Climate change presents an uncertain future with potentially high costs for Missoula County in western Montana. The area's economy and high quality of life that draw and keep people in the region could be in jeopardy due to changes in average temperature, stream flows, and precipitation. While the exact trajectory of change is unknown, preparations can be made for the future based on a reasonable range of expected scenarios. Preparing for climate change is similar to preparing for other potential events, such as fire or drought.
Claudia Mengelt and Robert Fri talk about coping with climate change. What short-term actions can be taken to respond effectively to climate change? What promising long-term strategies, investments, and opportunities could be pursued? This session summarizes the findings from a recent series of reports by the National Research Council of the National Academies of Science highlighting options for adapting to and mitigating global climate change.
Forest managers are seeking practical guidance on how to adapt their current practices and, if necessary, their management goals, in response to climate change. Science management collaboration was initiated on national forests in eastern Washington where resource managers showed a keen interest in science-based options for adapting to climate change. Over a two day workshop scientists and managers reviewed current climate change science and identified resources vulnerable to expected climate change.
It’s time to examine how our current operating systems — the institutions of social, political, and economic relations — leave us vulnerable. Then we can begin to draw a new map for navigating the territory ahead. While individual maps may differ, a set of core principles for developing 21st-century institutions is common to us all. They are the principles of resilience. Stated simply, human resilience is the capacity to effectively influence and adapt to change.
In the most basic sense, a watershed assessment is a process for understanding a watershed’s current conditions and the likely causes of those conditions. An assessment can include steps to identify issues, examine the history of the watershed, describe its features, and evaluate various resources within the watershed.
The Adaptation Strategies Guide for Water Utilities provides adaptation options for drinking water, wastewater, and stormwater utilities based on region and projected climate impacts. The adaptation options are based on the projected climate impacts for different regions. While specific example adaptation options are described in the Guide, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for adaptation planning.