Climate Change in Wildlands (Hardcover)
Pioneering Approaches to Science and Management
Island Press, 9781610917117, 408pp.
Publication Date: June 7, 2016
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Scientists have been warning for years that human activity is heating up the planet and climate change is under way. In the past century, global temperatures have risen an average of 1.3 degrees Fahrenheit, a trend that is expected to only accelerate. But public sentiment has taken a long time to catch up, and we are only just beginning to acknowledge the serious effects this will have on all life on Earth. The federal government is crafting broad-scale strategies to protect wildland ecosystems from the worst effects of climate change. The challenge now is to get the latest science into the hands of resource managers entrusted with protecting water, plants, fish and wildlife, tribal lands, and cultural heritage sites in wildlands.
Teaming with NASA and the Department of the Interior, ecologist Andrew Hansen, along with his team of scientists and managers, set out to understand how climate and land use changes affect montane landscapes of the Rockies and the Appalachians, and how these findings can be applied to wildlands elsewhere. They examine changes over the past century as well as expected future change, assess the vulnerability of species and ecosystems to these changes, and provide new, collaborative management approaches to mitigate expected impacts. A series of case studies showcases how managers might tackle such wide-ranging problems as the effects of warming streams on cold-water fish in Great Smoky Mountain National Park and dying white-bark pine stands in the Greater Yellowstone area. A surprising finding is that species and ecosystems vary dramatically in vulnerability to climate change. While many will suffer severe effects, others may actually benefit from projected changes.
Climate Change in Wildlands is a collaboration between scientists and managers, providing a science-derived framework and common-sense approaches for keeping parks and protected areas healthy on a rapidly changing planet.
About the Author
Andrew Hansen is a professor in the Ecology Department at Montana State University. He studies how land use and climate change influence plants and animals and implications for ecosystem management, especially in the context of protected areas. He currently is on the science leadership teams for the North Central Climate Science Center and the Montana Institute of Ecosystems.
William B. Monahan oversees the Quantitative Analysis Program for the Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team of the USDA Forest Service. Bill’s work focuses on how forests across the United States respond to environmental changes and insect and disease disturbances operating across multiple spatiotemporal scales.
David M. Theobald is a senior scientist at Conservation Science Partners in Fort Collins, Colorado, and adjunct professor at Colorado State University. He applies concepts from geography and landscape ecology and methods from spatial analysis to understand patterns of landscape change and their effects on watersheds, fish and wildlife habitat, and biodiversity.
Thomas Olliff is the co-coordinator of the Great Northern Landscape Conservation Cooperative and Division Chief of Landscape Conservation and Climate Change for the National Park Service Intermountain Region. He is the natural resources representative on the NPS Revisiting Leopold Implementation Team.
Praise For Climate Change in Wildlands: Pioneering Approaches to Science and Management…
"These case studies provide valuable insights for climate scientists as they engage with and attempt to meet the needs of management partners...By highlighting the emerging science of climate adaptation, Climate Change in Wildlands offers a glimpse into the future of wildlands management, and points the way toward opportunities for meaningfully adapting to rapid and accelerating climate change."
"Climate change is upon us and we are forced to adapt the way we think about and manage our beloved wildlife ecosystems...Hansen et. al have done us a service by providing a richly detailed set of tools and approaches for moving forward."
— George Wright Forum
"A landmark volume that pulls together many highly useful insights."
— Mountain Research and Development
"Climate Change in Wildlands is an important contribution to resource managers and scientists facing the daunting challenges of climate change. Through work in two mountain ranges--Rockies and Appalachians--the authors illustrate an approach to climate change adaptation informed by analyses, decision support tools, and dialogue with land managers to identify threats to resources and options for responding. Climate change presents unprecedented challenges to those responsible for stewardship of our public lands. This volume provides important examples and guidance for navigating those challenges."
— Jonathan B. Jarvis
"There has been much talk about linking science to wildlands management under climate change. This outstanding book actually demonstrates how to do so, providing clear guidance for adaptation planning, thoughtful how-to advice, and excellent case studies."
— Frank Davis, Director, National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis
"A down-to-earth scientific analysis of impending impacts of climate change on American wildlands and ecosystems. Climate Change in Wildlands is sobering yet encouraging, because it provides insights for proactive management of these precious ecological resources. This is a fine book that will be the source to turn to for decades to come."
— Thomas E. Lovejoy, University Professor of Environmental Science and Management, George Mason University