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National Assessment of the Potential Consequences
to Material from the Pacific Islands Assessment Group:
Related Articles from the National Assessment's Newsletter, Acclimations.
A workshop was hosted by the Center for Application of Research on the Environment, March 3-6, 1998, 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 rationale for convening the Hawaii-Pacific Workshop can be summarized in the context of three overarching themes.
The first important theme is the very real and significant impact that year-to-year climate variability has on communities and businesses in the region today. The second is the importance of scientific research in this region to understanding the nature and consequences of climate variability and change, both locally and globally. The third theme is the leadership role which this region can continue to play in establishing and sustaining the kind of continuing dialogue among scientists, businesses, governments and community leaders which is essential if the results of climate and global change research are to be used to improve decision making and benefit society locally, regionally, nationally and internationally.
Workshop Steering Committee
Issues for Analysis
The assessment considered a limited number of key sectors and issues that are critical in the Pacific Islands region and were identified as high-priority information needs during the March 1998 Workshop. The issues include: Fresh Water; Public Health; Public Safety; Sustaining Agriculture; Tourism; Marine and Coastal Resources; and Common Themes. The Assessment focus was on addressing environmental and socio-economic impacts due to climate changes, recognizing that some of the current stresses in the region are complicating factors.
Strategy for the Assessment
The general strategy of the Pacific Islands region was twofold: to develop a more complete understanding of local/regional implications of climate variability and change; and to establish and maintain a continuing, interactive dialogue with regional stakeholders. Various activities were undertaken to implement both focuses. For the improved local understanding - individual assessment teams were established for each key issue/sector addressed. For the interactive dialogue - assessment workshops and small-group discussions were organized on individual issues/sectors to support both the detailed exploration of consequences and the identification of critical information needs. The Pacific Island Assessment report available on the web.