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Indigo Bunting
Clark Rushing

Warming climate is changing where birds breed: Study

People love birds. Your climate communication and engagement strategy can connect around what's happening to them—and how to help. You can also help dismantle misinformation about renewables and birds.

[Clark] Rushing explained, “There’s a real risk that, if these declines continue at their current pace, many species could face extinction within this century. Neotropical migrants are vulnerable to future climate change, putting them at risk of greater declines.”

Neotropical migrants already fly thousands of miles each year to breed, so why can’t they go just a bit farther as the climate warms?

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Black Bear

Wildlife collapse from climate change is predicted to hit suddenly and sooner

This research is notable. We need to recognize that the pace and urgency of moving off fossil fuels is more apparent than ever. So, too, is our energy consumption. You and your land trust can help promote incentives to reduce energy use.

“It’s not that it happens in some places,” said Cory Merow, an ecologist at the University of Connecticut and one of the study’s authors. “No matter how you slice the analysis, it always seems to happen.”

If greenhouse gas emissions remain on current trajectories, the research showed that abrupt collapses in tropical oceans could begin in the next decade [emphasis added]. Coral bleaching events over the last several years suggest that these losses have already started, the scientists said. Collapse in tropical forests, home to some of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth, could follow by the 2040s…

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Wind energy & wildlife: Site it right

With Natural Climate Solutions estimated to be 21% in this country, we need renewables—and fast—to save the places we love. The Nature Conservancy is helping people understand the connection.

Site Wind Right is The Nature Conservancy’s approach to promoting smart, renewable wind energy in the right places—areas that are low impact for conservation, including already developed lands. The strategy has several components:

  • Promoting policies and incentives for low-impact renewable energy deployment
  • Advancing the science of low-impact siting
  • Providing the wind industry and public with information to support low-impact siting
  • Pursuing opportunities to work with the renewable energy sector to advance good siting practices
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Solar Panels
Evan Frost | MPR News

Pollinator-friendly solar energy becomes the norm in Minnesota

Your local land trust could share this with your supporters and let them know that pollinators are threatened and that this can help. Public perception is often shaped by those they trust, and as an organization they trust, you can help them understand that we need to think about solar in new ways.

The environmental benefits of Connexus Energy’s solar-plus-storage project are obvious enough, but this time of year, you’ll notice something more: prairie grasses and flowers planted under and around the sea of solar panels.

Pollinator-friendly plantings at large solar energy sites have become common in Minnesota in recent years. Not only do they provide habitat for the bee and butterfly populations people have been concerned about, but they also promote soil health and probably even boost the solar panels’ electricity output on warm days…

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Beautiful Monarch Butterfly

Climate change threatens the beautiful and beloved monarch butterfly

It's important to be transparent about the role of climate change with pollinator survival. Too often people are talking about lack of habitat and pesticides. Both are critical stressors. But climate change is key, too.

The butterflies are among the world’s experts in climate adaptation. They spend their summers in the northern United States and Canada; they breed in the southern United States during the fall and spring; and most spend their winters in central Mexico, in a few giant clusters.

Their life cycles are driven by a search for optimal conditions: temperatures ideally between 12°C and 22°C when they migrate, some rain during their winters and plenty of milkweed when they mate. The criteria are narrow—and dependent on relatively consistent weather patterns…

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Pollinator Friendly Solar
RTPeat / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

A Practitioner’s Guide to Pollinator-Friendly Solar Development

With Natural Climate Solutions estimated to be 21% in this country, we need renewables—and fast—to save the places we love. Yale's Center for Business in the Environment is working to add clarity to both solar developers and community members by sharing the financial realities as well as ecological opportunities. For example, early and ongoing research suggests that planting deep-rooted vegetation beneath solar panels creates cooler microclimates that help improve efficiency and energy output.

This toolkit provides background on pollinator-friendly solar and its advantages, and tips, resources, and important considerations to kick-start the integration of pollinator habitat into a solar development portfolio.

In addition to the diverse environmental benefits that pollinator-friendly solar projects can produce, there are an array of private benefits for solar developers to reap from planting perennial vegetation under their solar panels.

The guide offers a set of best practices for understanding local context, building support for a project, designing a site, financing, and development…

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Get a bee’s eye view of your landscape

Managed honey bees and wild bees travel long distances from their nests to find food and water.  What are your bees experiencing during their journey? This tool will help you understand how the landscape surrounding your apiary, garden, or farm stacks up in terms of floral resources bees can find, the insecticides they encounter, and for wild bees, the nesting sites that are available.

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Bee On Yellow Flower

Introducing Beescape: A new online tool and community to support bees

I wonder if your land trust, or those in your community, would be interested in this...

A new online tool and community, called Beescape, enables beekeepers, or anyone interested in bees, to understand the specific stressors to which the bees in their managed hives, home gardens, or farms are exposed, according to researchers at Penn State…

“With data provided by beekeepers from agricultural, rural, and urban landscapes across multiple states, we will be able to develop high-quality predictive models that will be included in the website in the future,” said Melanie Kammerer Allen, graduate student in ecology at Penn State, who is involved in the project.

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‘Mass extinction’ of bumblebees across Europe and North America result of climate crisis

We have an opportunity to see natural climate solutions, and renewables, as key partners. Try working with your solar companies to install solar that is beneficial to pollinators and/or agriculture.

When scientist Peter Soroye first saw the figures showing estimated bumblebee populations in North America had fallen by nearly 50% in a single generation, he thought it must be a typo.

He checked the numbers—the result of a long-term analysis of bumblebee populations published in the journal Science on Thursday—seven times to be sure they were accurate…

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Climate change contributes to widespread declines among bumble bees across continents

“One aspect of climate change is an increasing number of days with extreme heat. [Research scientists] analyzed a large dataset of bumble bee occurrences across North America and Europe and found that an increasing frequency of unusually hot days is increasing local extinction rates, reducing colonization and site occupancy, and decreasing species richness within a region..”

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