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Gorder Ellmers/Grassland Bird Trust

Argyle bird trust working with solar developer to conserve more land

With so many birds at risk due to climate change, finding ways for renewables to work with them is increasingly important.

“We’re excited about this collaboration and look forward to working with Eden on future mitigation projects,” said Grassland Bird Trust Executive Director Laurie LaFond. “We believe that renewable energy, when done right, can play an important role in restoring populations of grassland birds to sustainable levels.”

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One-third of all plant and animal species could be extinct in 50 years, study warns

We recognize that climate change is quickly pushing animals and plants past their ability to survive, and natural climate solutions are, at best, predicted to be approximately 30% of the solution.

One-third of all animal and plant species on the planet could face extinction by 2070 due to climate change, a new study warns.

Researchers studied recent extinctions from climate change to estimate how many species would be lost over the next 50 years.

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Dawn Fishin
San Bernardino County

Six habitat improvements that are also climate solutions

One of the challenges of working to slow down climate change is realizing that current lands and waters are already doing an important part of the job. Conserving them, as is, won't increase their ability to do more; managing them with climate change in mind might — and it will help reduce the chances that climate change will get worse due to land loss or conversion.

When you think about who cares about slowing down climate change, don’t forget about hunters, anglers, and those who have a long-standing connection with the land.

There is no one silver bullet nor single set of actions that will turn the tides entirely — climate change can only be addressed with a comprehensive strategy that involves all of us and all the tools we have. Thankfully, this includes habitat conservation measures that are already supported by sportsmen and women.

Here are six habitat improvement strategies that provide this win-win proposition: better hunting and fishing opportunities and fewer climate-change-driven impacts to fish and wildlife….

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Solar Panels

Utility-scale solar energy can be a tool for conservation, economic development

While many land trusts are concerned about climate change, few are messaging about solar in a manner that promotes larger-scale developments that work towards wildlife habitat, water absorption, and farm viability. Natural climate solutions will falter if we don't slow down the use of fossil fuels, quickly. Here's an example of an organization taking a proactive approach.

To put it plainly, these proposed projects will not destroy the natural environment nor negatively impact the watershed if they are approved and built in line with Linn County’s existing ordinance for solar energy projects. In fact, with a diverse mix of native grasses and wildflowers cultivated on-site, these proposed projects can significantly improve water quality, reduce soil erosion, and provide habitat for wildlife and pollinators, going a long way to restore Iowa’s landscape.

Furthermore, by using wildlife-style fencing instead of traditional chain link fencing, these sites can be a home for upland nesting birds such as ring-necked pheasants, quail, and other grassland birds like the dickcissel…

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Forest Path
Creative Commons

Cold Hollow to Canada

Cold Hollow to Canada's mission is to maintain ecosystem integrity, biological diversity, and forest resiliency throughout the Cold Hollow to Canada region, with a focus on community-led stewardship and the conservation of our working landscape in the face of a changing climate.

When a hundred community members came together in late 2008 to discuss the future of their shared landscape, no one in the room had an inkling of what might come of it…

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Monarch © Bark

Monarchs and climate change

The monarch is most commonly found in North America. This is likely something that could resonate with many people you know...

“Monarch Butterflies are very sensitive to changes in temperature as they rely heavily on this factor to prompt migration, hibernation and reproduction. Thus, changes in temperature due to climate change are expected to influence and potentially disrupt these critical stages of the butterflies’ life cycle…”

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Compounded effects of climate change and habitat alteration shift patterns of butterfly diversity

Climate change and habitat destruction have been linked to global declines in vertebrate biodiversity, including mammals, amphibians, birds, and fishes. However, invertebrates make up the vast majority of global species richness, and the combined effects of climate change and land use on invertebrates remain poorly understood…

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‘Climate change’ may be a key factor in declining butterfly populations

The public tends to blame habitat loss and pesticides for the declining butterfly populations in the Western United States. But climate change maybe an equal, if not greater, factor.

As Pennisi points out, “butterflies are at risk in open spaces, too.” She writes: “Art Shapiro, an insect ecologist at the University of California, Davis, and colleagues have shown that over the past 35 years, butterflies are disappearing even in pristine protected areas such as the Sierra Nevada mountain range in the western United States”…

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Moose in a warming climate

I love moose. They and other wildlife are part of the reason why I work so hard to slow down climate change. Yet the future of moose in this country is looking grim if we don't work quickly to slow down climate change, and get off fossil fuels.

“Moose populations across the northern United States are declining as the climate warms up. You wouldn’t think that a temperature increase of only 1.5 to 2 degrees Fahrenheit would kill a moose, but it appears that it does. In northwestern Minnesota, nearly all the moose have disappeared, and in northeastern Minnesota over 90 percent of the moose calves are dying during some years. Moose hunting is no longer allowed in Minnesota…”

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Climate change strategies

Land trusts all over the country are focusing on landscape-scale, climate-resilient lands for protection. It will also be important to prioritize community lands, as well as lands for human refuge and resilience.

The Land Trust of Napa County (LTNC) is actively working to incorporate the challenges and threats posed by climate change into both its land conservation and natural resource management strategies, with a focus on protecting and restoring the ability of our local ecosystems to respond and adapt to warming temperatures. LTNC has dramatically increased its pace of land protection and stewardship throughout Napa County over the last five years to more effectively address these pressing issues…

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