Welcome to the VCA
The Vermont Climate Assessment was created by a unique team at the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics at the University of Vermont. Led as a graduate course consisting of students with expertise in forestry, water resources, agriculture and farming, economy, community development and planning, energy and climate change science. Lead authors of each chapter garnered support from partners including the National Weather Service, state agencies, climate experts, and Vermont farms and businesses. All lead authors consulted, co-authored, or were reviewed with/by external experts in the subject matter. The leads collected data and subject matter from literature, interviews and observational data.
Why the VCA
The Vermont Climate Assessment seeks to address three main goals focused on the state of Vermont: 1) further scientific understanding of global change trends using local, historical data; 2) develop a deeper understanding of future impacts of climate change using simulations of future climate, and 3) communicate the current state of knowledge on global change impacts on Vermont, focusing on agricultural production, forests, water resources and recreation industries.
Additionally, the VCA serves to cultivate partnerships with stakeholders while investigating priority topics for research by performing a needs assessment to understand what information is most needed for adaptation and mitigation strategies to deliver Vermont towards a more resilient future.
We thank our partners for their support in bringing valuable insight and data information into the report.
We thank UVM’s office of Community-University Partnerships and Service Learning (CUPS) for endorsement of the VCA and assistance with the course by supporting Daniel Baker as a service learning teaching assistant. A number of partners were invaluable in the production of this report. We thank the National Climate Assessment for communication and coordination with national-scale reporting on climate change, in particular, Jerry Mellilo and Susan Hassol. In the state of Vermont, we thank the Secretary of Natural Resources, Deb Markowitz, her leadership team and staff who provided invaluable expertise to the project. Many state employees contributed to the review of material presented here and we thank them for their time. We thank the state climatologist, Lesley-Ann Dupigny-Giroux, for input on the VCA concept. Additional thanks to the UVM Extension School in providing assistance networking with stakeholders. Specifically, we thank Doug Lantagne, Terry Bradshaw, and Vern Grubinger. We also thank Ray Allan of Allanholm Farm for access to phenology data used in the agriculture chapter and insights into the apple business. Alan Betts has been an instrumental partner in the writing and critiquing of many parts of the VCA and we gratefully acknowledge his contributions. At the National Weather Service, Andy Nash and Paul Sisson have assisted in writing, reviewing and providing data for the VCA, providing a strong foundation in observational records of Vermont’s changing climate. A final thanks to The Gund Institute for providing start-up funds for the project and EPSCPR Research on Adaptation to Climate Change support in funding for graduate support by Ann Hoogenboom.