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CANCELLED --- Colloquium - Dr. Jeffrey Maynard

Mapping Coral Reef Vulnerability to Climate Change to Inform Reef Conservation and Climate Policy
When Feb 09, 2018
from 03:30 PM to 04:30 PM
Where Arts & Letters 105
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Mapping Coral Reef Vulnerability to Climate Change to Inform Reef Conservation and Climate Policy


Dr. Jeffrey Maynard
Director and Senior Scientist
SymbioSeas and the Marine Applied Research Center
Host: Arielle Levine

Vulnerability will drive spatial variation in the fate of coral reefs under climate change. Vulnerability can be assessed using a framework that combines exposure of the ecosystem to climate stress, sensitivity of the ecosystem to that stress, and the capacity of the ecosystem to adapt to climate impacts. In this framework, sensitivity is a combination of the capacity of the system to resist and recover from disturbances, collectively referred to as resilience, and the extent to which resilience is reduced by human activities. Data are available at a range of scales for coral reefs for all components of the climate vulnerability assessment framework. Our team has become a world leader in compiling these data and producing decision-support tools and guidance for managers, conservationists and policymakers. We developed state-of-art downscaled climate model projections of the sea temperature conditions that cause severe coral bleaching. The results identify potential climate refugia and show how much reefs would benefit from emissions reductions pledges becoming reality. We also developed guidance for assessing spatial variation in reef resilience, and a framework for interpreting maps of resilience potential that managers use to target actions. Coral reef resilience and vulnerability to climate change have rarely been explicitly included in the spatial planning of marine protected areas. I will describe the consequences of that in Indonesia, and new opportunities arising in Malaysia. This will all be weaved into a 45-minute story, complete with anecdotes for students on my unique career path and what I think the future holds.


Dr. Maynard leads a research non-profit called SymbioSeas and a consultancy called the Marine Applied Research Center, based in Wilmington, North Carolina. SymbioSeas’ mission is to develop decision-support tools to help managers maximize coral reef and coastal community resilience to climate change. To deliver on this mission, teams he leads use (in no particular order): common sense, climate models, remote sensing, GIS, statistical models, graphic design, and clever writing. He and his teams have published many articles and reports in the fields of decision and conservation science, marine policy, and coral reef ecology and marine biology.

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