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Preparing for the Changing Climate: A Northeast-Focused Needs Assessment

June 2011

This report is the first region-wide overview of how communities in the Northeast are preparing for climate change, and what resources and assistance they need to succeed. The intent of the report is to provide a snapshot of the barriers and resource gaps that need to be addressed in order for local, regional, and state governments to effectively plan for and implement climate preparedness strategies.

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The Unusual Nature of Recent Snowpack Declines in the North American Cordillera

June 9, 2011

This report from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) analyzes late-20th century snowpack reductions data to support findings that snowpack in the Western regions of North America has been declining since 1950. The data suggests that snowpack declines in the Rocky Mountains over the last 30 years are unusual compared to the past few centuries.

Authors or Affiliated Users: Greg Pederson, Stephen Gray, Connie Woodhouse, Lisa Graumlich, Daniel B. Fagre, Julio Betancourt, Jeremy Littell, Brian Luckman, Emma Watson, Dave Meko, Troy Knight

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Climate Change Adaptation in the Metropolitan Washington Region: Draft Transportation Sector Vulnerabilities

August 2011

The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG) Transportation Vulnerability Assessment was developed as part of a broader climate change adaptation initiative.  This preliminary vulnerability assessment for the transportation sector identifies the possible climate impacts to the transportation sector, including roads and bridges, rail, facilities and buildings, bicycle and pedestrian buildings, and airports.

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Past and Projected Trends in Climate and Sea Level for South Florida

July 5, 2011

This technical report summarizes trends in sea level rise, coastal climate variability and climate change impacts in south Florida. The report is one deliverable from a South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) project to coordinate issues related to climate change and sea level rise in the region. SFWMD is a state agency that is responsible for managing water resources in a 16-county region that extends from Orlando to Key West, Florida.

Authors or Affiliated Users: J. Obeysekera, J. Park, M. Irizarry-Ortiz, P. Trimble, J. Barnes, J. VanArman, W. Said, E. Gadzinski

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Assessment of Sea Level Rise in Coastal Mississippi

July 2011

Produced by the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, this report includes a risk assessment and a detailed vulnerability assessment addressing sea level rise impacts to both natural and man-made systems on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. The report also contains a number of sea level rise resiliency strategies categorized into three primary response pathways of armoring, retreating, and adapting.

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A Climate of Extreme Weather Events: U.S. Impacts and Vulnerability

June 2011

This white paper, from the Pew Center on Global Climate Change (now the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions "C2ES"), provides an easy-to-understand overview of flooding, heat waves, wildfires, and drought. Past and projected frequency, details of impacts, some location specific vulnerability and potential risks are provided for each of the four types of extreme events.

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Washington Connected Landscapes Project: Climate-Gradient Corridors Report

August 2011

Prepared by the Washington Wildlife Habitat Connectivity Working Group, this report builds off of a previous (2010) assessment of habitat connectivity patterns for wildlife in Washington. This study factors climate change into the assessment and identifies “climate-gradient corridors” that can support habitat conservation and wildlife migration and response to future changes in climate.

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Atoll Island States and Climate Change: Sovereignty Implications

October 2011

This article, by two researchers of the United Nations University (UNU) Institute for Advanced Studies, summarizes a working paper in which they examine questions of long-term survival for Atoll Island States. These countries could become uninhabitable or submerged in the course of the next century due to sea-level rise and coastal erosion, exacerbated by stronger tropical cyclones. Prominent vulnerable island nations include Kiribati, Tuvalu, the Marshall Islands and the Maldives.

Authors or Affiliated Users: Lilian Yamamoto, Miguel Esteban

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Simulated Changes in Salinity in the York and Chickahominy Rivers from Projected Sea-Level Rise in Chesapeake Bay

2011

The U. S. Geological Survey, along with the City of Newport News, evaluated the potential impacts of sea-level rise on the presence and degree of saltwater migration in Virginia tributaries of the Chesapeake Bay under multiple sea-level rise scenarios. The study utilized a hydrodynamic simulation model to evaluate potential changes in salinity in the York River and Chickahominy/James River estuaries. Simulated results demonstrate the potential for considerable salinity increases upstream with even marginal sea-level rise.

Authors or Affiliated Users: Karen C. Rice, Mark R. Bennett, Jian Shen

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Identifying Species in Pennsylvania Potentially Vulnerable to Climate Change

June 2011

From the Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program, the goals of this project were to first compile a priority list of species occurring in Pennsylvania that are likely vulnerable to climate change, and to then examine the climate change vulnerability of species included in the priority list. The overall objective was to not only identify climate change vulnerable species but to also examine the abiotic factors and life history characteristics that contribute to their increased vulnerability.

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