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Climate Change and The Economy: Expected Impacts and Their Implications

October 27, 2009

A series of climate change impact studies was undertaken by researchers at universities around the U.S. to evaluate economic costs related to particular climate-sensitive resources. This publication assembles six of these studies, with a focus on water resources in New Mexico; forests in Tennessee, Idaho, Montana and Wyoming; infrastructure in Alaska; and coastlines in Florida, North Carolina and Texas.

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Coastal Inundation Toolkit

The Coastal Inundation Toolkit was developed by the Digital Coast Partnership Group to help communities understand and address coastal inundation issues - where water covers what is normally dry land. Information and resources are organized into 5 stages: understanding coastal inundation, identifying community risks and vulnerabilities, creating inundation maps, communicating risks and vulnerability, and discovering what others are doing to address inundation. For each of these 5 areas, explanations and guidance are provided with links to the specific resources available from Digital Coast to support that specific step in the process, making this a user-friendly way to support assessments and planning for sea level rise and extreme weather events.

Resource Category: Data and tools

 

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USFWS Polar Bear Conservation Management Plan

January 9, 2017

The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Polar Bear Conservation Management Plan was developed as a guide to polar bear conservation in the U. S. , and calls for decisive action to address Arctic warming and protect polar bears from the impacts of climate change. This plan outlines conservation and adaptation strategies for the USFWS and agency partners to support the recovery of polar bears, while articulating the need to lower greenhouse gas levels to ultimately protect the survival of the species.

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Alaska Repaving Roads Using Polystyrene Insulation

2013

The Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities (ADOT&PF) is rebuilding portions of roads in the northern regions of the state using a thick layer of insulation under the pavement in order to help prevent the thaw of underlying permafrost caused by heat transfer. Thawing permafrost, exacerbated by increasing average annual temperatures and heat transfer from paved roads, has caused structural instability to roadway infrastructure and buildings in Alaska. Portions of Goldstream Road near Fairbanks and the Dalton Highway further north are both being replaced with insulation board to ensure thermal stability of the roads with increasing temperatures under climate change scenarios.

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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NOAA Office for Coastal Management

The Office for Coastal Management (OCM) is tasked with implementing the Coastal Zone Management Act. OCM activities include working with states and territories to conserve and protect coral reefs, operating a system of National Estuarine Research Reserves, and developing a system of marine protected areas.

 

 

Organization

Western Forestry Leadership Coalition

Formally established in 2000, the Western Forestry Leadership Coalition is a partnership between state and federal government forestry leaders in the west. The Coalition is comprised of 34 members including 23 State members, also known as the Council of Western State Foresters, and 11 USDA Forest Service members, including 7 Regional Foresters, 3 USFS Research Station Directors, and a USFS Forest Products Lab Director. The purpose of the Coalition is to address critical resource issues across ownerships and jurisdictions.

 

 

Organization

Western Governors' Association (WGA)

The Western Governors' Association is an independent, nonprofit organization representing the Governors of 19 states and three US-Flag Pacific islands. Through their Association, the Governors identify and address key policy and governance issues that include natural resources, the environment, human services, economic development, intergovernmental relations and international relations. Governors use the WGA to develop and advocate policies that reflect regional interests and relationships in debates at the national and state levels.

 

 

Organization

Western Regional Climate Center

The Western Regional Climate Center (WRCC) is one of six regional climate centers in the U. S. managed by NOAA's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). The mission of the WRCC is to disseminate high quality climate data and information pertaining to the western United States; foster better use of this information in decision-making; conduct applied research related to climate issues; and improve the coordination of climate-related activities at state, regional and national scales.   The WRCC serves as a focal point for coordination of applied climate activities in the West; maintains links to other climate programs such as the NCDC, state climatologists, and other Regional Climate Centers (RCCs); and conducts applied research on climate issues affecting the West.

 

 

Organization

Western States Water Council (WSWC)

The Western States Water Council is an organization consisting of representatives appointed by the governors of 18 western states. Since its creation, through adoption of a resolution at the Western Governors' Conference in 1965, the Council has striven to fulfill its chartered purposes. The purposes of the Council are: (1) to accomplish effective cooperation among western states in the conservation, development and management of water resources; (2) to maintain vital state prerogatives, while identifying ways to accommodate legitimate federal interests; (3) to provide a forum for the exchange of views, perspectives, and experiences among member states; and (4) to provide analysis of federal and state developments in order to assist member states in evaluating impacts of federal laws and programs and the effectiveness of state laws and policies.

 

 

Resource

From Newtok to Mertarvik: A Native Alaskan Tribal Village Relocation

Several tribal villages in Alaska are facing impending community-wide climate impacts of permafrost degradation, sea level rise, erosion, and flooding  which require immediate adaptation measures, including the potential of managed retreat. However, only one, the Village of Newtok, is in the process of actively relocating to a new site, Mertarvik, which was conveyed to Newtok through a federal land grant. The Newtok team  composed of federal, state, and local tribal representatives  is prioritizing the development of housing, roads, energy, and an evacuation center in the near-term. The project goal is to relocate everyone in Newtok to Mertarvik by 2023. The Newtok relocation has been funded by a patchwork of federal and state agencies for over 20 years. This case study can highlight one approach and ongoing lessons learned for state and local jurisdictions confronting larger-scale questions about managed retreat, and the process of transitioning entire communities to higher ground. 

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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