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Bureau of Indian Affairs Tribal Resilience Program Releases 2021 RFP Opportunity

The Bureau of Indian Affairs is pleased to announce the availability of funding through the Tribal Climate Resilience Program (BIA-TRP). The BIA-TRP will provide funding for activities that support Tribal adaptation and resilience planning, ocean and coastal management planning, and relocation, managed retreat, or protect-in-place planning and design activities for coastal and riverine communities. The Program aims to support Tribal Nations that are working toward climate adaptation planning and need information for management decisions that affect tribal trust and treaty resources, economies, infrastructure, and human health and welfare. The solicitation is for federally-recognized Tribal Nations and Tribal organizations (as defined by 25 U.S.C. Section 5304(1)). Other entities may participate as sub-grantees.   While both Federally-recognized Tribal Nations and Tribal organizations are eligible for funding through this solicitation, Tribal organization proposals will be reviewed and ranked separately from Tribal Nation proposals. 

The solicitation is available here.  Please also see the BIA Tribal Resilience Program site for more information (fillable cover pages, fillable application forms for Categories 3, 5, 6, 8, and 9, FAQs, helpful regional contacts, summaries of previous awards, etc.). An information webinar will be held on Tuesday, March 2, 2021 from 3:00-4:30pm Eastern Standard Time (2 PM Central Time). It will be hosted by the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals. Please register here. ITEP will provide a link to the recorded webinar within a few days of the webinar for those unable to attend.


Northeast, Southeast, and South Central Climate Adaptation Science Centers (NE/SE/SC CASCs) encourage CASC-Tribal partnerships through RFP opportunity

The Northeast, Southeast, and South Central Climate Adaptation Science Centers (NE/SE/SC CASCs) are encouraging partnerships between CASC/USGS Principal Investigators (PIs) and Tribal Nations/Departments for FY22 RFPs with a cross cutting theme supporting capacity building, research, products and services with and for Tribal Nations.  This is part of an ongoing project to support CASC-funded projects that address Tribal Nation priorities in responding and adapting to climate change.  Project funds will be awarded to CASC PIs or USGS scientists who can demonstrate a project in partnership with a Tribal Nation Department/Program meeting the Tribal Nation’s climate change adaptation priorities.  Funds can then be sub-awarded to Tribal Nation/Department/Program partners on the project. Statements of interest that include CASC/Tribal Nation or USGS/Tribal Nation partnerships are due 5 PM Eastern on Friday, March 19.

For more information and assistance in connecting with CASC Principal Investigators/USGS scientists please contact:

Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center
Casey Thornbrugh, Tribal Climate Science Liaison CThornbrugh@USETINC.ORG
Katherine Smith, NE/SE CASC Federal Director katherinesmith@usgs.gov
Details on the NE CASC RFP can be found here.
NE CASC will host an informational webinar 12 PM EST, Tuesday, February 23.  The link to the webinar is here.

Southeast Climate Adaptation Science Center
Casey Thornbrugh, Tribal Climate Science Liaison CThornbrugh@USETINC.ORG
Katherine Smith, NE/SE CASC Federal Director katherinesmith@usgs.gov
Details on the SE CASC RFP can be found here.
A recording of the SE CASC RFP information webinar can be found here.

South Central Climate Adaptation Science Center
April Taylor, Tribal Liaison april.taylor@chickasaw.net
Casey Thornbrugh, Tribal Climate Science Liaison CThornbrugh@USETINC.ORG
Emma Kuster, SC CASC Assistant University Director Emmakuster@ou.edu
Details on the SC CASC RFP can be found here
(Note: The SC CASC RFP also has a cultural resources category this round.)


Hot off the press!
Article of culturally based Adaptation framework: Tribal Nations in USET region, Sea Level Rise, and Water Security

Sea level rise (SLR) poses significant threats to northeast and mid-Atlantic Tribal Nations’ climate and water justice. Existing SLR adaptation frameworks do not include Indigenous knowledge. Furthermore, SLR adaptation policy prioritizes economic and property rights and is misaligned with Indigenous coastal protection priorities. If Tribal Nations are to respond effectively to SLR then adaptation frameworks must be designed and developed by Indigenous Peoples for Indigenous Peoples. Eastern coastal Tribal Nations have a unique history of survival and resilience despite settler-colonial expansion in the northeast and mid-Atlantic regions of what is currently referred to as the United States. Experiences of eastern Atlantic coastal Tribal Nations highlight innovative response strategies for SLR adaptation and coastal stewardship practices not reflected in existing adaptation frameworks for the region. Indigenist SLR adaptation frameworks that utilize Indigenous knowledge are needed to combat water security issues resulting from SLR risks such as flooding, saltwater intrusion, storm surge, and erosion. This article proposes the WAMPUM adaptation framework informed by northeastern and mid-Atlantic coastal Tribal Nation science and knowledge systems for climate change adaptation to SLR.
To read the entire publication click here.


Including Indigenous Researchers and their Knowledge

Researchers from Native American and Indigenous communities explain how colleagues and institutions can help them to battle marginalization.  More on the story here.


The Seneca Nation is Building Food Sovereignty, One Bison at a Time

The pandemic has spurred a reconnection to farming and Indigenous culture and foodways for the Seneca Nation. Read more.


Biden Administration Releases Fact Sheet on Executive Actions to tackle the Climate Crisis

On January 27, President Biden released a fact sheet providing an overview of his Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad executive order. View the fact sheet.


