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Climate Change Information

A new report (2013) is available about the effects of climate change in the Pacfic Northwest. The report Climate Change in the Northwest: Implications for Our Landscapes, Waters, and Communities is now available for download in PDF format. It is available here or through this link

This 271 paper is to be included in the Pacific Northwest chapter of the forthcoming U.S. National Climate Assessment to be published by Island Press. This report discusses, among other things projected impacts on coasts and ocean, water, forests, and agriculture.

Of special interest may be the salmon focus of the water resources section (Box 3.1 on page 51) and Section 4.5 on consequences of climate change to Coast and Marine Natural Systems (beginning on page 76).

NOAA has completed its 2013 Global Analysis. See: href="

Among other information is a chart of the significant climate events of the year:
 [2013 Significant Climate Anomalies and Events ]

The Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States report is the authoritative scientific report, developed by 13 Federal agencies, which summarizes the state of the science and the impacts of climate change on the United States, now and in the future. The 2009 report (on line version available at: is the latest published edition of this report under the authority of the United States Global Change Research Program. The next edition of this report is scheduled to be released in 2014.

Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States 2009 Report Key Findings

See Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States Highlights for further information regarding these key findings.

See the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change  for more in-depth information on climate change and to view various assessments and technical reports.

For general information on climate and climate change, visit

The diagram below, from NOAA is included in a report published in the June 2010 issue (Vol. 91) of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society. This report provides a comprehensive discussion and analysis on the state of the climate. It was prepared by 300 scientists from 48 countries who analyzed 10 indicators of global climate change. Seven indicators are rising: air temperature over land, sea-surface temperature, air temperature over oceans, sea level, ocean heat, humidity and tropospheric temperature in the "active-weather" layer of the atmosphere closest to the Earth's surface. Three indicators are declining: Arctic sea ice, glaciers and spring snow cover in the Northern hemisphere. The past decade was the warmest on record and that the Earth has been growing warmer over the last 50 years. The report emphasizes that human society has developed for thousands of years under one climatic state, and now a new set of climatic conditions are taking shape. These conditions are consistently warmer, and some areas are likely to see more extreme events like severe drought, torrential rain and violent storms.
 [ Ten Indicators of a Warming World ]


1. The National Fish, Wildlife, and Plants Climate Adaptation Strategy,March 2013

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, along with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Department of Commerce, as well as State and Tribal partners released, in March 2013, the final The National Fish, Wildlife, and Plants Climate Adaptation Strategy. The purpose of the Strategy is to inspire and enable natural resource professionals and other decision makers to take action to conserve the nation's fish, wildlife, plants, and ecosystem functions, as well as the human uses and values these natural systems provide, in a changing climate.

Full report:

For the Strategy highlights brochure:

2. The Climate Adaptation Knowledge Exchange (CAKE), a website that has a growing list of case studies from around the world on climate adaptation in practice.

3. A special issue of the journal Conservation Biology released in December 2013 includes a paper written by a team of authors from the Climate Impacts Group, USGS, NOAA, and Stony Brook University on choosing and using climate change scenarios for ecological impacts assessments and conservation decisions. Although written for a conservation biology audience, the paper’s guidelines are relevant to a diverse range of resource managers (info from Climate Impacts Group, Seattle).

"Choosing and Using Climate-Change Scenarios for Ecological-Impact Assessments and Conservation Decisions" (Snover et al. 2013) addresses common misperceptions about the relevance and applicability of climate change projections for biological assessments and decision-making. It presents defensible strategies for choosing among the diversity of available scenarios and for applying those scenarios in fisheries management and conservation decisions. See abstract (below).

The Conservation Biology special issue focuses on how to incorporate considerations of a changing climate into aquatic species management under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Other papers in the special issue include a policy examination of the ESA in light of significant ecosystem changes brought by climate change, five case studies on climate change and aquatic species management, and a summary paper. The special issue summarizes the results of the NOAA Climate Change and ESA Project, which had the goal of helping decision makers understand the differences between varying scientific approaches related to climate change and improving their ability to implement the ESA in a changing world.

Abstract for the “Choosing and Using” paper (Snover et al. 2013):
Increased concern over climate change is demonstrated by the many efforts to assess climate effects and develop adaptation strategies. Scientists, resource managers, and decision makers are increasingly expected to use climate information, but they struggle with its uncertainty. With the current proliferation of climate simulations and downscaling methods, scientifically credible strategies for selecting a subset for analysis and decision making are needed. Drawing on a rich literature in climate science and impact assessment and on experience working with natural resource scientists and decision makers, we devised guidelines for choosing climate-change scenarios for ecological impact assessment that recognize irreducible uncertainty in climate projections and address common misconceptions about this uncertainty. This approach involves identifying primary local climate drivers by climate sensitivity of the biological system of interest; determining appropriate sources of information for future changes in those drivers; considering how well processes controlling local climate are spatially resolved; and selecting scenarios based on considering observed emission trends, relative importance of natural climate variability, and risk tolerance and time horizon of the associated decision. The most appropriate scenarios for a particular analysis will not necessarily be the most appropriate for another due to differences in local climate drivers, biophysical linkages to climate, decision characteristics, and how well a model simulates the climate parameters and processes of interest. Given these complexities, we recommend interaction among climate scientists, natural and physical scientists, and decision makers throughout the process of choosing and using climate-change scenarios for ecological impact assessment.


1. California Adaptation Forum, August 18-20, 2014, Sacramento

To register go to:

2.Pacific Northwest Climate Science Conference -Fifth Annual Sept 9-10, 2014, Seattle, WA

The PNW Climate Science Conference annually brings together more than 250 researchers and practitioners from around the region to discuss scientific results, challenges, and solutions related to the impacts of climate on people, natural resources, and infrastructure in the Pacific Northwest. It is the region's premier opportunity for a cross-disciplinary exchange of knowledge and ideas about regional climate, climate impacts, and climate adaptation science and practice.

The conference also provides a forum for presenting emerging policy and management goals, objectives, and information needs related to regional climate impacts and adaptation. Conference participants include policy- and decision-makers, resource managers, and scientists from academia, public agencies, sovereign tribal nations, non-governmental organizations, and the private sector. Emphasis is on talks that are comprehensible to a wide audience on topics of broad interest.


3. Lara Whitely Binder , Outreach and Adaptation Specialist, Climate Impacts Group, University of Washington , has a list serve for new papers and items of interest in the Pacific Northwest. climateupdate mailing list:

4. Workshop on Estuaries, Climate Change, and Conservation Planning Oregon Coast Aquarium, Newport, Oregon, November 18-19, 2010

5. Mapping Impacts, Threats and Strategies for Adaptation: The Yale Mapping Framework - See more at: