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Climate Change Already Playing Out in West, Report Says

Dec 19, 2012
(Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY  — A new report says the effects of climate change are already being felt in bug-infested forests of the Intermountain West, in reduced flows of the Colorado River basin and in the amount of snow that falls in the Rocky Mountains.

What is key, the report stresses, is how state and federal governments are responding and what land and natural resource conservation strategies can be embraced or expanded to counter the impacts.

"I think the bottom line is that these impacts are not going to happen 50 or 100 years from now," said Bruce Stein, director of climate change adaption with the National Wildlife Federation. "Many of them are already here, and we are going to have to be rethinking what we do to protect our wildlife and how we build and protect our communities."