Yahara 2070: Building resilience through conversations about future generations
A 5-year project funded by NSF (2011-2016) as part of the Water Sustainability and Climate (WSC) program is examining how ecosystem services vary and how they can be sustained in the Yahara River watershed as climate, land use, and human demands change over the next 60 years. To do so, a 25-member research team is using integrated scenarios – called Yahara 2070, numerical modeling, field research, and studies of water governance. Yahara 2070 is a set of four scenarios, written as short fiction stories, that depict what life for future generations could be like if current generations made different decisions about environmental challenges. It is a tool to help decision makers build regional resilience and to facilitate broad public discussion about a desirable future. Yahara 2070 was launched to the public in May 2014. The scenarios provide the basis to guide numerical models that will quantify changes in ecosystem services.