Adapting California's ecosystems to a changing climate

Elizabeth A. Chornesky, David D. Ackerly, Paul Beier, Frank W. Davis, Lorraine E. Flint, Joshua J. Lawler, Peter B. Moyle, Max A. Moritz, Mary Scoonover, Kristin Byrd, Pelayo Alvarez, Nicole E. Heller, Elisabeth R. Micheli, Stuart B. Weiss

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

Significant efforts are underway to translate improved understanding of how climate change is altering ecosystems into practical actions for sustaining ecosystem functions and benefits. We explore this transition in California, where adaptation and mitigation are advancing relatively rapidly, through four case studies that span large spatial domains and encompass diverse ecological systems, institutions, ownerships, and policies. The case studies demonstrate the context specificity of societal efforts to adapt ecosystems to climate change and involve applications of diverse scientific tools (e.g., scenario analyses, downscaled climate projections, ecological and connectivity models) tailored to specific planning and management situations (alternative energy siting, wetland management, rangeland management, open space planning). They illustrate how existing institutional and policy frameworks provide numerous opportunities to advance adaptation related to ecosystems and suggest that progress is likely to be greatest when scientific knowledge is integrated into collective planning and when supportive policies and financing enable action.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)247-262
Number of pages16
JournalBioScience
Volume65
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015

Keywords

  • Adaptation
  • Adaptive capacity
  • Ecosystem service
  • Global change
  • Mediterranean climate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

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