natural coastal environments provide makes managing climate-related risks along coasts a massive challenge for all of the U.S. coastal states and territories. Answering questions about both the costs and the benefits of alternative adaptation strategies in the near term is critical to taxpayers, decision-makers, and to the biodiversity of the planet. There is significant public and private interest in using ecosystem based adaptation approaches to conserve critical significant ecosystems in coastal watersheds, estuaries and intertidal zones and to protect man-made...
Abstract (from Ecological Society of America): Large, severe fires are becoming more frequent in many forest types across the western United States and have resulted in tree mortality across tens of thousands of hectares. Conifer regeneration in these areas is limited because seeds must travel long distances to reach the interior of large burned patches and establishment is jeopardized by increasingly hot and dry conditions. To better inform postfire management in low elevation forests of California, USA, we collected 5‐year postfire recovery data from 1,234 study plots in 19 wildfires that burned from 2004–2012 and 18 years of seed production data from 216 seed fall traps (1999–2017). We used this data in conjunction...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
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The goals of this project were to: (1) produce a state-of-the-art assessment and synthesis of climate change projections, impacts, vulnerabilities, adaptive capacity, and prospects for mitigation and adaptation actions in the Southwest in support of the regional contribution to the National Climate Assessment; (2) develop an inventory of federal partners and stakeholders involved with climate adaptation programs, and (3) forge stronger bonds between the DOI-SW CSC, the three NOAA-RISAs in the Southwest, and the Landscape Conservation Cooperatives.
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There is increasing and broad recognition of the importance of Indigenous and local knowledge in leading climate change adaptation. Indigenous peoples and nations are on the front lines of climate change impacts, yet they are also leading the way in many innovative adaptation actions, such as traditional or cultural burning practices - a form of low-intensity understory-burning that promotes ecosystem health and builds cultural resilience. The overarching goal of this project is to better understand and establish traditional burning as a robust adaptation strategy, based on the practice’s own merits and/or as a complementary approach to other conventional ecosystem restoration practices. Focusing on central California,...
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