Integrating Climate Change in California Cooperative Extension Programs Workshop
Background: The University of California’s Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR) has worked with Californians for more than 100 years to solve problems in agriculture, natural resources and food systems. Climate change compounds these problems, making it more difficult for UC ANR to achieve its vision for a thriving California in 2025.
UC ANR academics and staff are mobilizing to address the threat of climate change. For example, the ANR leadership supported the establishment of a climate change program team in 2015, with the primary goal of building capacity within Cooperative Extension to better serve the public in addressing climate change impacts and adaptation challenges.
Survey results on climate change: As one of the its first activities, members of the program team distributed an online survey in early 2017, reaching out to approximately one thousand UC ANR faculty, specialists, advisors, and staff to evaluate interests and experiences in incorporating climate change science into research and extension programs. The results (published in Cal Ag) indicated:
- There is an overwhelming agreement on the importance of addressing climate change.
- At the same time, fewer than half of the respondents currently incorporate climate change in their extension programming in some way.
- Many respondents also had a low level of confidence in their current ability to incorporate climate change in their extension programming.
- Perceived barriers included lack of access to climate information relevant to their extension programs and clientele, limited familiarity with climate science fundamentals, and fear of alienating clientele by taking about a contentious topic.
Next steps - RREA workshop: In part as a response to these survey results, the program team submitted an RREA proposal to develop a pilot professional development opportunity for UC ANR academics and staff to increase our capacity to integrate climate change into extension programming. The workshop was held February 6 & 7, 2018 at Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Parlier, CA
Workshop Report, Agenda and Materials
February 6, 2018
10:30-11:30 Climate Change and Cooperative Extension - On the Front Lines in a Warming World Mike Crimmins, Extension Specialist, University of Arizona
11:30am-12:30 State of the state: Climate change in California
- Climate Change in California, Tapan Pathak, UC ANR
- Visualizing Climate-Related Risks to the Natural Gas System using Cal-Adapt, Maggi Kelly, UC Berkeley
- Climate change impacts on human health and well-being, Arnold Bloom, UC Davis
1:30pm-2:15pm Lightning talks: Current projects in climate extension in UC ANR ?
- A role for HR in Climate Change Education, Jeff Mitchell, UC Davis
- Climate Stewards Initiative of the California Naturalist, Greg Ira, UC ANR
- Statewide Nutrition, Family and Consumer Sciences Program, Anna Martin, UC ANR
- Climate Change and California Rangelands, Leslie Roche, UC Davis
- Climate Change Water and Freshwater Ecosystems, Ted Grantham, UC Berkeley
- Climate Change - Youth and Families, Woutrina Smith, UC Davis
2:15-3:45pm The Art and Science of Climate Communication, Faith Kearns, UC ANR
February 7, 2018: 8:30-9:30am
- A Successful Extension Approach to Climate Communication - Lessons from Adapt LA, Nick Sadrpour, USC Sea Grant
- USDA Climate Hubs - Actionable Climate Information for California's Farmers Ranchers and Foresters, Steve Ostoja, California Climate Hub
- California's Fourth Climate Assessment, Guido Franco, California Energy Commission