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For the past few years, “king tides,” or the highest tides of the year, have been occurring more frequently and significantly affecting coastal environments across Hawaiʻi. Now, disappearing beaches and waves crashing over roadways are seemingly the “new normal.” In response, the state of Hawaiʻi is implementing adaptation strategies to combat tidal flooding in coastal areas. While flood management strategies are being implemented in urban areas, less is known about how tidal flooding, and associated inundation into surface and groundwater, might influence watershed dynamics and the native animals that depend on estuarine environments where freshwater meets the sea. Efforts for biocultural restoration of ecosystem...
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Pollinator restoration requires information about what species to plant and when to plant them to ensure food sources are available throughout the periods when pollinators are active. Changes in climate, including earlier spring warming and warmer fall temperatures, may cause flowering to become out of sync with pollinator activity. When restoring land to support pollinators, managers are challenged to select a mix of species that support pollinators of concern throughout their periods of activity. Existing planting tools have several disadvantages such as, their usability is location specific, they are virtually non-existent for the South Central region, and they do not often account for future changes in plant...
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Elodea spp. (Elodea) is Alaska’s first known invasive aquatic plant, first discovered in urban lakes in 2010. The combination of human pathways and climate change related shifts in seasonality and temperature have resulted in Elodea’s range expansion into Alaska’s freshwater resources. Elodea transmission often occurs when plant fragments get entangled in seaplane rudders and are carried to remote waterbodies where they quickly establish dense plant growth. This growth inhibits seaplane access and drastically alters aquatic ecosystems. Recent research showed that Elodea can have significant negative impacts on parks, subsistence, aviation‐related recreation, and Alaska’s salmon fisheries. For example, the economic...
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In the Western U.S., approximately 65% of the water supply comes from forested regions with most of the water that feeds local rivers coming from snowmelt that originates in mountain forests. The Rio Grande headwaters (I.e. the primary water generating region of the Rio Grande river) is experiencing large changes to the landscape primarily from forest fires and bark beetle infestations. Already, 85% of the coniferous forests in this region have been affected by the bark beetle, and projections indicate greater changes will occur as temperatures increase. In this area, most of the precipitation falls as snow in the winter, reaches a maximum depth in the late spring, and melts away due to warmer temperatures by early...
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Climate Change threatens efforts to restore and protect the natural and cultural resources vital to the traditional ways of life of Northern California Tribes. The state has indicated the need to include Tribal science priorities and Tribal management objectives into regional planning and policy. Moreover, Governor Newsom’s recent Executive Order N-82-20 aims to combat the biodiversity and climate change crises in California using nature-based solutions. Tribes, however, are at different phases of developing climate adaptation/ resiliency plans and, in many cases, have yet to have the opportunity to align these plans with neighboring Tribes or to include Tribal science in regional and statewide plans. As a result,...
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States in the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (SEAFWA) region have faced challenges when trying to develop regional plans or actions for many conservation issues. Leadership in many SEAFWA states is hesitant to approach the topic of climate change at all, let alone engage in multi-state efforts to mitigate climate impacts. Recent Southeast Climate Adaptation Science Center (SE CASC) supported research surveyed agency directors and supervisory boards, and discovered their primary concerns revolved around agency budgets, “R3” efforts (i.e., to recruit, retain, and reactivate hunters and anglers), and public outreach to maintain social relevance. Another project supported by the SE CASC and the...
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Ecosystem services – the benefits that nature provides to people – are a natural link between ecosystem functions and economic and social impacts. However, climate change is already impacting and altering ecosystem services. Research focused on all aspects of ecosystem services falls within the mission of the Climate Adaptation Science Centers (CASCs). While knowledge of ecosystem services supply is strong, analyses of service delivery and value currently fall outside the research agenda and capacity of the CASCs This project will draw on existing literature and expertise and experiences of CASC leadership and staff to identify the types of ecosystem services and the value of information of CASC research that are...
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The combined effects of climate change (e.g. increased freshwater supply, sea level rise, etc.), leveeing of the Mississippi River, and the gradual settling of soil have led to a land loss crisis in coastal Louisiana. Coastal wetlands provide various ecosystem services to local coastal communities, such as storm protection, flood control, and habitat for economically and ecologically important plants and animals. The loss of such valuable wetlands has become concerning to these communities as well as natural resource managers. Creating new coastal wetlands and reconnecting the Mississippi River to adjacent wetlands are two common strategies to mitigate coastal land loss and protect vulnerable coastal communities,...
Detailed information about past fire history is critical for understanding fire impacts and risk, as well as prioritizing conservation and fire management actions. Yet, fire history information is neither consistently nor routinely tracked by many agencies and states, especially on private lands in the Southeast. Remote sensing data products offer opportunities to do so but require additional processing to condense and facilitate their use by land managers. Here, we propose to generate fire history metrics from the Landsat Burned Area Products for the southeastern US. We will develop code for a processing pipeline that utilizes USGS high-performance computing resources, evaluate Amazon cloud computing services,...
