Our climate is changing, and people around the world are beginning to notice impacts. Birders have remarked how chicks are hatching earlier and earlier in the year, sometimes even missing the peak abundance of their food sources. Residents of the far north observe changes in species patterns, and Arctic coast residents are moving their homes inland to avoid destructive storm surges formerly buffered by pack ice. Read the full article in the Daily Camera.
Dilling, L., 2015. Daily Camera, May 3.
The Dynamics of Vulnerability: Why Adapting to Climate Variability Will Not Always Prepare Us for Climate Change
Recent reports and scholarship suggest that adapting to current climate variability may represent a ‘no regrets’ strategy for adapting to climate change. Addressing ‘adaptation deficits’ and other approaches that target existing vulnerabilities are helpful for responding to current climate variability, but we argue that they may not be sufficient for adapting to climate change. Read the full article at WIREs Climate Change.
Dilling, L., M. E. Daly, W. R. Travis, O. V. Wilhelmi, and R. A. Klein, 2015. WIREs Climate Change , doi: 10.1002/wcc.341, Published April 23 2015.
There is growing evidence that the rate of warming is amplified with elevation, such that high-mountain environments experience more rapid changes in temperature than environments at lower elevations. Elevation-dependent warming (EDW) can accelerate the rate of change in mountain ecosystems, cryospheric systems, hydrological regimes and biodiversity. Read the full article at Nature Climate Change.
Pepin, N., et al., 2015. Nature Climate Change, Vol. 5, 424-430, doi: 10.1038/nclimate2563.
Anthropogenic influences and climate variability and change pose a challenge to conserving cold-water resources and associated biota in the US Rocky Mountain region. State and federal regulators set temperature standards for point-source wastewater dischargers to maintain healthy stream conditions. Read the full article at Environment Systems and Decisions.
Huisenga, M. T. and W. R. Travis, 2015. Environment Systems and Decisions 35: (1) 11-21.
Upcoming workshops: Snowpack monitoring for streamflow forecasting and drought planning
WWA and its partners are convening three all-day workshops focused on improving the usability of snowpack monitoring information for runoff forecasting, drought early warning and planning, and other applications. For more information and registration:
Utah workshop: Tuesday, August 11 – West Jordan
Wyoming workshop: Thursday, August 27 – Lander
Colorado workshop: Wednesday, September 9 – Broomfield
WWA and CSU release Colorado Climate Change Vulnerability Study
WWA, in collaboration with Colorado State University, conducted a broad study of climate vulnerability for the state of Colorado. Drawing from existing data and peer-reviewed research, the study summarizes the key challenges facing seven sectors: ecosystems, water, agriculture, energy, transportation, outdoor recreation and tourism, and public health. Read the CIRES press release and download the report.
WWA/CIRES Free Online Course on "Water in the Western United States"
More information and registration for the course can be found here. This college-level course provides a broad overview of the history of water development in the region and relevant hydrology and climatology. The course will run in April, but registration is available now, and there are no requirements other than an Internet connection. We look forward to having you join our course!
Introducing the U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit
The first phase of the U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit website was released on November 17. The Toolkit was developed by the NOAA and other Federal agencies to enable decision-makers to take action to boost their climate resilience using data-driven tools, information, and subject-matter expertise to make smarter decisions. The Toolkit offers information from across the federal government in one easy-to-use location. On the 'Find Experts' tab, WWA is listed as one of several entities within Colorado that are ready to assist Toolkit users with interpreting and applying the climate information accessed through the Toolkit.
WWA and CWCB release Climate Change in Colorado report
WWA and the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB) today released the report “Climate Change in Colorado: A Synthesis to Support Water Resources Management and Adaptation,” which updates and expands on the 2008 WWA-CWCB report of the same name. The report, authored by WWA team members Jeff Lukas, Joe Barsugli, Imtiaz Rangwala, and Klaus Wolter, and WWA affiliate Nolan Doesken of the CSU Colorado Climate Center, presents findings on observed climate trends in the state, linkages with global changes, and projections of future climate and hydrology, as well as guidance on incorporating climate change into planning. Download the report here.