Mass ECAN April News

Mass ECAN April News

Our monthly newsletter provides curated information relevant to our community of practice. See below for:

Feel free to pass this message along to colleagues and encourage them to join us. At any point, you can reach out to with ideas about what our Network should tackle next.


Melissa Ocana
Climate Adaptation Coordinator, UMass Amherst

Mass ECAN Member Spotlight
Every month, we'll highlight someone in our community of practice so you can learn about the variety of adaptation work going on and "meet" a new colleague!
Deanna Moran
Director of Environmental Planning,
Conservation Law Foundation (CLF)

Bio: Deanna oversees CLF’s Community Resilience Program where her work is centered on climate adaptation and environmental justice through planning, policy, and regulation. She advocates for the use of green infrastructure as an adaptation solution, including parks and open space, which provide important community co-benefits like public access. Deanna also educates state and local decision-makers and elected officials on the importance of leveraging natural systems for adaptation and the urgency of climate change.

 Climate change adaptation project she’s currently excited about: CLF’s recently released report, “Climate Change & the Massachusetts Public Waterfront Act,” highlights how climate change and flooding will threaten public access to coastal tidelands across Massachusetts, including waterfront parks and open space, and highlights the changes the Commonwealth needs to make to protect this access. An estimated 1.6 million square feet of open space in Boston alone will be at risk of flooding by the end of this century and we advocate for changes to state regulations that streamline the use of green infrastructure as a climate adaptation measure.


News - Governor Baker announced yesterday that current Undersecretary of Climate Change, Katie Theoharides, will become the new Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary.

Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Program Funding -
The latest round of MVP grants awarded 27 communities a total of $725,000. Half of all MA municipalities are now in the program.

Planning Grants - See here for the RFR for the MVP FY19 Planning Grants. Applications accepted by communities on a rolling basis until May 3rd or until all funds have been awarded. The RFR also includes a helpful list of other State grant programs that can support implementation of adaptation actions.

Funding Opportunity - The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation is awarding grants through the National Coastal Resilience Fund to assist communities in strengthening their the resiliency of their coasts. Pre-proposals are being accepted through May 20th.

Award Opportunity - Nominations for the 2019 Climate Adaptation Leadership Awards for Natural Resources are now open. This award honors those who aim bolster resiliency of our country's natural resources. Nominate here until May 18.

Resource - Curious about climate adaptation work across the country? Check out the American Society of Adaptation Professionals (ASAP) reflections on the Regional Adapation Fora of 2018.

Resource - Science for Climate Action (SCAN) launch and recommendations for a new framework that applies climate reports in a sustained, user-oriented process instead of a one-off release: "The basic idea of a sustained [National Climate Assessment] is to better inform decision-making by providing access to knowledge of climate change and its potential impacts in a more flexible and ongoing way than through a series of reports."

Conference - South Shore Climate Change Symposium on May 9th will hold sessions on local adaptation case studies. Register here.

Event - Forestry with Birds and Climate in Mind on May 1st in Brookfield.

Webinar - Mapping Climate Change Refugia for Vernal Pools, with Jennifer Cartwright and Evan Grant of USGS. Hosted by the Northeast Climate Adaptation Science May 1st, 12pm, join here.

Job - New England Climate and Agriculture Program Manager, American Farmland Trust, Northampton

Job - Communities Responding to Extreme Weather (CREW), Program Coordinator, Better Future Project, Cambridge
Looking Back on One Year of
Mass ECAN Member Spotlights!

If you missed these highlights of your peers or any of the past newsletters, they are always available in our Past News Archive.
  1. Eric J. Roberts, Coastal Resilience Specialist, The Nature Conservancy, April 2018.

  2. Michelle Staudinger, Science Coordinator, DOI Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center, May 2018.

  3. Stefanie Covino, Coordinator, Shaping The Future of Your Community Program, formerly Mass Audubon (now City of Worcester), June 2018

  4. Darci Schofield, Senior Environmental Planner, Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC), July 2018.

  5. Julia Knisel, Coastal Shoreline and Floodplain Manager MA Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM), August 2018.

  6. Bethany Bradley, Associate Professor, Dept. of Environmental Conservation, UMass Amherst, September 2018.

  7. Rachel Weiter, Water Resources Engineer, Fuss & O'Neill, Nov. 2018.

  8. Kristen Ferry, Habitat Restoration Program Manager, MA DER, December 2018

  9. Kimberly Noake MacPhee, Land Use & Natural Resources Program Manager, Franklin Regional Council of Governments, January 2019

  10. Marissa Weiss, Program Manager, Harvard Forest, February 2019.

  11. Dr. Susanne Moser, Director/Principal Researcher of Susanne Moser Research & Consulting; Research Faculty at Antioch University New England, March 2019.

I love the National Adaptation Forum. It is full of inspiration and inspiring people. I'm taking away some promising ideas and renewed connections as we begin to shape the Coastal Resilience program out of the Gloucester Marine Station. Exciting!
-Katie Kahl, UMass Amherst Extension Faculty

Reflections on the National Adaptation Forum

The National Adaptation Forum is my second favorite conference (second only to our own, of course!). The 4th National Adaptation Forum (NAF) was held in Madison, WI over three packed days, April 23-25. It is the bi-annual gathering of climate adaptation professionals from across the country. NAF is a smorgasbord – it provides little tastes of every sector in the climate adaptation field. It is the perfect place to get an overview of adaptation practice in our country and to consider how your work overlaps with other sectors.

The National Adaptation Forum serves many purposes as a:

      celebration of the amazing, innovative work being done on the ground by passionate and tireless practitioners and researchers;

      source of inspiration to take home what we’ve learned and apply it to our own projects;

      respite for those working in parts of the country where climate change is considered a dirty word;

      collective morale boost for those coping with the daily ups and downs of tackling such a challenging and monumental issue;

      place to strengthen connections and work together to advance the field of climate adaptation.


For those that couldn’t attend, here are some of my takeaways and what I heard at the conference:

Read More >
Michelle Staudinger - NE Climate Adaptation Science Center, presents in a session on coastal resilience.
Top: Deanna Moran - Conservation Law Foundation, Toni Lyn Morelli - NE Climate Adaptation Science Center, Julie Wormser - Mystic River Watershed Association, and Melissa Ocana - UMass Amherst steal a moment between sessions.
Bottom Left: John Bolduc - City of Cambridge, visits the Climate Adaptation Fund exhibitor table.
Bottom Right: Darci Schofield - MAPC, speaks about the role of municipalities in land conservation for climate adaptation co-benefits.

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