Location: Alaska Statewide
Project Date: Various
Project Lead: Chris Beck, Shelly Wade
Aleutian Bering Sea Island Landscape Conservation Cooperative Strategic Planning, 2014-present
Agnew::Beck recently facilitated a two day strategic planning session for this collaborative organization. The Landscape Conservation Cooperative works to better understand and then develop strategies to respond to changing environmental challenges in marine and terrestrial environments in western Alaska. This region is facing increasing serious issues related to ocean acidification, invasive species, and dramatic increases in marine vessel traffic. The board represents diverse interests in the region, including agencies, non-profits, scientists, and tribal entities. Agnew::Beck helped the board translate their broad mission and vision statement into a specific two-year operations action plan. The strategic plan sets priorities among a range of possible actions, and provides a framework to guide staff and generate additional organization funding.
Chugach National Forest and Kenai Peninsula Climate Vulnerability Assessment, 2014 to present
Agnew::Beck facilitated meetings between physical scientists and economists about an assessment of landscape and community vulnerability to climate change in the Chugach National Forest and Kenai Peninsula. Agnew::Beck is translating the results of the technical research into a more easily understood and impactful format. An additional product of the work is an outline of how to work with Native communities to share this information and gain their perspectives. This work will be published in the Vulnerability Assessment in late 2015.
LCC Cross-Collaboration, 2014
Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCCs) are self-directed partnerships of Federal, State, and Tribal entities. Of a national network of 22 LCCs, five are either wholly or partially contained within the State of Alaska. Agnew::Beck, with the Wildlife Management Institute, designed and facilitated a day long workshop to assist the five Alaska landscape conservation cooperatives to brainstorm strategies to guide them in coming years. The workshop began with presentations on the work LCCs were doing. After lunch, the 50+ participants attended two of five small group work sessions on the following topics:
- Processes for identifying, prioritizing and filling cross-LCC science needs.
- Options to improve and better coordinate business practices among the 5 LCCs.
- Strategies to increase and leverage funding or other resources and to influence other entities to produce products or take actions that support the LCC mission.
- Strategies to share LCC science and information products, and to improve two-way communication between LCC’s and agencies, residents, communities, our conservation partners, other public stakeholders.
- Strategies to support species and habitat conservation, and to advance common conservation objectives for the five LCCs.
The second group to workshop the topic reported out to the whole group at the end of the day. Following the work session, Agnew::Beck compiled and shared a meeting summary and drafted an action plan for the steering committee.
Aleutian Bering Climate Vulnerability Assessment Community Facilitation, 2014
The global climate is changing and observed changes in Alaska are some of the most rapid in the world. Climate change could affect local communities in profound ways, some good, some bad, and many unknown. The Aleutian Bering Sea Island Landscape Conservation Cooperative (ABSI LLC) directs publically funded research to benefit landscapes and the people who live in them. Funded by the Alaska Ocean Observing System, ABSI LCC hired Agnew::Beck to facilitate a community dialogue in Unalaska on climate change in the Aleutian Islands and Bering Sea. A::B designed a workshop that included presentations on climate modeling by University of Washington professor Nick Bond, and then asked participants their input using audience live polling technology and discussion across three categories: observed changes in the physical environment and marine life, concern about impacts to human and adaptation efforts, and where the community suggests directing future research. Over forty people attended the workshop, which was then followed up by a rebroadcast and radio show to extend the discussion. The community dialogue was incorporated into the ABCVA report which documents observed and predicted changes to the environment and communities as a result of climate change.
Pacific Coast Joint Venture (Pacific Birds), 2013-present
Agnew::Beck has worked with Pacific Coast Joint Venture (now Pacific Birds) since 2013, helping the organization restructure its mission and programs to work at a regional/flyway scale. Pacific Birds, like the LCC’s, focuses on habitat conservation, working in partnership with a broad range of agencies, land trusts, environmental organizations and other non-profits. Our specific assignments have included helping Pacific Birds develop new communications strategies, facilitating meetings with staff and the Pacific Birds Board, developing specific habitat conservation “initiatives” including an initiative focused on coastal climate change. Our current assignment is helping Pacific Birds develop fundraising strategies. Through this work A::B has gained a good deal of knowledge of the habitats that are at risk as a result of climate change, and of the partners and funders that can be brought together to address these challenges.
Alaska Geographic Youth Climate Summit, 2010
In September of 2010, Agnew::Beck facilitated the First Annual Alaska Geographic Youth Summit on Climate Change. At the Summit, held in Anchorage, Alaska, Senior Planner and Lead Facilitator, Shelly Wade, facilitated over 40 youth representatives as they gathered to share their summer outdoor field experiences and to learn about job opportunities. Students came from St. Paul Island, Arctic Village, Kodiak, Cordova, Homer, Kenai, Anchorage, Valdez, and Seattle. The youth had all worked, volunteered, or participated in research collection on the Chugach National Forest, Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge, and the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge. They learned about future job opportunities in public lands during a panel that included representatives from the US Forest Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Alaska Pacific University, UAA’s Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program, Youth Employment in Parks, and many others.
The summit was part of the Chugach Children’s Forest Initiative, as a part of the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Youth in the Great Outdoors Initiative, which aims to employ, educate, and engage young people from all backgrounds in exploring, connecting with and preserving America’s natural and cultural heritage. The summit was presented by Alaska Geographic in partnership with the USDA Forest Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, and National Audubon Together Green.
Chugach National Forest Climate Change Facilitation, 2010
Agnew::Beck facilitated a pre-planning meeting for the Chugach Climate Symposium with the University of Alaska Anchorage.