Climate Change Preparedness for Watershed Councils

In the summer of 2009, with support from the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB), CLI initiated a program focused on climate change preparation planning for watershed councils in Oregon.

Using local watershed council data, we assessed how local climate change projections will impact watershed councils; held workshops and trainings with watershed councils to assess risks and propose management strategies to minimize risk; and developed web-based resources to support climate change preparation strategies. Our pilot areas for the 2009-2010 project included the Klamath, Umatilla, and Willamette river basins. However, trainings and resources developed in the pilot areas are intended to be replicable for other watershed councils in Oregon and nationally. 

We selected to work with these three watersheds on climate preparedness because although the entire state of Oregon will be affected by climate change, some of the most significant ecological consequences will occur in the Klamath, Umatilla and Willamette river basins. These basins are rich in aquatic and terrestrial biodiversity, hold important cultural resources, and/or provide water resources that are critical for significant segments of the population. Rising temperatures, increased wildfire, major storm events, reduced snowpack, and other climate impacts will not only exacerbate existing stresses in these basins, they will also create new stresses on ecosystems, species, and humans. This work is intended to jump-start preparation efforts in the pilot basins and identify strategies and policies for collaborative efforts that will increase the resistance and resilience of natural, built, human, and economic sectors to climate change across Oregon and, eventually, the United States.

 On these pages, you will find:

  1. Information on trainings and workshops for watershed councils on climate change preparation
  2. Resources on the impacts of climate change on watersheds and stakeholders
  3. Resources on how watershed councils can support climate change preparation in their watershed
  4. Information on how watershed councils can communicate the impacts of climate change and encourage adoption of preparation strategies to their stakeholders
  5. Opportunities for networking, funding and learning  

Workshop Resources:



Image: Klamath Basin, Stacy Vynne