1.3 San Diego County Ecosystems: Ecological Impacts of Climate Change on a Biodiveristy Hotspot

Monday, 7 January 2019: 11:00 AM
North 224A (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Megan Jennings, San Diego Sate Univ., San Diego, CA; and D. Cayan, J. Kalansky, A. Pairis, D. M. Lawson, A. D. Syphard, U. Abeysekera, R. E. S. Clemesha, K. Guirguis, A. Gershunov, J. M. Randall, E. D. Stein, and S. Vanderplank

The diverse ecosystems, habitats, plants, and animals in the San Diego County region will be impacted by climatic shifts in multifold ways due to current and future variability, along with other factors including habitat loss and fragmentation, land use shifts, and changing fire regimes. While home to a major metropolitan area, San Diego County still hosts expanses of native and preserved habitats where management and conservation action could be greatly enhanced through science-based assessments and planning for climate change and increased climate variability. The spatial and temporal scales at which climate variations and change operate must be considered to build resilience into natural systems. Effective conservation actions will need to build on ongoing efforts focused on landscape-scale planning rather than more traditional single-species approaches. To address this, a team of climatologists and ecologists in a unique collaboration described the rich biodiversity of the region, the efforts that have been made to conserve open spaces and natural resources, and review the state of the science with respect to understanding potential climate impacts on the diverse environmental landscape in the San Diego region. In addition, we explore the most regionally-relevant climate adaptation strategies that can be applied to buffer the effects of climate variability and conduct a needs assessment to identify needed science efforts such as long-term monitoring, climate modeling and projections, and ecosystem modeling that may facilitate change detection, adaptive management, and risk planning for the region. The outreach of findings from the report had a phased approach to reach a diversity of stakeholders.
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