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Meridian Institute

National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center

External Project Site: nccwsc.usgs.gov/
Related: Climate Change, Environment and Natural Resources

In the United States, federal agencies manage natural resources on vast areas of public land, where climate change has enormous implications. In 2008, Congress authorized the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to establish a new organization—the National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center (NCCWSC)—to research the complex effects of climate change on terrestrial and aquatic plants and animals.

 

In 2008 and 2009, the USGS conducted an intensive effort to engage a wide array of stakeholders in planning for the NCCWSC. Meridian Institute—along with the Wildlife Society and the Ecological Society of America—assisted the USGS in this planning process. Specifically, Meridian helped to organize and facilitate a series of five workshops to identify information gaps, research needs and priorities, collaboration strategies, and an organizational and staffing structure that would meet the goals of the Center.

 

Workshop participants included scientists, wildlife managers and other experts from federal and state agencies, NGOs, and universities. The first workshop, held in December 2008 in Lansdowne, Virginia, promoted dialogue and information sharing and helped to build consensus on the objectives, priorities, and initial ideas regarding organizational structure of the Center. The three subsequent regional workshops (in Patuxent, Maryland; Seattle, Washington; and Denver, Colorado) sought to familiarize regional stakeholders with the NCCWSC concept and the status of the implementation efforts, and to obtain further recommendations regarding the priorities and structure of the Center. The USGS convened a final, national workshop in July 2009 in Arlington, Virginia, to gather input on a five-year strategy for the Center.

 

In December 2009, the USGS published a final report detailing the major recommendations that came out of the workshops. Workshop summaries and the final report are available at https://nccwsc.usgs.gov/

 


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