Pacific Islands-Alaska CASC Collaboration

Parallels across the Pacific

mendenhall glacier in afternoon light

Mendenhall Glacier in Southeast Alaska

Steep watersheds with dramatic environmental gradients are familiar features of both the Pacific Islands and Southeast Alaska, and both locations are experiencing significant alterations to watershed ecosystems and environmental processes due to climate change.

On high Pacific Islands, the holistic ecosystem view linking coastal watersheds to the ocean is dubbed “ridge to reef” (R2R) while Alaska terms it “icefield to ocean” (I2O). Regardless of terminology, both regions are experiencing impacts through terrestrial, freshwater, and nearshore marine ecosystems via the movement of water, energy, biota, and nutrients. Human communities in both regions depend on the cultural and ecosystem services provided by these linked land-to-coastal marine systems.

kaui mountains and see

Kalalau Valley, Hawai'i

The Alaska and Pacific Islands Climate Adaptation Science Centers have joined forces to address these similar local challenges together, in a collaboration unique to the CASC network.

Scientists from each region are teaming up to perform cross-regional research, cultural engagement, and synthesis, developing a variety of forums for scientists, managers, and students to jointly explore these systems and exchange knowledge as a means to support community-based climate adaptation.

Pacific Islands-Alaska Projects

Pacific Island and Alaska Climate Adaptation Science Center Leadership

stephen gray

Stephen Gray
AK CASC Federal Director

scott rupp

Scott Rupp
AK CASC University Director

Mari-Vaughn Johnson

Mari-Vaughn Johnson
PI CASC Federal Director

darren lerner

Darren Lerner
PI CASC University Director

graphic of coastal mountains showing the connection between ridge to reef on one side and icefield to ocean on the other, with the alaska and pacific islands climate adaptation science center logos