NCAI Commendation of President Biden’s Day One Executive Actions Addressing Climate Change

On January 21, 2021, President Biden revoked the Presidential permit granted to the Keystone XL pipeline by executive order and signed an instrument to rejoin the Paris Agreement. NCAI applauds the Administration’s decision to prioritize climate change and the sovereignty of Tribal Nation on day one. 
View the executive order.
View the Paris Climate Agreement.
View NCAI’s resolution opposing the Keystone XL Pipeline.
View NCAI’s resolution to support the Paris Climate Agreement.


Updated Tool: “Welcome to the New Drought.gov!”

NOAA’s National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) has launched the redesigned U.S. Drought Portal (www.drought.gov) to better serve stakeholders, decision makers, the media, and the public.

The new website features updated content and new interactive architecture designed to provide actionable, shareable information and easy-to-understand graphics describing current drought conditions and forecasts by city, county, state, zip code, and at watershed to global scales. The Drought Portal also aggregates and presents drought impact data for economic sectors such as agriculture, energy, water utilities, and recreation using interactive maps and data that don’t exist anywhere else. Learn more and explore this updated tool.


2020 in Review: A Look Back at Drought Across the United States in 12 Maps

NOAA’s National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) has put together a compilation of 12 separate maps review the year in terms of drought and drawing on trends that may have been made apparent during the year. Maps include visuals of weekly drought monitoring, present of normal precipitation, departure from normal temperature, streamflow data and more. Read more and see the maps.


APHIS Changes Approach to Fight Emerald Ash Borer (EAB)

Many concerned Tribal natural resource staff, traditional harvesters, and basket makers submitted comments in opposition of the lifting of the federal domestic emerald ash borer (EAB) quarantine regulations. On December 14, 2020, USDA APHIS lifted that quarantine. The timing is less than ideal for many Tribal Nations in the Northeast continuing to combat this forest pest that is devastating a cultural resource.

In the photo to the right, Vice Chief of the Aroostook Band of Micmacs, Richard Silliboy, peels away the outer cambium layer of a white ash tree searching for evidence indicating the presence of EAB.

“WASHINGTON, December 14, 2020 —The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is changing its approach to fight the emerald ash borer (EAB) infestation that has spread through much of the United States. The Agency is publishing a final rule that removes the federal domestic EAB quarantine regulations that have proved ineffective and will redirect resources to more promising methods…


The final rule and the response to the comments we received will publish in the Federal Register on December 15, 2020 and be rule will be effective on January 14, 2021. Documents may be viewed online at https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=APHIS-2017-0056 upon publication.


APHIS is working with the National Plant Board on effective strategies to manage firewood movement, which is one of the ways the emerald ash borer spreads. APHIS’ goal is still to maintain ash in the North American landscape. We look forward to continued collaboration with our partners on this effort. Questions about the regulatory change for emerald ash borer can be directed to National Policy Manager Herb Bolton at 301-851-3594 or Herbert.Bolton@usda.gov.”

USDA APHIS

If you have any comments or questions about this news, feel free to contact Tyler Everett, USET’s Forest Adaptation Technical Assistant.


Coastal harm from invading saltwater ‘happening right now’

On December 2, 2020, Bill Lambrecht and Gracie Todd of the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism published an article in Houma Today that highlights some of the more devastating climate related impacts being observed in the USET region.

“COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Four Native American Tribes on Louisiana’s Gulf Coast requested United Nations assistance this year to force action by the U.S. government on invading saltwater. Their formal complaint cites “climate-forced displacement” and says saltwater has poisoned their land, crops and medicinal plants. “That strips us of not only being able to generate an income to provide for ourselves, it also strips us of our ability to feed ourselves healthy,” Shirell Parfait-Dardar, chief of the Grand Caillou/Dulac Band of Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw in Terrebonne Parish, said in an interview.”

HoumaToday.com

Restoring Longleaf Pines, Keystone of Once Vast Ecosystems

On December 30, 2020, the Associated Press published an article looking at recent collaborative efforts being made to restore the ecosystems of the culturally significant, and fire adapted tree species known as the longleaf pine across the USET region.

“Now, thanks to a pair of modern day Johnny Appleseeds, landowners, government agencies and nonprofits are working in nine coastal states from Virginia to Texas to bring back pines named for the long needles prized by Native Americans for weaving baskets…. About 400 acres (160 hectares) of land returned to longleaf were planted by the Alabama-Coushatta Tribe of Texas, for their needles. But branches from most of the first planting are now too high to reach. So Gesse Bullock, the Tribe’s fire management specialist, said he is pushing for another planting on the 10,200-acre (4,100-hectare) reservation.”

Associated Press via US News and World Report

Tribal Review of the Congressional Climate Action Plan

The Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians (ATNI) in partnership with Tribal Nations and Tribal organizations across the country led an effort to perform a Tribal Review of the 2020 Congressional document titled: Solving the Climate Crisis: The Congressional Action Plan for a Clean Energy Economy and a Healthy, Resilient, and Just America. The Congressional Action Plan (CAP) was developed by the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. The CAP aims to fulfill a set of integrated goals to reach net-zero emissions by 2050; reduce pollution in environmental justice communities; and reach net-negative emissions in the second half of the 21st century. Both the CAP and the Tribal Review can be found on ATNI’s Climate Change page.

The purpose of the Tribal Review is to provide Tribal Nations, inter-tribal organizations, and other interested parties with a framework of the CAP that will:

  1. Provide information to Tribal leaders regarding impacts and opportunities, gaps, concerns, and Tribal priorities identified in a critical review of the CAP;
  2. Assist Tribal leaders in strategizing to address the priorities and gaps of the CAP;
  3. Provide draft language that Tribal leaders may deploy in communications with policymakers to advance fulfillment of objectives, including Tribal resolutions.

