The Southcentral Test Case, based at the University of Alaska Anchorage, focuses on drivers of change in the communities of the Kenai River watershed. The area is subject to multiple drivers of change, including global and regional temperature and precipitation changes; salmon population fluctuations; a recent tourism downturn; recreational pressure from Anchorage; shrinking wetlands and successional change; and forest fire dynamics. Hydrological changes in the area include river discharge, water temperature, and sedimentation, while landcover changes include urbanization, resource extraction, infrastructure, drying wetlands, and forest fires. These multiple interacting factors form the basis of a ‘messy’ social-ecological system and necessitate response and adaptation by communities in the watershed. Research is broadly organized into five categories, each of which influence other drivers and form the basis of a 'messy' social ecological system. These categories are: hydro-climate, landscape change, aquatic ecology, salmon fishery and human dynamics.
SCTC_watersheds.zip (122 KB)