JTNP Announces Crossroads Conference Agenda

posted Nov 24, 2011, 10:43 PM by JTCA Contact   [ updated Nov 25, 2011, 12:43 PM ]

As part of a year-long celebration of the park's 75th Anniversary, Joshua Tree National Park and the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) are partnering to host a one day conference highlighting several topics:

  • the potential effects of global climate change
  • impacts of climate change on individual park species and native ecosystems
  • developing climate change science, monitoring programs, and climate change adaptation strategies

The symposium will be followed on December 3rd by a field trip to the park.

For additional information please contact the park's 75th Anniversary Coordinator George Land at 760-367-5507, or by email: george_land@nps.gov.

Joe Zarki
Public Information Officer
Joshua Tree National Park
email: joe_zarki@nps.gov

National Park Service and National Parks Conservation Association
Release Agenda for 'Crossroads' Conference.

Location: UCR, Palm Desert Campus Graduate Center
Date: Friday, December, 2nd

As Joshua Tree National Park winds down its year-long, 75th Anniversary celebration, the park is taking the opportunity to reflect on the challenges and opportunities of the next 75 years. At the December 2nd Crossroads Conference, park staff and a panel of accomplished speakers will shed light on some of the park’s pressing issues. Topics include the potential effects of global climate change at Joshua Tree National Park, climate change impacts on individual park species and native ecosystems, and developing climate change science, monitoring programs, and climate change adaptation strategies in the national parks.

Invited Speakers

  • Dr. Kenneth Cole is a recently retired USGS research ecologist with a background in geosciences, global change, and plant ecology. Since 1976, Dr. Cole has been an active researcher in paleoecology, paleoclimatology, geomorphology, successional ecology, and fire ecology, especially as they relate to vegetation change. He has published 52 peer-reviewed manuscripts on these subjects. Most of his research has concentrated on vegetation of the arid southwest, although he has also studied climate and fire-related vegetation changes in the Great Lakes Region, coastal California, and the Middle East. Since 1991 he has studied the effects of future climate change on ecosystems.

  • Dr. Cameron Barrows is currently an assistant research ecologist coordinating the Center for Conservation Biology’s Desert Studies Initiative at the University of California, Riverside. Dr. Barrow’s research focuses on the impacts of climate change on southwestern desert biodiversity and population persistence on fragmented landscapes. He has a Ph.D. from the University of California at Riverside, a M.S. in Biology from California State University at Long Beach, and a B.S. in Renewable Resources from the University of California at Davis. Dr. Barrows has been working to preserve species and landscapes throughout California serving as the Manager of the Northern California Coast Range Preserve and the Southern California Regional Manager for the Nature Conservancy and more recently as the Director of the Coachella Valley Preserve for the Nature Conservancy and the Center for Natural Lands Management.

  • Dr. Leigh Welling leads the NPS Climate Change Response Program, which provides training, technical expertise, project funding, and information products to support National Park Service actions that preserve the park resources and values in a changing climate. She has a Ph.D. and M.S. in Oceanography from Oregon State University and a B.A. in Geology from the University of Colorado, Boulder. She has been working in the climate change research and education arena since the mid-1980s and her research focused on ground-truthing hindcast models for paleo-oceanographic reconstruction.Prior to joining the National Park Service, Leigh held research faculty positions at the University of North Dakota and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where she taught, supervised students, and oversaw programs aimed at the intersection of science and decision-making.

Conference Schedule

Friday, December 2nd

12:30 Welcome by Superintendent Mark Butler
12:40 NPCA message by David Lamfrom
12:45 Proclamation-recognizing the 75th Anniversary-Marc Troast representing Congresswoman Mary Bono-Mack
1:50 Status of JOTR projects – sustainability, External Pressures, and Climate Change Actions at JTNP
1:00 Introduction to Speakers’ Forum
1:00 Dr. Kenneth Cole - Past, Recent and Future climate changes in the southwestern deserts and their effects on the range of Joshua Tree.
1:45 Dr. Cameron Barrows - The effect of scale in an analysis of the sensitivity of Joshua trees and other species to expected levels of climate change in Joshua Tree National Park.
2:30 Dr. Leigh Welling – Tools and Strategies for Adapting to Climate Change.
3:15 Break
3:30 Start panel discussion
4:00 Final Wrap up – Superintendent Mark Butler
4:10 Reception with 75th Anniversary Cake

Saturday, December 3rd

9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Field trip to Joshua Tree National Park.

All Crossroads Conference presentations and field trips are free of charge. Space on the field trips is limited. For more information and to RSVP, contact Joshua Tree’s 75th Anniversary Coordinator George Land at 760 367-5507, or email: george_land@nps.gov.



Contact: Joe Zarki, 760-367-5520

JTCA Contact,
Nov 24, 2011, 10:43 PM