California Department of Fish and Wildlife

2014 California Department of Fish and Wildlife Climate College

CDFW Climate College

In Spring 2014, CDFW will hold the second iteration of its Climate College, this time focusing on the state’s Marine resources and featuring tribal perspectives on marine ecosystem management.

The CDFW Climate College is intended to provide a basic foundation of knowledge for all staff and partners on climate change science and its impacts to fish, wildlife, and habitats. This iteration of the course will focus on how climate change affects the state’s marine resources to enhance participants’ understanding of marine-related climate change science, impacts to species and habitats, and the implications for marine region management and planning. In the interest of developing stronger partnerships between tribal nations and the Department, this course is being developed as a collaborative effort with tribal representatives, and will introduce traditional ecological knowledge (TEK). TEK can be defined as the “holistic, evolving practices and beliefs passed down through generations about the relationships of living beings to their environment” (Swinomish 2010, in National Strategy, 2013).

The course will describe California’s unique challenges and opportunities in managing its 1,100 miles of coastline, bays/estuaries, and marine protected areas under climate impacts. The course will also discuss case studies to show examples of responses to climate impacts. Through this course, the Department will demonstrate California’s continuing leadership in addressing climate impacts as well as managing natural resources through diverse input and coordination with similar efforts at the federal and local levels.

Lecture topics will cover atmospheric changes, physical oceanic changes, sea level rise, species response, and conservation planning. The lectures will also cover biological ocean changes such as primary productivity and related processes, and productivity/abundance/phenology. This course will also provide examples of adaptation strategies to address the issues discussed.

The course will consist of a 7-part lecture series scheduled to begin in February 2014, however specific course dates and times are still to be determined. Please check this web page for future updates. In the spirit of increasing climate literacy and partnership the course is open to all partners and the public. We encourage all who are interested to participate either in person or via WebEx.

Course Schedule, Registration and Materials

Below is a list of lectures and speakers for CDFW’s 2014 Climate College. This course is part of a training certification program for CDFW staff offered through an internal registration process.  For those individuals outside of CDFW, we also have a registration process for you.  Both are located below each class.  Please be sure to register for each class.  All lectures are open to anyone who is interested in participating, and will be recorded and posted for those unable to join on the day of the event.

Opening Class: February 10, 2014, 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.


Subject: Climate Science and Policy (PDF): This lecture includes introductions by Secretary for Resources John Laird and CDFW Director Chuck Bonham.

Location: State Resources Building, First Floor Auditorium, 1416 Ninth Street, Sacramento, CA


  • John Laird, Secretary for Natural Resources
  • Chuck Bonham, Director, CDFW
  • Catherine Kuhlman, Executive Director, California Ocean Protection Council
  • Kurt Malchow, Climate Change Advisor, CDFW


Class #2: March 10, 2014, 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.


Subject: Climate impacts on California’s marine waters (PDF

Location: NOAA/NMFS Southwest Fisheries Science Center, 110 Shaffer Road, Santa Cruz, CA 95060


  • Nate Mantua, NOAA/Southwest Fisheries Science Center



Class #3: April 3, 2014, 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.


Subject: Climate Change Impacts: Winds/Upwelling and California Current/Counter Currents.

Location: Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, Pacific Forum, 7700 Sandholdt Rd, Moss Landing,CA


  • Arthur Miller, Ph.D., Research Oceanographer. Scripps Institution of Oceanography
  • Francisco Chavez, Ph.D., Senior Scientist, Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute



Class #4: April 21, 2014, 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.


Subject: Climate Change Impacts: Hypoxia and Ocean Acidification.

Location: CDFW San Diego Field Office and Laboratory, San Diego, CA


  • Lisa Levin, Ph.D., Professor, Scripps Institution of Oceanography
  • Gretchen Hofman, Ph.D., Professor, University of California, Santa Barbara

Class #5: May 13, 2014, 10:00 a.m. - Noon


Subject: Climate Change Impacts: Sea Level Rise and Extreme Wind and Storm Events

Location: State Resources Building, 1416 9th Street, Conference Room 1131, Sacramento, CA



  • Tom Suchanek, Ph.D. - Scientist emeritus and Climate Science Coordinator, USGS

Class #6: June 5, 2014 (time TBD)


Subject: Climate Change Impacts to Pelagic Ecosystems

Location: Sonoma County Water Agency, Santa Rosa, CA



  • Bill Sydeman, Ph.D., Farallones Institute
  • Bill Peterson, Ph.D., NOAA Fisheries Service

Class #7: (date, time and location TBD)


Subject: Climate Adaptation Case Studies / Traditional Ecological Knowledge


Please check this web page for future updates.

If you have any issues registering, please send an email to Please include name/affiliation, email, and class #.

For further information contact

Archive: 2012-13 Climate College

In support of CDFW’s Science Institute initiative, the Fish and Wildlife Strategic Vision and the upcoming strategic vision process, the CDFW Climate Science Program provided the first of its kind lecture series on climate change as it relates to the mission of CDFW. The CDFW Climate College was designed to cover the fundamentals of climate science and provide tools and resources necessary to empower participants to better incorporate climate change into their professional responsibilities.