News Release

November 9, 2010

Coordinator Appointed for the North Pacific Landscape Conservation Cooperative

Media Contacts:
David Patte, (503) 231-2264, david_patte@fws.gov

Cooperative Fact sheet: http://www.fws.gov/pacific/Climatechange/pdf/DoINorthPacificLCC.pdf

Oregon Natural Resources Policy Director Accepts New Interagency Role

Michael Carrier has been appointed to be the Coordinator of the North Pacific Landscape Conservation Cooperative, a position that will lead a partnership effort to obtain the science needed to respond to climate change and other threats to fish and wildlife and their habitats and to support large, landscape scale conservation. His appointment was announced today by Robyn Thorson, Regional Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Pacific Region.

The cooperative is an innovative partnership among state and federal agencies, tribes, nongovernmental organizations, universities and others stretching from southeast Alaska to northern California, including vast coastal ecosystems. It is designed to inform natural resource management needs to address climate change and other environmental stressors within and across large, connected natural areas. Learn more about the cooperative at: http://www.fws.gov/pacific/Climatechange/pdf/DoINorthPacificLCC.pdf

Pam Inmann, Executive Director of the Western Governors' Association, called Carrier "the perfect choice" to lead the LCC. The Western Governors' Association represents the governors of 18 states and three U.S. territories in the Pacific.

"Mike is a recognized leader in large-scale partnerships and in working across political boundaries," Inmann said. "He will ensure that the work of the LCC is interconnected with the many landscape-scale conservation efforts led by the Western Governors' Association and its member states."

Carrier worked for the State of Oregon for the past 10 years, serving as the governor's Natural Resources Policy Director for the past six years.

Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCCs) are self-directed conservation partnerships supported by the Fish and Wildlife Service and other agencies to address the challenges of climate change in an integrated fashion across broad areas. LCCs will provide scientific information and technical support to better understand species and habitat responses to climate change and other ecological changes (such as changing fire regimes and spread of invasive species). These cooperatives will provide the scientific basis needed to help inform the development of strategic, landscape-scale conservation efforts on the ground.

"Climate change is the most complex environmental and conservation challenge facing the 21st Century; its impacts will exacerbate existing stressors on our fish and wildlife resources," Regional Director Thorson said. "In the Pacific Northwest, we're concerned about rising sea levels, widespread melting of snow and ice, changes in ocean currents and precipitation patterns, ocean acidification, coastal erosion, and increased flooding rates. All will contribute to increased biological impacts such as new exotic species invasions, disease outbreaks, disrupted food webs, loss of intact plant communities and ultimately, increased species extinctions."

"Mike Carrier is a seasoned executive in natural resource management," Regional Director Thorson said. "He brings extraordinary skills in consensus building and partnership approaches plus expertise in state and federal policies and laws related to endangered species, forestry, water management, environmental protection, agriculture, energy, fish and wildlife."

Carrier served as Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski's principal advisor on all natural resource and environmental issues from 2004 to the present. Prior to that, he was the Director of the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department for four years. He also served in a variety of management positions for natural resource agencies in Iowa and Indiana prior to moving to Oregon.

He begins his new position November 8.