Regional Climate Change Impacts

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					Climate Change Impacts in the Chesapeake Bay Area

                                                         A closer look at
                                                                        Water temperatures
                                                                        Precipitation (runoff)
                                                                        Sea Level
Four publications that site the 2007 IPCC report as a central source:

       June 2009                       January 2009                 November 2009        September 2007
                          USGCRP Key Findings
1. Global warming is unequivocal and primarily human-induced
   Global temperature has increased over the past 50 years, primarily due to human-induced emissions of heat-trapping gases.

2. Climate changes are underway in the United States and are projected to grow.
    These include increases in heavy downpours, rising temperature & sea level, rapidly retreating glaciers,
    thawing permafrost, lengthening growing seasons & ice-free seasons on lakes and rivers, earlier snowmelt,
    and alterations in river flows.

3. Widespread climate-related impacts are occurring now & are expected to increase.
   Climate changes are already affecting water, energy, transportation, agriculture, ecosystems, and health.

 4. Climate change will stress water resources.
    Drought, related to reduced precipitation, increased evaporation, and increased water loss from plants, is an important
    issue in many regions, especially in the West. Floods and water quality problems are likely to be amplified by climate
    change in most regions. Declines in mountain snowpack are important where snow acts as water storage.

5. Crop and livestock production will be increasingly challenged.
   Agriculture is considered one of the sectors most adaptable to changes in climate. However, increased heat, pests, water
   stress, diseases, and weather extremes will pose adaptation challenges for crop and livestock production.

                                                             US Global Climate Research Program
       USGCRP Key Findings (continued)
6. Coastal areas are at increasing risk from sea-level rise and storm surge.
  Sea-level rise and storm surge place many U.S. coastal areas at increasing risk of erosion and flooding.
  Energy, transportation infrastructure and property in coastal areas are very likely to be adversely affected.

7. Threats to human health will increase.
   Health impacts of climate change are related to heat stress, waterborne diseases, poor air quality, extreme weather
   events, & diseases transmitted by insects and rodents. Robust public health infrastructure can reduce negative

8. Climate change will interact with many social and environmental stresses.
  Climate change will combine with pollution, population growth, overuse of resources, urbanization, & other social,
  economic, and environmental stresses to create larger impacts than from any of these factors alone.

9. Thresholds will be crossed, leading to large changes in climate & ecosystems.
  There are a variety of thresholds in the climate system and ecosystems. These thresholds determine, for example, the
  presence of sea ice and permafrost, and the survival of species, from fish to insect pests, with implications for society.
  With further climate change, the crossing of additional thresholds is expected.

10. Future climate change and its impacts depend on choices made today.
 The amount and rate of future climate change depend primarily on current and future human-caused emissions
 of heat-trapping gases and airborne particles. Responses involve reducing emissions to limit future warming,
 and adapting to the changes that are unavoidable.

                                                            US Global Climate Research Program
  Climate Change and Risk:
Mitigation: reduces amount of global warming
Adaptation: reduces the impact
                     Necessary to avoid dangerous
                     climate change

                     Climate change is inevitable;
                     Adaptation needed to minimize
Climate Change Impacts in the Northeast
                           Extreme heat and declining air quality
                           are likely to pose increasing problems for
                           human health, especially in urban areas.

                           Agricultural production, including dairy,
                           fruit & maple syrup, are likely to be
                           adversely affected as favorable climates shift.

                           Severe flooding due to sea-level rise & heavy
                           downpours is likely to occur more frequently.

                           The projected reduction in snow cover will
                           adversely affect winter recreation and the
                           industries that rely upon it.

                           The center of lobster fisheries is projected to
                           continue its northward shift & cod fishery on
                           Georges Bank is likely to be diminished.
Chesapeake Bay Watershed
What does the historical record tell us?
Temperature projections for the 21st Century
Water Temperatures
What does the historical record tell us about water temperatures?
    (warmer temperatures of more than 2oC (3.6oF) in the past 70 years)

                Chesapeake Bay Watershed
       Sea Level Rise
Areas in green are expected to be inundated.
       (melting ice & expanding water)

The IPCC estimates sea level will rise by over 2 feet
     along Maryland’s 7,000 miles of shoreline
Glass Bottom Boats tours of the National Monuments?
Changes in store for Chesapeake Bay Ecosystems
Regional Mitigation Goals
Mitigation – DC targets
According to the 2007 IPCC report,
to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations,
carbon emissions will have to be reduced by at
least 50 percent and as much as 85 percent
below 1990 levels by 2050 (IPCC 2007d)

Pending legislation to help us get there:
Clean Energy & American Power Act (Kerry-Boxer 9/09)
             Economy-wide cap and trade system with strict requirements for
             large stationary sources that emitting > 25,000 tons GHGs per year
             and producers and importers of petroleum fuels.

        Targeted standards for lower emissions from key sectors
                   20% below 2005 by 2020
                   83% below 2005 by 2050
 Where do we go from here?
Climate Change Impact Assessment
 Goal: Determine effect of climate changes on an impact
  system, with a goal of identifying adaptation strategies

          Physical                             Impact
          Climate                              System


      Policy-Relevant Climate Impact Assessment
    Requires information to be useful to decision-making process
Steve Ackerman, CIMSS/SSEC

Margaret Mooney, CIMSS/SSEC

LuAnn Dalhman, NOAA Climate Office

Dan Pisut, NOAA National Environmental Satellite, Data, & Information Service

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