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Boesch, D.F., J.C. Field, and D. Scavia. 2000. The Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change on Coastal Areas and Marine Resources. NOAA Coastal Ocean Program Decision Analysis Series 21. Silver Spring, MD. 163 pp.

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The issues and problems associated with coastal and marine resources, and their current or potential relationship to climate, have continued to receive a high level of national and international attention. Headlines draw attention to subjects ranging from disastrous hurricanes and one of the strongest El Niño events in recent history, to the latest collapse of marine fish stocks and massive coral reef die-offs associated with elevated sea surface temperatures. Thus it should come as no surprise that climate variability, and the potential consequences of future climate change, are of considerable interests to stakeholders, policymakers and the general public, especially as they may act as an additional stressor to coastal and marine resources.The primary objective of this assessment is to detail the potential impacts to coastal and marine resources associated with climate variability and potential climate change. This is done within the guidelines generated by the National Assessment Synthesis Team. While the focus will be on the impacts of climate to coastal and marine resources, it has also proven necessary to focus on climate forcing mechanisms to set the stage for those impacts. In addition, individual case studies, which focus on specific ecosystems or issues, have been included to generate an understanding of specific examples of climate impacts.

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