Southeast CASC 2018 Retrospective

As 2019 gets underway, the Southeast Climate Adaptation Science Center takes a look back at a few of the many accomplishments of 2018 that we’ll be building on in the year ahead.


Publications

We added more than 30 new publications to our database. For example, a Science article by a research team including former Global Change Fellow identified areas where animals that change coat color have individuals of both colors in winter, indicating the potential for rapid evolutionary change in the face of warming climate. News post.

SE CASC-supported team produced Climate Change and Conservation in the Southeast: A Review of State Wildlife Action Plans Final Report, which identified various approaches used to address climate change in 2015 State Wildlife Action Plans for southeastern states and Puerto Rico. The 4-page Report Summary highlights the key observations and recommendations from the full report.

Several SE CASC affiliated researchers contributed to The Fourth National Climate Assessment Volume II – Impacts, Risks, and Adaptation, a federally mandated scientific assessment that evaluates current and projected climate-related effects. Notably, chapters on U.S. Caribbean, Southeast, Water, and Reducing Risks Through Adaptation Actions.


Global Change Fellows

Our first Climate Adaptation Science Field Intensive used place-based learning to introduce multidisciplinary graduate students to the principles of climate science, structured decision making, co-produced actionable science, engagement with tribes, science communication, and climate adaptation challenges of resource managers.

The Global Change Fellows hosted live-streamed seminars to prompt informed discussions on various issues related to climate change. Some topics were:
– Food and Water Security in the Face of Climate Change
Fire Management in a Changing Climate 
Integrating Ecosystem Services into Decision Making
Climate Justice: Why Climate Change is More Than Just an Environmental Issue


Research

In 2018 our dedicated team of staff and researchers have…
–  Collaborated with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in providing Species Status Assessments to inform decisions under the Endangered Species Act. News post.

–  Engaged with tribal nations to ensure that their information and technical needs are being met in the face of climate change. News post.

– Received an Honorable Mention for the 2017 Department of the Interior Environmental Achievement Award for the project, Protecting Cultural Resources in the Face of Climate Change. News post.

–  Continued work to support conservation strategies for at-risk amphibian species in Puerto Rico, in spite of the destruction caused by Hurricane Maria. Link to article.


Outreach

These events allowed us to share our science with research and management communities throughout the Southeast and collaborate with partners and stakeholders. SE CASC was present at:

  • American Geophysical Union (AGU)
  • Carolinas Climate Resilience Conference (CCRC)
  • Southeast Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (SEAFWA)
  • American Fisheries Society (AFS)
  • Ecological Society of America (ESA)


A Look Ahead to 2019

  • We will be launching a NCA4 newsletter series, taking a more in-depth look at some of the relevant chapters that were released as part the Fourth National Climate Assessment.
  • New research projects are kicking off, implementing themes described in Science Priorities and Principles of Operation for the SE CASC.
  • Our Global Change Fellows will be hosting their first seminar of the semester on February 7th, entitled “The Current State of Sea Level Rise in North Carolina.”