Potential changes in climate could alter interactions between environmental and societal systems and adversely affect the availability of water resources in many coastal communities. Changes in streamflow patterns in conjunction with sea-level rise may change the salinity-intrusion dynamics of coastal rivers. Several municipal water-supply intakes are located along the Georgia and South Carolina coast that are proximal to the present day saltwater-freshwater interface of tidal rivers.
Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Puerto Rico, USVI
Defenders of Wildlife (DoW) is working with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s (FWC) Climate Change Team and Workgroups to define a process to incorporate climate change information into agency planning and decision making. This process will be designed to help guide agency efforts to develop an integrated climate change response strategy that can fulfill the needs of the State Wildlife Action Plan (SWAP) and other agency planning efforts.
From the Executive Summary:
Growing understanding of the need to adapt to the impacts of climate change has led to a significant rise in ongoing and planned adaptation action in the developing regions of the world, including the Caribbean. This upsurge in climate change adaptation action is a welcome occurrence, but enhanced coordination among expanding networks of adaptation actors is needed to ensure resources are deployed quickly and effectively.
The Puerto Rico Coastal Management Program (PRCZMP) is conducting a two-year Coastal Adaptation Project. The goal is to develop a coastal zone vulnerability assessment and appropriate adaptation strategies to help Puerto Rico cope with existing coastal hazards and future climate changes. The project is utilizing participatory stakeholder processes, spatial analysis tools, geophysical and chemical scientific knowledge, and utilization of the best available data from Puerto Rico’s experts in order to develop broadly applicable outputs.
Part of the Safeguarding Wildlife from Climate Change Web Conference Series, this webinar explores the approaches most commonly implemented to model the large-scale response of amphibians and reptiles to climate change. Steven Jackson, professor of Botany and director of the Program in Ecology at the University of Wyoming, discusses what conclusions can be drawn from vulnerability assessments and what kinds of data are necessary to execute an assessment.
Climate change is happening now at an unprecedented rate. Sea level rise is one of the more predictable and most profound consequences of climate change. In the next one to three centuries, sea level rise is likely to nullify most, if not all, that has been done over the past century to protect the terrestrial plants, animals and natural communities of the Florida Keys. Negative impacts on the built environment and human communities are also likely to be serious and irreversible.
In the absence of effective avoidance, mitigation, minimization and adaptation, climate-related failures will result in greater difficulty in addressing the priority problems identified in the Charlotte Harbor National Estuary Program (CHNEP) Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP): hydrologic alteration, water quality degradation, fish and wildlife habitat loss, and stewardship gaps. This study examines the current climate and ongoing climate change in southwest Florida along with five future scenarios of climate change into the year 2200. These scenarios include:
The authors conducted a survey to elicit responses from experts and decision makers serving the Florida Keys regarding vulnerability to global climate change. Study findings reveal deep concern among federal, state and local experts and decision makers about adverse impacts at the local level. A large majority of respondents recognize the increasing likelihood of dynamic, potentially irreversible, socioeconomic and ecological repercussions for the Florida Keys. However, very few experts and decision makers report that their respective agencies have developed formal adaptation plans.
In 2000, Congress approved and funded a massive 30-year restoration effort for the Florida Everglades - the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP). In 2008, the National Academies of Sciences recommended that restoration projects in the Everglades include long-term plans and sea level rise effects. Because CERP involves federal, state, and local partnerships (along with guaranteed funding), it may serve as an ideal platform from which to effectively plan and implement sea level rise adaptation plans.