Incorporating Climate Change Refugia into Climate Adaptation in the Acadia National Park Region

Monday, June 25, 2018

    Toni Lyn Morelli, NE CASC Research Ecologist with the USGS, and Jenny Smetzer, a student contractor with the USGS and soon to be a Second Century Fellow at Schoodic Institute, recently attended a meeting in Maine to bring climate science to refugia planning for the Park Service. The objectives of the meeting were to bring together local natural resource managers to continue dialogue about climate change adaptation in the Acadia National Park region and derive a list of candidate species to pilot a regional climate change refugia management strategy for the Acadia National Park region. This meeting kicked off a new research project organized under a research fellowship funded by The American Association for the Advancement of Science, Acadia National Park, and Schoodic Institute’s Second Century Stewardship Fellowship project.

The goals of the project include

  • To work with regional conservation partners to incorporate climate change refugia into regional management and climate change adaptation plans;
  • To link climate science and natural resource management more effectively through active stakeholder engagement and knowledge co-production. 

To this end, Toni Lyn and Jenny met with stakeholders in Winter Harbor Maine on June 8, 2018 to discuss how climate change refugia can be used in local management, identify local and regional data sources for the project, and to derive a list of species for which climate change refugia modeling would be most fruitful.

The meeting drew nearly 25 participants from multiple agencies, including local land trusts and conservation non-profits, Acadia National Park, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, and the US Fish and Wildlife Service. After developing the climate change refugia maps for the focal species identified at this first meeting, NE CASC will continue to work with partners to 1) refine and validate the model outputs, 2) interpret and understand the data products, and 3) identify ways to incorporate climate change refugia concepts into on the ground management and conservation actions. 


Written by Communications Intern Mike Crowley