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The National Climate Assessment (4) and previous versions, have some excellent guidance for developing regional and even local responses to climate change and variability challenges.
However, one of the persistent problems associated with climate predictions is the difficulty of downscaling climate and ecosystem behaviors at finer scales. Even more importantly, developing appropriate management responses at the scale at which management decisions are made. Even though Global Circulation Models (GMs) can be extremely informative, the output is generally in grid cells 50-100 km on a side. Even with advanced downscaling techniques (both dynamic and statistical), most systematic projections are limited to 15-20 km grid cells, but specific projects have developed predictions at the km2 scale. These scales include significant temporal and spatial uncertainty in the predictions, as well as a high degree of spatial heterogeneity. Even at that scale, there is significant variability in soils and vegetation, important in both predicting impacts and developing responses. This is MLRA 69 in SE CO. It is representative of the high plains region in WY, CO, NM, TX, OK, KS and NE. Clearly, there is a significant amount of heterogeneity within a GCM cell, a watershed, a ranch or even a field.
In order to develop realistic and credible vulnerability assessments of climate change impacts—and ultimately, realistic responses, Exposure requires a site scale evaluation of climatic attributes, which can be assessed without a detailed knowledge of soil and vegetation; however sensitivity requires an understanding of species or lifeform relationships; adaptive capacity requires an integration a detailed knowledge of ecological processes and management intervention (including an economic context) that is only relevant at the ecological site scale and can vary substantially across sites.
Organizing information relevant to assessing site-level sensitivity and adaptive capacity
In this symposium we are going to examine the application of ecological sites and state and transition models to the individual components of landscapes with the emphasis on climate change interpretations. This framework is scale appropriate, accessible and proven. Our speakers will now discuss those individual components.
July 29-130-Joel Brown Intro
Adapting Landscapes to
State and Transition Models to Support
20 km grid cell
“Spatial resilience is a function of landscape composition
and configuration” Chambers et al 2019.
ADAPTING LANDSCAPES TO CLIMATE CHANGE:
STATE AND TRANSITION MODELS TO SUPPORT CONSERVATION DECISION-MAKING
State and Transition Models to support conservation decision-making: Including a climate change context -Joel
Brown, USDA NRCS
Accounting for Climate Variability in State and Transition Models on Rangelands: History, status, lessons
learned - Curtis Talbot, USDA NRCS
State and Transition Models on Croplands: examples, challenges, emerging principles -Mike Kucera, USDA
Questions and Discussion / BREAK
Accounting for Climate in the Application of State and Transition Models on Landscapes with Mixed Landuse -
Greg Schmidt, USDA NRCS
Integrating Changing Land Use into a State and Transition Model Framework: Urban and Subaqueous Sites -
Michael Margo, USDA NRCS
Knowledge Base for State and Transition Models -Brandon Bestelmeyer, USDA ARS
Translating Site Level State and Transition Model to Landscape Levels -Joel Brown, USDA NRCS
Questions and Discussion