The Southern Climate Impacts Planning Program at LSU is promising some major steps toward assessing the impact that changes in the climate can have on the Gulf Coast region. SCIPP was funded last year through a $3.8-million National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration grant for scientists at LSU and the University of Oklahoma to conduct in-depth research on extreme climate events in the southern U.S.
Adaptation advocate Lynne Carter was recently hired as the SCIPP associate director. She was previously the director of the Adaptation Network and author of a White House study earlier this year called "Global Climate Change Impacts on the United States." She says her team has developed a survey to evaluate regional preparedness for hazards associated with a changing climate, both for "now impacts" and for likely future impacts. "It aims to evaluate state and local level hazard planning processes currently in place across the south-central U.S. in an effort to learn more about information sources used, planning challenges, data needs and communication," Carter says. "Additionally, this survey also focuses on climate change perceptions and how climate change may affect hazard planning in the area in the future." For more information, check out www.southernclimate.org. — Alford