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Tuesday, January 26 • 1:20pm - 1:40pm
Three Tiers of Inertia: Moving The Ball on Climate Change

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AUTHORS: Olivia E. LeDee, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: As natural resource managers, climate change impedes our ability to fulfill our missions. Yet, we are unable to address this threat in the same manner nor at the same pace. For some agencies, senior leaders and the public are the primary barriers to action. For other agencies, the primary barriers are information, capacity, and decision support. Despite these barriers, there are mechanisms to move the ball on climate change. To address political and information barriers, the first tier of inertia, I’ll demonstrate the benefit of close collaboration across state and federal agencies, namely the Midwest Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies and the Department of Interior Climate Science Centers. In the presence of support and information, a second level of institutional inertia may emerge– a demand for guidance. I’ll present the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources’ mechanism to address this barrier, an agency-wide climate adaptation and mitigation policy. Finally, in the presence of information and guidance, a third tier of inertia may emerge— decision paralysis. I’ll present one case study using scenario planning to frame a complex management landscape and develop an action plan to proactively manage vulnerable brook trout populations in northern Minnesota. Three tools, collaboration, formal direction, and decision support, are effective mechanisms to address the three tiers of institutional inertia on climate change.

Tuesday January 26, 2016 1:20pm - 1:40pm EST
Vandenberg A