Funding Opportunities
and Resources

FY21 Chesapeake Bay-Watershed Education and Training (B-WET) Program Funding Opportunity
Applications due March 1, 2021. B-WET supports programs that provide hands-on environmental education about issues affecting the Chesapeake Bay watershed for students through “meaningful watershed educational experiences” (MWEEs) and related professional development for educators who serve formal K-12 audiences.

This year, new grants will prioritize two types of projects: increasing local school district capacity to plan for and deliver curriculum-embedded environmental education, and implementing system-wide MWEEs in school districts. They are also encouraging applications to include partnerships with community-based organizations that are based in or work with disenfranchised communities.

Informational webinars will be held on January 7, 2021, at 2:00 p.m. EST and January 19 at 11 a.m. EST; for more information and registration for the webinars click here.

For additional information on this program and to apply, click here.

Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) Renewable Energy Systems & Energy Efficiency Improvement Guaranteed Loans & Grants
Applications due March 31, 2021. The program provides guaranteed loan financing and grant funding to agricultural producers and rural small businesses for renewable energy systems or to make energy efficiency improvements. Agricultural producers may also apply for new energy efficient equipment and new system loans for agricultural production and processing. For more information and to apply, click here.

Northeastern States Research Cooperative – Indigenous Knowledge Forest Fund
Applications are due April 2, 2021. The Northeastern States Research Cooperative (NSRC) announces an Indigenous Forest Knowledge Fund and associated Request for Proposals.  The NSRC recognizes and respects the deep, primary knowledge of Tribal Nations in the Northern Forest region and announces the NSRC Indigenous Forest Knowledge Fund to support:

  • The education, mentorship, and training of Indigenous youth in applied forest research and/or Traditional Ecological Knowledge about forest systems;
  • New applied forest research that advances Tribal Priorities; and
  • The synthesis and translation of forest research and/or Traditional Ecological Knowledge to advance communications, outreach, and economic programs for Tribal Nations and Indigenous communities.
  • Projects must clearly address forest research, education, outreach, and/or economic priorities for Tribal Nations or other Indigenous communities.
  • Project leaders and/or project settings should be on Tribal homelands/territories of the NSRC region (i.e., the Northern Forest region that includes/overlaps Maine, New Hampshire, New York, and/or Vermont).
  • A signed letter of support from a Tribal Leader attesting to the value of the project must accompany each proposal (e.g., Tribal Council Official, Tribal Chairperson, Tribal Department Director). In the letter, please describe how the project advances Tribal priorities in terms of education, training, research, communications, and/or economic development.

More information and a complete description of the RFP can be found here.

FY21 Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) Feedstock Technologies and Algae FOA
Applications due April 5, 2021. The purpose of this modification is to update the EPIC system to provide a field to upload the Technical Datasheet that is required for the Full Application under Topic Area 2, and to provide the associated Technical Datasheet template. No changes to the FOA document are made as part of this modification. DOE’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) develops technologies that convert domestic biomass and waste resources into fuels, products, and power to enable affordable energy, economic growth, and innovation in renewable energy and chemicals production. This Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) DE-FOA-0002423 will support BETO’s highest priority research and development (R&D) areas in two BETO programs: Feedstock Technologies and Advanced Algal Systems. Both Topic Areas support BETO’s objectives to reduce the minimum selling price of drop-in biofuels, lower the cost of biopower, and enable high-value products from biomass or waste resources. For more information and to apply, click here.

Bureau of Indian Affairs – Tribal Resilience Program
Applications are due April 23, 2021. The Bureau of Indian Affairs is pleased to announce the availability of funding through the Tribal Climate Resilience Program (Program). The Program will provide funding for activities that support Tribal adaptation and resilience planning, ocean and coastal management planning, and relocation, managed retreat, or protect-in-place planning and design activities for coastal and riverine communities. The Program aims to support Tribal Nations that are working toward climate adaptation planning and need information for management decisions that affect tribal trust and treaty resources, economies, infrastructure, and human health and welfare. The solicitation is for federally-recognized Tribal Nations and Tribal organizations* (as defined by 25 U.S.C. Section 5304(1)). Other entities may participate as sub-grantees. 

While both Federally-recognized Tribal Nations and Tribal organizations are eligible for funding through this solicitation, Tribal organization proposals will be reviewed and ranked separately from Tribal Nation proposals. 

The solicitation is available here.  Please also see the BIA Tribal Resilience Program site for more information (fillable cover pages, fillable application forms for Categories 3, 5, 6, 8, and 9, FAQs, helpful regional contacts, summaries of previous awards, etc.).

An information webinar will be held on Tuesday, March 2, 2021 from 3:00-4:30pm Eastern Standard Time (2 PM Central Time). It will be hosted by the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals. Please register here. ITEP will provide a link to the recorded webinar within a few days of the webinar for those unable to attend.

Coastal Program Department of the Interior Fish and Wildlife Service
Applications due September 30, 2021. The Coastal Program is a voluntary, community-based program that provides technical and financial assistance through cooperative agreements to coastal communities, conservation partners, and landowners to restore and protect fish and wildlife habitat on public and private lands. The Coastal Program staff coordinates with partners, stakeholders, and other Service programs to identify geographic focus areas and develop habitat conservation goals and priorities within these focus areas. Geographic focus areas are where the Coastal Program directs resources to conserve habitat for Federal trust species. Projects are developed in collaboration with partners, and with substantial involvement from Service field staff. Coastal Program projects must support the missions of the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), and the Coastal Program, and be based on sound scientific biological principles. For more information and to apply, click here.

Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI)
Fact Sheet:
Federal Resources for Nature-Based Solutions to Climate Change has provided this fact sheet as a survey of federal funding and technical assistance available to help state and local governments and agencies, Tribal Nations, non-governmental organizations, universities, and individuals implement nature-based solutions for climate resilience. Many of these sources of federal support allow communities to develop projects which draw on the multiple, interrelated benefits of nature-based solutions.  To access the fact sheet, click here.

DOC EDA FY2019 EDA Disaster Supplementals
Applications are accepted on a continuing basis and processed as received. This investment assistance will help communities and regions devise and implement long-term economic recovery strategies through a variety of non-construction and construction projects, as appropriate, to address economic challenges in areas where a Presidential declaration of a major disaster was issued under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act. For more information and to apply, click here.

Student Opportunities

2021 Student Summer Internship Opportunity: Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP)
Deadline to apply: February 26, 2021. ITEP offers two types of internships for Native American and other college students. The student summer internship (SSI) program is a 8-week program for college students and the short internship (SIP) program is a 20 to 40-hour long internship program for high school and college students. The purpose of the internship programs is for students to gain hands-on skills with EPA or other governmental and Tribal environmental offices. The internship programs are funded by a grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Contact EEOP-INTERN@nau.edu for more information. For more information, visit: http://www7.nau.edu/itep/main/eeop/Internships/ 

Call For Student Posters: 2021 Shifting Seasons Summit Virtual Student Poster Session
Posters must be submitted by March 1, 2021. 
The Shifting Seasons Summit is a gathering that focuses on climate resilience planning and implementation within Tribal Nations and across Tribal ceded territories in the Northeast Region. Showcase your work at this virtual gathering on April 19-21, 2021. For more information on the gathering and the call for posters announcement click here.

Udall Foundation Scholarship
Applications are due March 2, 2021.
 The Udall scholarship honors the legacies of Morris Udall and Stewart Udall, whose careers had a significant impact on Native American self-governance, health care, and the stewardship of public lands and natural resources. Are you working towards positive solutions to environmental challenges or to issues impacting Indian country?
Have you demonstrated your commitment to one of these areas through public service? Do you inspire and motivate others to take action? Are you committed to making a difference through civility and consensus building?  If you answered “yes” to these questions, the Udall Scholarship may be right for you.  More information and the application can be found here.

Bureau of Indian Affairs – Pathways Program
Deadline to apply: March 5, 2021. The BIA-Pathways Program is pleased to announce that we are recruiting for several Pathways internship positions working across the nation performing a variety of assignments involving the basic principles of management and program analysis, in one or more Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Office of Trust Services (OTS) program areas.  Students will also receive opportunities to raise their awareness of traditional ecological knowledge education and land-management practices in use today by Tribal Nations. Students can intern with the BIA, Tribal Nation, or a Tribal related program.

The job vacancy announcement is here (or copy and paste the link: https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/592339300). To apply you will need a USAJobs Profile, which can be created here.  For more information or assistance you can contact Strategic Recruitment-Trust at 405-768-4060 or strategicrecruitment@bia.gov.

Intertribal Timber Council: Truman D. Picard Scholarship 2021
Applications ae due March 12, 2021, 5:00 PM PST. The ITC has announced the details for the 2021 Truman D. Picard Scholarship, a program dedicated to the support of Native American students pursuing a higher education in Natural Resources. Native American students that are graduating high school and pursuing a college degree in natural resources, and students enrolled in an undergraduate program or a graduate program in natural resources are encouraged to apply for this $2500.00 scholarship. For more details on how to apply click here.

AgFirst and NAAF Partnership Scholarship For Native American Students
Application Deadline March 15
AgFirst Farm Credit Bank is offering educational scholarships to full-time Native American students studying business and/or agricultural-related fields. Each scholarship recipient will receive $3,000 per academic year ($1,500 per semester). To learn more and to apply click here

Graduate Student Scholarship Opportunity: Sloan Indigenous Graduate Partnership. The Center for Native Peoples and the Environment at the State University of New York (SUNY)
Applications accepted on a rolling basis (but note SUNY fall/spring application deadlines). Graduate Study Opportunity Integrating Indigenous and Scientific Knowledges for Environmental Sustainability. The Center for Native Peoples and the Environment at the State University of New York (SUNY) College of Environmental Science & Forestry is recruiting students for graduate study in diverse environmental sciences from ecology, sustainability, conservation biology to restoration and environmental engineering. As a member of the Sloan Indigenous Graduate Partnership, the program provides funding for full tuition and stipends for Native American students pursuing MS and PhD degrees. Applications are open so please join us in this exciting initiative. Additional information can be found online at https://www.esf.edu/nativepeoples or contact Dr. Robin Wall Kimmerer at rkimmer@esf.edu.

Additional Resources

Northeast Indigenous Climate Resilience Network

The Northeast Indigenous Climate Resilience Network (NICRN) seeks to convene Indigenous peoples to identify threats to Indigenous self-determination and ways of life and to formulate adaptation and mitigation strategies, dialogues, and educational programs that build Indigenous capacities to address climate-related issues. This website provides the latest tools and resources for Indigenous peoples and scientists to work together towards meeting the current challenges of climate change.  To go to the NICRN website, click here.

