May 2020 Newsletter                                               Join Us  | Email Signup  |   Follow us on Twitter   Like us on Facebook   View our profile on LinkedIn
Climate Change Compact Publishes Guidance Report and Updated Regionally Unified Sea Level Rise Projection for Southeast Florida  
The Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact has published a guidance report to accompany the third update of the Regionally Unified Sea Level Rise Projection for Southeast Florida. The projection was released in December 2019 at the Compact's 11th Annual Climate Leadership Summit. The updated projection and accompanying guidance report are currently in the process of final review and acceptance by all four of the Compact counties.

Regionally Unified Sea Level Rise Projection and this guidance document were developed by an ad hoc Sea Level Rise Work Group of experts from academia and federal agencies, and supported by individuals from local government and Compact staff. The Compact is grateful for the time and expertise it took to develop these important products to guide a regionally coordinated response to climate change. The guidance report is intended to assist decision-makers at both the local and regional levels in Southeast Florida to plan for and make decisions about sea level rise and associated vulnerabilities based on best-available science. Read the report.

A WUFT Investigation into Climate Change and Public Health  
Florida's climate preparedness has focused largely on the built and natural environment. A semester-long investigation of climate change and public health conducted by WUFT (Gainesville, FL) found that human hazards - from heat-related hospitalizations to disease-carrying insects - are on the rise in Florida. Children, elders, low-income Floridians and other vulnerable populations are particularly susceptible to these risks, now amplified by coronavirus as basic programs are suspended to contend with the emergency. But potentially record heat, stronger hurricanes and other human health threats didn't get the message to quarantine. The four-part series opens with Heat Policies in Florida May Overlook Most Vulnerable and Heat-Related Illness Rising With Temperatures. Additional installments in this series will be published each Monday in May.
GCOOS, NCCOS Award $556K for New Studies to Uncover the Costs of Florida's Red Tide 
The Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System (GCOOS) and NOAA's National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) are funding two new studies designed to uncover the full costs of harmful algal blooms (HABs) across numerous sectors - from tourism and seafood to industries where impacts are less visible, such as healthcare and construction. As a state that relies heavily on these sectors, Florida is especially vulnerable to the socioeconomic damages of toxic blooms. This was apparent during the prolonged red tide that began in 2017 and lasted through early 2019, causing the state's governor to declare a state of emergency.

The funded studies will evaluate the sociological and economic impacts of Florida's 2017-
2019 red tide event and develop a framework to inform future assessments of other
HAB events with the goal of mitigating economic impacts on communities.

"From Bloom to Bust: Estimating Economic Losses and Impacts of Florida Red Tide (Karenia brevis)" will be conducted by Drs. Sergio Alvarez from the University of Central Florida and Dr. Heather O'Leary from the University of South Florida. This two-year project will examine the economic impacts of K. brevis events across 80 different sectors, based on varied bloom occurrence and intensity. Understanding the true costs of HABs is key to developing effective response and adaptation strategies that meet the needs of impacted communities in Florida and around the country.

"Assessment of the short- and long-term socioeconomic impacts of Florida's 2017-2019 Red Tide event" will be conducted by Drs. Christa Court, Xiang Bi, Jin Won Kim, Angie Lindsey, Stephen Morgan, Andrew Ropicki and Ricky Telg from the University of Florida and David Yoskowitz from the Harte Research Institute, Texas A&M University Corpus Christi. This two-year project will comprehensively quantify and qualify the short- and long-term socioeconomic impacts of the 2017-2019 Karenia brevis event in Florida and develop a transferable framework to help inform national-scale efforts focused on quantifying as well as measuring community vulnerability and resiliency.
2019 Annual Report by Florida's Chief Resilience Officer Released  
Florida's Executive Office of the Governor has released the Chief Resilience Officer (CRO) 2019 Annual Report prepared by Julia Nesheiwat, the state's former CRO. The 36-page report discusses the Officer's goals and proposes "what can be done to start effective resilience planning and action."  Download a copy of the report here.
Framing the Health Aspects of Climate Change
Each year, local health departments spend considerable time and expense preparing for and responding to extreme weather events, which are growing more severe due to climate change. However, only 11% of local health departments report conducting activities related to climate change preparedness. The National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) has published a new information sheet - How to Frame the Health Impacts of Climate Change - to help health departments frame their work around climate change when communicating with the public.
Other Upcoming Events & Webinars
National Coastal and Estuarine Summit | October 4-8  | Providence, RI
Job, Internship, and Fellowship Opportunities

Climate Scientist, Climate Central

Climate Resilience Program Manager, City of Boston | Boston, MA
Dontis, E. E., Radabough, K. R., Chappel, A. R., Russo, C. E., & Moyer, R. P. (2020). Carbon Storage Increases with Site Age as Created Salt Marshes Transition to Mangrove Forests in Tampa Bay, Florida (USA). Estuaries and Coasts.

Ernst, K. M., & Preston, B. L. (2020). Applying the Knowledge Product Evaluation (KnoPE) Framework to two urban resilience cases in the United States. Environmental Science & Policy, 107, 7-22.

Koelmel, J. P., Koelmel JP, Napolitano, M. P., Napolitano MP, Ulmer, C. Z., Ulmer CZ, et al. (2020). Environmental lipidomics: understanding the response of organisms and ecosystems to a changing world. Metabolomics, 16(5).

Owens, H. L., & Guralnick, R. P. (2019). climateStability: An R Package to Estimate Climate Stabilityfrom Time-slice Climatologies. Biodiversity Informatics, 14, 8-14.

Peng, B., Guan, K., Tang, J., Ainsworth EA, Asseng S, Bernacchi, C. J., et al. (2020). Towards a multiscale crop modelling framework for climate change adaptation assessment. Nat Plants, 6(4), 338-348.

Simpson,, Lovelock,, Cherry,, & Feller,. (2020). Short-lived effects of nutrient enrichment on Avicennia germinans decomposition in a saltmarsh-mangrove ecotone. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, 235(106598).

Zhang, L., Ruiz-Menjivar, J., Luo, B., Liang, Z., & Swisher, M. E. (2020). Predicting climate change mitigation and adaptation behaviors in agricultural production: A comparison of the theory of planned behavior and the Value-Belief-Norm Theory. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 68.
A Book from the FCI:
Florida's Climate: Changes, Variations, & Impacts
Florida's Climate: Changes, Variations, & Impacts provides a thorough review of the current state of research on Florida's climate, including physical climate benchmarks; climate prediction, projection, and attribution; and the impacts of climate and climate change on the people and natural resources in the state. The book is available for purchase in paperback and Kindle format at

Individual chapters may be accessed on the FCI website.
About Us
The Florida Climate Institute (FCI) is a multi-disciplinary network of national and international research and public organizations, scientists, and individuals concerned with achieving a better understanding of climate variability and change.     

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