The Total Water Level and Coastal Change Forecast delivers 6-day forecasts of hourly water levels and the probability of waves impacting dunes along 5000 km of sandy coasts along the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico and will soon expand to the Pacific. These forecasts provide needed information to local governments and federal partners and are used by the USGS to place sensors before a storm. The forecast data are presented in a publicly accessible web tool and stored in a database. Currently, model data are only accessible to project staff. A growing user community is requesting direct access to the data, to conduct scientific analyses and share forecasts on other platforms. To address this need, we will develop an...
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The Hawaiian Islands have an extremely diverse number of plants and animals found nowhere else on Earth. Changes brought about by the arrival of humans and the introduction of non-native predators, weeds, and diseases has led to the extinction of hundreds of Hawaiian species – far more than any other U.S. state. To help the State of Hawaiʻi prevent additional species from becoming extinct and to restore at-risk species to secure population sizes, the State, along with federal, private, and scientific partners, is currently developing and implementing a comprehensive conservation plan to protect and manage over 300 declining and endangered native plants and animals on the islands of Maui, Molokaʻi, and Lānaʻi. This...
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Riparian systems are critical to the human and ecological communities that interact with them. For the members of San Carlos Apache Tribe, this is particularly true, as riparian systems provide immense cultural and natural values such as ceremonial grounds and recreation areas. However, the riparian areas within the San Carlos Apache Reservation are at risk of degradation due to climate change and land use. Over the past several decades, invasive vegetation, changes in river discharge, and increased wildfire activity have continued to threaten the area’s riparian resources. This project aims to inform riparian restoration efforts by providing products that: identify historic vegetation and river channel properties,...
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As the climate continues to change, vulnerable wildlife species will need specific management strategies to help them adapt to these changes. One specific management strategy is based on the idea that some locations that species inhabit today will remain suitable over time and should be protected. The climate conditions at those locations will continue to be good enough for species to survive and breed successfully and are referred to as climate refugia. Another management strategy is based on the idea that species will need to shift across the landscape to track suitable conditions and reach climate refugia locations as climate and land uses change over time. The more opportunities we can give species to safely...
Fighting wildfires and reducing their negative effects on natural resources costs billions of dollars annually in the U.S. We will develop the Wildfire Trends Tool (WTT), a data visualization and analysis tool that will calculate and display wildfire trends and patterns for the western U.S. based on user-defined regions of interest, time periods, and ecosystem types. The WTT will be publicly available via a web application that will retrieve fire data and generate graphically compelling maps and charts of fire activity. For an area of interest, users will be able ask questions such as: Is the area burned by wildfire each year increasing or decreasing over time? Are wildfires becoming larger? Are fire seasons becoming...
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The Pueblo de San Ildefonso is facing increased wildfire risk under climate change. Recent fires have not only burned culturally significant sites, but they have also resulted in a loss of watershed runoff retention, which has increased erosion and the transport of contaminated sediments and soils on Pueblo lands from the adjacent Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). A priority for the Pueblo is to ensure that wildfires are managed appropriately and, when large fires do occur, that effective measures are taken to control the aftermath of increased flooding and erosion. This project will build on the knowledge of elders and the community to develop a study plan (or study method) to evaluate different landscape...
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The thawing of ice-rich soils in permafrost landscapes, a process known as thermokarst, can result in profound impacts on the energy and water balance, carbon fluxes, wildlife habitat, and existing infrastructure in the local area. The Alaska Thermokarst Model is a “state-and-transition" model being developed to simulate landscape evolution in polygonal tundra landscapes commonly found on the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska. This study will focus on the second step of the landscape evolution process – initiation of the thermokarst process through the concept of “climate priming” of the landscape. “Climate priming” occurs when there is high early and total winter snow precipitation, above normal winter temperatures,...
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Indigenous peoples and nations are on the front lines of climate change impacts and are leading the way in innovative adaptation action, such as in the use of traditional burning. Traditional burning has been recognized as a robust adaptation strategy, increasing the resiliency of ecosystems and the local communities that depend on them for their economic and social well-being. Furthermore, implementing natural fire practices may help reduce the likelihood of catastrophic fires and increase ecosystem water holding capacity. Traditional burning may be applied singularly or as a complementary approach with other ecosystem restoration practices, such as thinning and prescribed burning. The overarching goal of this...
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Wild turkey is a culturally and economically important game species that has shown dramatic population declines throughout much of the southeastern U.S. A possible explanation for these declines is that the timing of nesting has shifted to earlier in the year while hunting seasons have remained the same. Wild turkeys are the only gamebird in the contiguous United States that are hunted during the reproductive season, so premature harvest of adult male turkeys may disrupt reproductive behaviors and reduce population growth. In addition to hunter harvest, climate change can also impact population growth of wild turkeys. Local and broad-scale regional changes in precipitation and temperature associated with a changing...
