Resource managers are at the forefront of a new era of management. They must consider the potential impacts of climate change on the Nation's resources and proactively develop strategies for dealing with those impacts on plants, animals, and ecosystems. This requires rigorous, scientific understanding of environmental change.
The role of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in this effort is to analyze climate-change data and develop tools for assessing how changing conditions are likely to impact resources. This information will assist Federal, State, local, and tribal partners manage resources strategically. The 2008 Omnibus Budget Act and Secretarial Order 3289 established a new network of eight Department of Interior Regional Climate Science Centers to provide technical support for resource managers.
The Southeast Regional Assessment Project (SERAP) is the first regional assessment to be funded by the USGS National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center (http://nccw.usgs.gov/). The USGS is working closely with the developing Department of Interior Landscape Conservation Cooperatives to ensure that the project will meet the needs of resource managers in the Southeast. In addition, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is providing resources to the SERAP to expand the scope of the project.