This report summarizes the results of a rapid vulnerability assessment (July 2016) and adaptation strategy planning (September 2016) workshops for 10 focal resources in the Territory and National Marine Sanctuary of American Samoa by engaging with stakeholders, including village leaders, community members, resource managers, local government representatives, and business owners that rely on the resources with the goal of increasing climate resilience in the region.
The Marine Plan Partnership for the North Pacific Coast (MaPP) is a collaboration between British Columbia’s Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, and First Nations representing the Coastal First Nations-Great Bear Initiative, the North Coast-Skeena First Nations Stewardship Society, and the Nanwakolas Council. EcoAdapt partnered with MaPP in 2012-2015 to facilitate the integration of climate change into marine use plans for the four subregions: Haida Gwaii, North Coast, Central Coast, and North Vancouver Island.
The Great Barrier Reef (GBR) Marine Park Zoning Plan is the primary planning vehicle for conservation and management of the GBR Marine Park. Management is shared between the Australian and Queensland governments, and day-to-day operations are overseen by the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service. The Zoning Plan aims to protect and conserve the biodiversity of the GBR ecosystem within a network of highly protected zones and provide opportunities for the ecologically sustainable use of, and access to, the reef.
Coastal and marine spatial planning (CMSP) is a science-based, collaborative process used to sustainably manage resources, interests, and activities among diverse coastal and ocean users and sectors. Climate change is affecting marine and coastal ecosystems throughout the world, manifesting in warming air and sea temperatures, increasing coastal storms, and rising sea levels. The existing and projected impacts of climate change and ocean acidification need to be incorporated into planning processes to ensure long-term success. Because CMSP is an emerging field, it is important to look to other coastal and marine planning and management frameworks to identify opportunities for climate-informed action.
With the support of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, EcoAdapt created the Climate-Informed CMSP Initiative to examine the connections between climate change and coastal and marine planning. This included conducting a needs assessment survey to identify what practitioners need in order to integrate climate change into their planning efforts, as well as research into the state of climate-informed CMSP efforts with the intention of identifying case study examples of adaptation in action. Our key research questions included:
- How is climate change currently being integrated into CMSP-related efforts?
- How can climate-informed CMSP be done?
- What do practitioners need in order to integrate climate change into CMSP?
The impact of climate change on cold-water ecosystems—and the cold-adapted native salmonids present in these systems—is the subject of a substantial body of research.. Recently, scientists have developed a number of datasets and analyses that provide insight into projections of climate change e ects on native salmonid populations in the northern U.S. Rockies region. Alongside this research, a number of management options for helping native salmonids respond to the e ects of climate change—also known as ‘climate adaptation’ strategies and actions—have been identi ed by scientists and managers in the region. These analyses and climate adaptation options o er valuable information to managers charged with making di cult decisions about where and how to best conserve and restore the region’s native salmonids given the challenges posed by shifting climatic conditions. Yet managers in the region continue to identify challenges in applying available information on climate change impacts, particularly in determining forward-looking conservation goals and selecting appropriate actions from the long menu of available climate adaptation options.
To augment this research and compilation of climate-informed management options, we have developed a decision support framework aimed at helping managers think critically about how to apply climate information to their management decisions. Speci cally, our framework is meant to help managers:
1) articulate an appropriate conservation goal for cold-adapted native salmonid populations taking into account the impacts of climate change on habitat suitability, threats from non-native sh, and connectivity;
2) consider the climate adaptation strategies that might best support that goal; and
3) identify actions that are available to implement the chosen strategies.
Given the complexity and uncertainty of conserving cold-adapted species in an era of rapid climate change and the limited resources available for conservation, choices about where to invest conservation dollars require defensible and transparent decision making. The three-step decision framework we provide here is meant to be a starting point to help managers document how they have incorporated information on climate change into their management decisions and prioritization of limited resources. The process used to develop the framework for native salmonids can be used to tailor decision support for additional conservation targets of interest. Ultimately, managers can integrate this climate change thinking into existing conservation strategies and management plans, alongside the myriad other regulatory, social, economic and locally-driven factors and mandates that in uence management decisions.
The Western Regional Action Plan outlines present and prioritizes future efforts to increase the production, delivery, and use of the climate-related information needed to help fulfill NOAA Fisheries’ mission and implement the NOAA Fisheries’ Climate Science Strategy (NCSS) in the CCLME over the next three to five years.