Social Science for Climate Change
Susan Moser

Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation
in California

two booksClimate change is a critical issue facing California — as it reshapes ecosystems, impacts public health, agriculture and water resources, and affects coastal and marine areas, all with effects on the larger economy.

I contributed to the development of California’s first statewide Adaptation Strategy, released in 2009, by assisting the California Natural Resources Agency throughout the process, supporting the state agencies by providing essential background on vulnerability and adaptation science, and helping to synthesize existing research on climate change impacts and adaptation needs (click here for the Adaptation Strategy and related reports and resources).

California’s adaptation strategy calls for an Adaptation Advisory Council. The independent, Los Angeles-based Pacific Council on International Policy’s had already set up a Task Force on adaptation aimed at helping to shape the next steps in state adaptation policy. Governor Schwarzenegger appointed this Task Force as the state’s Advisory Council on adaptation. The Task Force identified steps to strengthen governance, develop the necessary financial mechanisms and build capacity to face the state’s adaptation challenges with regard to sea-level rise, changes in water supply, and increased fire risk. I lead the sea-level rise sub-group.

As a contributing scientist and consultant, I continually help shape the California Energy Commission’s research agenda, especially with regard to social science contributions, and synthesize climate change-related research into milestone reports and informational brochures for policy-makers and the interested public. One recent example of my work is a synthesis called, The Future is Now.

For related publications, click here.

For more work in California, see: