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Planning Strategy in a Changing Climate

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Carbon dioxide levels today (∼378 ppm) are higher than they have been over the past 650,000 years (Siegenthaler et al, 2005). Based on projections given by the IPCC, by 2100 the global average temperature could increase by 3.0°C. Consequences of such a temperature increase include increased intensity, duration, and frequency of storm events, dramatic changes to mountainous snowfall and snowmelt dynamics, increased melting of land ice (specifically in Greenland and Antarctica), and thermal expansion of the marine mixed layer of the ocean. Both melting land ice and thermal expansion of the marine mixed layer of the ocean contribute to sea level rise. Scientists agree the impacts are likely to accelerate over the next couple of decades, however there are opportunities to mitigate climate change by reducing GHG emissions. In addition to mitigation efforts, water quality agencies need to adopt more integrated, adaptive management strategies.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2008-01-01

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