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Increasing water usage and demands, combined with potentially less source water as a result of climate change impacts, are causing water resource managers to evaluate and implement alternative solutions for reducing water shortages, maximizing water availability, and reducing costs. The capture and reuse of wastewater is a promising strategy for increasing available water, but the costs and benefits of wastewater reuse are poorly quantified. In many locations, wastewater forms a significant component of stream flows for downstream beneficial uses. While wastewater reuse can boost local water availability, it also may reduce downstream flows and have negative impacts on downstream ecosystems. Therefore, assessing...
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State wildlife agencies and their partners use State Wildlife Action Plans to coordinate and guide management activities aimed at protecting species. To do so, they must identify factors putting species and their habitats at risk. Current and future climate change is one such factor. To succeed, management actions need to account for impacts of climate change on species today and in the future as climate change accelerates in coming decades. Researchers use modeling approaches to simulate and understand how future climate change will impact species. In contrast, natural resource managers involved in wildlife action plans tend to favor index-based scoring approaches to understand the risks to and vulnerability...


map background search result map search result map Assessing the Climate Vulnerability of Wild Turkeys Across the Southeastern U.S. Evaluating the Impacts of Potential Wastewater Reuse on Streams in the Red River Basin of Oklahoma Estimating the Future Effects of Forest Disturbance on Snow Water Resources in a Changing Environment Detecting and Predicting Aquatic Invasive Species Transmission Via Seaplanes in Alaska Time to Restore: Using a Community Based Approach to Identify Key Plant Species for Pollinator Restoration Planning for a Fresher Future: Implications of River Management Practices on Salt Marsh Restoration Projects in Coastal Louisiana Field Surveys for Vanishing Species: Closing Data Gaps to Understand Climate Change Impacts on Hawaiian Land Snails and Preserve Biodiversity Effect of Extreme Tidal Events on Future Sea-Level Rise Scenarios for He‘eia Fish Communities undergoing Ahupua‘a Restoration Mapping Connections across Ecosystems in the Northeast to Inform Climate Refugia Networks Accounting for Ecological Impacts of Climate Change in State Wildlife Action Plans: A comparison of Model-Based and Index-Based Vulnerability Assessments Mapping Riparian Vegetation Response to Climate Change on the San Carlos Apache Reservation and Upper Gila River Watershed to Inform Restoration Priorities: 1935 to Present Landscape Management Practices on the Pueblo de San Ildefonso Northern California Tribal Climate Adaptation and Science Integration Research Project Indigenous-Led Climate Adaptation Strategies: Integrating Landscape Condition, Monitoring, and Cultural Fire with the North Fork Mono Tribe An Ecosystem Services Approach to Climate Adaptation Research Identification of Regions in Alaska Susceptible to Landscape Deformation Due to “Climate Priming” of Permafrost Soils Improving Support for Regional Conservation Efforts in the Region Managed by the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies Landscape Management Practices on the Pueblo de San Ildefonso Northern California Tribal Climate Adaptation and Science Integration Research Project Planning for a Fresher Future: Implications of River Management Practices on Salt Marsh Restoration Projects in Coastal Louisiana Evaluating the Impacts of Potential Wastewater Reuse on Streams in the Red River Basin of Oklahoma Mapping Riparian Vegetation Response to Climate Change on the San Carlos Apache Reservation and Upper Gila River Watershed to Inform Restoration Priorities: 1935 to Present Indigenous-Led Climate Adaptation Strategies: Integrating Landscape Condition, Monitoring, and Cultural Fire with the North Fork Mono Tribe Accounting for Ecological Impacts of Climate Change in State Wildlife Action Plans: A comparison of Model-Based and Index-Based Vulnerability Assessments Mapping Connections across Ecosystems in the Northeast to Inform Climate Refugia Networks Field Surveys for Vanishing Species: Closing Data Gaps to Understand Climate Change Impacts on Hawaiian Land Snails and Preserve Biodiversity Effect of Extreme Tidal Events on Future Sea-Level Rise Scenarios for He‘eia Fish Communities undergoing Ahupua‘a Restoration Time to Restore: Using a Community Based Approach to Identify Key Plant Species for Pollinator Restoration Assessing the Climate Vulnerability of Wild Turkeys Across the Southeastern U.S. Detecting and Predicting Aquatic Invasive Species Transmission Via Seaplanes in Alaska Identification of Regions in Alaska Susceptible to Landscape Deformation Due to “Climate Priming” of Permafrost Soils Improving Support for Regional Conservation Efforts in the Region Managed by the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies An Ecosystem Services Approach to Climate Adaptation Research