The University of Arizona is recognized nationally and internationally as a leader in the science of adaptation to climate change, and associated research and outreach to understand climate change, its observed and potential impacts, and possible responses.
Evaluating our Capacity: A Discussion of Capability for Ongoing Climate Assessment in the Colorado River Basin
Most organized discussion about climate change within the Colorado River Basin (CRB) has focused on water supply on the main stem of the Colorado River. An upcoming workshop, entitled “Evaluating our Capacity: A Discussion of Capability for Ongoing Climate Assessment in the Colorado River Basin”, will broaden the discussion to include both
- basin-wide concerns and assessment across three key sectors – water, agriculture, and ecosystems, and
- the evaluation of vulnerabilities, risks, and adaptive capacity
Organizations from across the basin and from various sectors will come together to evaluate the collective capacity in the CRB to conduct ongoing assessment of climate change vulnerabilities and adaptive capacity. The common focus will be water, as this is the primary medium through which climate change impacts will manifest in the CRB. Developing self-sustaining, ongoing, regional and cross-sectoral assessment and adaptation capacity is a primary objective of the National Climate Assessment (NCA). The CRB workshop seeks to support this objective by pursuing the following goals:
1) Evaluate capacity for ongoing assessment of climate change vulnerabilities and impacts
2) Assess adaptation capacity and catalogue adaptation efforts
3) Describe possible assessment and adaptation capacity metrics as well as metrics that describe the efficacy of adaptation strategies
4) Develop a network that supports ongoing assessment and adaptation
The CRB workshop is a key vehicle for achieving these goals and supporting the third NCA report, scheduled for completion in 2013. In order to focus workshop discussions, organizers will provide white papers that evaluate the current state of assessment and adaptation capacity in the CRB. These white papers will take the initial step in identifying what types of assessment information stakeholders value and how to provide better access to it. Workshop discussions will be oriented towards prioritizing the essential elements needed to sustain an ongoing network for providing assessment and adaptation information.