Materials and Resources
Climate Change Update
Welcome to the New Climate Change Update
Welcome to the first edition of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Climate Change Update from the Office of the Science Advisor.
Attention on climate change is increasing, and we know it can be hard to sort through all the information out there. We hope this Update will provide a meaningful, Service-oriented synopsis of selected announcements and information tailored to help regional and field staff stay informed about "big ticket" climate change developments. It will also help our staff share success stories and examples, access key resources, and stay up-to-date about our agency's climate change response.
We will be working with the National Climate Team and scientists from across the Service to develop this Update, and welcome your feedback and input. Please contact Ann Froschauer to help provide content for future editions.
President Issues Climate Change Executive Order
How the Department is responding
Executive Order 13653 (Preparing the United States for the Impacts of Climate Change), released in November 2013, is an important step toward implementing the Administration's Climate Action Plan. Among other requirements, the Order requires DOI to update its Climate Change Adaptation Plan and assess how policies, programs, and regulations need to change to become more resilient to climate change.
To respond to the Executive Order, the Department is asking its Bureaus to submit climate change opportunities, activities, and plans. Regions and Programs are asked to respond to this request (see Director's Memo) by January 21.
The Latest Climate Science from the IPCC
What it means for USFWS
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issues an assessment of the most recent scientific, technical, and socio-economic information relevant to the understanding of climate change approximately every six years. At the end of September 2013, the IPCC issued Part I of its fifth assessment report, dealing with the "The Physical Science Basis of Climate Change."
A small working group of the National Climate Team has prepared three documents (varying in the amount of detail) that highlight the findings of the report and implications for the Service. These summary documents will help Service employees understand the key findings of the IPCC report, and how the Service might use those findings.
The National Fish, Wildlife and Plants Climate Adaptation Strategy
Synopsis and how-to guide for the Service
In March 2013, the Service, along with NOAA, the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, and many other federal, state and tribal partners, released the National Fish, Wildlife, and Plants Climate Adaptation Strategy (Strategy). Congress called for this inter-governmental effort to guide collaborative efforts to help fish, wildlife, and plants cope with the impacts of climate change.
Since the Strategy's release, the Administration has incorporated it into guidance regarding federal adaptation planning efforts. It is also referenced as an important benchmark document in the new Executive Order 13653 and it is the focus of recently introduced climate change adaptation legislation (the SAFE Act). The recently adopted Service policy on Climate Change Adaptation (056 FW 1) also specifies responsibilities across our agency for working with partners to implement the Strategy.
The Service's National Climate Team has prepared a brief synopsis of the Strategy along with suggestions for using it, including examples of innovative Service adaptation projects that support the Strategy. We encourage you to review this synopsis and use it to identify opportunities to implement Strategy recommendations at all levels of the Service, from the field to Regional Offices to Headquarters.
Service Director to testify on climate change: On Thursday, January 16 at 9:15 ET, Service Director Dan Ashe testified at the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee's hearing entitled, "Review of the President's Climate Action Plan."
Photo database: A new Service climate change photo database can help to tell the story of how our nation's natural resources are already being affected by a changing climate. The photos and captions in this collection were adapted from the National Fish, Wildlife and Plants Climate Adaptation Strategy, and are available for your use. If you have photos to add please contact Ann Froschauer.
Fish and Wildlife National Climate Team: Do you know who your primary contact regarding climate change is? Connect with your Program's or Region's National Climate Team representative for more information about the Service’s work in this area, and with questions about climate change