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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. 

The logic Model. It shows five steps on top of each other. On the bottom is Monitoring and data collection with an arrow pointing to Science and Model Development with an arrow pointing to Assessments with an arrow pointing to Systematic Approach to Applications and Decision Support and an arrow pointing to Climate Change Adapatation Implemented.
Figure 1

The West-wide Climate Risk Assessments will assess impacts to water supplies and demands on a reconnaissance level and include a baseline risk and impact assessment.  The assessments establish a foundation for more in-depth analyses and the development of adaptation options through Basin Studies, operations planning, or any other activity that can benefit from the assessments.

The Basin Studies develop adaptation options by partnering with basin stakeholders to conduct comprehensive studies to define options for meeting future water demands in river basins in the West. The Basin Studies will incorporate the latest science, engineering technology, climate models and innovation.  The desired outcomes are basin-specific plans recommending collaboratively developed solutions that will help meet water demands and foster sustainable development. The Landscape Conservation Cooperatives, meanwhile, are focused on the development and communication of science at the landscape scale to inform resource conservation within a partnership (federal, state, tribal, and local) framework.  Along with Reclamation’s Science and Technology Program,  working with the USGS Climate Science Centers, the Landscape Conservation Cooperatives represent the primary source and communications avenue for climate change science to support climate change adaptation.  The Landscape Conservation Cooperatives will support the incorporation of environmental information within the WWCRAs and Basin Studies that are developed with Landscape Conservation Cooperative partners.  The water resource information developed by the West-wide Climate Risk Assessments and Basin Studies will be a major contribution of Reclamation’s to our Landscape Conservation Cooperative partners.


Last updated: 2/6/15