The Tribal Adaptation Menu (TAM)

The Tribal Adaptation Menu (TAM) is an extensive collection of climate change adaptation actions for natural resource management, organized into tiers of general and more specific ideas. While this first version of the Menu was created based on Ojibwe and Menominee perspectives, languages, concepts and values (hence its name in language–Dibaginjigaadeg Anishinaabe Ezhitwaad), it was intentionally designed to be adaptable to other Indigenous communities, allowing for the incorporation of their language, knowledge and culture.  The TAM authors and team provide culturally-supportive climate change adaptation planning workshops.  For more information see here.  

Bureau of Indian Affairs: Tribal Resilience Program        

The BIA Tribal Resilience Program (TRP) provides federal-wide resources to Tribal Nations to build capacity and resilience through leadership engagement, delivery of data and tools, training and Tribal capacity building. Direct funding supports Tribal Nations, Tribal consortia, and authorized Tribal organizations to build resilience through competitive awards for Tribally designed resilience training, adaptation planning, vulnerability assessments, supplemental monitoring, capacity building, and youth engagement. The resilient ocean and coastal management effort supports planning, science and tools, and capacity for coastal Tribal Nation’s ocean management, including the Great Lakes.  For more information, see here.

Tribal Climate Change Guide

Tribal Climate Change Funding Guide is intended to provide up-to-date information on grants, programs and plans that may assist Tribal Nations in addressing climate change through a broad range of sectors. We will update this guide regularly, so please check back often. If you have questions or updates for this guide, email: kathy@uoregon.edu. Please note that for entries that are accepting applications continuously, the grant deadline column will list “12/31/2017” as the grant deadline. This ensures that those grants will appear immediately after those grants with a set deadline.  To go to the Tribal Climate Change Guide, click here.

Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP): Tribal Climate Change Program    

ITEP’s Climate Change Program is a resource for Tribal Nations and Tribal environmental and other program staff for climate change adaptation support.  The ITEP Climate Change Program provides climate change adaptation planning workshops and trainings via webinar and in-person.  For more information see ITEP’s Climate Change Program webpage here

Virtual Adaptation Planning and Practices Course: Adaptation Planning for Tribal Environmental Professionals

January 27 – March 15, 2021. The Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science and USDA Northern Forests Climate Hub are offering the Adaptation Planning and Practices training as an online course for forest and natural resource managers, and there is no registration fee

This unique opportunity provides hands-on training in considering climate change information and identifying adaptation actions for natural resources management professionals working in forests and natural ecosystems. Participants will receive coaching and feedback while using the Adaptation Workbook to develop their own real-world climate adaptation project. The course consists of seven web sessions with work time occurring between sessions.

Information will focus on forest ecosystems, urban forests, and forested watersheds in the Midwest and Northeast, but applicants from other regions should apply and may be accepted if space allows. For more information and to register see here.

 

National Webinar Series: Ecological Drought

This four-part webinar series, taking place in February and March, seeks to raise awareness of ecological drought, share actions that strengthen ecosystem resilience and mitigate the impacts of droughts, and discuss research and management needs for future drought planning and preparedness. The series is co-hosted by NIDIS and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Climate Adaptation and Science Center, with expert speakers from the research community, Tribal Nations, and government agencies.

  • Webinar #1 February 3, 2021 at 11:30 AM ET Ecological Drought and Introduction
    Introducing ecological drought as a scientific concept distinct from other definitions of drought, this webinar explores recent research on the topic, including transformational drought impacts and ecological tipping points. To register, click here.
  • Webinar #2 February 17, 2021 at 1:00 PM ETEcological Drought: Planning for Resilience
    This webinar focuses on planning, restoration, and recovery actions that strengthen ecosystem resilience, mitigate the impacts of natural disasters, and realize co-benefits. To register, click here.
  • Webinar #3 March 3, 2021 at 4:00 PM ETEcological Drought: Drought, Wildfire, and Recovery
    Drought can exacerbate wildfire frequency, intensity, and severity. This webinar will explore wildfire management approaches based on ecological principles, including those that embed traditional ecological knowledge. To register, click here.
  • Webinar #4 March 17, 2021 at 3:00 PM ETEcological Drought: Impacts on Coastal Ecosystems
    This webinar will share recent research on drought impacts to coastal ecosystems and services. To register, click here.

Quarterly Meeting of the Northeast Indigenous Climate Resilience Network (NICRN)

February 24, 2021 at 12:00 PM ET. The Northeast Indigenous Climate Resilience Network (NICRN) seeks to convene Indigenous peoples to identify threats to Indigenous self-determination and ways of life and to formulate adaptation and mitigation strategies, dialogues, and educational programs that build Indigenous capacities to address climate-related issues.  The NICRN will be convening quarterly meetings with Tribal directors, program managers, Tribal scientists and scholars, allies and partners in Tribal climate resilience.  For more information please contact Casey Thornbrugh, USET/NE CASC/SE CASC Tribal Climate Science Liaison CThornbrugh@USETINC.ORG or Sara Smith, College of the Menominee Nation/MW CASC Tribal Resilience Liaison ssmith@menominee.edu. The Zoom link for the meeting will be https://zoom.us/j/92190767002?pwd=OFhTTmNpR3FVaGJRZDNHTlJUaUFPUT09.

 

Webinar: Breaking Down Barriers to Proactive and Consistent Risk Assessments of Invasive Plants in the Northeast U.S.

