Climate Change Adaptation in the West

Authors: Lauren Hunt*, Boise State University, Vicken Hillis, Boise State University
Topics: Coupled Human and Natural Systems
Keywords: climate change, rangeland, adaptation
Session Type: Poster
Day: 4/4/2019
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Lincoln 2, Marriott, Exhibition Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Rangelands cover over 50% of the land surface area in the western US, providing important economic, social and environmental benefits. The resilience of western rangelands, however, is threatened by climate change, including altered phenology and precipitation patterns, increased frequency and intensity of drought and forest fires, heightened pressure from invasive plants, and reduced water storage in winter snowpack. Climate adaptation strategies are available to ranchers, yet uptake varies substantially. Rancher decision-making is a complex function of their beliefs, knowledge, skill level, risk perceptions, and the institutions supporting them. Semi-structured interviews, focus groups and workshops will be utilized to examine how ranchers in Idaho, Montana, Wyoming perceive and respond to climate change, and the opportunities and
barriers these social processes create for climate change adaptation.

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