2024 Abstracts

Southwestern Mountains Climate Resilience Center


Mariah Carbone1* (mariah.carbone@nau.edu), Salli Dymond2, Seafha Ramos2, Jaime Yazzie2, Daniel Feldman3, Kenneth Williams3, Peter Fulé2


1Center for Ecosystem Science and Society, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ; 2School of Forestry, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ; 3Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA



The Southwestern Mountains Climate Resilience Center (SMCRC) was established to address fundamental and applied research needs of regional populations in highlands of the southwestern United States. The communities and stakeholders of the southwestern highlands include the highest density of Native American populations and Tribal lands in the United States. Key local challenges in this region include drought, fire, flooding, and insect herbivory that lead to ecosystem degradation and high socioeconomic burdens on rural and Tribal communities. These factors are exacerbated by warming climate, requiring a forward-looking approach to reducing damage through climate-adaptive management. The SMCRC´s objectives are to (1) integrate research tools in dynamics of forests, disturbances, climate, carbon, and hydrology that provide informative practical examples for climate-resilient management of public and Tribal lands; (2) develop an outreach program for science translation reaching K–12 and adult populations through online materials and a network of Native-serving teachers; (3) foster training and science translation of multidisciplinary climate scientists by building on links with a community college, Tribal college, the national-scale Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals, and the Southwest Fire Science Consortium; and (4) partner with DOE scientists on developing and communicating relevant science in two-way interactions with southwestern communities. To date, the SMCRC team has established relationships with partners, finalized the job search for a research coordinator, and initiated approval of instrumentation for a local field site at the Fort Valley Experimental Forest near Flagstaff, AZ.