Luna Community College Seed Award

Building the Capacity to Monitor Climate Change and Manage Lands to Minimize Climate Impacts in New Mexico

Lead Investigators: Richard P. McNeill & Dr. Andrew Feldman

Project Summary

Plants are the one of the most critical elements of the environment affected by climate change. The temporal changes in temperature and hydrology affects phenology, distribution and diversity of plants species. These changes will have one of the greatest impacts on human populations. Understanding how plants respond to climate change will enable researchers and land managers to evaluate and modify management practices to minimize the impacts on the plants of an area as a result of climate change.

This project has two approaches. The first is to increase the infrastructure that supports botanical education and research for students and professionals. This would include equipment and teaching materials. These tools would help ensure that students have the best possible understanding of the processes and issues related to plants, hydrology and climate change. Students and professionals should be familiar with the tools and procedures used to understand and manage these issues, and have access to the tools and research material needed for effective research and management. The second approach is to provide opportunities for students to work with scientists and land managers. This experience would provide students with a valuable understanding of the complexities and requirements of working in the natural resource field in a changing climate.

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