Western Region Symposium on Animal Agriculture in a Changing Climate March 31, 2015

These presentations were from the Western Region Symposium on Animal Agriculture in a Changing Climate at the Waste to Worth Conference, Seattle WA. 3/31/2015.

Climate Change Impacts On Western Livestock

Lara Whitely-Binder is an outreach specialist with the University of WA’s Climate Impact’s Group.  Her presentation describes the Western U.S regional climate outlook and projected impacts to agriculture. She examines the impacts (some positive, some negative) on water supply, changes in yield, rangeland fire risk and forage quality, and milk and beef production.

Livestock Grazing In a Changing Climate: Implications for Adaptive Management

Justin Derner, PhD is a Rangeland scientist with the USDA-ARS in Cheyenne, WY, and the director of the Northern Plains Climate Hub in Ft. Collins, CO. This presentation discusses livestock grazing in a changing climate and the implications for adaptive management on rangelands. Adaptive management is a process by which a manager is constantly evaluating the system and making adjustments to reduce risks and uncertainty. View Dr. Derner’s proceedings paper for the conference.

USDA Northwest Region Climate Hub Update

Bea Van Horne, PhD is with the USDA Forest Service and the director of the USDA for the Pacific Northwest Regional Climate Hub. She gave an update of the Pacific Northwest Climate Hub.  Climate change is expected to have significant impacts on agriculture. The climate hubs aim to deliver region-specific information and serve as a clearinghouse for providing science-based information to agricultural managers.

Beef Cattle Selection and Management For Adaptation To Drought

Megan Rolfe, PhD is an assistant professor in animal science department at Oklahoma State University and a beef extension specialist for the state of Oklahoma. The presentation discusses her program’s research findings on beef cattle selection and management for adaptation to drought. She discusses areas such as water intake, quality and quantity of available water, and animal performance and carcass characteristics under water restriction.

Adopting Policies and Priorities to Encourage Climate-Smart Agricultural Practices

Susan Capalbo is Professor and Department Head of Applied Economics at Oregon State University. She gave an presentation discussing ways to encourage the ag community to adopt practices and policy makers to create policies that are beneficial in terms of climate and food production.


This page was developed as part of a project “Animal Agriculture and Climate Change” an extension facilitation project to increase capacity for ag professionals. It was funded by USDA-NIFA under award # 2011-67003-30206. If you have questions about any of the topics or have problems with links, contact Crystal Powers cpowers2@unl.edu or Jill Heemstra jheemstra@unl.edu.

For questions about the AACC project, contact Rick Stowell rstowell2@unl.edu or Crystal Powers.

Global Climate Change – What Does It Mean For Us?

Climatologists are seeing noticeable patterns in data that points toward future weather that will be more extreme and extreme more often. In this presentation, Gary McManus, the State Climatologist for Oklahoma, discusses the basics of climate science, the trends and more. The lecture focuses on Oklahoma and the Southern Plains; however most of the information is relevant nationally.

This presentation was recorded at the “Climate and Cattle Workshop” held in November, 2014 in Stillwater, OK.

Introduction and Trends in Climate

Climate Science: The Basics

What is the greenhouse effect and what are the physics of this phenomenon?

Observational Data

What are we measuring that indicates climate is changing? What are some of nature’s indicators?

Climate Projections

How confident are climatologists in predicting future patterns? Where are there uncertainties?

Download links – Educational Resources

If you need to download a copy of a segment, submit a request.


This material was developed through support from the USDA National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA) under award #2011-67003-30206.

The project wishes to gratefully acknowledge Mr. McManus for presenting at the workshop and allowing us to record the lecture. David Smith, Texas A&M dwsmith@tamu.edu and Dr. Saqib Mukhtar organized the workshop.