3.1 Developing a Science and Climate Change Communication Network for the Northeast Region of the National Park Service

Monday, 8 January 2018: 2:00 PM
Room 5ABC (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Minh Duc Phan, East Carolina Univ., Greenville, NC; and A. Babson and E. Rogers

Climate change, and specifically projected sea level rise and increased storm impacts, poses a significant challenge to protecting the lighthouses and boardwalks and the maritime habitats and history of coastal national parks in the Northeast. Since Hurricane Sandy, more than 35 studies have been undertaken to better understand the storm’s impacts on the natural and cultural features in national parks like Assateague Island, Cape Cod, Fire Island National Seashore and Gateway National Recreation area. Through the George Melendez Wright Young Leaders in Climate Change (YLCC) Program in partnership with the National Park Service and the University of Washington (UW), a science and climate change communication intern worked with NPS staff to expand and enhance science communication efforts at NER coastal parks. With a focus on post-Hurricane Sandy research, a multi-park effort was led to cultivate a network of researchers, resource managers, and communicators. Digital media products and content relating to studies conducted at several NER coastal parks was developed with a focus on sharing post-Hurricane Sandy science and as a model for how to bring scientists and communicators together to produce engaging and accurate science communication products. This model will inform the expansion of the network, on a regional scale and help build a sustainable science communication community of practice.
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