West-wide Climate Risk Assessments

The West-wide Climate Risk Assessments (WWCRA) are a complementary activity with the Basin Studies and the Landscape Conservation Cooperatives within the WaterSMART Initiative, in accordance with Secretarial Order 3289 (pdf - 83 KB), and meet the authorizations of the Secure Water Act. As a whole, these three activities represent a comprehensive approach to incorporate the best available science into planning activities for climate change adaptation planning. Together, they represent a continuum of activities within the context of climate change adaptation as depicted by Figure 1.

Logic model, continuum of activities within the context of climate change.

Figure 1.

WWCRAs complement the Basin Studies by providing a consistent, baseline assessment of climate change impacts to water supply and demand across the West. The baseline assessments conducted through WWCRA evaluate risks to water supplies related to changes in snowpack, changes in timing and quantity of runoff, and changes in groundwater recharge and discharge. WWCRAs also evaluate risks to water supplies related to increase in the demand for water as a result of increasing temperatures and reservoir evaporation rates. The information generated through WWCRA is used to support Basin Studies by providing a foundation of climate change data, information, and tools that partners can build from to develop adaptation strategies.

Last Updated: June 26, 2015