Monday, February 4, 2008

State Climate Change Response Getting Organized

Wisconsin's climate change initiatives are getting organized, with a focus on coordination in the agricultural, industrial and university sectors.

A website about the iniative collaboration is here.

I've said earlier that Milwaukee, urban interests and city workforce goals have got to be included.

1 comment:

Richard Lathrop said...

The Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts (WICCI) was created to assess climate change impacts on specific natural resources, ecosystems and regions, as well as industry, agriculture, tourism, and human health in Wisconsin. An important outcome of these assessments is to develop adaptation strategies that can be implemented by businesses, farmers, public health officials, municipalities, resource managers and other stakeholders.

One of the primary responsibilities of the Science Council of WICCI is to create working groups that will conduct the particular impact assessments on statewide topic areas such as water, forests, wildlife, human health, and tourism. Working groups are also being created to conduct integrated assessments in particular geographic regions such as Milwaukee and the northern forests.

A “Milwaukee Working Group” is particularly compelling given the region’s economic importance to Wisconsin and the region’s large population. This effort also recognizes that Milwaukee has unique challenges as a dense urban center located on the shores of Lake Michigan.

The formation of a comprehensive working group within WICCI is in the works, led by Dr. Sandra McLellan of the Great Lakes Water Institute at UW-Milwaukee. The goal will be to look at a full range of potential climate-related impacts on human health, air quality, water quality and quantity, the urban economy, etc. So far there has been an overwhelmingly positive response from the region’s key leaders in water resource management, urban sustainability, urban planning, the business community, and public health willing to participate in this working group.

In the weeks ahead the Milwaukee Working Group will hopefully take shape where it can be soon launched. A summary of activities to date will be given by WICCI Science Council Co-Chair John Magnuson as part of a keynote presentation entitled “Identifying and Adapting to Climate Change Impacts in Wisconsin” at the UWM Conference on Climate Change and Sustainable Development being held in Milwaukee on April 24-25.

Richard Lathrop
WICCI Science Council Co-Chair
email: rlathrop@wisc.edu