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A New Era for Conservation: Safeguarding Wildlife from Global Warming

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A New Era for Conservation: Safeguarding Wildlife from Global Warming Patty Glick Senior Global Warming Specialist National Wildlife Federation – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: A New Era for Conservation: Safeguarding Wildlife from Global Warming


1
A New Era for Conservation Safeguarding
Wildlife from Global Warming
  • Patty Glick
  • Senior Global Warming Specialist
  • National Wildlife Federation

2
The Future is Not What it Used to Be
3
The Future is Not What it Used to Be
4
Responses to Global Warming
  • Mitigation
  • Addresses causes of global warming
  • Focus on reducing greenhouse gas emissions
  • Adaptation
  • Addresses impacts of global warming on people and
    ecosystems
  • Focus on coping strategies or safeguards

5
Increasing Interest in Adaptation
Scientific Papers on Adaptation Source Heller
and Zavaleta, 2009
Print Media News Articles on Adaptation Source
Moser, in prep
6
Examining the State of Play
  • Adaptation 2009
  • Convened major national conference in February
    with leaders in policy and practice
  • Carried out exhaustive review of adaptation
    literature
  • A New Era for Conservation
  • http//ncseonline.org/WHPRP/NWF/Adaptation2009/

7
Definitions of Adaptation
  • Traditional adaptation

Changes in an organisms behavior, physiology, or
other characteristics that enhance its survival
in a new environment
  • Managed adaptation

Initiatives and measures designed to reduce the
vulnerability of natural and human systems
against actual or expected climate change
effects (IPCC WGIII, 2007)
8
Messaging Challenges
  • Problems with Adaptation
  • Conflicts with prior usage in biology
  • Unintelligible jargon to the public
  • Sounds defeatist to some
  • Alternatives include
  • Safeguarding
  • Coping
  • Preparing for and Responding to...
  • Need to link ecosystems with human benefit
  • Safeguarding Nature for People and Wildlife

9
(Overcoming) Barriers to Adaptation
  • Lack of knowledge of impacts
  • Research, workshops, info-sharing
  • Uncertainty
  • Adaptive management, scenario planning
  • Psychological and institutional barriers
  • Reevaluate goals, policies, procedures
  • Lack of resources
  • Dedicate funding, prioritize
  • Political will
  • Encourage leadership

10
Key Adaptation Concepts
  • Anticipatory vs. Reactive
  • Preparing for change in advance
  • Responding to after-the-fact damage
  • Human and Natural Systems
  • Addressing impacts on human communities and gray
    infrastructure will be extremely costly
  • Need to ensure impacts on wildlife and ecosystems
    are addressed

11
Key Adaptation Concepts
  • Resilience and Resistance
  • Resilience refers to ability of a system to
    bounce back from disturbance and return to a
    functional state
  • Resistance refers to ability of a system to
    withstand disturbance without significant loss of
    function
  • Facilitating Change
  • Accepting a new functional state

12
Overarching Adaptation Principles
1. Reduce other, non-climate stressors
Invasive species
Stormwater runoff
Habitat fragmentation
13
Overarching Principles
2. Manage for ecological function and biological
diversity
Salmon ESUs
Grasslands
Coral reefs
14
Overarching Principles
3. Improve habitat connectivity to allow plant
and animal species to shift ranges
Migration corridors
Natural streamflows
15
Overarching Principles
4. Implement proactive management and restoration
strategies
Assisted accretion
Translocation
Cold-water spill
16
Overarching Principles
5. Embrace uncertainty through increased
monitoring and adaptive management
Flexibility
Ongoing monitoring
17
Designing Adaptation Strategies
1. Select conservation target
3. Evaluatemanagement options
4. Develop management response
5. Implementmanagementand monitoringstrategies
2. Assess climate change impacts and
vulnerability
6. Reviewand revise
18
Assessing Vulnerability
Vulnerability (Sensitivity Exposure) -
Adaptability
  • Vulnerability Assessment Considerations
  • Decision processes
  • Biological level
  • Species, habitats, ecosystem processes
  • Spatial scale
  • Available data
  • Cost
  • Time

19
Example A Focus on Sea-Level Rise
  • Sea-level rise is direct and certain
  • Coastal communities are at risk
  • Important coastal habitats are at risk

20
Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM),
Version 5.0
21
Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM),
Version 5.0
  • Multiple Scenarios
  • Accelerated sea-level rise at 25-year time steps
  • Localized Factors (Relative Sea-Level Rise)
  • Rates of sedimentation, marsh accretion, tectonic
    processes, etc.

22
Areas We Have Modeled
Winter 2009
23
Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
24
Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
Initial Condition
25
Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
11.2 in. by 2050 (IPCC A1B Max)
26
Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
27.3 in. by 2100 (IPCC A1B Max)
27
Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
Initial Condition
28
Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
11.2 in. by 2050 (No Dikes)
29
Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge
27.3 in. by 2100 (No Dikes)
30
Additional Information Needs
  • Localized geomorphology, dynamic accretion
    processes
  • Specific impacts on species and ecosystems
  • Interaction with additional climate and
    non-climate stressors
  • More detailed coastal elevation data (LiDAR)

31
We Cannot Let Uncertainty Delay Action!
32
Adaptation Strategies
Prioritize restoration project sites
  • Identify sites based on ecological importance
    and vulnerability
  • Expand and/or revise already existing
    restoration projects

33
Adaptation Strategies
Establish and/or preserve ecological buffers
  • Identify potential for upland protection (e.g.,
    marginal agricultural land)
  • Focus restoration on protective habitats such
    as dunes and mangroves

34
Adaptation Strategies
Restore diverse array of habitat types, protect
ecosystem services
  • Support principles of representation and
    redundancy
  • Protect and restore habitat connectivity

35
Adaptation Strategies
Move, abandon, and/or maintain shoreline
infrastructure
  • Consider tradeoffs between protected development
    and protected habitat
  • Promote soft armoring approaches, discourage
    hard armoring

36
Adaptation Strategies
Discourage development in coastal high hazard
areas
  • Revise local, state, and federal policies

Reduce or eliminate incentives for harmful and
vulnerable development
Promote incentives for sound coastal management
37
Adaptation Strategies
Selectively implement proactive adaptation
measures
  • Assess potential for assisted accretion through
    use of dredged materials
  • Support environmentally sound beach
    re-nourishment

38
Adaptation Strategies
Selectively implement proactive adaptation
measures
39
Adaptation Strategies
Learn As You Go
  • Support and conduct additional research and
    monitoring
  • Revise strategies as necessary

40
Nisqually NWF Comprehensive Conservation Plan
41
(No Transcript)
42
Questions?
For more information http//www.nwf.org/sealevelr
ise http//ncseonline.org/WHPRP/NWF/Adaptation2009
/ glick_at_nwf.org (206) 285-8707, ext. 104
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