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The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) developed future scenarios of land use-land cover (LULC) change in the United States as part of a national carbon sequestration assessment required by the U.S. Congress (Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007). Future potential demand, or the area of land required for each LULC class, was based on a set of scenarios from three Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on Emission Scenarios (SRES) (Nakicenovic et al. 2000): A2 (emphasizes economic development with a regional focus), A1B (emphasizes economic development with a global orientation), and B1 (emphasizes environmental sustainability with a global orientation). To develop LULC change scenarios...
ContextIn addition to biodiversity conservation, California rangelands generate multiple ecosystem services including livestock production, drinking and irrigation water, and carbon sequestration. California rangeland ecosystems have experienced substantial conversion to residential land use and more intensive agriculture.ObjectivesTo understand the potential impacts to rangeland ecosystem services, we developed six spatially explicit (250 m) climate/land use change scenarios for the Central Valley of California and surrounding foothills consistent with three Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change emission scenario narratives.MethodsWe quantified baseline and projected change in wildlife habitat, soil organic...
Dr. Frank Casey of the US Geological Survey discussed the challenges faced when attempting to value changes in ecosystem services in response to climate/land use change impacts on California rangelands.The presentation provides a brief overview of how an economics conceptual framework and tools can be used to value three ecosystem services that California rangelands provide:Carbon sequestrationWildlife habitatWater flow and quality The Alameda Creek watershed is selected as a case study example illustrating the challenges and opportunities in valuing changes in these services under two climate/land use change scenarios.
In the Pacific Northwest, coastal wetlands support a wealth of ecosystem services including habitat provision for wildlife and fisheries and flood protection. The tidal marshes, mudflats, and shallow bays of coastal estuaries link marine, freshwater, and terrestrial habitats, and provide economic and recreational benefits to local communities. Climate change effects such as sea-level rise are altering these habitats, but we know little about how these areas will change over the next 50–100 years. Our study examined the effects of sea-level rise on nine tidal marshes in Washington and Oregon between 2012 and 2015, with the goal of providing scientific data to support future coastal planning and conservation. We compiled...
The CA LCC-funded project “A Climate Change Adaptation Strategy for Sierra Nevada Birds “ applied the NatureServe Climate Change Vulnerability Index tool to assess vulnerability of 168 bird species that breed in the Sierra Nevada and developed a peer-reviewed Climate Change Adaptation Strategy for Sierra Nevada bird species that are most vulnerable to climate change. “Sierra Nevada Bird Vulnerability Rankings Table” summarizes the vulnerability rankings using the NatureServe Climate Change Vulnerability Index for 168 Sierra Nevada bird species.
The 18 million acres of rangelands in the Central Valley of California provide multiple benefits or “ecosystem services” to people—including wildlife habitat, water supply, open space, recreation, and cultural resources. Most of this land is privately owned and managed for livestock production. These rangelands are vulnerable to land-use conversion and climate change. To help resource managers assess the impacts of land-use change and climate change, U.S. Geological Survey scientists and their cooperators developed scenarios to quantify and map changes to three main rangeland ecosystem services—wildlife habitat, water supply, and carbon sequestration. Project results will help prioritize strategies to conserve these...
The development of sophisticated species distribution modeling techniques provides an opportunity to examine the potential effects of climate change on bird communities. Using these modeling approaches, we are relating bird data to environmental layers to generate robust predictions of current (1971–2000) and projected future species occurrence. Future bird distributions are based on regional climate model projections for the periods 2038–2070 (IPCC Scenario A2). Bird species distributions were created using the Maxent modeling technique: Maxent (Phillips et al. 2006), which is able to model non-linear responses to environmental variables. Map values represent the predicted habitat suitability; the higher the values,...
The Watershed Analyst lets you access climate and hydrology data to help your community get climate ready. The Watershed Analyst accesses the best science available to provide our region’s first high resolution resource for looking at the effects of climate on water resources and open spaces. This project taps into the knowledgebase of TBC3, the Terrestrial Biodiversity Climate Change Consortium, a Bay Area interdisciplinary research collaborative funded by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. Data provided can be a helpful tool for teachers, students, planners, and researchers. For more information on the peer-reviewed research base of the watershed toolbox see tbc3.org.You can explore historic climate and water...
The Deltares Delft3D FM (flexible mesh) model of the Bay-Delta that provides boundary conditions for the South San Francisco Bay geomorphic model, which is now a 1D model that is spatially extrapolated to 2D, was released at the Bay-Delta Conference in October 2014. The San Francisco Bay-Delta Community Model is an open source Delft3D FM model and allows for continuous development of a process-based, hydrodynamic surface water flow model of the San Francisco Bay-Delta system. The domain covers an area from Point Reyes up to the tidal limits near Sacramento and Vernalis and includes the entire Bay. A high-resolution mesh ultimately allows for detailed computations of flow (including salinity and temperature), sediment...
This report presents the approach, methods, conclusions, and recommendations of the San Francisco Bay Area Upland Habitat Goals Project, a five-year science-based study to identify the most essential lands needed to sustain the biodiversity of the San Francisco Bay Area.The project identified the types, amount, and distribution of habitats – the Conservation Lands Network – and the ecological processes needed to sustain healthy and diverse populations of plants, fish, and wildlife in the nine county Bay Area. The Conservation Lands Network is a mosaic of existing protected lands, additional lands to support irreplaceable rare and endemic species, and vast tracts of intact common vegetation types. The network design...
Densities for five key tidal marsh-dependent bird species were modeled using boosted regression trees (Elith et al. 2008). The models are able to fit non-linear functions between environmental variables and the presence/absence or density of a species. Map values represent the probability of occurrence of a species or the density (birds/ha). Higher values in a map indicate a higher likelihood that a species will be present at a site. Bird species modeled: Common yellowthroat, black rail, clapper rail, marsh wren, song sparrow. Model outputs: Probably of occurrence, density (birds per hectare)
We assessed the ‘vulnerability’ of roughly 10% of California’s rare plant species (156 of 1625 total rare plants) representing a range of species characteristics. The project used species distribution modeling to assess the risk to habitat change under various climate change scenarios for rare plants. To predict the response of rare plant species to climate change, the project modeled the current distribution of the species using climate and environmental data (e.g., soils, disturbance, land-use), use these models to predict the species distribution given climate change, calculate current and future range size, calculate the amount of overlap of predicted future distribution with current distribution, and assess...
Current and projected bird distribution and abundance layers, updated with new model that has better inputs. Point Blue Conservation Science assessed the effects of sea-level rise (SLR) and salinity changes on San Francisco Bay tidal marsh ecosystems. Tidal marshes are naturally resilient to SLR, in that they can build up elevation through the capture of suspended sediment and deposition of organic material (vegetation). Thus, a “bathtub” model approach is not appropriate for assessing impacts to this dynamic habitat. Rather, dynamic accretion potential can be modeled annually based on tidal inundation, sediment availability, and the rate of organic accumulation (related to salinity).Working with researchers at...
This graphing tool presents climate and hydrology data values from the California Basin Characterization Model dataset plotted over time for 156 hydrologic basins (HUC-8 basins) that comprise hydrologic California. You can select a basin by clicking on it on the map on the left; hover your mouse to see basin names. You can select a data variable and a smoothing period on the right, then click “Draw”.Historical and projected future values for that basin and the chosen data variable are plotted on the same graph. The four future climate scenarios were selected to demonstrate a range of precipitation and temperatures projected by the 18 scenarios available from the BCM; they are: MIROC-esm RCP 8.5 (warmest, driest),...
Maps of the probability of occurrence of tidal marsh plant species were created using generalized additive models (Hastie and Tibshirani 1990). Species modeled: Saltgrass, alkali-heath, SF Bay gumplant, jaumea, wirerush, pepperweed, giant reed, pickleweed, hard-stem tule, three-square bullrush, smooth cordgrass, California cordgrass, cattail.
EcoAdapt and partners have been conducting a climate change vulnerability and adaptation assessment for focal resources in the Sierra over the past year. We will be showing the final results of these assessments based on the two workshops held in 2013 and additional syntheses by EcoAdapt. Additionally we will be explaining next steps for the project and discussing the broader impacts. Although the geographic focus is the Sierra, the methods and results are relevant to all of California so we encourage folks to participate from other areas!
Decision makers that are responsible for stewardship of natural resources face many challenges, which are complicated by uncertainty about impacts from climate change, expanding human development, and intensifying land uses. A systematic process for evaluating the social and ecological risks, trade-offs, and cobenefits associated with future changes is critical to maximize resilience and conserve ecosystem services. This is particularly true in coastal areas where human populations and landscape conversion are increasing, and where intensifying storms and sea-level rise pose unprecedented threats to coastal ecosystems. We applied collaborative decision analysis with a diverse team of stakeholders who preserve, manage,...
The coastal region of California supports a wealth of ecosystem services including habitat provision for wildlife and fisheries. Tidal marshes, mudflats, and shallow bays within coastal estuaries link marine, freshwater and terrestrial habitats, and provide economic and recreational benefits to local communities. Climate change effects such as sea-level rise (SLR) are altering these habitats, but we know little about how these areas will change over the next 50–100 years. Our study examined the projected effects of three recent SLR scenarios produced for the West Coast of North America on tidal marshes in California. We compiled physical and biological data, including coastal topography, tidal inundation, plant...
Understanding San Francisco Bay’s vulnerabilities to sea level rise is important for both biodiversity conservation and for management of public infrastructure. Coastal marshes provide essential ecosystem services such as water filtration and flood abatement while also providing important habitat for species of conservation concern. Improving our understanding of how tidal marsh habitats will be affected by sea level rise is important so that we maximize ecosystem services that coastal marshes provide and ensure that endemic populations of plants and animals persist into the future. For this project, marsh accretion was modeled by ESA PWA (http://www.pwa-ltd.com/index.html) using the Marsh-98 model, described here:...
Data layers of current and projected suitable habitat for five species: big-eared woodrat (Neotoma macrotis), California gnatcatcher, Ceanothus greggii, Ceanothus verrucosus, and Tecate cypress in the South Coast Ecoregion in California, USA. Data set includes scenarios with and without projected urban growth over a 50 year period, and with and without projected climate change over a 50 year period. The potential distribution of California gnatcatcher was modeled using a MaxEnt species distribution model using recent and future climate data with presence records from the San Diego Natural History Museum. Species distributions were modeled only for the South Coast Ecoregion in California, USA as this is where management...