Plan the Work, Work the Plan: An Introduction to the National Park Service Climate, Science, and Disaster Response Program

Jeneva P. Wright and Morris Hylton III
Posted on: 11/28/2023 - Updated on: 11/28/2023

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The climate crisis poses significant and unprecedented threats to the resources stewarded by the National Park Service (NPS). Some impacts are already apparent, while understanding of other outcomes is still developing. While the rate and magnitude of climate change ultimately depends on worldwide management of greenhouse gas emissions, resource managers today face choices about what actions to take, despite the uncertainty.

To support the mission of NPS and its cultural resource preservation goals, the Climate, Science, and Disaster Response (CSDR) Program has been developed to explore climate impacts, provide cultural resource expertise, and expand and accelerate initiatives related to cultural resources and climate change adaptation. Here we introduce the construct of the CSDR program, share the components of the program’s 2022–2025 Action Plan, and highlight initial activities.

The CSDR team developed a three-year action plan (2022–2025) intended to systematically and strategically organize, articulate, and measure the impacts of a series of emergent, interrelated activities. Eight action areas have been articulated and a range of scales captured within each action area. Some activities target problem-specific research at individual park units, while others attempt broader strategies.


Wright, J.P. and Hylton III, M. (2022). Plan the work, work the plan: An introduction to the National Park Service Climate, Science, and Disaster Response Program. Parks Stewardship Forum, 38(3). Retrieved from

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