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322 East Front St., Ste 401

Boise, ID 83702

(208) 373-4340

 


Rocky Mountain Research Station Headquarters

2150 Centre Ave., Bldg A
Fort Collins, CO 80526

(970) 295-5923

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Climate Change: awae research subject areas


Earth Source: NASA.gov Environmental trends associated with a warming climate are occurring rapidly in the Rocky Mountains. These trends will affect the spatial and temporal distribution of water resources, habitats, and disturbance in aquatic ecosystems. Threats from reduced runoff, increased flow variability, increased temperature, increased wildfires, lost snowpack storage, and reduced vegetation cover affect water users and aquatic biota alike. The complex challenges posed by climate warming will require proactive, informed management if significant alteration of aquatic systems is to be avoided.

Scientists (profile pages)

 

bulletKelly Elder

bulletDan Isaak

 

bulletCharlie Luce

bulletJim McKean

bulletBruce Rieman

Subcategories (quick jump)

bulletAir Quality

bulletFire & Fuels

bulletFisheries

bulletStream Temperature

bulletWatershed Processes


featured Science

 

Air Quality

 

 


Air Quality in Mountain Ecosystems - Ozone

The monitoring of ozone in remote ecosystems is problematic, since continuous ozone monitors need electric power to operate. Two solutions to this problem exist. The first is to use passive samplers to estimate ozone loading. Passive samplers utilize a chemical reaction of ozone with nitrite to form nitrate. The amount of nitrate indicates the amount of ozone loading. Nitrite-coated filters are exposed for 1-2 weeks and then analyzed for nitrate. The second method is to use portable battery powered ozone monitors for continuous monitoring of ozone in remote ecosystems.

 

Videos and Abstracts of the 2008 Western Division Meeting of the American Fisheries Society

 
Fire & Fuels

 

Climate & Wildfires Image

Climate Change & Wildfires: Effects on Stream Temperatures & Thermal Habitats

Temperature has an important influence on the distribution and abundance of stream organisms. A warming climate is expected to increase stream temperatures, but documentation of such increases is rare and usually limited to trend monitoring at a few sites. Broader understanding of climate effects on thermal characteristics of streams is needed to inform management strategies, but developing this understanding requires modeling techniques that provide valid interpolations between temperature measurement sites. Widespread use of digital temperature loggers provides abundant data in many places that may facilitate development of broad stream temperature models.

 

Science Briefing

 
Fisheries

 

Bull Trout image

 

Bull Trout and Climate Change

Bull trout are an ESA listed species that may be especially vulnerable to the effects of a warming climate.  As such they may be a useful biological indicator of the effects climate change will have on mountain stream ecosystems.  Understanding threats to persistence of bull trout will help us understand threats to other species and ecosystems —information that will be key to prioritization of limited management resources.

 

Science Briefing

 

 

Climate Change and Rocky Mountain Native Trout

Climate Change and Rocky Mountain Native Trout

Rapidly warming climates across the Rocky Mountains threatens many populations of native fishes. Models predict large reductions in native trout across the Rocky Mountains in the 21st century.

 

Science Briefing 

 

 

Climate Change and Fish Conservation

Climate Change and Fish Conservation

Rapidly warming climates across the Rocky Mountains threatens many populations of native fishes. Models predict large reductions in native trout across the Rocky Mountains in the 21st century.

 

Science Briefing 

 

 

 

 

Adaptation for Wildland Aquatic Resources

Adaptation for Wildland Aquatic Resources

Environmental trends associated with a warming climate are occurring rapidly in the Rocky Mountains. These trends will affect the spatial and temporal distribution of water resources, habitats, and disturbance in aquatic ecosystems. Threats from reduced runoff, increased flow variability, increased temperature, increased wildfires, lost snowpack storage, and reduced vegetation cover affect water users and aquatic biota alike. The complex challenges posed by climate warming will require proactive, informed management if significant alteration of aquatic systems is to be avoided

 

Science Briefing 

 
Stream Temperature

 

 

Stream image


Stream Temperature Modeling

Stream thermal regimes are important within regulatory contexts and strongly affect aquatic ecosystems. Numerous approaches have been developed for modeling stream temperatures, but broad application of these models to USFS lands has been constrained by data limitations and poor predictive ability. RMRS scientists have developed an approach to modeling stream temperatures that requires a minimum of field effort by using existing temperature records in combination with GIS and remote sensing technologies. The approach is being applied in a central Idaho watershed to map thermal habitat networks for native fish species, but could also be used to forecast future habitat distributions, improve understanding of factors affecting stream temperatures, determine compliance with water quality standards, or optimize temperature sampling strategies.

