September 2011

The Executive Office of Environmental Affairs released the Massachusetts Climate Change Adaptation Report that offers a comprehensive overview of observed and predicted changes to Massachusetts’ climate and the anticipated impacts of and potential adaptation strategies to prepare for climate change. Massachusetts Climate Change Adaptation Report was prepared by EEA and the 34-member Climate Change Adaptation Advisory Committee established under the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2008. MassWildlife was one of the agency members on the Advisory Council.

November 2010

BioMap2; Conserving Massachusetts Biodiversity in a Changing World released by MassWildlife. BioMap2 designed to guide strategic biodiversity conservation in Massachusetts over the next decade by focusing land protection and stewardship on the areas that are most critical for ensuring the long-term persistence of rare and other native species and their habitats, exemplary natural communities, and a diversity of ecosystems. BioMap2 is also designed to include the habitats and species of conservation concern identified in the State Wildlife Action Plan. Finally, BioMap 2 includes information on ecologically resistant and resilient ecosystems to better address anticipated effects of climate change.

April 2010

The Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife (DFW) and Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences published a series of three reports that address questions around the impact of climate change on ecosystems and species.

Funded by the Wildlife Conservation Society and the Doris Duke Foundation, the objective was to make "climate-smart" the State's existing State Wildlife Action Plan (SWAP) - the Division's "blueprint" for future conservation in the state.

As the climate continues to change in the Northeast, it is important to evaluate how current conservation planning (including the SWAP) will be affected, and how resource managers and agencies can most effectively refine long-term goals. The overall objective of this project is to help advance just such adaptation planning.

The Climate Change and Massachusetts Fish and Wildlife reports address the main adaptation issues facing planners and conservation managers in the state and are designed to be supplementary materials to the existing SWAP. The Division of Fisheries and Wildlife is working with the Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences and other implementation partners to achieve this goal. The reports include:

  • Volume 1 - Introduction and Background pdf format of climate_change_intro.pdf
file size 1MB - This report provides background to the project by describing how biodiversity conservation is currently carried out by the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife; the history, objectives, and methods of the SWAP; and how the climate in Massachusetts has been changing and is expected to change over the remainder of this century.
  • Volume 2 - Habitat and Species Vulnerability pdf format of climate_change_habitat_vulnerability.pdf
file size 1MB - This volume reports the results of the work assessing the likely vulnerabilities of fish and wildlife and their habitats to climate change. The report addresses the following questions:
  1. How do the SWAP-targeted fish and wildlife habitats rank in terms of their likely comparative vulnerabilities to climate change?
  2. How will the representation of these habitats in Massachusetts be altered by a changing climate?
  3. Which vertebrate Species in Greatest Need of Conservation are likely to be most vulnerable to climate change?
  4. What degree of confidence can be assigned to the above predictions?
  • Volume 3 - Habitat Management pdf format of climate_change_habitat_management.pdf
- This report provides at least partial answers to the second question: how valued ecological resources might be effectively managed as climatic conditions continue to change.
  • Habitat Type Vulnerability Evaluations Reference pdf format of climate_change_quick_ref_habitat_types.pdf
 - This document, a sub-set of Volume 2: Habitat and Species Vulnerability, serves as a quick reference to the 17 habitat types evaluated for climate change vulnerability.