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Precision in Policymaking May Undermine Conservation and Restoration Goals

October 7, 2016

Overly specific requirements in conservation policies may be unintentionally wasting management resources and doing more harm than good for the species and landscapes they seek to protect, according to a new opinion paper published in Trends in Ecology and Evolution.

The paper, authored by a group of researchers including Stephen Jackson, Director of the Department of the Interior Southwest Climate Science Center, urges a move away from narrowly prescriptive conservation... Read more

Pacific Ocean’s response to greenhouse gases could extend California drought for centuries

September 15, 2016

News release from Alison Hewitt, UCLA Newsroom

Warming forces have caused millennia of dryness in California’s prehistory, and greenhouses gases could do the same

Clues from prehistoric droughts and arid periods in California show that today’s increasing greenhouse gas levels could lock the state into drought for centuries, according to a study led by UCLA professor [and SW CSC Principal Investigator] Glen MacDonald.

The study, published Sept. 15 in the journal Scientific Reports, looked at how natural climatic forces contributed to... Read more

New, High-Resolution Climate Projections Aim to Better Represent Extreme Events

September 12, 2016

A press release from Scripps Institution of Oceanography:

A collaboration of university researchers, government agencies, and private sector groups released today a next-generation climate modeling dataset with improved local-scale climate projections covering the 21st century for a region from northern Mexico to southern Canada.

The dataset was produced by researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego who developed a new climate “downscaling” method for global climate models known as localized constructed analogs (... Read more

California tidal marshes vulnerable to sea-level rise

August 26, 2016

In a new report out on USGS publications, sea-level rise in response to climate change is examined for the tidal marshes of California. Tidal marshes are important coastal habitats that link marine, freshwater, and terrestrial habitats. They also provide a host of ecosystem services such as wildlife habitat, carbon sequestration, improved water quality, and coastal protection from storms. Sea-level rise will impact these coastal habitat, but how so over the next 50 to 100 years?

This SW CSC project, led by Karen Thorne of USGS and Glen MacDonald of UCLA, looked at the projected... Read more

The last call of the rail in California?

August 15, 2016

In a new blog published on the Early Career Climate Forum, Jordan Rosencranz, a UCLA graduate student and SW CSC Fellow, discusses his research on California’s salt marshes - breeding habitat for species like Ridgway’s Rails.

"As wetland scientists, we are simultaneously trying to understand the effects of climate change and sea-level rise on salt marshes, and also trying to the make them more resilient to such forces. Salt marshes could be the first coastal ecosystems to perish in the wake of climate change and sea-level rise... Read more