Climate Change Response Framework

The Climate Change Response Framework (CCRF) is a collaborative, cross-boundary approach among scientists, managers, and landowners to incorporate climate change considerations into natural resource management.


There is no single solution for how natural resource managers and landowners should adapt to climate change. Every manager and landowner has different goals and information needs, as well as a range of tolerances for risk. The CCRF works side-by-side with people across the land management community  to help them consider how climate change may affect their lands and what options they have for responding to changing conditions.

The CCRF uses the best available science to advance climate change adaptation through four interrelated efforts: Partnerships, Vulnerability Assessments, Adaptation Resources, and Adaptation Demonstrations.



The CCRF is expanding our toolkit to support a broader array of stakeholders as more land managers and landowners are requesting information on how to adapt to change. 

Vulnerability Assessments

The Mid-Atlantic vulnerability assessment and accompanying StoryMap was published, wrapping up a series of 8 ecoregional assessments. New field guides for Wisconsin and Pennsylvania provide accessible summaries of the assessments. NIACS also helped lead an ongoing vulnerability assessment with Apostle Islands National Lakeshore and launch an urban vulnerability assessment for the city of Austin.

training exercise, post-its on wall

Adaptation Resources and Demonstrations

Partner interest has spurred several new menus of adaptation strategies and approaches on a wide array of topics. New menus for tribal perspectives, forested watersheds, and non-forested wetlands were developed and published with the help of numerous partners and can be used with the Adaptation Workbook. Several additional menus are in development and undergoing review. 

The network of Adaptation Demonstrations continues to expand, providing hundreds of real-world examples of climate-informed management. An updated website showcases more than 150 adaptation demonstration projects. 

NIACS staff worked closely with many state agency partners over the past year, expanding agency-wide efforts beyond Pennsylvania DCNR to agencies in New York and Colorado. We continue to support all 15 regional National Forest units, and worked on integrating climate change into the forest plan revision for the Wayne National Forest. 


NIACS continues to be a recognized leader in delivering high-quality training to natural resource professionals. Twelve trainings were hosted using the Adaptation Planning and Practices curriculum, including 3 online offerings. During the past 6 years, NIACS has delivered 50 of these trainings to more than 1,000 natural resource professionals!

"I just wanted to let you how happy I am with the workshop up in Minnesota. The Tribal Adaptation Menu is fantastic. The way Kristen and the others did the workshop was beneficial because not only was it hands on, but we had to do preparation before the workshop."

- Yvette Wiley, Director, Office of Environmental Services, Iowa Tribe of Oklahomas




The CCRF turned 10 in 2019, and it just keeps growing! The CCRF is increasingly influencing the rest of the country through the USDA Climate Hubs, with American Forests spurring the development of a CCRF project in California in partnership with NIACS and the California Climate Hub. Work funded through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative and USDA Climate Hubs is taking on issues related to adaptation in forested watersheds and riparian areas. New menus of adaptation strategies and approaches menus are expanding the Adaptation Workbook to new subjects, including carbon, wildlife, and recreation.


2019 Fast Facts

14 real-world projects have used the Tribal Adaptation Menu so far

Hundreds of partners - federal, tribal, state, and private

300+ demonstration projects

12 adaptation planning and practices trainings