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Past Is Prologue: A Case Study Exploration of the Role of Climate Indicators in Adaptation in the United States

Alexis St. Juliana, Heather Hosterman, and Karen Carney, Abt Associates; Jason Vogel, University of Washington; Michael J. Kolian and Dana Krishland, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; Jennifer Peers JMHP

Article

December 17, 2020

Climate change projections have been the primary tool for exploring the impacts of climate change and thus for determining how to prepare for and adapt to those projected impacts. However, climate indicatorsobserved climate trends, conditions, and impacts—which are often associated inked to socioeconomic consequences, can also help inform adaptation actions but often they have a limited role. The authors explored the use of climate indicators in adaptation decision-making through three detailed case studies and found they play a limited role in the implementing and evaluating policy stages of the decision process. Ultimately, the authors recommend an integrated approach that draws upon both climate indicators and climate projections to support adaptation decision-making.