Speaker: Bethany Bradley, University of Massachusetts Amherst
February 24, 2021 at 12:00 PM ET. Preventing new invasive plants is most effective when management is consistent across jurisdictional boundaries and has a strong focus on early detection and rapid response. But our recent analyses of regulated plant lists show that invasive plant policy is neither consistent nor proactive. Here, we use a case study of risk assessments from Northeast states to develop recommendations for species to evaluate and ways to evaluate them that could lead to more consistent and proactive policy. To join this webinar click here.

 

Webinar: Introduction to Rivercane Gathering Webinar Series – First Webinar

February 25, 2021 at 2:00 PM ET. This first webinar in the Rivercane Gathering series will  1) introduce the goals and objectives of the Tribal Nations-USDA Forest Service Rivercane Gathering initiative; 2) present practical field identification techniques for rivercane, including comparison to non-native bamboo species  (Roger Cain, United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians/Cherokee Nation); and 3) provide an introduction to the cultural importance of rivercane, (Casey Bigpond, Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians). Register in advance for this meeting.

 

Webinar: Bureau of Indian Affairs – Tribal Resilience Program 2021 RFP Information Session

March 2, 2021 at 3:00 PM ET (2:00 PM Central)The Bureau of Indian Affairs is pleased to announce the availability of funding through the Tribal Climate Resilience Program (Program). The Program will provide funding for activities that support Tribal adaptation and resilience planning, ocean and coastal management planning, and relocation, managed retreat, or protect-in-place planning and design activities for coastal and riverine communities. The Program aims to support Tribal Nations that are working toward climate adaptation planning and need information for management decisions that affect tribal trust and treaty resources, economies, infrastructure, and human health and welfare. The solicitation is for federally-recognized Tribal Nations and Tribal organizations* (as defined by 25 U.S.C. Section 5304(1)). Other entities may participate as sub-grantees. An information webinar will be held on Tuesday, March 2, 2021 from 3:00-4:30pm (Eastern Standard Time). It will be hosted by the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals. Please register here. ITEP will provide a link to the recorded webinar within a few days of the webinar for those unable to attend.

 

Webinar: Beneficial Invertebrates in Our Soil

Speaker: USDA NRCS
March 17, 2021 at 2:00 PM ET. Join us as we discuss the diversity of soil invertebrates, their role in soil health, ways to observe or monitor them, and farming practices that support soil life and improve production. To register for this webinar, click here.

 

11th Annual Rooted in the Mountains Symposium – Ama: The Sacredness of Water (Integrating Indigenous Knowledge, Language, Health & Environment)

April 8-9, 2021. Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, NC. Rooted in the Mountains is an annual symposium that intersects traditional and local knowledge with health and environmental issues. Join the keynote speakers and panelists for an interdisciplinary discussion of water during the 11th Annual Rooted in the Mountains Symposium. This full two-day symposium will occur on the WCU campus with panels and keynoters. Participants leave the symposium with a new sense of urgency and tools to use in valuing our common ground.  Learn more and register HERE.

 

Summit: Shifting Seasons 3

April 19-21, 2021. With a special Earth Day event on April 22. UPDATE: This has been reworked to a virtual gathering for the same dates as previously described. The 3rd Shifting Seasons Summit will include climate adaptation training sessions tailored to the needs and capabilities of Tribal Nations but will focus on the development of in-depth case studies based on existing Tribal adaptation work in the Northeast region. This summit would also include relevant Tribal climate change initiatives developed outside of the Northeast by capacity-building organizations, academic institutions and Tribal Nations who have approved climate adaptation plans, thus creating continued network building opportunities. The latest information on this event can be found HERE.

 

Conference: National Adaptation Forum

April 26-28, 2021. Atlanta, GA. This event will gather the adaptation community to foster knowledge exchange, innovation and mutual support for a better tomorrow. Join adaptation practitioners from around the country who are focused on moving beyond adaptation awareness and planning to adaptation action. For more information see here.

 

Webinar: Refugia are important but are they connected?
Mapping well-connected climate refugia for species of conservation concern in the Northeastern U.S.

Speaker: William DeLuca, National Audubon Society

May 5, 2021 at 12:00 PM ET. As the climate continues to change, vulnerable wildlife species will need specific management strategies to help them adapt to these changes. One such strategy focuses on the concept of refugia, areas that are buffered from the impacts of climate change and therefore remain suitable habitats for vulnerable species over time. Refugia stand in contrast to other habitats, which are impacted by climate change and may become unsuitable for vulnerable species. When wildlife managers are considering protecting land for these species, they sometimes prioritize locations that are predicted to be climate refugia. Rarely can those managers consider, however, the overall accessibility of refugia locations for vulnerable species, which are often unwilling or unable to migrate across landscape features such as wetlands, steep lopes, and developed areas. What good is it, then, to protect climate refugia if the species we are trying to protect cannot access those locations? This webinar will provide an update on work we are undertaking regarding 10 vulnerable species and refugia locations for these species. Our project identifies refugia locations for each of the species under consideration, maps how well each refugia location is connected to other refugia locations, and also maps locations that are most critical to connect current habitat to future climate refugia. This information will allow town, state and federal officials both to prioritize land that will serve as refugia in the future and ensure that it will be accessible to species that are likely to need it. To join this webinar click here.

