NOAA Fisheries has launched its new Climate Vulnerability Assessment Tool! It provides easy access to vulnerability information from all of the current Climate Vulnerability Assessments in one convenient location. Previously, these assessments were only available as individual reports on the NOAA Fisheries website or via scientific journals.
As part of its commitment to addressing the impacts of climate change, NOAA Fisheries conducts Climate Vulnerability Assessments on fish stocks, protected species, habitats, and fishing communities. The Climate Vulnerability Assessment Tool provides an easy way for scientists, academia, and decision makers to find vulnerability information on nearly 400 marine-related species and habitats.
Climate Vulnerability Assessments provide decision makers with information on which species, habitats, and communities may be most susceptible to climate change. They also show where action may be needed to help reduce impacts and increase resilience to changing ocean conditions. The information is also being used to guide research on possible climate impacts and solutions. The assessments estimate vulnerability to climate change based on:
- Level of exposure to projected changes in the environment (such as increased ocean temperatures)
- Sensitivity to these changes based on life history characteristics (such as diet and reproductive rate)
Currently, the Climate Vulnerability Assessment Tool pulls data from seven completed assessments:
- Atlantic Marine Mammal Climate Vulnerability Assessment
- Northeast Fish and Shellfish Stock Climate Vulnerability Assessment
- West Coast Salmon Vulnerability Assessment
- Bering Sea Fish Stock Climate Vulnerability Assessment
- West Coast Fish Stock Climate Vulnerability Assessment
- Pacific Islands Marine Life Climate Vulnerability Assessment
- Northeast Habitat Climate Vulnerability Assessment
The Climate Vulnerability Assessment Tool will be regularly updated as data from new assessments are made available. Several other Climate Vulnerability Assessments are in progress, including assessments for sea turtles, Atlantic highly migratory species, and Gulf of Mexico fish stocks.