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Date Permissions Signed


Date of Award

Spring 2021

Document Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Environmental Studies

First Advisor

Laninga, Tamara Jean

Second Advisor

Peterson, David L. (David Lawrence), 1954-

Third Advisor

Wang, Grace A.


Public lands in the United States serve critical roles for ecosystems and humans alike, but they have become increasingly vulnerable to climate change. Many agencies have attempted to reduce negative effects of climate change through adaptation planning. This research evaluates the implementation of the North Cascadia Adaptation Partnership (NCAP), which was developed in 2010 to provide science-based guidance to land managers in the North Cascades Ecosystem (Raymond, Peterson & Rochefort, 2013). The NCAP consists of four federal land units: North Cascades National Park, Mt. Baker- Snoqualmie National Forest, Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, and Mt. Rainier National Park. Relying on survey and interview data, I assess how land managers are perceiving and responding to climate change, but more specifically how they are using the North Cascadia Adaptation Partnership vulnerability assessment. While some differences are apparent between the National Park Service and U.S. Forest Service agencies, common factors influencing implementation of strategies and tactics include level of collaboration, barriers, and agency culture. I conclude with recommendations for how agencies can better incorporate climate change adaptation planning and action into existing planning and decision-making processes. Adaptation partnership outcomes would be enhanced with regular revisions and repeated workshop offerings, as well as continued evaluation of climate change focused research.




Public Lands, Climate Change, Adaptation, National Parks, National Forests


Western Washington University

OCLC Number


Subject – LCSH

Forests and forestry--Climatic factors--Washington (State); Forest ecology--Washington (State); Ecosystem management--Washington (State); Public lands--Washington (State)--Management




masters theses




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