 

Conference: 2021 Carolinas Climate Resilience Conference

Postponed until May 10-12, 2021. Durham, NC. The Carolinas Climate Resilience Conference has been postponed to May 10–12, 2021, due to concerns associated with the novel coronavirus pandemic. The CISA team and conference planning committees agree that this postponement will help to ensure the health and safety of our participants. We are especially grateful to our first responders and health care professionals who are on the frontlines, helping to save the lives of so many. We look forward to convening the network in-person next spring. For more information see here

 

Workshop: Wildfire and the Biosphere Innovation Lab

Application Deadline March 1 (Lab will occur May 17-19, May 21, and May 26, 2021). The Wildfire and the Biosphere Innovation Lab will bring together experts from a wide variety of fields to ideate and refine a strategic framework, to envision new projects related to wildfire and the biosphere, and to develop new research collaborations. Participants will also contribute to a white paper that will shape the direction of this developing research area. Applicants (~100) who demonstrate a collaborative spirit and represent a variety of different scientific disciplines, backgrounds and approaches will be selected to participateAt the end of the lab, participants will have formed new collaborations around innovative ideas. Opportunities for submission of project proposals across NSF will be highlighted. Applicants must be willing to commit to active engagement for the entire duration of the Innovation Lab.  More information and applications can be found here.

 

Conference: 2020 Local Solutions: Eastern Regional Climate Preparedness Conference  

May 24-25, 2021. Portland, ME. The 2020 Local Solutions conference will empower participants to take action steps that center climate equity. Climate equity ensures that all people have the opportunity to influence and benefit from climate resilience-building solutions. When we achieve climate equity, all communities will have the opportunity to thrive in the face of climate change, and race, ethnicity, income level, gender, and disability or immigration status will not be factors causing disproportionate vulnerability to climate impacts. For more information see here

 

Camp: ATNI Tribal Climate Camp

 May 23-28, 2021. Anchorage, AK. Native Organization Host: Chugach Regional Resources Commission. In 2020, the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians, U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, Michigan State University, Portland State University’s Institute for Tribal Government, Chugach Regional Resources Commission, and the Northwest Climate Adaptation Science Center are collaboratively offering the Tribal Climate Camp (TCC) to support teams of Tribal leaders, climate change coordinators, planners, and program managers to build skills, gather information, and develop Tribal policy needed to address climate change impacts. To learn more about the event see here or contact Peggy Harris at DP@Seventhgenerationllc.com.

 

Camp: Native Youth Community Adaptation and Leadership Congress

June 26 – July 3, 2021 (For those students that applied for 2020 NYCALC, their applications will still be valid for 2021). National Conservation Training Center, Shepherdstown, WV.  The Native Youth Community Adaptation and Leadership Congress (NYCALC) is held each summer at the National Conservation Training Center (NCTC) in Shepherdstown, WV. The Congress includes a mix of urban and rural students from Tribal Nations and Indigenous communities located throughout the continental U.S., Alaska, Hawaii, and American Samoa.  For more information and to apply see here.

 

Camp: USET Tribal Climate Resilience Camp

July 11-16, 2021, Schoodic Institute, Winter Harbor, ME. Tribal Nation Host: the Penobscot Nation. The USET Office of Environmental Resource Management (USET-OERM) will be holding a Tribal Climate Resilience Camp to support teams of Tribal Leaders, climate change coordinators, planners, and program managers to build skills, gather information, and develop Tribal policies and plans needed for Tribal Nations to address climate change impacts. Information about travel, lodging, and registration will be available soon. For more information contact, Casey Thornbrugh, USET Tribal Climate Science Liaison at CThornbrugh@USETINC.ORG.

 

 

La Niña conditions have set in for the Fall-Winter 2020-2021

El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) conditions have remained neutral through the summer, but with continued cooling of sea surface temperatures in the eastern Tropical Pacific, La Niña conditions have developed and are likely to continue impacting the US climate in the fall and winter. For more information see HERE.

Typically, La Niña conditions develop when sea surface temperatures in the eastern Tropical Pacific Ocean are cooler than their seasonal average.  This sets up an air circulation and jet stream pattern that favors more Atlantic hurricanes in the fall and a northerly Jet Stream or storm track favoring wetter than average conditions over the Pacific Northwest and the Midwest regions of the U.S.  La Niña conditions can also favor colder than average conditions during the winter in the Northern Great Plains.


See original map HERE               

See original map HERE

The opposite scenario is El Niño where conditions develop when sea surface temperatures in the eastern Tropical Pacific Ocean are warmer than their seasonal average.  This sets up an air circulation and jet stream pattern that favors fewer Atlantic hurricanes in the fall and in the winter, a southerly Jet Stream or storm track favoring wetter than average conditions over the southern tier of the U.S. and drier conditions in the Midwest. Sometimes warmer than average conditions also occur over the northern tier of the U.S. and Canada.  


See original map HERE.                       

See original map HERE

NOAA State of the Climate Report: Selected Climate Anomalies for 2020

Explanation of Maps:
The following maps were generated with observed and recorded data from weather stations across the continental United States compiled and displayed at the High Plains Regional Climate Center (HPRCC) located in Lincoln, NE.  The data uses a baseline or “climate normal” based on the 30-year climate averages for locations for the years 1981-2010. The standard 30-year climate averages will be updated again for the time frame 1991-2020 at the conclusion of year 2020.

