Learn about our two programs:
Become a leader in the field of climate adaptation! Model Forest Policy Program offers the highly regarded Climate Solutions University to develop leaders who assist communities in the challenging work of adapting to climate change. Learn how to plan beyond jurisdictional boundaries and protect vulnerable citizens and the natural resources on which they depend.
Preparing your community for climate adaptation is critical. Smart planning protects vulnerable citizens from floods and drought, conserves water resources, preserves watershed health, stabilizes micro-climates, maintains species habitat, preserves the economy, and ensures local and regional climate resilience.
The climate adaptation plan you create is ready for implementation. The finished product is thorough and specific. It includes action steps, timelines, deliverables, and responsible parties. In other words, this plan will not sit on the shelf!
Benefit from building resilience for at-risk urban and rural citizens. You are a good fit to participate if you seek to build community capacity for climate resilience for at-risk urban and rural citizens, and the critical forested watershed ecosystems and ecosystem services upon which they depend. As part of the program, upstream rural areas will partner with urban municipalities whose water resources, public health, and economic stability depend on ecosystem services in adjacent rural areas.
Communities with other planning processes can also qualify. Climate Solutions University is also for those whose communities’ whose land use or comprehensive plans are up for revision, whose watershed plans fail to address how climate change impacts hydrology, or those struggling to implement a completed plan. Join our network of communities implementing their adaptation plans!
Economic & Fiscal Sustainability: The economies of many cities are directly impacted by risks to drinking water, public safety and infrastructure associated with resource activity and impacts from upstream areas. Climate adaptation planning in partnership with rural areas ensures the economic sustainability of these resources. In a challenging fiscal environment, maintaining a strong economy dependent on healthy environmental resources is crucial.
Climate Adaptation Plan Development Program
Join the more than 30 communities that have planned and increased resilience through Climate Solutions University! This innovative program led by climate change experts from Model Forest Policy Program, Cumberland River Compact, and Key Log Economics is for communities that need to create a human-centered regional forest & water adaptation plan that integrates urban-rural linkages, emphasizes protection of vulnerable citizens, and safeguards critical forest and water ecosystem services. The program is also suitable for organizations and municipalities who wish to integrate forest, water, and economic strategies into exiting plans and processes.
Through the program communities will understand and work to attain the benefits of improved land stewardship. You will learn market solutions, based in solid research, that foster positive, sustainable connections between community, economic, and ecosystem health. This includes quantifying the economic benefits of natural resource conservation and developing market-based solutions to natural resource challenges.
From January – December, your organization creates an effective, team-based, and actionable climate adaptation plan with steps to form and engage a local planning team; conduct a local climate, forest, water, vulnerable citizen, and economic risk analysis; develop practical adaptation strategies; involve and protect vulnerable citizens, and build public support to implement your plan.
Program Activities (All participation is online, interactive, and engaging)
- Build an urban/rural partnership support team for collaborative adaptation planning.
- Conduct a local climate, forest, water, vulnerable citizen, and economic risk analysis.
- Learning through two live, 90 minute interactive webinars each month.
- Receive ongoing guidance, plan review, and research assistance from adaptation experts
- Involve & Protect vulnerable citizens in your climate adaptation plan.
- Complete your plan with analysis and editing support.
- Exclusive access to MFPP’s Listserv with current climate adaptation resources and grant announcements.
- Learn from and work with 4-6 other communities participating in the curriculum.
- Network with past and present Climate Solutions University participants.
- Benefit from 1-1 fundraising assistance. Joint fundraising opportunities!
- Enjoy full access to all activities, speakers, working groups for those communities implementing their plans.
- Build your organizational and personal leadership capacity.
- A team-created Climate Adaptation Plan that addresses regional climate resilience, integrates urban-rural linkages, emphasizes protection of vulnerable citizens, assesses economic conditions, and safeguards critical forest and water ecosystem services.
- Engaged local stakeholder team for ongoing adaptation support.
- Public support for taking action through your climate adaptation plan.
- Recognition as a community leader in the field of climate adaptation.
Limited space is available and participants are selected based on those that are the best fit! Contact Josh Dye to discuss your interest – Josh@mfpp.org or 612-481-8059.
Climate Adaptation Plan Implementation Program
The Plan Implementation program is open now for enrollment for communities with an existing adaptation plan that is not fully implemented. Our team helps you put your plan into action. We partner with communities for up to five years as each works to implement its plan.
The Plan Implementation program features:
- Customized individual coaching to help implement the plan.
- National webinars with climate experts.
- Connections to federal agencies working on climate adaptation.
- Interaction with our network of communities implementing adaptation plans.
- Access to our online virtual curriculum.
Topics covered in recent Plan Implementation webinars include:
- Generating revenue for climate adaptation.
- Balancing information and relationships in climate adaptation communications.
- Building support for climate action in the conservative religious community.
- Communicating climate change data to decision makers.
- Case Study: Ecosystem services in Shasta County, California.
- Leadership and self-care.
Topics covered in recent Plan Implementation coaching sessions include:
- Policy development and regulatory change.
- Building your implementation team.
- Citizen Science (volunteer data collection & public education).
- Developing an economic message.
- Ecosystem services.
- Building support from conservatives.
Contact Josh Dye to discuss your interest – firstname.lastname@example.org or 612-481-8059.
Climate Solutions University Success Stories
In Sumner County, TN the 2035 Comprehensive Plan now includes climate resilience measures including a goal for new steep slope protection ordinances, and a county wide 2% increase in tree canopy, reversing tree loss trends along headwater streams.
In Taos, NM, the town awakened to water supply threats and adopted a new water conservation ordinance.
In Durango, CO, the Mountain Studies Institute is active in climate resilience with ecological restoration project and adaptive management through climate change monitoring for the San Juan Resource Management Plan.
In Keene, NH, the Sustainability Project members facilitated adoption of the Ashuelot River 10 year Implementation Plan. It is the first river protection document in the state to address climate change, for which they received recognition.
In Moab, UT, the Canyonlands Watershed Council’s climate planning contributed to receiving a $50,000 grant and recently created the Moab Area Watershed Partnership (MAWP) covering over 11,000 square miles and five designated impaired water bodies.
In Missoula, MT, the Clark Fork Coalition is integrating county adaptation planning with US Forest Service climate strategies.
“The support system Dan River Basin Association (DRBA) built through Climate Solutions University- from state and federal government agencies, to local leaders, to other environmental groups – were vital to DRBA in responding to and navigating media relations, public concerns, and corporate negotiations. ….because of Climate Solutions University, we were able to quickly find our bearings after the Dan River coal ash spill and move into action, into the solution. We worked with our partners to press for and won passage of the strongest coal ash management laws in the nation.”
~Jenny Edwards, 2011 participant, Dan River Basin Association, NC
“I think the CSU program is well organized and in a great format for writing a climate adaptation plan. I am excited to start implementing!”
~ Morgan Green, 2014 Participant, Nisqually River Council, WA
“I highly recommend any agency seeking to pursue these issues engage MFPP for assistance. They fully understand the complexities of problems associated with forest, water and climate and how various policies can be implemented for governmental institutions to modify and change their existing directives and policies.”
~ James A. Stafne, Chairman Cookeville Planning Commission, TN
Who should apply to Climate Solutions University?
- Community leaders of local government agencies
- Watershed organizations and resource conservation districts
- Civic organizations
Curriculum Director Gwen Griffith explains the program and why you should apply.