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This project links climate, hydrological, and ecological changes over the next 30 years in a Great Basin watershed. In recent years, climate variability on annual and decadal time scales has been recognized as greater than commonly perceived with increasing impacts on ecosystems and available water resources. Changes in vegetation distribution, composition and productivity resulting from climate change affect plant water use, which in turn can alter stream flow, groundwater and eventually available water resources. To better understand these links, project researchers implemented two computer-based numeric models in the Cleve Creek watershed in the Schell Creek Range, east of Ely, Nevada. The application of the...
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The Colorado River is the dominant water source for the southwestern United States, crossing through seven states before reaching Mexico. The river supplies water to approximately 36 million people, irrigates nearly six million acres of farmland within and beyond the basin, and contributes an estimated 26 billion dollars each year to the region’s recreational economy. Yet the Colorado River’s water supply is already fully allocated, meaning that the economic and environmental health of the region is closely tied to the river’s streamflow. Climate projections for the Southwest show a future marked by chronic drought and substantial reductions in streamflow. The region has already been impacted by climate change,...
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Fire in the western U.S. poses one of the greatest threats to human and ecological communities alike. In fact, fire management is the largest single expenditure of land management funds on federal lands. Now, climate change is altering wildfire patterns. Climate change in the West is creating warmer and drier conditions, resulting in an increase in the amount of dead vegetation available to fuel fires. This project sought to assess the vulnerability of forests in the southwestern U.S. to climate change and wildfire, in order to understand how these ecosystems might become altered as a result. Researchers (a) examined how climate change impacts wildfires in the region, to better understand fire risk; (b) identified...
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Native Americans are one of the most vulnerable populations to climate change in the United States because of their reliance upon the natural environment for food, livelihood, and cultural traditions. In the Southwest, where the temperature and precipitation changes from climate change are expected to be particularly severe, tribal communities may be especially vulnerable. Through this project, researchers sought to better understand the climate change threats facing the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe of northwestern Nevada. Researchers found that the Tribe’s vulnerability to climate change stems from its dependence on Pyramid Lake, which may experience reduced water supply in the future. This will potentially have negative...
Categories: Project; Types: Map Service, OGC WFS Layer, OGC WMS Layer, OGC WMS Service; Tags: 2012, CASC, Completed, Federal, Fish, All tags...
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Biodiversity is declining worldwide, and this trend could potentially become more severe as climate conditions change. An integral component of proactive adaptive management planning requires forecasts of how changes in climate will affect individual species. This need has been identified my multiple federal agencies, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, and U.S. Forest Service. The goal of this project was to assist land and wildlife managers in anticipating which species are most vulnerable to changes in climate in the Southwest, and how resources can best be invested to facilitate adaptation. Researchers evaluated the current and future breeding ranges...
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In the Southwestern U.S., rising temperatures and changing precipitation patterns are resulting in changes such as more frequent and severe wildfires and prolonged drought. Natural resource managers striving to make decisions in the face of these changing conditions can benefit from information on past, present, and future climate. While an array of climate assessments are available, it is unclear how useful or relevant this information is for resource management decision-making in the Southwest. This project sought to identify the types of environmental information that resource managers in the Southwest need to make climate-related management decisions. To meet this goal, researchers first assessed the degree...
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Natural climate variability can obscure or enhance long-term trends in experienced weather due to climate change. This can happen temporarily on timescales of a season to several years to a decade or two. Natural variability is poorly described and attributed to specific causes, contributing to uncertainty and misunderstandings about the nature of climate change that stakeholders and resource managers attempt to anticipate. There exists, therefore, a need to clarify the magnitude and causality of natural climate variability. This connection needs to be explained for locally-experienced weather and particularly for daily extreme events, whose seasonal behavior impacts both resources and imagination. Conversely, it...


    map background search result map search result map Identifying the Vulnerability of Birds and Reptiles to Changes in Climate in the Southwest The Vulnerability of Forests to Climate Change and Wildfire in the Southwestern U.S. Climate Change Vulnerability of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe in the Southwest Projecting Future Streamflow in the Colorado River Basin Understanding and Projecting Changes in Climate, Hydrology, and Ecology in the Great Basin for the Next 30 Years Understanding and Communicating the Role of Natural Climate Variability in a Changing World Assessing the Use of Climate Information in Resource Management Decisions in the Southwest Understanding and Projecting Changes in Climate, Hydrology, and Ecology in the Great Basin for the Next 30 Years Climate Change Vulnerability of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe in the Southwest Projecting Future Streamflow in the Colorado River Basin The Vulnerability of Forests to Climate Change and Wildfire in the Southwestern U.S. Understanding and Communicating the Role of Natural Climate Variability in a Changing World Assessing the Use of Climate Information in Resource Management Decisions in the Southwest Identifying the Vulnerability of Birds and Reptiles to Changes in Climate in the Southwest