Great Lakes water levels fluctuate in response to such environmental factors as lake precipitation, runoff, and evaporation, as well as human influences like water withdrawals and controls of water flow between lakes. In light of future climate change scenarios, the water level changes we could face will have impacts on not only our Great Lakes ecosystems, but the public health of our coastal communities. To help better understand the implications of climate change on the future of Great Lakes water levels, this webinar will address the following questions:
- What processes govern the water levels of the Great Lakes? What information is used to understand these processes, and what are the different sources of uncertainty in this information?
- How is uncertainty in existing and future climate conditions expressed in water level forecasts?
- How might we incorporate uncertainty of future water levels into our water resource and infrastructure management decisions?
The Great Lakes support numerous fishes of ecological, economic, and cultural importance. How will Great Lakes fish communities respond to projected changes in temperature and precipitation? This webinar will provide information about:
- Expected impacts of climate change on Great Lakes fish communities
- How interactions between climate change and other human-caused stressors may drive unanticipated change in Great Lakes fish production
- Needed information gaps that will improve our ability to forecast the response of fish communities to climate change
Great Lakes ports, harbors, and marinas are vulnerable to a changing climate. To understand the issue, the NOAA Great Lakes Sea Grant Network has been studying the level of awareness, identifying specific actions for addressing Great Lakes climate change, and creating a scalable tool or matrix to help stakeholders understand both the current value and potential threats or liability related to navigation aids and port infrastructure. This webinar will provide information about:
- Results of case study surveys about attitudes and awareness of Great lakes ports
- Climate change issues relevant to Great Lakes ports, harbors, and marinas
- Development of a scalable economic tool to evaluate the economic impacts for climate change scenarios
- Results of the tool applications for two Great Lakes ports case studies (Toledo, OH and Duluth/Superior, MN/WI)
- How a matrix tool concept might be used to understand similar concerns with Storm Water/Waste Water systems
* Photo Credit: Chris J Benson
Past and potential increases in the magnitude and frequency of large rainfall events present important challenges for stormwater managers including conveyance systems filled beyond capacity, increased combined sewer overflows, and costal vulnerabilities. The Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts - Stormwater Working Group has been examining how to reduce the risk to our communities and improve stormwater management infrastructure. This webinar will provide information about:
- Historic trends in rainfall in the western Great Lakes
- Projected precipitation patterns for Wisconsin
- Assessing stormwater impacts and system vulnerability
- Adaptation strategies for Great Lakes communities
Forests are key players in biological carbon sequestration and the conservation of biodiversity. How should these public and private lands best be managed to help mitigate the impacts of climate change? This webinar will provide information about:
- Carbon storage potential of Great Lakes forests and how to measure it
- Impacts of forest management decisions on short and long-term forest carbon sequestration
- Linkages between forest age, biological and structural complexity, and ecosystem resilience to climate change