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National Assessment of the Potential Consequences
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Related Articles from the National Assessment's Newsletter, Acclimations.
The New England regional workshop was held at the University of New Hampshire, September 3-5, 1997, as part of the series of US Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) regional climate change workshops. This series of workshops is seen as a first step in a U.S. national assessment of the potential consequences of climate variability and change. The workshop involved a total of 122 participants representing all New England States and upstate New York. The workshop focused on seven sectors: natural resources, human health, insurance and business, energy and utilities, government and resource management, recreation and tourism, and information transfer. The first day of the meeting focused on soliciting stakeholder perspectives and concerns while the second day focused on identifying the likely consequences of climate change. The second day discussions included how the consequences of climate changes might interact with current stresses as well as identifying knowledge gaps and response strategies.
Issues for Analysis
Participants of the New England Regional Climate Change Impacts Workshop identified 12 significant findings regarding climate change issues and concerns of importance to the region. The first was: education on regional issues related to climate change is not readily available and is essential for informed sectoral discussion. To incorporate a number of the significant findings, a limited number of specific focuses for the Assessment were identified by stakeholders and included the Sectors of: Forestry, Human Health, and Water; and the Impact Areas of: Atmospheric Chemistry, Extreme Events, and Seasonal Dynamics.
Strategy for the Assessment
The New England approach has been to facilitate the development of a dynamic partnership among regional research, service, industry, and end-user communities. This partnership applied research methods and technologies, as well as effective outreach programs to addressing important regional climate change and variability issues and concerns identified by end-user communities. The following specific activities were undertaken: