Climate Change and Pacific Islands: Indicators and ImpactsPublished: December 03, 2012
This report developed by the Pacific Islands Regional Climate Assessment (PIRCA) is aimed at assessing the state of knowledge about climate change indicators, impacts, and adaptive capacity of the Hawaiian archipelago and the US-Affiliated Pacific Islands (USAPI). The PIRCA is a collaborative effort engaging federal, state, and local government agencies, non-government organizations, academia, businesses, and community groups to inform and prioritize their activities in the face of a changing climate.
The immediate focus has been on bringing together almost 100 scientific experts and practitioners to generate an integrated report to provide a regional contribution to the National Climate Assessment (NCA), which is conducted under the United States Global Change Research Act of 1990. The PIRCA report examines the adaptive capacity of Pacific Island communities regarding climate change effects on freshwater availability and quality; regional and community economies; urbanization, transportation, and infrastructure vulnerabilities; ecosystem services; ocean resource sustainability and coastal zone management; and cultural resources. The initial PIRCA activities were conducted August 2011 through February 2012 and included multiple dialogues and three workshops to facilitate sharing, analyzing, and reporting on scientific consensus, knowledge gaps, sectoral needs, and adaptive capacity for addressing the changing climate. The material presented in this report is based largely on published research. The report was reviewed and approved by the PIRCA Steering Committee, and workshop participants were invited to comment on the draft report. Several reviewers independent of the PIRCA process also provided comments.