Incorporating social-ecological considerations into basin-wide responses to climate change in the Colorado River Basin

Lucas S. Bair, Charles B. Yackulic, John C. Schmidt, Denielle M. Perry, Christine J. Kirchhoff, Karletta Chief, Benedict J. Colombi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

2 Scopus citations


During the last 50 years, construction of dams in the western United States declined. This is partly because of increasing recognition of diverse and unintended social-ecological consequences of dams. Today, resource managers are recognizing the wide array of tradeoffs and are including a more diverse group of stakeholders in decision making for individual dams. Yet decisions at the regional scale maintain a focus on a limited number of resources and objectives, leading to inefficient and inequitable outcomes. Social-ecological changes compounded by climate change challenge this management paradigm. Increasing water demands for humans and the environment and renewed interest in hydropower present opportunities for operations that include climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies while considering tradeoffs and equitable responses at the regional scale.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14-19
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent Opinion in Environmental Sustainability
StatePublished - Apr 2019


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)

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