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Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park Natural Resource Condition Assessment Permanent Link

Natural Resource Report NPS/CHOH/NRR—2014/760

Thomas JE, Campbell JP, Carlstrom B, Carter M, Costanzo SD, Dennison WC, Hitchcock J, Lehman M, Nortrup M, and C. Stubbs C

Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park provides a wealth of natural resource values, due to its location spanning four physiographic provinces. These resources were assessed using the Vital Signs framework. Overall, the natural resoures in Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park are in moderate condition but are under threat from surrounding land use, regionally poor air quality, overpopulation of deer, and the recent documentation of the presence of emerald ash borer and white-nose syndrome within the park. Climate change is predicted to negatively affect many of the natural resources of the park, including increasing ozone levels and particle pollution, raising the water temperature of cold-water, trout-supporting streams, changing forest composition, and affecting exotic species and forest pests and diseases.

Maryland's Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act Plan Permanent Link

"Climate change is real. Scientists agree. It's happening now. It's harmful and human-caused. We can make a difference through our actions." In 2009, Governor Martin O’Malley and Maryland’s General Assembly charged the State with developing a Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan that will reduce greenhouse gases 25 percent by the year 2020. This report provides a detailed overview of Maryland’s Plan, describing Maryland’s vulnerability to climate change and detailing Maryland’s 150-plus Greenhouse Gas Reduction programs and initiatives and their associated benefits.

Helping your woodland adapt to a changing climate Permanent Link

As Maryland's climate changes, your woodland may be more susceptible to natural disturbances such as storms, droughts, insect and disease outbreaks, or other stressors that can damage trees or slow their growth. As a good woodland steward, now is the time to make smart environmental and economic decisions, and implement the most effective strategies to help your woodlands adapt to climate change. This guide explains the potential impacts of climate change in Maryland and how they may affect your woodland. Management options are described for each of these climate change impacts to reduce or avoid loss of forest cover, declines in forest productivity, and reductions in the environmental benefits of woodlands.

Maryland's Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan: Executive Summary Permanent Link

"Climate change is real. Scientists agree. It's happening now. It's harmful and human-caused. We can make a difference through our actions." In 2009, Governor Martin O’Malley and Maryland’s General Assembly charged the State with developing a Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan that will reduce greenhouse gases 25 percent by the year 2020. This executive summary provides an overview of Maryland’s Plan, describing Maryland’s vulnerability to climate change and summarizing Maryland’s 150-plus Greenhouse Gas Reduction programs and initiatives and their associated benefits.

Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan: Chapter 8 Adaptation Permanent Link

Climate change will affect Maryland in a variety of ways. More obvious impacts could include an increased risk for extreme events such as drought, storms, flooding, and forest fires; more heat-related stress; the spread of existing or new vector-born disease; and increased erosion and inundation of low-lying areas along the State’s shoreline and coast. Adaptation, together with mitigation, is necessary to address climate change. Climate change adaptation is an extremely complex process and there is no single means of response. This report details the many adaptation strategies taken by the State of Maryland.

Updating Maryland's Sea-level Rise Projections Permanent Link

Boesch DF, Atkinson LP, Boicourt WC, Boon JD, Cahoon DR, Dalrymple RA, Ezer T, Horton BP, Johnson ZP, Kopp RE, Li M, Moss RH, Parris A and Sommerfield CK

With 3,100 miles of tidal shoreline and low-lying rural and urban lands, "The Free State" is one of the most vulnerable to sea-level rise. Historically, Marylanders have long had to contend with rising water levels along the Chesapeake Bay, Atlantic Ocean, and Coastal Bay shores. Shorelines have eroded and low-relief lands and islands (some previously inhabited) have been inundated. Prior to the 20th century, this was largely due to the slow sinking of the land since the Earth's crust is still adjusting to the melting of large masses of ice following the last glacial period. Over the 20th century, however, relative sea-level rise (how much the average level of tidal waters has risen with respect to land) has increased, at least partially as a result of global warming. This report interprets recent scientific results to produce projections useful for sea-level rise adaptation in Maryland.

2013 summer forecast Permanent Link

Produced by EcoCheck in collaboration Younjoo Lee and Walter Boynton, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science

Researchers at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science have forecasted the hypoxic volume of the mainstem Chesapeake Bay for the seventh year. The average summer 2013 hypoxic (Dissolved Oxygen ≤2.0 mg·L-1) volume forecast is 4.5 km3, with 95% confidence interval that the hypoxic volume will be between 4.1 and 4.8 km3. This is smaller than average for the time period (1985-2012). Loads are the main driver of the forecast model.

Sampling and data analysis protocols for Mid-Atlantic non-tidal stream indicators Permanent Link

EcoCheck in collaboration with the Mid-Atlantic Tributary Assessment Coalition

Wicks EC, Fries AS and Kelsey RH

This document provides guidelines for the successful production of non-tidal stream health report cards. Specifically, this document develops clear and consistent protocols for the identification, collection, and analysis of indicators to be used by report card-producing organizations in Mid-Atlantic rivers and streams. The overall objective of this protocol document is to encourage and enable comparisons of monitoring results from report card-producing organizations and to increase the scientific validity of report cards as outreach tools. This document is intended for use in non-tidal areas only, as the ecosystem health indicators and thresholds discussed are pertinent only to river and stream ecosystems.

Assessing Progress Permanent Link

Three Years Later

Following the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, seven Oil Spill Commission Action (OSCA) commissioners released their first report in April 2012—Assessing Progress: Implementing the Recommendations of the National Oil Spill Commission. It provided recommendations for making offshore energy production safer, improving oil spill response, and addressing the impacts on people, economy and the environment. The Commissioners issued their second progress report recently, on April 17, 2013, three days before the third-year anniversary of the disaster. This report, Assessing Progress: Three Years Later, summarizes the Commissioners assessment of what progress has been achieved, and what still needs to be done.

Stakeholder Engagement Permanent Link

Participatory Approaches for the Planning and Development of Marine Protected Areas

Walton A, Gomei M and Di Carlo G

The participatory engagement of stakeholders is perhaps the most important component of the planning and development of an MPA. Meaningful engagement depends on the ability of practitioners to build a healthy, lasting, and trustful relationship with stakeholders, including local communities. The approaches described in this guidebook are intended to help practitioners navigate this process of stakeholder engagement.

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