92nd American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting (January 22-26, 2012)

Wednesday, 25 January 2012: 9:15 AM
A Regional Approach to Addressing Impacts of Climate Variability and Climate Change on Forest Production in the Southeast US
Room 243 (New Orleans Convention Center )
Heather A. Dinon, North Carolina State Univ., Raleigh, NC; and G. Boyd, R. Boyles, W. Hubbard, J. Idassi, T. Martin, M. Megalos, M. Monroe, and E. Taylor

USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) recently funded three Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) Coordinated Agriculture Program (CAP) grants. All relate to climate change, and one focuses on adaptation and mitigation strategies related to the southern pine forest. A team of 52 scientists from 12 institutions will study loblolly pine as part of this $20 million, five-year project. These efforts will enable stakeholders to enhance productivity of southern pine forests, while maintaining social, economic, and ecological sustainability. Specific goals include mitigation of atmospheric carbon dioxide, more efficient utilization of nitrogen and other fertilizer inputs, and adaptation of forest management approaches to increase resilience in the face of a changing climate.

One key aspect of this project is the extension component that focuses on outcomes and impacts. The extension team, which includes extension foresters, educators, and climate scientists, will utilize several innovative approaches to disseminate information and new technological advances to forest landowners, industry, policy makers, and youth. The extension team plans to engage with stakeholders in an effort to assess knowledge as well as perceptions of climate information. The team also aims to disseminate emerging research to influential landowners, such as research cooperative industry members, who will share this information with end-users to aid with decision making. The team will partner with state climatologists across the southeastern US to: 1) develop core educational and training materials on climate variability and climate change, 2) host one to two training workshops per state per year with forest landowners and local extension agents to communicate climate variability and climate change impacts on local and regional forest production, 3) serve as a resource for appropriate use of climate data and climate model output, and 4) establish a decision support system to assist forest land owners, managers, and policy makers in managing risk associated with climate variability and climate change.

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