NOAA Regional Climate Centers: Departure from Normal Temperature (°F) for Nov., Dec. 2020, & Jan. 2021
Late fall and winter 2020-21 experienced significantly warmer than average conditions (based on the years 1981-2010 climatological average) in the northern Great Plains, Great Lakes, and Northeast. Most of the US observed above average temperatures with the only exception being the Four Corners region of the Southwest and Southern Rockies.
For more information visit: https://hprcc.unl.edu/maps.php?map=ACISClimateMaps


NOAA Regional Climate Centers: Percent of Normal Precipitation (%) for Nov., Dec. 2020, & Jan. 2021
Late fall and winter 2020-21 experienced mostly drier than average conditions over most of the U.S. (based on the years 1981-2010 climatological average). Exceptions to this have been areas in the Central Great Plains, the Mid-Atlantic and South Florida.
For more information visit: https://hprcc.unl.edu/maps.php?map=ACISClimateMaps

Explanation of the Maps: NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center (CPC) issues seasonal climate forecast maps.  These maps show the probabilities of unusually warmer/colder or wetter/drier seasons (relative to the 1981-2010 climate averages).  Specifically, “A” indicates chances are leaning toward above average, “B” indicates chances are leaning toward below average, and “EC” indicates that there are equal chances for above average, below average, or average conditions.  This information is generated from forecast models that use information on ocean, land, and atmospheric conditions such as sea surface temperatures (e.g. El Niño/La Niña conditions), presence/absence of sea ice or snow pack, and tropical weather patterns that can influence the location of the Jetstream and persistent areas of high/low pressure systems during a season.  Note: These are seasonal forecasts not predictions with 100% certainty. For example, a single hurricane with heavy rain or a week-long cold air blast/heat wave can impact the outcome of these forecasts. Please see this 2-minute video on how to interpret these maps.

Temperature & Precipitation Outlooks

Warmer than normal
Cooler than normal

Wetter than normal
Drier than normal

The late winter-early spring (February-March-April; FMA) 2021 temperature outlook is for the entire U.S. is leaning toward above average temperatures for most of the eastern and southern U.S.  The only region with an outlook leaning toward below average temperatures is the Pacific Northwest and southern Alaska.
The FMA 2021 precipitation outlook indicates a leaning toward above average seasonal precipitation for across the Northern Tier and the Ohio River Valley with leanings toward below average precipitation over the Southwest, Gulf Coast, and Florida.  This climate forecast is what may be expected during La Niña conditions as is occurring this winter in the Tropical Pacific.

Resolutions, Reports & Testimonies

2018:SPF 002 Maine Tribal Aquatic Ecosystems in Peril

2017:003 Authorization to Apply for Federal Funding for Natural Resource Management Programs

2016:037 Authorization for USET to Seek Federal Funding for BIA Tribal Climate Resilience Program

2016:034 Climate Change Impacts and Response Actions to Protect Human Health, Tribal Lands, Water and Natural Resources, Cultural Identity, and Sovereignty

2013:036 Authorization to Submit a Funding Proposal for Ethnobotanical Climate Change Adaptation Planning

2010:010 Support for Tribal Energy Capacity Development and Implementation

2011:055 Support the Formation of a National Tribal Water Advisory Committee


Testimony of United South and Eastern Tribes Sovereignty Protection Fund Submitted to the House Natural Resources Subcommittee for Indigenous People of the United States for the Record of the February 12, 2019 Hearing, “The Impacts of Climate Change on Tribal Communities” February 26 2019

USET Climate Program Staff

Casey Thornbrugh is the Tribal Climate Science Liaison with United South and Eastern Tribes (USET) and is a citizen of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe. Based at the Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center (NE CASC) at UMass-Amherst, Casey provides current climate science information to Tribal Nations in both the NE CASC and the Southeast Climate Adaptation Science Center (SE CASC) regions. Casey also works with Tribal Nations to identify climate research needs and priorities and provide climate adaptation planning support.
cthornbrugh@usetinc.org
NE CASC Office – (413) 545-2619    USET Mobile: (615) 589-1629

Tyler Everett is a Forest Adaptation Technical Assistant working for USET to provide Climate Change and Forest  Adaptation planning technical support to Tribal Nations.  Tyler is a citizen of the Aroostook Band of Micmacs and is a forester specializing in forest pests, namely the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), which is impacting Black/Brown Ash (Fraxinus nigra) on Tribal lands in northern forests.  Tyler works remotely from Maine and assists with USET Climate Change trainings, writing retreats and other climate change adaptation events. He is also in the Ph.D. program at the School of Forest Resources at the University of Maine.
teverett@usetinc.org   

SC CASC and MW CASC Tribal Liaisons 

April Taylor is a Sustainability Scientist and Tribal Liaison with the South Central Climate Adaptation Science Center (SC CASC) and is a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation. April is based at the University of Oklahoma in Norman, OK and works with the goal of building research relationships with Tribal Nations in the SC CASC region.  She is actively involved with the training and development of resources for Tribal health and climate change vulnerability assessments.
April.Taylor@chickasaw.net
Office: (580) 235-7430   

                                  

Sara Smith is the Midwest Tribal Resilience Liaison with the College of Menominee Nation as part of the Sustainable Development Institute.  She is a direct descendent of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin. Sara is stationed at the US Forest Service’s Northern Forest Research Station on the University of Minnesota campus in St. Paul, Minnesota. Sara serves as a direct liaison between Tribal Nations in the Midwest and the NE CASC to identify and address research gaps in climate, natural, and cultural resources as well as improve outreach and capacity building. Sara also coordinates meetings of the Northeast Indigenous Climate Resilience Network (NICRN).
ssmith@menominee.edu
Office: (651) 649-5134

January 2021 Story Archive

December 2020 Story Archive

November 2020 Story Archive

October 2020 Story Archive

September 2020 Story Archive

July 2020 Story Archive

June 2020 Story Archive

May 2020 Story Archive

Fourth National Climate Assessment Vol II + SOCCR2

February 2018 Tribal Climate Highlights

January 2018 Tribal Climate Highlights

October 2019 Tribal Climate Headlines