 

 

Science Briefing  |  Stream Temperature Modeling and Monitoring Website |

 

NorWeST Regional Database and Modeled Stream Temperature Website

 

 

 

Using Underwater Epoxy To Install Temperature Sensors

 

Using Underwater Epoxy To Install Temperature Sensors

Thermal regimes are a fundamental attribute of stream ecosystems and the ability to monitor and model these regimes are rapidly advancing. With a simple protocol that uses underwater epoxy to attach sensors, more than 500 new monitoring sites were established from 2010 to 2012 in rivers and streams across the Rocky Mountains.

 

Science Briefing

 

 

 

Stream Isotherm Shifts From Climate Change

 

Stream Isotherm Shifts From Climate Change

Distributions of some species already appear to be shifting to cooler areas (higher elevations and poleward) in response to climate change.

 

 

Science Briefing

 

 

Species Distribution Uncertainty

Species Distribution Uncertainty

Forecast of species distributions under future climates are inherently uncertain; nonetheless, uncertainty in species distributions should be taken into consideration in conservation planning and reserve design.

 

Science Briefing

 


Climate Change & Wildfires: Effects on Stream Temperatures & Thermal Habitats Nonnative Fish Removal (SEE FIRE & FUELS)

 
Watershed Processes

 

 

Western Watersheds and Climate Change Workshop

 

Western Watersheds and Climate Change Workshop

The Western Watersheds and Climate Change: Water and Aquatic System Tools workshop was held from November 17-19, 2009 in the Denver/Boulder area of Colorado. This workshop brought together the management and research community to 1) share knowledge and tools that are currently available to address water and climate change, and 2) identify additional tools that are needed to adequately address water and climate change issues in Forest Plan revisions, project level decisions, and partner activities.

 

Link to Presentations

 

 

Bull Trout & Climate image

Bull Trout and Climate Change - Risks, Uncertainties and Opportunities for Mapping the Future

Bull trout are a federally listed, native charr species distributed throughout the Pacific Northwest. Among the critical requirements for this species are a need for large, interconnected habitats of cold water. Much uncertainty exists regarding the future of bull trout and their habitats given environmental trends associated with a warming climate and increasing fire activity. Presentations at this symposium provide an overview of bull trout, their relationship to climate, and alternatives for modeling future habitat and population distributions.

 

Videos and Abstracts of the 2008 Western Division Meeting of the American Fisheries Society

 

 

Sediment Delivery In A Changing Climate

Sediment Delivery In A Changing Climate

Headwater basins periodically produce massive pulses of sediment to main stem rivers. Understanding how this sediment affects fluvial processes, aquatic habitats, and infrastructure along river corridors is key to allocating limited management resources.

 

Science Briefing

 

 

 

Pilot Watershed Vulnerability Assessment Project

Pilot Watershed Vulnerability Assessment Project

Forest managers are expected to anticipate and respond to the threat of a changing climate by adjusting management priorities and actions. Drawing distinctions in climate change vulnerability among watersheds on a national forest or grassland allows more efficient and effective allocation of

resources and better land and watershed stewardship.

 

Science Briefing

 

 

Precipitation Declines In Pacific Northwest Mountains

Precipitation Declines In Pacific Northwest Mountains

High-elevation climate trends in the Pacific Northwest show that streamflow declines are linked to decreases and changes in wind patterns that bring precipitation to mountains.

 

Science Briefing

 
 
 

Climate Change & Wildfires: Effects on Stream Temperatures & Thermal Habitats Nonnative Fish Removal (SEE FIRE & FUELS)

 

Research Subject Areas

 

AQUATIC ENVIRONMENTS AND....

 

bulletAquatic Ecology

bulletAtmospheric Sciences

bulletBiogeochemistry

bulletClimate Change

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Engineering

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Fire & Fuels

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Fisheries

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Geomorphology

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Hydrology

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Plant Physiology

bulletSediment & Erosion

bulletSpatial Analysis

bulletWater & Watershed Processes

 

Resources

 

NorWeST Stream Temperature- Regional Database and Model

 

2011 Climate-Aquatics Decision Support Workshop

 

Stream Temperature Modeling and Monitoring Website

 

R1 Air Temperature Modeling and Monitoring Website


River Bathymetry Toolkit (RBT)

 

Bull Trout and Climate Change - Risks, Uncertainties and Opportunities for Mapping the Future

 

 

Western Watersheds and Climate Change Workshop - November 17-19, 2009

 

Dave Cleaves Interview with The New York Times

 

Office of the Climate Change Advisor

 

Assessing the Vulnerability of Watersheds to
Climate Change: Results of National Forest Watershed Vulnerability Pilot Assessments


 

Rocky Mountain Research Station - Air, Water and Aquatic Environments Sciences Program
Last Modified:  Thursday, 03 April 2014 at 18:36:42 CDT

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