Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
Seasoned backpacker and adventurer Yang Lu earned the grand prize in the 2015 Share the Experience photo contest with this image of a sunburst captured at sunrise in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah. Yang has made the outdoors part of his daily life and finds deep connection to the land through his lens.
“My photography is not just for recreation, it is to inspire people to explore these areas." -- Yang Lu
Photo by Yang Lu (www.sharetheexperience.org).
The plantings of cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the People of the United States from the People of Japan. In Japan, the flowering cherry tree, or "Sakura," is an exalted flowering plant. The beauty of the cherry blossom is a potent symbol equated with the evanescence of human life and epitomizes the transformation of Japanese culture throughout the ages.
In the expectation that global climate will change steadily in the coming decades, this research project had the goal to obtain a more detailed view of the climatic changes that Hawaiʻi could experience by mid- and late-21st century.
Plants in Hawai‘i, as elsewhere, have certain environmental requirements from their habitats which can be affected by changes in climatic conditions and resource competition with other species. It is important to understand the requirements of targeted conservation species as well as how they may respond to likely climate changes.
Join the Pacific Islands Climate Science Center for a webinar on Wednesday, May 4, 2016 at 11 AM HST / 5 PM EDT looking at how climate change will exacerbate the transmission of avian malaria, resulting in major population declines and even extinction for some native Hawaiian birds.
Join us for a webinar on Tuesday, April 26, 2016 at 9 AM HST / 3 PM EDT, where Noelani Puniwai (University of Hawai'i at Hilo) will discuss observations of the seascape shared by recreationists, fishers, and respected ocean watermen in Hilo, Hawaiʻi.
In 2015, the Pacific Islands Climate Science Center had many accomplishments and made significant progress on a number of strategic initiatives, including engaging with resource managers and funding a number of new research projects.
In Hawai‘i, the beneficial uses of streams include supplying freshwater for irrigation and domestic needs, providing for traditional Hawaiian practices, and maintaining habitat for native stream fauna. Maoya Bassiouni (USGS Pacific Islands Water Science Center) will present her updated findings for the impacts of projected rainfall on streams in the Hawaiian Islands entitled Sensitivity of Low Flows to Rainfall Variability in Ungaged Hawai‘i Streams.
Join the Pacific Islands Climate Science Center on Tuesday, March 15 at 12:00 HST (2PM PST/ 5PM EST/ 10PM UTC/ March 16, 8AM ChST) for a LiveStream event to learn about the impacts of groundwater on Hawaiian coral reefs. Steve Colbert, University of Hawaii-Hilo, will dive into his research on the combined effects of groundwater inputs and increasingly acidic ocean water on coral reef organisms.
Hawaiʿi Island is home to many types of epiphytes, or specialized plants with adaptations that allow them to grow in the branches of trees. Epiphytes are sensitive to changes in air pollution, rainfall, fog, and cloud patterns due to their reliance on airborne water and nutrient sources, which makes them ideal for monitoring changes to climate and air quality in their habitat.
A new study, published in Climate Change Responses, points to how a shift in atmospheric circulation patterns may make a difference in the survival of silversword populations. Paul Krushelnycky, ecologist at University of Hawai‘i-Mānoa, led the research to study the effects of changes in temperature, precipitation, and solar radiation on populations of silverswords over 80 years of data records.
The Pacific Pandanus is a quarterly newsletter co-created by the Pacific Islands Climate Science Center and the Pacific Islands Climate Change Cooperative. The theme for our second issue, January 2016, is Vulnerability and Resilience.
Climate change is expected to alter the seasonal and annual patterns of rainfall and temperature in the Hawaiian Islands. This is a major concern for resource managers at Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park (HAVO) where current preserves for listed species may no longer provide suitable habitat in the future as climate changes.
In order to better reach their members, partners, and affiliates across the Pacific, the Pacific Islands Climate Science Center (PI CSC) and the Pacific Islands Climate Change Cooperative (PICCC) have developed a quarterly newsletter, the Pacific Pandanus. The newsletter includes climate change related projects, upcoming events and opportunities, and climate action taking place across the U.S.-affiliated Pacific islands!
Being born many thousands of years too late to see a glacier in the Tropics, Heather Kimball traveled to the wilds of Washington State primarily to engage in the 2015 Climate Boot Camp, hosted by the Northwest Climate Science Center.
The Pacific Islands Climate Science Center (PI CSC) and Pacific Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessments (RISA) are partnering to co-host a brown-bag presentation/webinar on September 15: “Exploring Theory and Application of Regional Downscaling.” Guest researchers Ethan Gutman (National Center for Atmospheric Research [NCAR]), Martyn Clark (NCAR,) and Jeremy Littell (Alaska Climate Science Center) will discuss three challenges associated with using climate models.