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Updated 11 October, 2003

US National Assessment of
the Potential Consequences
of Climate Variability and Change
Region: Southeast



For additional information, see the Southeast Mega-Region

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Links to Material from the Southeast Assessment Group

Related Articles from the National Assessment's Newsletter, Acclimations.

The Workshop

The Southeast Regional Workshop was held at Vanderbilt University, June 25-27, 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 on Climate Variability and Water Resource Management in the Southeastern United States" examined the impacts of climate variability and change on several sectors, including agriculture, coastal resources and fisheries, education, urban areas and human health, parks and public lands, and water resources. Geographically, the workshop covered the following southeastern states: Florida, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, Arkansas, and Louisiana. The workshop had more than 120 attendees, representing federal, state, and local government and the academic and commercial sectors.

Issues for Analysis

The follow-up assessment considered a limited number of key sectors and issues that are critical in the Southeast region. The issues addressed include: Agriculture, Forests, Air Quality, Water Quality, Land Use Change, and the Cross-cutting effects of water resources on these sectors. 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 Assessment

Quantitative assessments were conducted in agriculture, forestry, air quality, and water quality using baseline and climate change scenarios including extreme climate and various linked models. These analyses were closely coordinated with the two coastal regions in the southeast - Gulf Coast and South Atlantic Coast/Caribbean assessments - and with the Appalachian region to ensure full coverage of the major environmental and economic issues. A stakeholder/user network was established to guide the assessment and to ensure that the issues and topics covered were relevant to regional stakeholders, resource managers, and critical decision-makers. In addition, the Southeast region utilized a steering committee representing local, state and federal agencies, various NGOs, and the university research community to provide technical guidance to the assessment process.  The Southeast Regional Assessment report is expected during 2002.

Principal Investigator Jim Cruise, University of Alabama-Huntsville
Jim O'Brien, Florida State University
Coordinating Federal Agency National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Agency Representatives Woody Turner
Alex Tuyahov
Ann Carlson, National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Douglas Kahle, National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Additional Involvement National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Geological Survey
Key Sectors/Issues
  • Agriculture
  • Forests
  • Air Quality
  • Water Quality
  • Land Use Change
  • Cross-cutting effects of water resources on these sectors

Assessment Team

  • Robert Abt, North Carolina State University
  • James Cruise, University of Alabama - Huntsville
  • James Hansen, University of Florida
  • Upton Hatch, Auburn University
  • James Jones, University of Florida
  • David Legler, Florida State University
  • Richard McNider, University of Alabama - Huntsville
  • Steve McNulty, US Forest Service
  • Brian Murray, Research Triangle Institute


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