How climate change will impact outdoor recreation in the Pacific Northwest

As the seasons change in Washington state from winter to spring, you can almost hear the collective cheers at the promise of warmer weather and sunnier days. For some, though, this time of year also marks the dreaded end of winter fun, as snow starts melting on the Pacific Northwest’s tallest peaks. But how will climate change affect outdoor recreation, not only during these transitional periods but throughout the year? 

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UW Climate Impacts Group and partner organizations launch the Northwest Climate Resilience Collaborative

Northwest Climate Resilience Collaborative announcement photo

The UW Climate Impacts Group, an EarthLab member organization, along with nine community, nonprofit and university partners, is launching a program of community-led, justice-oriented climate adaptation work across Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana. The Northwest Climate Resilience Collaborative will be founded with a five-year, $5.6 million grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA). The program will be one of 11 across the country funded through NOAA’s Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessments program. 

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Bigger and worse wildfires? UW fire experts weigh in

Firefighters respond to the Taylor Creek and Klondike fires in Oregon’s Rogue-Siskiyou National Forest in summer 2018.

2020 was a memorable year for wildfires. Images of burning forests appeared everywhere on social media and attention-grabbing headlines dominated news cycles all over the world. Heading into the 2021 fire season, two big questions loom in everyone’s minds, so we checked in with some fire experts at UW Environment to ask: Are fires getting worse over time? If so, what compounding factors are in place? 

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Case studies illustrate how water utilities may adapt to climate change

The ship canal

Changing climate has far-reaching impacts, and is testing parts of society’s ability to continue doing business-as-usual.  Among these are water utilities, the entities responsible for delivering clean, fresh water to our nation’s households and managing wastewater and stormwater. Climate change affects not only rainfall and annual precipitation patterns—which has implications on the availability of freshwater—but can also stress the infrastructure and systems used to treat, deliver and manage water resources. 

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